If you can slog your way past the page that blasts mans best friend (which he has recently removed) - wherein Harry Bethel attempted to used Scriptures to try to show that dogs are evil and we're all morons for loving them - you will end up shaking your head in disbelief over the fact that the Ten Commandments are not for Christians because Christians have a "higher calling" (what calling would that be?...to spread the lie of Santa Claus, etc.?) - and that women aren't allowed to speak in church. (We suggest that Harry re-read the Bible as well as our article about women teaching men so he can see that God has used plenty of women to spread His message, including Deborah who was a judge over the entire Israeli army which consisted only of men!)
Bethel uses his website to vent many personal opinions, but the one that grabbed the attention of The Refiner's Fire was the fact that he called Messianic Judaism a "doctrine of demons". Although he seems to do his level best to make us believe he "loves Jews" and that he's not anti-Semitic, his article called THE HOLOCAUST - Persecution or God's Judgment? and his "Message for Messianic Jews" prove otherwise.
The vomit spewed forth in these articles clearly indicates that Bethel himself is plagued with demons, because nobody who has the Holy Spirit residing in their hearts could ever come up with hate speech like this, let alone present these ideas to the world - let alone, use the BIBLE to prove his ludicrous allegations! Let's begin by examining his Holocaust article first. In order to soften the blow, Bethel makes the following disclaimer:
"NOTICE: I do not advocate illegal discrimination or racism or violation of civil rights of Jews or any other group. This article and website is NOT anti-Semitic. Christians should love the Jews, pray for them and ask God to have mercy on them, and share the true Gospel with those who will listen."
And then he goes on to make comments such as the following:
The Jews, generally, rejected Jesus Christ as the Messiah and Savior and conspired to kill Him.
The Refiner's Fire Response: Yes, there's no doubt about that. However, since you want to play word games and get technical: Who was it that drove the nails into His hands and feet (John 20:25)? Who spit on Him and hit Him in the head with a staff (Matthew 27:30)? Who actually gave the commandment to kill Yeshua? It was Pilate, a Roman: Mark 15:15. The Bible tells us the people insulted and made fun of Jesus (Matthew 27:29, 39-44, 49), and the crowd said to crucify Him (Matthew 27:22). Does it say these "people" and the "crowd" consisted only of Jews?
Here's the thing: Scripture in context illustrates that it was Yeshua's destiny to die as it was all part of God's plan of Salvation to use the anger of the FEW Jewish priests of the time who incited hatred for Yeshua - as well as the viciousness and willingness of Roman leaders and soldiers to carry out a hideous murder.
As a human, Yeshua had the CHOICE to go through with it - He could have accepted satan's offer in Matthew 4:1-11, and He could have chosen to run and hide from the Pharisees, etc. - but He didn't. He knew WHO He was and, as the "arm of YHWH" (Isaiah 53:1), a human with a Divine qnoma (Nature), He wasn't going to give in to the world!
1 Corinthians 15: 3, 1 Peter 3:18, and Romans 5:8 show that Yeshua died for our sins and that He came to redeem the lost sheep of Israel (which includes ANYONE who chooses to accept Y'shua as our Final SIN Sacrifice, and through Him obtain eternal life).
Matthew 15: 24. But he answered and said to them, Have I not been sent except to the sheep, which went astray from the house of Israel?
"Israel" today is scattered throughout all nations, and we must remember, the Covenant Promises YHWH made through Abraham are for the benefit of all nations (Genesis 17:7-8).
The bottom line is, if He hadn't died, He could never have been our Sin Sacrifice, which would render the entire New Testament null and void....
BETHEL's assertion: The Jews throughout much of the period covered by the Old Testament were generally a stiff-necked people in rebellion against God...
The Refiner's Fire Response: And Gentiles weren't? Mr. Bethel, have you ever noticed that the entire Bible is about the Jews and Israel? In case you haven't read the Old Testament (which you may not have, since it's clear in your articles that you have no reverence for it, whatsoever), Gentiles were ALL considered to be heathens and/or pagans, because anyone who didn't adhere to Torah was considered unclean: Heathens/pagans are generally defined as those who worship false gods. During Bible History, heathens/Gentiles/idol-worshippers were viewed with utter contempt, not because of who they were (since anyone who truly repents and turns to and obeys God is accepted), but because of what they did: "living in debauchery, lust, drunkenness, orgies, wild parties, and forbidden idol-worship" (1 Peter 4:3).
1 Corinthians 12:1-2: "But, brothers, I do not want you to go on being ignorant about the things of the Spirit. 2 You know that when you were pagans, no matter how you felt you were being led, you were being led astray to idols, which can't speak at all."
