In John 8:12-20, Yeshua, our righteous Messiah gives us a picture of his identity as the light of the world.
Yeshua is speaking with the religious leaders, he leads with his identity as the “light of the world”. Yeshua makes the point clear that in following him that he offers “light” which brings life, unending life. The religious leaders question Yeshua’s authority to make this statement because he was speaking on his own. In response Yeshua makes it clear that his words are not his alone but the words of his Father also.
We then read these words in verse 19:
They said to him, “Where is this `father’ of yours?” Yeshua answered, “You know neither me nor my Father; if you knew me, you would know my Father too.”
In Yeshua’s response we see an interesting teaching, that to recognize Yeshua, the Son involves acknowledging of Hashem, his Father. In acknowledging Yeshua we are drawn deeper into connection with the Father and also as we draw close to Hashem, which includes a life of honoring Torah we are drawn to see Yeshua as the Messianic king.
It is in drawing near to both Hashem and Yeshua as we are drawn deeper into connection with them both. What then can we learn from this?
From Isaiah 43:21-44:23 (Haftarah for Parashat Vayikra), we read of Israel’s growing weary of God and not honoring him by offering the Torah’s required sacrifices and observances and this neglect of covenant faithfulness leads to estrangement from God and even words of condemnation and curse. In this we see that relation to and more importantly intimacy with God is derived through obedience. The lack of covenant faithfulness demonstrated in this passage led to estrangement between Israel and her God, the flipside is that faithfulness to the covenant draws us closer to God.
In a picture of the Messianic Age given by Ezekiel in the 37th chapter of his book we read:
My servant David will be king over them, and all of them will have one shepherd; they will live by my rulings and keep and observe my regulations. (v. 24)
As Ezekiel sees the future reign of Messiah, the Davidic king, ruling over Israel as her rightful monarch, inextricably tied to the Messianic Age is that part and parcel of the Messianic Age is a Jewish people committed to the rulings and regulations laid out in the Torah. The eternal, ever presence of Yeshua is also a time of ever present Jewish covenant faithfulness.
If the Messianic Age, our daily hope and longing is characterized by a renewed Jewish people surrounding a returned Messiah and walking in Torah ways, if we live for this glorious day, why don’t we now begin living in the reality of the Messianic Age by drawing near to Hashem’s Torah and being drawn deeper into connection to Hashem and to Yeshua, his Son and our righteous Messiah?
As we draw near to Hashem by walking lives of Torah faithfulness, we go beyond just acts of obedience to acts of deep connection to the God who gave us this Torah and as we draw nearer to Hashem we are given a new experience of God and Messiah and begin living now in the reality of the Messianic Age today. May we seek a deeper connection to Torah, Hashem and to our righteous Messiah and may we model before Am Israel, a Messianic community following the God of Israel, walking Torah and experiencing now a foretaste of the Messianic reality, as we live today in the knowledge of Yeshua, our Messiah and the future coming of the Messianic Age.