We enjoyed Passover in Israel, especially being in Jerusalem on the day of the Priestly Blessing. What a joy! We hope that many of you will join us for Sukkot.
This week's Torah portion Acharei Mot "after the death" proved to be a deep one this week since I decided to focus the online classes on the cult of Molekh mentioned in the context of sexual sin. The cult of Molekh appears at the heart of two categories: forbidden sexual behavior and the occult. Significantly, the cult of Molekh will appear again next week in Kedoshim, "Holies."
Caution: Biblical Sexual Content Below
By re-acquainting us with the spirit of Molekh around the time of Passover each year, the annual reading cycle reminds us of the dark forces that we battle from day to day. Think of Abraham walking with Isaac, the type of Messiah, to Mount Moriah, passing by the very Valley of Ben-hinnom (Gehenna) where children were passed through the fire as sacrifices to Molekh. He'd skirt the southern edge of the valley, cross over, and ascend to Moriah, possibly somewhere in the area of the Zion Gate.
What could he have thought? Did Abraham "see" the abominable royal cult of the future Judean kings as he passed by? Would he have wondered how his willingness to kill Isaac and burn him as an olah offering to El Shaddai was any different from the evil going on in the valley below? The Word gives the answer to this question, and it illustrates a pattern of Scripture that appears repeatedly: an evil imposter or usurper is always camped adjacent to or atop the truly holy things to prevent resurrection life.
That evil imposter will persuade a human being that his wickedness is holy passion. "You will be like God..."
When the human is fully persuaded that his evil is holy zeal for the cause of the Divine, he will unable to receive sound doctrine. "You shall not eat."
When the human is fully persuaded that his evil is holy zeal, he will kill, believing it to be an act of sanctification dedicated to God. "You will surely die."
Such is the self-deception of the death cult of Molekh. The human being persuades himself to kill himself and his family. He will die for his sin. His child will die. The soul of the mother will die, for "
Can a woman forget her nursing child and have no compassion on the son of her womb?" (Is 49:15) Any normal mother will have to be silenced or persuaded to accept the death of her child as a noble thing.
The death-cult of Molekh was based on a human's desire to rule and be the authority. For this reason, it was the favored cult of the Judean kings, who desired military power. The name Molekh is derived from the three-letter Hebrew root
malak, which means king, ruler. Ironically, the cult of Molekh prospered by killing or silencing those who were weaker. Sound familiar? The cult was practiced all over the Near and Middle East in ancient times, from Malta to Mesopotamia. Even today, Islam recognizes "Malik" as the gatekeeper of death. It has always been a death cult that promoted dominance.
"Death and life are in the hand of the tongue." Proverbs 18:21 (or Je 9:7)
The Seven Abominations are:
Hands that shed innocent blood
A heart devising wicked plans
Feet that run quickly to evil
A false witness breathing out lies
One who separates brothers
The Seven Abominations lead to the list of sexual perversions and the death cult associated with Molekh in Leviticus 18. Although we've covered this ground in previous newsletters, let's review the "hand" of the tongue, for Scripture associates the bloodshed of slander with sexual peversion:
"There are men in you who
slander to shed blood, and people in you who eat on the mountains;
they commit lewdness in your midst. In you men
uncover their fathers' nakedness..." (Ezekiel 22:9-10)
There is literal lewdness, and there is spiritual lewdness. In a spiritual application, imagine that slander against a fellow Israelite is the equivalent of peeping under the Father's clothes, for Israel is His wife who follows Him in the wilderness (Je 2:2). Imagine that it is perversion with the one's brother or sister in Messiah. Ouch! And gross. Really.
So how do we know the difference between a prophet warning us or a Molekh-worshipper slandering us?
This is not an easy answer, but maybe an analogy can help. Think of Israel as a formation
in utero. Can the nation of the Greater Exodus be born in a day without formation? When something is in formation, it is incomplete, but it IS growing according to a Divine calendar. Its formed substance will be revealed, but we would never judge the child in the womb by the same standard as an adult. All its parts aren't working yet!
