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The Birthday

Most souls realize that birthday parties do not have their origin in the Household of Faith, therefore those who celebrate birthdays have ultimately gone elsewhere to establish their authority, and of course minhagim (traditions) is how birthdays came about.  One might think birthdays being such a trivial matter, don't need to be judged by the Authority of Scripture or the Beit Din, the fact of the matter is, there is a right way and a wrong way to do everything.  The Disciples of Yeshua are entrusted to yield to Yeshua's authority within each Prophetic and Torah based directive given by the Word of YHWH.  We as a people do solely rely on His Authority to establish our halacha and minhagim.  YHWH is One and His Name One, He is not divided in Himself and neither are we who walk by the Spirit and not after the flesh.  There is no authority given in Torah or the Ketuvim Netzarim to celebrate birthdays, but all who walk by Faith in Yeshua must each year do battle against the rank paganism of the Christmas birth of Jesus/Tammuz and also witness the propping up of green trees commemorating the festival of a pagan deity.

 

There is no tradition in Judaism of celebrating birthdays, otherwise we would have a list of birthdays from Noah, Abraham to Moses, King David and many others, but no such thing exists. There are of course Sages who have suggested that certain individuals were born on Moedim or important days of Israel's history, however there are no "birthdays" within Judaism, Torah, the Ketuvim Netzarim or the Household of Israel.

 

Spiritual Jews do not celebrate birthdays, counting our days is one thing, celebrating them is yet another. The fact is the Tanak only mentions a birthday once, that was the birthday of Pharaoh.  It was Pharaoh whose whole life was set out for him in advance, who never seemed to have the will to do the right thing.  He is the only one who celebrates a birthday in the Tenach.  Pharaoh shows a defiance for the things of YHWH, he is the epitome of a pagan, an enemy of YHWH and and enemy of the Israel of Elohim.  We must not take up a lukewarm value system over the matter of birthdays or anything else, because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spew thee out of my mouth.  Because you say, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and know not that you art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked.  The giving of gifts to children because of the ritual of birthdays can breed covetousness, greed, envy, rebellion, lack of appreciation etc, these are not the values that are to be visible within the Body of Mashiyach.

 

In Judaism souls are memorialized by their day of death, their yahrzeit - their personal anniversary, not the day of their birth.  One who follows Mashiyach must certainly be spiritually born again to enter into Life.  This spiritual re-birth looks forward to the Olam Haba and pales the physical birth by a quantum leap.  By elevating ones physical birthday the flesh is magnified above the spiritual. 

 

The Moedim of YHWH are set times that provide opportunity to celebrate and be birthed in a spiritual new beginning into the Kingdom of Elohim.  The Moedim are replete with infinite insights that take values of time and space in this present world, and reveal them inside an eternal dimension.  YHWH instructs us to do what is pleasing to Him by His appointments, "If you turn away your foot from the Shabbat, from doing your pleasure on MY Holy Day; and call the Shabbat a delight, the holy of YHWH, honorable; and shall honour HIM, not doing your OWN ways, nor finding your OWN pleasure, nor speaking your OWN words..."  Isaiah 58:13  We are also instructed of the annual Moedim (set times) that YHWH desires us to come before Him Leviticus 23, these Celebrations or Feasts unto YHWH are not optional for the people of Elohim, nowhere is there or can there be a mention of celebrating one's birthday, this is an invention of the flesh that points the other direction.  Those who are adamant to celebrate birthdays are at a loss to show how YHWH is part of their celebration, the fact is they are only justifying a man made value.