Matthew 6:6-8: "But you, when you pray, go into your room, close the door, and pray to your Father in secret. Your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you. 7 "And when you pray, don't babble on and on like the pagans who think God will hear them better if they talk a lot. 8 Don't be like them because your Father knows what you need before you ask him.
Ephesians 2: 11 Therefore, remember your former state: you Gentiles by birth - called the Uncircumcised by those who, merely because of an operation on their flesh, are called Circumcised - 12 at that time had no Messiah. You were estranged from the national life is Isra'el. You were foreigners to the covenants embodying God's promise. You were in this world without hope and without God.
Luke 2: - 30 for I have seen with my own eyes your yeshu'ah (salvation) 31 which you prepared in the presence of all peoples - 32 a light that will bring revelation to the Goyim (Gentiles) and glory to your people Isra'el."
BETHEL's assertion: The Jews persecuted Christians in the first century: It is bad enough that the Jews persecuted and killed Jesus, but they also persecuted Christians. As the apostle Peter and others were speaking to the Jews about the resurrection of the dead through Jesus, the Jewish priests and Jewish Sadducees put them in jail. The Jewish leaders threatened the Christians and commanded them not to speak or teach at all in the name of Jesus (Acts 4:1-18).
The Refiner's Fire Response: And the Gentiles have been persecuting Jews since the proverbial "Day One"! They have been killing Jews throughout history, including the six million innocents during the Holocaust! No matter how you try to color it, innocent people were killed simply because they were Jews. The GOOD news is that God USED what the Gentiles did in order to make one of His major Bible prophecies come true: In 1948, because "the world" briefly felt sorry for the Jews, Israel was returned to them! And it happened in ONE DAY, just as the Bible prophecied!
And let's not forget how the Gentiles have been slaughtering each other over "religion" as well. Remember the Crusades? Remember the Middle Ages when Catholics were killing anyone who refused to adhere to the CHURCH's teachings? Read your history books, Mr. Bethel. They're chock full of "man's inhumanity to man"....
BETHEL's assertion: Influential and wealthy Jews have influenced the world to engage in immorality, homosexuality, divorce, crime, violence, youth rebellion, and the general decline of humanity in the industrialized nations: Why is there a dislike and even hatred for the Jews among some societies throughout the world? Is it because they are honest and love their Gentile neighbors? Or is it because many of them are known for their shrewd and dishonest business tactics and love of money? Or is it because many of them have the desire to control politically, financially, and in other ways, the Gentile host countries in which they live?
The Refiner's Fire Response: Prove that ludicrous statement by poviding STATISTICS for back-up! Let me give you a few as outlined at Jewish Nobel Prize Winners:
Jews currently make up approximately 0.25% of the world's population and 2% of the US population, yet they also comprise the biggest percentage of Nobel Prize Winners:
- Chemistry (28 prize winners, 19% of world total, 28% of US total)
- Economics (21 prize winners, 38% of world total, 53% of US total)
- Literature (12 prize winners, 12% of world total, 27% of US total)
- Physiology or Medicine (52 prize winners, 29% of world total, 42% of US total)
- Peace (9 prize winners, 10% of world total, 11% of US total)
- Physics (45 prize winners, 26% of world total, 38% of US total)
Perhaps Jews have gotten the "bad rap" of idolizing money because they're SMARTER? Jews are the ONLY people in the entire universe who have managed to keep their religion AND a separate identity throughout the millenia. How many Gentiles can claim the same? This can only happen when God's hand of protection is on someone.
Mr. Bethel, I'd like to remind you that SATAN and SIN have caused us to do the things you charge. Blame Adam and Eve, not the Jews! You should be ashamed of yourself accusing only the Jews of having a problem with immorality, etc. It wasn't just the Jews! Take a look in the mirror!
Why is there a dislike for Jews? Because of people such as yourself perpetrating and perpetuating hatred and bigotry! You truly come across like a White Supremacist, KKK, or those horrid "Christian Identity" types. They, like you, try to use to the Bible to "prove" their narrow-minded, bigoted ideas. And they, like you, are EASILY disproved....
This is just a small sampling of Bethel's mind. After having said all the above, he boldly goes on to make the following statements:
What should be the attitude of Christians toward Christ-rejecting Jews?