When a child understands and defies, at that point correction is necessary. Be suspicious of anyone who shames an individual in the Body of Messiah for being weaker, and test that spirit to see if it is attempting to kill without discerning the formation stage of the child. Molekh kills the innocent first, silencing the "nursing mother" or persuading her that it is an act of religious zeal. Yes, it is a cowardly spirit, but it is easy to see why it is charmed by the promise of authority and dominance.
When Paul corrected congregations, it was because they were deviating from a teaching that he had already explained to them, and they weren't growing. When Paul corrected a congregation, he wrote, "we were gentle among you, even as a nurse cherishes her children." (1 Th 2:7) The apostles had been with those congregations. They knew their flocks firsthand. They had taught those congregations, and in turn, those congregations received their corrections, applications, and instructions as authoritative. The apostles modeled, and the believers learned.
In some cases, the apostles exercised their authority, and they directed the local congregation to act on certain cases that they deemed wickedness, not ignorance or immaturity. One of those cases is Paul's instructions to the Corinthians to quit being arrogant and to put out a member who was having relations with his father's wife; instead of arrogantly allowing the sin, they should mourn death cult within it (1 Co 5:1-2). This prohibition is in Acharei Mot, a forbidden lewdness. The sexual immorality was bringing the death cult into the congregation, and it was arrogance against instruction, not immaturity.
Left unchecked, sexual perversion becomes militant. It demands to be accepted or else. Sound familiar?
It is Molekh. Sexual perversion kills the seed (
zera), for the prohibition is not against passing one's
yeladim (children) to Molekh, but one's
seed. This warning against Molekh is embedded in an entire chapter of prohibited sexual unions that defy the created order. Acharei Mot, "After the death," the Torah speaks of life:
"'You are to perform My judgments and keep My statutes,
to live in accord with them; I am the LORD your God. You shall observe My decrees and My judgments, which man shall carry out and
live by them - I am HaShem." (Le 18:4-5)
The opening of the Torah portion is defined by the death of Nadav and Avihu, putting their deaths out of chronological order, but setting it in thematic order. What is the theme? Controlling:
In a long list of prohibited sexual relations, such as incest, bestiality, menstrual relations, sister-wives, homosexuality, adultery, there is a contextual clue out of place, which means it is not out of place!
"You shall not give any of your offspring (
zera, seed) to offer them to Molekh, nor shall you profane the name of your God (Elohim); I am the LORD (YHVH)." (Le 18:21)
וּמִֽזַּרְעֲךָ לֹא־תִתֵּן לְהַעֲבִיר לַמֹּלֶךְ וְלֹא תְחַלֵּל אֶת־שֵׁם אֱלֹהֶיךָ אֲנִי יְהוָֽה׃
To open the out-of-place verse, an alternative for
yeladim (children) is used,
zera, the same as used in Tazria, "When she sows seed," the sowing of a live infant into the earth with all its potential. The term zera appears again in the following Torah portion Kedoshim in the context of not mixing seed in a field. At the simple level, don't mix wheat and barley or spelt and flax in the same field. At contextual level, don't have sexual relations with just anyone you meet in the "field of the world" a beast or a close relative:
field is the world; and as for the good seed, these are the sons of the kingdom; and the tares are the sons of the evil one." (Mt 13:38)
The Torah portion Tazria uses zera to describe children that a woman sows into the world even after the initial male seed has been sown into her. The zera of the male is incomplete until it fertilizes the female egg; only the female can complete the potential of that seed by forming a living son or daughter. The soul is formed in her womb in partnership with the Creator (Ps 139).
This makes sense in the 7/14 and 40/80 day difference of childbirth purification times in Tazria. The female makes the zera whole and gives it life. Without her, the zera dies. The female child, then, represents the fullness of the seed/zera, 14 and 80. The male can only be half, never full, without the "finishing" ability of the female. Perhaps this is why Scripture specifies that it is not good for the
male to be alone.