 

47  Therefore, behold, the days come, that I will do judgment upon the graven images of  Babylon : and her whole land shall be confounded, and all her slain shall fall in the midst of her.  48  Then the heaven and the earth, and all that is therein, shall sing for Babylon: for the spoilers shall come unto her from the north, says YHWH.  49  As  Babylon has caused the slain of Israel to fall, so at Babylon shall fall the slain of all the earth. Jeremiah 51

 

The matter of birthdays causing division in the Body of Mashiyach is a very serious matter, there is no humor here.  Many souls perish because of stubborn and willful defiance to the Word of YHWH on many levels.  Something as insignificant as a birthday party could become a stumbling block for souls unwilling to stand down from un-sanctified humanistic celebrations and be used by the flesh to cut themselves off from the Body of Mashiyach.

 

Ezekiel 9:5  And to the others he said in mine hearing, Go ye after him through the city, and smite: let not your eye spare, neither have ye pity:  6  Slay utterly old and young, both maids,  and little children,  and women: but come not near any man upon whom is the mark;  and  begin at my sanctuary. Then they began at the ancient men which were before the house.  7 And he said unto them, Defile the house, and fill the courts with the slain: go ye forth.  And  they went forth,  and  slew in the city.  8  And  it came to pass, while they were slaying them, and I was left, that I fell upon my face,  and  cried,  and said, Ah Adonai YHWH! wilt thou destroy all the residue of Israel in thy pouring out of thy fury upon Jerusalem?  9  Then said he unto me, The iniquity of the house of Israel and Judah is exceeding great,  and the land is full of blood, and the city full of perverseness: for they say, YHWH has forsaken the earth,  and YHWH sees not.  10  And as for me also, mine eye shall not spare, neither will I have pity, but I will recompense their way upon their head.  11  And , behold, the man clothed with linen, which had the inkhorn by his side, reported the matter, saying, I have done as thou hast commanded me.

 

This prophecy tells of those who put a branch to their nose, they worshipped to Tammuz, as a seemly fun and innocent detour from YHWH they made sun worship or humanism their authority for worship.  The entire umbrella of all authority, that is not of YHWH, comes from hasatan, hence the perilous present reality of relativism has become the most popular form of religion.  The Judgment of YHWH against false worship proves to be very severe, "Slay utterly old and young, both maids, and little children, and women", the little children are also to be slain, the little children carry the generational rebellion of their forefathers.  Some say for example they wouldn't do birthdays except that "we do it for the children", they want to make all children feel special and honored.  Some say God is Love and He would never wipe out little children.  Some say it's the "Old Testament" thinking that YHWH would do such a thing.  Some say they are under a dispensation of grace where God is Love and He forgives everyone, in their sin.  Some people make up their own gods through the imagery of their minds, they've been told a lie and they believe a lie.  YHWH is LOVE, He is Righteous and His Word protects us, but those who mock His Word and His Holiness are His enemies and the enemies of His called out people.

 

It is one thing to observe a birthday party, it is yet another to do it on Shabbat, and yet another to rebuke someone for giving a clear warning that there is more to a birthday party than eating some cake, and having a bit of "fun".  If anyone judges a brother for bringing this matter before the body, the entire body of Mashiyach will also stand judged on this matter, these issues are never just between a couple individuals only.  YHWH marks those who sigh and cry for the abominations in the land, and who refuse to compromise with Hellenism.  Yet the Hellenists also number those as "legalists" who walk in the FEAR of YHWH and are careful to Observe all that He has Commanded us to do.  The people of YHWH are not in the least bit ashamed or concerned of the criticisms outsiders have towards any halachic decision given by the Ruach HaKodesh, in the Name of Yeshua.  Netzarim Yehudi do not celebrate birthdays, in 45 years walking as a Netzarim Jew I have NEVER heard of Netzarim Jews celebrating birthdays, certainly not on Shabbat.  The age and birthdays of those in the community are recognized by verbal mention, but not celebrated, those who have a family get together with a few friends do not do so on the actual birthday of their children and teach their children the significance of a mikra kodesh vs a family party.

