“Yeshua, mercy my son”: a strong exorcism as reported in the Book of Matthew

I had just finished my article about the mustard seed parable when Yeshua brought me back to the very episode I had been reflecting on.

Chapter 17 of the Book of Matthew, verses 14 to 21 actually unveil interesting details that emerge from the Hebrew structure of some expressions.

(All excerpts that I am using here are taken out of the Delitzsch Hebrew Gospels.)


“Have compassion”, there is much more behind this expression than you ever thought



“As they came to the crowd of people, a man approached him and got down on his knees across from Him. He said:



“My Master, please have compassion of my son, because he is truck by the moon, and his illness is severe. Often he falls into the fire, and often into the midst of fire. I brought him to your disciples, but they were not able to heal him.”


Welcome to the feminine dimension of Hashem’s love

When the father asks Yeshua to have compassion of his son, the man actually uses the following expression in Hebrew ” rachem na”= רחם נא


The root ” rachem” points at רחמים, rachamim ( this is the word that is actually written in Hebrew on the picture, above, not racham), mercy. The word ” mercy” in Hebrew actually describes a womb.


In his version, André Chouraqui translates  ” have mercy” by ” matricie moi”, the word ” matrice” also means womb in French.


So when we are asking for our Lord to have mercy in Hebrew language, the word ” compassion” covers a broader meaning. When Hashem has compassion of somebody, He envelops the person securely into a mantle of protection in the same way an unborn child is protected into the womb of his mother.


We have to open our mind in order to place this expression in the perspective of the healing episode depicted in Matthew chapter 17. Being the object of Yeshua’s mercies in a healing perspective can compare with being replaced into a mother’s womb. Inside of the womb ( the source of mercies), the suffering person is being re-created. This is what literally occurs through the wonderful action of the Holy Spirit.


The man asking Yeshua for compassion about his son’s healing is quite desperate. He has witnessed the disciples inability to  get the demon out of his son’s body.

He is humbled and begs Yeshua to help him out.


Why is Yeshua so harsh on the disciples?


Yeshua answered and said:

“Alas, o crooked generation that lacks faith! How long will I be with you? How long will I bear you? Bring him here to me.”

In this verse Yeshua is clearly blaming His disciples for their lack of faith. At first sight, I thought that He was maybe a bit harsh with them over the faith issue.

It also humbled me very much, because I know that Yeshua’s disciples were men of faith. When I look at myself, I’ve been lacking faith so often, but Yeshua forgave me and always showed me great compassion. So I kept asking myself: why is Yeshua pointing an accusatory finger at them during this precise circumstance? I then remembered that this story seems to have occured just after the Transfiguration on mount Thabor. Although only Shim’on Kepha ( Peter), Yochanan and Yaakov ( the sons of Zebedee) were present on the mountain and actually saw His glory, they must have told it to their fellow disciples.


Yet the remaining disciples still lacked faith, despite a clearer knowledge of who Yeshua actually was.


Demons are not what most people think they are


Yeshua reprimanded the demon, and it left him and the young man was healed from that hour.


The disciples approached  Yeshua when He was alone and they said: “Why were we not able to drive it out?

Yeshua said to them: “It is because if the lack in your faith (Chouraqui translates by ” adherence”). For amen, I say to you, if you have faith like a mustard seed, and you tell the mountains, “Be moved from there to there”, it will be moved from its place. There is nothing that will be impossible to you”.


But this type only comes out with prayer and fasting.”



I already underlined the link between the Book of Exodus and  the parable of the mustard seed.

Now let us have a look at the exorcism.


Very often, I have heard some people boast about their ability to chase demons away. It is only when I was myself confronted with some real demons, over 20 years ago, that I understood I wasn’t dealing with something easy.


The story is very personal and I am not keen getting into much detail. Let me just summarize the situation I experienced. I was confronted with a man who even claimed to be ” legion”. This man was speaking of Yeshua all the time and he was blaspheming His beautiful Name as often as he could.


He brought some devilish entities into my apartment. I mean, I’ve seen several types of fallen angels right before my eyes. And this is not easy to deal with. Remember that you are not dealing with creatures of flesh, but with some powerful entities in the spiritual world.


I wasn’t saved at this time, but I believed in Yeshua. I knew there was much power in His Name.

