The following is the preface to my Lewis New Testament Bible Study Series with fourteen books from Matthew to Revelation. Each book will be released on Amazon.com as finished throughout 2017. This is one of many excerpts of the books I will introduce on this blog. Book mark this page to see what’s happening.
From early childhood, I wanted to know how to read and understand the Bible. That may sound strange coming from a person whose family never discussed religion or went to church. When I did have the opportunity to read a Bible, I couldn’t. It was beyond my understanding and there was no one in the family to help me. I felt on the outside of something that I knew was important. Thirty years later, two days after I received the truth of Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit, I was given a Bible. There are sixty-six books in the Bible and I chose to read the last and most controversial; the Revelation of Jesus Christ.
My childhood wish was fulfilled in a way I and my family knew nothing about then. I stepped through the door of Jesus, from the world’s understanding in my human birth, into the kingdom of heaven’s understanding in my new spirit birth, given by the Holy Spirit through Jesus. That was the beginning of my schooling in the Spirit and the Bible.
C. S. Lewis chose another way of expressing the same thing in his fiction fantasy books, The Chronicles of Narnia. We both share the very real wonders of the Bible with the world in different ways to reach different hearts and minds for Jesus. Fantasy was Lewis’ gift and the enormously fantastic reality of the Bible is my gift; both are exciting in their own ways.
Within the pages of my first Bible, I soon learned that the Bible’s Old Testament books are about human struggles between good and evil from creation, how God’s Law helped with that struggle, and how the prophets spoke God’s desire for the people to love him and turn to him. The New Testament books are about the new birth in Jesus Christ by the Holy Spirit, as I described above and John describes in his Gospel with the words, you must be born again. Billions of invitations are spoken daily by the infinite Spirit of our Creator, directly or through fellow humans. Everyone from the beginning of creation to the end was or is on the invitation list until the invite is accepted or completely rejected. He doesn’t force anyone to love him and turn to him. Just remember; after death, choice is no longer an option.
Join me, will you, on a stroll through the New Testament to share in the adventures of Jesus and his disciples.
This series is about the Bible, so the Bible is the primary resource. Prevalent theological understanding must be placed in a secondary position, due to many differing doctrines among theologians and church leaders.
The Bible used in my writings is my own Word of YHVH Bible (WYB). I created this version from a Public Domain copy of the King James Version (KJV); I might add, with great trepidation. Even though I didn’t grow up with a Bible, I was raised to respect it, which means, don’t mess with it. But the deeper my studies went, the more I realized that somebody already messed with it. This is what shook me loose.
(Isaiah 42:8-KJV) I am the LORD: that is my name: and my glory will I not give to another, neither my praise to graven images.
(Isaiah 42:8-WYB) “I [am] YHVH: that [is] My Name: and my glory I will not give to another, neither my praise to graven images.”
YHVH is our Creator’s Hebrew personal name. We humans don’t have the right to change it. We can define his character and attributes with the Bible’s epithets for him, but don’t change his name. The early Bible translators made that mistake. Did they not know our Creator is the same yesterday, today, and tomorrow and he has never changed his name? Until recent years, only the Holy Scriptures of Judaism proudly presented the Hebrew name YHVH.
English translators substituted LORD for the Hebrew name, YHVH in the Old Testament 6,521 times. In the New Testament, the name of our Creator was substituted 1,372 times with the Greek word, Theos, then the translators substituted the English word God for Theos.
Hebrew scholars and grammarians believe YHVH is unpronounceable, so they use substitutes while reading or speaking it, like the Four Letters, G_d, Adonai, and Yahweh. They qualify their conclusion with long complicated modern Hebrew grammar reasoning for an ancient name written thousands of years before Hebrew rules of grammar existed. Even so, YHVH says to proclaim his name in all the earth, and I am here to honor that command.
I use the KISS principle, Keep It Simple Saints. The root of YHVH is the Hebrew word, HVH (hävah), defined in Strong’s Bible Dictionary as to be. The simplest pronunciation for the Four Letters is by phonetics, Yah-Ha-vah, YaHavah. It means Yah is.
I stress the importance of knowing our Creator’s name, because he is the real teacher and interpreter of the Bible and not to be confused with any other god. After all, he inspired its original human scribes to write his words. The Word of YHVH Bible is the only English language Bible with his name in both, the Old Testament and the New Testament.
This is what YaHavah spoke through David in Psalm 32:
(Psalm 32:8-9) “I will instruct you and teach you in the way which you shall go: I will guide you with My eye. Be not as the horse, [or] as the mule, [which] have no understanding: whose mouth must be held in with bit and bridle, or they will not come near to you.”
“I” is YaHavah, “My eye” is the Spirit of YaHavah. YaHavah envelops his creation with his infinite Spirit and keeps the movement of every orb in the universe in perfect timing, from the smallest atom to the greatest sun. He knows every grain of sand on earth’s shores and knows every hair on every head, or where it used to be.
The first question most people want to know is, what my qualifications are for creating a new version of the Bible or writing commentaries on the Bible? My answer is simple, I believe Jesus’ command:
(Matthew 28:18-20) 18—And Jesus came and spoke to them, saying, All authority is given to me in heaven and in the earth. 19—Go accordingly and teach all peoples, 20—teach them to be watchmen of all things that I commanded you and know I am with you always, until the end of the age. Amen.
And not just to the first disciples, but all true and faithful believers who accept the invitation to become reborn in the Spirit of YaHavah through Jesus.
(John 3:16-17) “For YHVH so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believes in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. For YHVH sent his Son into the world not to condemn the world, but that the world through him might be saved.”
I have spent half of my life learning from YaHavah and his precious words in the Bible, and my whole life listening to what other people say about the Bible. The world’s consensus is mixed with mystery, love, and hate. By listening, I’ve learned that the difficulty in understanding the Bible is not because it is veiled in mystery, it is because human understanding has placed that veil of mystery over it. All anyone need do is open their heart to YaHavah’s great love and open their mind to his great wisdom to accept the gift of new life, for which Jesus gave his life.
Born again believers have the Spirit of YaHavah to teach its meaning with his wisdom and understanding. You might say they attend the HSU of YHVH, or “Holy Spirit University of YaHavah” located in the kingdom of YaHavah. It has the distinction of being the first “online” university. Unfortunately, enrollment has been down for several hundred years. I know this because YaHavah does not teach diverse understandings of his word. His understanding is consistent and unified in his Spirit; therefore, different understandings by multiple persons or groups on any Bible subject is not of YaHavah or the Bible.
(Psalm 25:2-5) 2—O my Elohim, I trust in you: let me not be ashamed, let not my enemies triumph over me. 3—Yea, let none that wait on you be ashamed: let them be ashamed which transgress without cause. 4—Show me your ways, O YHVH; teach me your paths. 5—Lead me in your truth, and teach me: for you [are] the Elohim of my salvation; on you do I wait all the day.
How to use this Study Series
Each chapter contains the Scriptures for reading and quick reference, followed by a study/commentary. Each chapter ends with a conclusion, not mine, but yours. Briefly describe three or more main points of each chapter of each study book.
Suggestion: use a journal for study notes and questions throughout this series for future reference and above all, let the Holy Spirit and the Bible teach you and answer any questions you have.
Peace be with you and yours