Christians should love the Jews just as we should love the heathen in Africa. As the Lord leads we should evangelize the Jews with the true Gospel message, which includes the necessity of repentance and receiving Jesus Christ as the only way to God the Father and to heaven. Paul wrote that "all Israel shall be saved" (Romans 11:26), but the apostle also wrote that "though the number of the children of Israel be as the sand of the sea, [only] a remnant shall be saved" (Romans 9:27). All true Israel is only a remnant. During the Great Tribulation 144,000 Jews will be saved, but this is only a small remnant compared to the millions of Jews living today. The Christ-rejecting Jews are no different than anyone else who has not repented of their sins and been born again. Pray for the Jews, love them, ask God to have mercy on them, and share the true Gospel with those who will listen.
Is it any wonder that Jews don't want to accept the Gentiles' "Jesus"? Who wants to be put down, cussed-out, belittled, and brow-beaten into believing? It's people like you who keep others away from Yeshua! It was because of bigoted, loud-mouthed anti-Semites like yourself that the web master of The Refiner's Fire didn't get to know Yeshua until she was 44 years old! Because of the misguided tongues and actions of many "Christians" she was under the mistaken impression that ALL Christians were total hypocrites! Don't waste your time praying for the Jews, Mr. Bethel! We don't wish to serve your god - Satan, the god of lies, perversion, deceit, and gossip....(That surely MUST be your god, because those who worship Yeshua would NEVER stoop to tearing down God's Chosen! Instead, they would, through loving kindness try to lead them to the Lord.)
Bethel goes on to suggest that the coming Anti-Christ will be a Jew. And then, he even compares himself to God:
BETHEL's assertion: I am no more anti-Semitic than God is. Their argument is with God, to whom they will give account on the Day of Judgment. This article reveals what God says about the Jews as recorded in His Word, and exposes many of their wicked deeds.
The Refiner's Fire Response: Well, Mr. Bethel - we sure you hope don't go to hell for that statement! Have you never read the Scriptures that show that the Jews are God's CHOSEN people? Has it ever occurred to you that the "wicked deeds" of the Jews are specifically talked about in the Bible because the ENTIRE BIBLE IS ABOUT THE JEWS AND ISRAEL AS OPPOSED TO THE GENTILES WHO WERE CONSIDERED NOTHING BUT HEATHENS UNWORTHY OF MENTIONING?????
In I Chronicles 17:21-22 we see David praying the following to God: "And who is like Your people Israel, the one nation on the earth whom God went to redeem for Himself as a people – to make for Yourself a name by great and awesome deeds, by driving out nations from before Your people whom You redeemed from Egypt? For You have made Your people Israel your very own people forever; and You, Lord, have become their God."
Deuteronomy 33:2-4: 2 Adonai came from Sinai; from Se'ir [the territory of Esau] he dawned on his people, shone forth from Mount Paran ([Ishmael's territory]; and with him were myriads of holy ones; at his right hand was a fiery law for them. 3 He truly loved the peoples - all his holy ones are in your hand; sitting at your feet, they receive your instruction, 4 the Torah Moshe commanded us as an inheritance for the community of Ya'akov.
Deuteronomy 7:6-11: (Moses, speaking to the Jews) 7 For you are a people set apart as holy for ADONAI your God. ADONAI your God has chosen you out of all the peoples on the face of the earth to be his own unique treasure. 7 ADONAI didn't set his heart on you or choose you because you numbered more than any other people – on the contrary, you were the fewest of all peoples. 8 Rather, it was because ADONAI loved you, and because he wanted to keep the oath which he had sworn to your ancestors, that ADONAI brought you out with a strong hand and redeemed you from a life of slavery under the hand of Pharoah king of Egypt. 9 From this you can know that ADONAI your God is indeed God, the faithful God, who keeps his covenant and extends grace to those who love him and observe his mitzvot (commandments), to a thousand generations. 10 But he repays those who hate him to their face and destroys them. He will not be slow to deal with someone who hates him; he will repay him to his face. 11 Therefore, you are to keep the mitzvot, laws and rulings which I am giving you today, and obey them.
Next, Mr. Bethel, we suggest you study the following about how the church lost its Jewish roots. It might also behoove you to find out that what you are doing is called "Replacement Theology".
As for your "Message for Messianic Jews" (scroll down deep as he is apparently trying to hide it), most of what you say isn't even worthy of comment. However, for the sake of our reading audience, we will gladly slam-dunk a couple of your ideas:
BETHEL's assertion: Frequently I receive letters or literature from Messianic Jews and other Christians of similar persuasion trying to get me to keep the Law of Moses. They are sincere, but misled. All false doctrine is the doctrine of demons and to put it bluntly, the spirit that is influencing these dear brothers and sisters in Christ regarding trying to keep Moses' Law is demonic.