However, I was like paralyzed in front of these horrible creatures. They were smelly and I remember the cold sweat running from my back.

I also remember that some of them could drive out some laser-alike light from their eyes.


In the end, and despite the fact I was unsaved, Yeshua delivered me from this person and the entities he was calling into my life.


The reason why I am telling you this story is to make you conscious that evil entities are draining your energy out.


Believing in Yeshua is not enough. Sometimes just being a follower is not enough.


It is not about uttering Yeshua’s Name from your mouth. It is rather about HOW you pronounce it: I mean with total faith.


Where does faith come from? Faith comes from closeness with Yeshua.



Also, to be able to cast out evil creatures, a spiritual approach is necessary. Fasting also brings us much closer to Hashem. When our nourishment comes from Him, when our Lord is the fundament of our life, darkness will FLEE.



Copyright© by Isabelle Esling

Thomas, a man of faith

To a great majority of people, Thomas, Yeshua’s disciple has become the epitome of the doubter. The expression ” doubting Thomas” is so popular that many people end up bragging: “I am like Thomas. I only believe what I see.”

I am going to prove you that Yeshuda Toma aka Thomas Didymus, nicknamed the “twin”, was actually a man of faith. Actually, you will never see Thomas with the same eyes after reading the following article.

Thomas desperate.jpg
picture from the movie “Thomas”

Zechariah’s prophecy and the disciples state of mind after Yeshua’s crucifixion


All Gospel quotes are from Franz Delitzsch Gospels and the verse of Zechariah is from Tanakh.

 

“Strike the shepherd, and the sheep be scattered, and I will turn against the insignificant ones”
Zechariah 13:7

הַךְ אֶת הָרֹעֶה וּתְפוּצֶיןָ הַצֹּאן וַהֲשִׁבֹתִי יָדִי עַל הַצֹּעֲרִים



Many people ( especially non believers) think that Yeshua’s disciples were cowards and traitors to their Master. Yet I don’t think that any of us would have done better.
Always bear in mind that you all know that Yeshua is the Messiah. Although they all shared His friendship, saw Him, ate with Him, laughed with Him and cried for rescue when they felt threatened, the disciples had no precise idea about WHO Yeshua actually was. Only Shim’on Petros, Peter revealed His identity once, because the Holy Spirit revealed it to him.
Many disciples expected Yeshua to deliver Israel from the Roman oppressors. The Messiah was supposed to put everything in order and to restore peace.
Now imagine the precious friend who was part of their daily life, whom they had set all their hopes in, gets betrayed and dies the painful death of a criminal ( for a Jewish person, it was a shame to get crucified. This punishment was reserved to the worst criminals.)
The disciple were really hit hard by Yeshua’s death. They were hopeless. At the same time they were fearing persecution and had to hide.
The Gospel of John clearly tells us that the disciples did not understand that the Messiah had to suffer according to the prophecies and to rise from the dead after three days;

“For they did not understand what was written, that He would rise from the dead” John, Chapter 20, verse 9
Thomas’ quotes in the Gospels
Yeshua appears to Thomas 

 

Yeshua appearing in front of Thomas
“Toma who is called Didumos, one of the Twelve had not been in their midst when Yeshua entered.

The rest of the disciples told him about, saying: ” We have surely seen the Master!”

He said to them: “If I do not see the wound marks of the nails in His hands, put my finger on the place of the nails and put my hand on His side, I will not believe.” John 20:24-29
“At the end of the 8 days, the disciples were in the house a second time and Toma was with them.

Yeshua entered, and yet the doors were closed. He stood among them and said: “Shalom to you.”

After that, He said to Toma: ” Extend your finger here and look at my hands. Reach your hand here and place it on my side. Do not let your faith be lacking, but rather believe.” Toma answered and said to him: “My Master and my God” (אדֹני ואלֹהי)

Yeshua said to him: “Because you have seen me, you believe. O gladness of those who believe yet do not see.”

Thomas seeing wounds

From a personal point of view, I feel a lot of empathy for Thomas, because, in some ways, I am quite similar. I mean, I have always been a believer, even in my worst sinning days. I’ve always loved Yeshua. I cannot think of one time that I hated our Lord. Even when I rejected Him openly, my heart still had a secret corner where He was loved. I used to believe, but I think that I have been a big doubter as well, on many occasions, and even after Yeshua approached me.
Yeshua knows that I needed to feel, to hear and to see Him…and, in His immense goodness, He granted me the desire of my heart.