 

Some Talmidim of Yeshua grew up in homes where Christmas was celebrated and in the course of time separated out of their lives that which is pagan.  The influences of paganism within Judaism and Christianity are many and we must all be vigilant to not become lukewarm.  Grace is given to each one in Mashiyach to make distinctions and walk upright in Yeshua and Torah, while the world accuses us before our Father for being "legalistic" we aim to please our Father not men.  We are called to be a peculiar people unto YHWH, but the love of many is growing cold because of their anti-Torah values.  The Word of YHWH judges everyone equally, His Grace gives us the strength to lay down the things which do not profit.  This over-emphasized extra-biblical feast day is clearly centered on the flesh, not the Creator.  The celebration of birthdays is usually accompanied by a barrage of immunity-reducing, sugar-saturated cake and ice cream, otherwise known as the foods of Babylon see Daniel 1:9-16.  "Forasmuch then as Mashiyach has suffered for us in the flesh, arm yourselves likewise with the same mind: for he that has suffered in the flesh has ceased from sin; That he no longer should live the rest of his time in the flesh to the lusts of men, but to the will of YHWH. 1 Peter 4:1,2.

 

The Ketuvim Netzarim do not record the date of Yeshua’s birth, and do not describe any celebrations, yet various Christian groups set dates for a birthday party for "Jesus", based on long established pagan dates.  Roman Catholics and Protestants use December 25, Eastern Orthodox use Jan. 6, the Greek Orthodox celebrate on January 7th.  In the "Holy Land", the Orthodox churches use the old Julian calendar introduced by Pope Gregory XIII in 1578, which is 13 days behind the Gregorian calendar, to determine the date for Christmas.  Accordingly, the Armenians celebrate Christmas on January 19th.  According to Roman Catholic sources, their date for Christmas was changed from January 6th to December 25th in order to override a pagan feast dedicated to the birth of the Sun, which was celebrated on December 25th.  The Greek founders of "the church" encouraged Greek Christians to continue all their pagan celebrations, but to use the name of Jesus instead of Zeus, Ishtar etc.  Clearly anyone who celebrates the birthday of Jesus has fallen into paganism, in more ways than one.  Groups such as the JW's and Mohammedans reject the commemoration of one's birthday because of its pagan origins.

 

The celebration of birthdays has been historically embraced by non-Jews:

1. "And it came to pass the third day, which was Pharaoh's birthday, that he made a feast unto all his servants"  Genesis 40:20

 

2. "But when Herod's birthday was kept, the daughter of Herodias danced before them, and pleased Herod."  Matthew 14:6

 

3.  In 2Maccabees 6:7,  there is the reference to the monthly genéthlia of Antiochus IV, during which the Jews were forced to partake of the sacrifices. Josephus (Wars of the Jews, vii. 3. 1) refers to Titus’ celebration of his brother’s and father’s birthdays (genéthlia) by slaughtering Jewish captives.

 

There is also the matter of Job's children's observance, "every one his day":

"And his sons went and feasted in their houses, every one his day; and sent and called for their three sisters to eat and to drink with them.  And it was so, when the days of their feasting were gone about, that Job sent and sanctified them, and rose up early in the morning, and offered burnt offerings according to the number of them all: for Job said, It may be that my sons have sinned, and cursed Elohim in their hearts. Thus did Job continually."  Job 1:4-5

 

There is an affinity of such commemoration among the wicked as recorded in The Satanic Bible (Anton Szandor LaVey, (Air) Book of Lucifer – The Enlightenment, Avon Books, 1969, Ch XI, Religious Holidays, p. 96) regarding Birthdays:

"The highest of all holidays in the Satanic religion is the date of one’s own birthday. This is in direct contradiction to the holy of holy days of other religions, which deify a particular god who has been created in an anthropomorphic form of their own image, thereby showing that the ego is not really buried.  The Satanist feels: ‘Why not really be honest and if you are going to create a god in your image, why not create that god as yourself." Every man is a god if he chooses to recognize himself as one. So, the Satanist celebrates his own birthday as the most important holiday of the year. After all, aren’t you happier about the fact that you were born than you are about the birth of someone you have never even met? Or for that matter, aside from religious holidays, why pay higher tribute to the birthday of a president or to a date in history than we do to the day we were brought into this greatest of all worlds?  Despite the fact that some of us may not have been wanted, or at least were not particularly planned, we’re glad, even if no one else is, that we’re here! You should give yourself a pat on the back, buy yourself whatever you want, treat yourself like the king (or god) that you are, and generally celebrate your birthday with as much pomp and ceremony as possible."