The Refiner's Fire Response: Demonic how? Since when is following the Bible to the letter "demonic"? Everything Bethel espouses in this article shows his severe lack of knowledge about the Bible, specifically God's Torah. Bethel doesn't seem to "get" that while God gave us a new Covenant via Yeshua, He never abolished His Torah - His original teaching and instruction! He never abolished the seventh day Sabbath or the Biblical feasts - all of which point to Yeshua. (Please see Yeshua Has So Far Fulfilled the First Four of the Seven Feasts, and The Jewish Holidays in a Nutshell.
BETHEL's assertion: Christians under the New Covenant have a much higher calling to holiness than did the Old Testament saints under the Law of Moses. Does this sound like grace is a license to sin? That concept is a perverted straw man that Messianic Jews and others have constructed having been deceived by demonic spirits. One purpose of this demonic deception is to subvert souls saying that you must keep the Law (Acts 15:24 KJV).
The Refiner's Fire Response: Er....Higher calling? What exactly is that? And if you're so much "higher", then WHY did Yeshua have to die to take away YOUR sin? Why is the world filled with as much sin today as it was in Noah's day when God DESTROYED the earth? If you're so much "higher", then this should be a perfect world where nobody sins anymore....Ask yourself some of the pointed questions in the article, Yeshua was NOT a Christian.
WHO is "under the law"? Not Messianic Jews and Gentiles! We realize that Yeshua was the final SIN offering. He gave us a new COVENANT, not a different Torah; nothing was ever said about Torah being abolished! NOTHING!
Matthew 5: 17 Don't think that I have come to abolish the Torah or the Prophets. I have come not to abolish but to complete. 18 Yes indeed! I tell you that until heaven and earth pass away, not so much as a yud or a stroke will pass from the Torah - not until everything that must happen has happened.
Has everything happened that must happen? Have heaven and earth passed away yet? If not then, WHY are you ignoring Torah? Consider this before condemning Messianic Judaism:
Rev. 12:17 - "The dragon was infuriated over the woman and went off to fight the rest of her children, those who obey God's commands and bear witness to Yeshua."
Rev. 14:12 - "This is when perseverance is needed on the part of God's people, those who observe his commands and exercise Yeshua's faithfulness."
Who bears witness to Yeshua AND keep God's commands? It is not the Christians! The above Scriptures are not talking about just the Ten Commandments. God warns us in Proverbs 4:2 - "I give you good instruction: Do not forsake my Torah." Since Yeshua said He didn't come to abolish Torah, we should be taking this very seriously! With the advent of Christianity, the "Old Testament", along with God's original teaching and instruction, basically became null and void because they mistakingly think "Torah" equates to "law". BIG MISTAKE, Mr. Bethel!....
Yeshua was a Torah observant, tallit wearing, synagogue attending, feast-keeping, kosher Jew - yet the "church" decided none of that mattered (mainly through some severely misinterpreted and misunderstood teachings by Paul....). It didn't matter that Yeshua worshipped on the Seventh Day - Man decided to worship on the FIRST day. It didn't matter that God NEVER said to stop observing His Biblical feasts - Man decided to honor Him via man-made holidays steeped in paganism! (Since you're so all-fired sure that you're Biblical, Mr. Bethel - if you can honestly say that it's okay to lie to your kids about Santa Claus and egg-laying rabbits, then perhaps it's time to check which god you are worshipping!)
BETHEL's assertion: Again, we have a higher calling to holiness under the Covenant of Grace. Instead of committing the physical act of adultery to be guilty of that sin under the Law, under the Covenant of Grace you are guilty of adultery if you even look at a woman to lust after her (Mt. 5:28). Instead of having to physically kill someone to be guilty of murder under the Law, now if you even hate your brother you are guilty of murder (1 Jn. 3:15). Instead of having to bow down to an idol to be guilty of idolatry, now, if you are covetous you are guilty of idolatry (Col. 3:5). More could be cited regarding this, but the point has been made for those with ears to hear.
The Refiner's Fire Response: Again, you're talking about the change in covenants, not a change in God's original teachings and instructions! You're extremely confused! We urge you to pray and ask the Holy Spirit for guidance on this....
Under the Old Covenant God's people were given laws that they could not keep because of the sinful nature. They were not given the power to keep the Law, that is, they were not given grace as Christians are under the New Covenant.
The Refiner's Fire Response: Er - that's why He sent us Yeshua, in the first place! The second sentence makes no sense, whatsoever, so we'll skip it. But ask yourself this: Did God abolish His Torah? Did He say it was okay to ignore any OF HIS COMMANDMENTS? (Oh, that's right - one of your articles states that Christians don't even have to obey the Ten Commandments.....)