He granted it to me because I was committed to do His will.
Now back to Thomas: often people do not understand that Thomas, as a disciple, has always been a man of faith. Thomas loved Yeshua very much and he was heartbroken when Yeshua died on the Cross. His pain was so immense that he didn’t want to be fooled by some kind of ” hallucination” from his friends that he probably thought to be desperate enough to imagine Yeshua alive before them. He wanted to experience by himself. Note that immediately after seeing and touching Yeshua, Thomas utters a strong confession of faith: “Adonai ve Elohai”  (אדֹני ואלֹהי), my Lord and my God.
This expression is also linked with a personal experience I had with Yeshua. One night, I fell asleep and I saw Yeshua standing before me, all dressed in white, and, eyes closed, I stated twice: “My Lord and my God”. If you are curious to read it, I shared this experience in An Encounter with Yeshua.

 

Thomas’ enigmatic quote from John 11:16

Thomas, who is called Didymus  said to his fellow disciples: “Let us go as well, so that we may die with him.”
If we single it out from the whole text of John 11, it becomes even more deranging. Therefore I will quote the preceding verses:
“After He spoke things like this, He said to them, “our beloved Lazar ( Eleazar, Lazarus) is asleep, I am going, so that I may wake him.

The disciples said to Him: “My Master, if he is sleeping, he will recover.
Yeshua was speaking about his death, but they thought that He was speaking about sleeping for rest.”
The answers of the disciples point at some state of spiritual blindness or maybe a refusal to accept the hypothesis of Lazarus’ physical death. Yeshua uses a metaphor that they are unable to decipher.

So Yeshua needs to them plainly.
“Then Yeshua said to them plainly: “Lazar is dead.”  I am glad for your sake that I was not there so that you may believe. And now let us travel and go to him.
Yeshua will resurrect Lazarus so the disciples may BELIEVE.
As Yeshua is inviting His disciples to travel and go to see Lazarus, Thomas makes this enigmatic statement:
“Let us go as well, so that we may die with him.”

A lot of scholars have used this statement to make Thomas look like a pessimistic, negative and maybe suicidal character.

I must say that this verse intrigued me, this is the least I can say, so I asked our Lord to open my understanding of it.

I am not going to give you a classical interpretation, this is what I saw, with the help of the Spirit:

After Yeshua spoke of the reality of Lazarus’ death, He made it clear that He would perform a miracle. He would resurrect His dead friend and bring the disciples to faith by performing this act.

In this instant we can assume that Thomas became conscious of the symbolism of death and resurrection, realizing that one must die at first before being reborn.

The Gospel of John is very subtle and intended to allow the committed disciple reach spiritual heights with the help of the Spirit. It is very uplifting when you allow the Spirit to direct your read.

The “Gospel of Thomas”

gospel of Thomas
I’ve read the Gospel of Thomas back in the 90’s  out of curiosity. While it is often slated for being ” gnostic”, I didn’t find anything really negative in it. Other people consider it to be a ” lost Gospel”. Frankly, I would have to re-read it in order to reformulate a sharper opinion about it. But I’ll let you judge by yourselves and have a look at the document that supposedly carries some “secret words” of Yeshua.

The movie “Thomas”

I’ve watched this movie a few months ago. It unveils Thomas’ emotional side and love for Yeshua our Messiah. Just have a look and judge by yourself.

Thomas’ mission


According to the following article,Thomas supposedly died in the year 72 as a martyr.

Thomas is said to have traveled to India in order to preach the Gospel.

A lot of stories and legends have been built around Yeshua’s disciple. I won’t get into details as I think sticking to the Gospels is much safer.

While I was apologizing to our Lord for my doubting character, Yeshua told me: “It is better to have Thomas’ faith than none.”

If you love Yeshua and you are committed to Him, single moments of doubt will not compromise your faith. Walk in humbleness with Yeshua, as the disciples did.

Sometimes they failed at their task miserably. Thomas did. But most importantly, he loved Yeshua and after doubting, he came back with a stronger faith and testimony.

We are just human. Our Lord understands when we doubt and He comes to our rescue.

You might doubt a lot of things. However, never doubt His immense love and compassion, for it lasts for ever and ever.

Copyright© by Isabelle Esling