 

Those who enter into the Kingdom of Elohim are not to subscribe to pagan tradition, the Scripture says:

"A good name is better than precious ointment; and the day of death than the day of one's birth."  Ecclesiastes 7:1

"Has a nation changed their gods, which are yet no gods?  But My people have changed their glory for that which does not profit."  Jeremiah 2:11

 

"That no flesh should glory in his presence."  1 Corinthians 1:29

 

"And again, YHWH knows the thoughts of the wise, that they are vain. Therefore let no man glory in men..." 1 Corinthians  3:20-21

 

The celebration of birthdays is a tradition that justifies the flesh, it is generally used as an excuse to eat foods of Babylon or do mundane and trivial activities for the sake of "amusement" that merit nothing for the world to come.  Whenever pride and the flesh rise up in our souls, Truth and Sobriety for the Word and Spirit of YHWH takes the back seat.  Although some politely choose not to celebrate birthdays, their family or friends push the issue and try to impose their will.  Perhaps some feel a need to give recognition, hoping you will return the favor?  Perhaps some want to indebt you, so you feel obligated to recognize their birthday?  Do we want recognition to come, from YHWH or from men?  It might be good to determine why some feel celebrating birthdays is of such importance?

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Shalom U'Brechot,

YHWH be with you,

 

Baruch Ben Daniel

 

Why the Survey?

 

The matter of Birthday celebrations is a non-issue among Netzarim Jews and the Spiritual Israel of Elohim who do not celebrate birthdays, neither of course do Netzari Yehudi or Spiritual Israelites in any way celebrate the birthday of Yeshua.  It is not uncommon to publicly state the age and birthday of someone unless they request otherwise.  All who desire to follow Yeshua and Torah subscribe to YHWH's Authority for each matter of observance and do not celebrate birthdays as the world does for many reasons, none the least of being that our Saviour and Redeemer is annually being misrepresented by those who celebrate the "birth of Jesus" on the pagan day of sun rebirth (Tammuz worship) called Christmas.  Netzarim followers of Yeshua celebrate the Moedim (appointed times) of YHWH with much enthusiasm and gratitude knowing that Yeshua is the substance of all our celebrations.  On the Moedim each soul in attendance is celebrated both individually and collectively as YHWH's peculiar treasure.  Each of the Moedim establishes the foundation of the new birth in Mashiyach, many souls are unaware of the Moedim setting a people apart as unto YHWH and have not entered into the fullness of Covenant in their walk in Yeshua, as such the personal celebration of Birthdays provides social meaning and significance on that different level.

     While it is very helpful to consider the days and years of our lives, and to number our days, certainly we know of the length of days of many of our ancestors, it is yet another to endow oneself with pomp and circumstance on the anniversary of one's birth.  Some find it necessary to inform others of their physical birthday in the Roman calendar, their rebirth-day when they were baptized into "the Church" and their birthday as it coincides to the Hebrew calendar, some announce their Birthdays with an expectation of receiving a token gift from others.  To publicly state birthdays and ages of individuals within the Body of Mashiyach is a warm and healthy way to acknowledge the brotherhood, without becoming excessive.  There is no authority in the Ruach HaKodesh that advocates the celebration of ones birthday.

 

Let each one be fully convinced in the Ruach HaKodesh and "For I say, through the grace given unto me, to every man that is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think; but to think soberly, according as Elohim has dealt to every man the measure of faith."   Romans 12:3

 

 

 

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