BETHEL's assertion: Concerning salvation under the New Covenant is there any significance or distinction in being a Jew? No. "There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus" (Gal. 3:28)....If a person is a Christian is he of Moses' seed or Abraham's seed? "If ye be Christ's, then are ye Abraham's seed, and heirs according to the promise" (Gal. 3:29).
The Refiner's Fire Response: "The church" is worshipping the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob - the God of the Jews, the people with whom God made His covenant. You can't change that, no matter how hard you try. "The church" didn't originally accept God; the Jews did! You can't undo history.
"The church" has borrowed the God of the Jews and made Him theirs. While this is a good thing, "the church" has opted to ignore God's original teachings - His Torah - and just look at what's happened to the world as a result! "The church" has broken into myriads of denominations and belief systems, with each one doing their "own thing". We, as a human race, are more decadent than ever and steadily going downhill! So what makes "the churches" of the world God's "chosen"?
"The church" is teaching that "Jesus nailed it to the cross" - which is a gross misconception and misinterpretation of Scripture. WHEN did God ever say to worship on the FIRST day? When did God ever tell us to stop celebrating His Biblical feasts, which have so much signifiance in the grand scheme of things? When did God tell us it was okay to be homosexual, have sex before marriage, smart off to our parents, or celebrate His birth or resurrection using Pagan customs? Many CHURCHES are teaching this kind of tolerance! So what makes them God's "chosen"? Just because they believe in "Jesus"? Hardly. Most churches are "lukewarm"! Yeshua Himself says that if we are lukewarm to Him, He will say He never knew us and will "spit us out" of His mouth (Revelation 3:16).
Here's what God says about the Jews:
Genesis 12:3 - "I will make you into a great nation and I will bless you; I will make your name great, and you will be a blessing. I will bless those who bless you, and whoever curses you I will curse; and all peoples on earth will be blessed through you."
If you will remember, in the "Old Testament" Gentiles were referred to as "heathens". So, why would they suddenly replace God's original "chosen"? Did God change His mind? No - right through the end, He lets us know that the Jews are His Chosen (see Isaiah 66:7-8 and Leviticus 26:3-8). The fact that one of God's major end time prophecies came true in 1948 proves this fact: He used the Holocaust to give Israel back to His "chosen", the Jews (which included those who are "grafted in" through the atoning blood of Messiah) - and they still have it (and always will), despite the efforts of many bigger countries to try to steal it from them.
BETHEL's assertion: Should we observe feast days, etc. according to the Law? No. "After that ye have known God, or rather are known of God, how turn ye again to the weak and beggarly elements, whereunto ye desire again to be in bondage? Ye observe days, and months, and times, and years. I am afraid [for] you, lest I have bestowed upon you labour in vain" (Gal. 4:10-11). "Do not be carried away by all kinds of strange teachings. It is good for our hearts to be strengthened by grace, not by ceremonial foods, which are of no value to those who eat them" (Heb.13:9).
The Refiner's Fire Response: Did God ever say to ignore His Biblical feasts? No - it was your MISUNDERSTANDING of Paul's teachings.
Bethel's long and tedious article proves nothing, except for his lack of understanding when it comes to the Bible. Rather than to bore the world with his rantings, we've skipped over a much redundancy to the final paragraph:
BETHEL's assertion: Why do so many Christians, including Messianic Jews, persist in trying to keep the Law, including the Sabbath and the feast days in spite of the clear teachings of the New Testament? Some of the reasons are: Pride because of a false perception of superiority in being Jewish. Deception by adhering to the false teaching of those who do not understand what grace is. Ignoring the clear teaching concerning the Law, especially in the book of Galatians, chapters three and four. Because of declining spirituality: (when true spirituality declines ritualism increases). And last but not least, because of Christians being demonized by religious demons who want to pervert the truths of God's Word including the truth that Christians have a higher calling under the New Covenant.
The Refiner's Fire Response: We keep Torah because GOD SAID "Do not forsake my Torah!" (Proverbs 4:2). We keep Torah because Yeshua said He came to FULFILL, not "abolish" Torah. We keep Torah because we know Yeshua was the final Sin Sacrifice who absolutely did not abolish His own, original teachings and instruction. If God said it, why isn't it good enough for you, Mr. Bethel? Stop using your limited, human mindset to try to understand the Word.
And for God's sake, Harry, STOP pushing your poisoned bigoted mindset and unfounded prejudices down the world's collective throat! You're making ALL Christians out to be wild-eyed kooks!