Speaking proudly, slanderously, and jealously against such a wonderful creation is an act of bloodshed. To Molekh are Divinely-formed children given. The shed blood of the child makes the parent feel more righteous, dedicated, powerful, and able to experience spiritual ecstasy. The ecstasy they feel, however, is from joining in a prohibited relationship with evil spirits, gods of death.
Misdirected passion is death.
Today children are being passed to Molekh, identifying as homosexual, transgender, and all variations of sexual identity. The field of the world has surrounded them with confusion, and many now identify themselves not with the decrees of Adonai, but with the confused seed upon which they imprint from movies, billboards, games, cartoons, and internet. It is everywhere they turn.
The resulting promiscuity results in the mixture of good seed and bad, killing the seed either literally or in the next generation. This handicaps the child born from mixed seed with a natural inclination toward idolatry. Nevertheless, we have examples of people like Ruth who did overcome and transform their status with holy passion for Adonai and his Land, Covenant, and People. Pray for the children to find the holy fields!
A death cult reduces human women to "breeders" who will pass their children to the dominant god, making her believe that passing her child to Molekh is noble zeal. She submits to stand silently before the beast of the field, who was only created to reproduce "after their kind," not humans.
The rejection of the Holy Name in favor of Molekh's relational and sexual dominance is seen in the particular decrees surrounding the mentions of Molekh, such as not making a sexual rival of a sister or standing for an animal which is not only of a different kind, but under the protective authority of its master. It is an abomination to give it dominance:
'Also you shall not have intercourse with any animal to be defiled with it, nor shall any woman stand before an animal to mate with it; it is a perversion. (Le 18:23)
Bestiality, like homosexuality, reduces fearfully-made women to mere dominated breeders or objects of animal, sexual passion. Only in a human being was the female removed from the male's side, his own being, his intimate. Women also were given rule over the Creation. Yeshua did not come to bind us to continued curses, but to free us and restore us to life. The Seed of the woman brings abundant life to every role in a family, not animal domination.
It is important not to frame the lesson of Molekh as anti-male. It is anti-male-without-balance.
There is irony in the perversion of this principle in American political correctness. What "Jerusalem" should have corrected within itself with holy boundaries of the Word, the wicked world has attacked and slandered without those boundaries. Loving, honoring, cherishing one's wife and bringing life and peace to one's children should have been preached and practiced by shepherds and believers as true masculinity. Without it, America has imprinted upon tares.
In the vacuum created by slanderous, authority-addicted or passive, cowardly, and confused faith, the spirit of Molekh has grown a fiery death cult, a growing army of militant zealots for a social religion that strips males, females, and children of their holy formation and purpose. It destroys families, both literally and by spiritual application. At the very same time, it camps atop a mountain of self-righteous holiness, insisting that it is authentic life while it sheds the blood of children.
As long as disciples of Yeshua proudly slander one another on the mountains and in the valleys that should be peace, profaning the Name, how can we expect a wicked world to realize that they follow a death cult? Or that it kills the souls of men along with the women and children they sacrifice in the fires of dominance and authority? When we slander, what do we really want? To feel more powerful? To hear the screams of children burning to death? Or is that why we make ourselves deaf to the pleas of the Holy Spirit in the name of Molekh, the passion-king?
Love one another. Serve the Kings of Kings. Cherish one another.
"We know that we have passed out of death into life, because we love the brethren. He who does not love abides in death." - (1 Jn 3:14)
LaMalah Children's Centre and our Brothers and Sisters in Kenya Celebrate Pesach and Unleavened Bread
Thank to all our donors for your help to make their Passover happen each year. If you'd like to help, the Donation button is at the bottom of the newsletter. Here are some pictures of the celebration and a note from Pastor Ndungu:
Shalom Sister Hollisa.