What exactly is ‘stringing pearls’?
Yeshua taught from the Old Covenant Scriptures and He used techniques that were common practice by Rabbis and teachers for hundreds of years. One of those techniques (stringing pearls) was called ‘Gezerah Shevah’ or ‘Comparison of Equals’ which basically means that a passage of Scripture can expand on another passage of Scripture if they share the same word. In other words, Scripture interprets Scripture. Chuck Missler has referred to this as ‘expositional constancy’. So as part of their study practice, Rabbis would look for places in the Bible where the same words were used and then see if and how they might be connected. They must never contradict each other or undermine the plain meaning of the text because God would never undermine His own Word. The connection is from the Hebrew rather than the English rendering.
Yeshua ‘stringing pearls’.
When Yeshua was asked by a young Pharisee which was the greatest commandment in the Torah, He responded by saying: “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: Love your neighbour as yourself.” – Matt 22:36-39 The first part comes from Deut 6:5 which is part of the Shema, a prayer said by Jews both morning and evening to this day and is placed inside a mezuzah on the door post of their home. The second part comes from Lev 19:18. Both passages have the word ‘veh ah’hahv’tah’ which means ‘and you shall love’ and because of this phrase, both passages—though from different sections of the Torah—can be linked together. Scripture interprets Scripture and more often than not, we don’t look deep enough to find the connections.
God was ‘stringing pearls’ on the day Yeshua was baptised.
Mark 1:9-11: ‘In those days Jesus came from Nazareth in Galilee and was baptised by John in the Jordan. Immediately coming up out of the water, He saw the heavens opening and the Spirit like a dove descending upon Him; and a voice came out of the heavens; “You are My beloved Son, in You I am well-pleased.” God Himself is quoting HIS OWN SCRIPTURES and putting small phrases together. ‘You are My son’ comes from Psalm 2:7 “I will surely tell of the decree of the Lord: He said to Me, You are My Son, today I have begotten You.” ‘Whom I love’ comes from Genesis 22:2 “He said, ‘Take now your son, your only son, ‘whom you love, Isaac, and go to the land of Moriah, and offer him there as a burnt offering on one of the mountains of which I will tell you.’” ‘In You I am well-pleased’ comes from Isaiah 42:1 “Behold My Servant, whom I uphold; My chosen one in whom My soul delights. I have put My Spirit upon Him; He will bring forth justice to the nations.”
The Messiah throughout the Scriptures.
Both Psalm 2 and Isaiah 42 have always been understood and accepted to be referring to the Messiah. Psalm 2 is God proclaiming that His Son is a royal king who will rule over the whole world. Isaiah 42 is God is calling the Messiah His Servant whom God has placed His Spirit upon. As Yeshua came up out of the water, God the Father said, “You are My beloved Son, in You I am well-pleased” as the Spirit was in fact descending on Him.
This one sentence reveals Yeshua as Prophet, Priest and King encapsulating the Gospel of our Redemption.
Genesis 22 is the most critical event in the Old Covenant. Abraham was about to sacrifice His son Isaac, a son Abraham waited 100 years to get who was more precious to him than his own life. This foreshadowed God the Father’s own feelings for His own Son, whom He would sacrifice. When Yeshua was baptised the Father was in effect saying, “Here is My precious Son, MY Isaac,” prophetically hinting at the sacrifice Yeshua would make in a few short years from that time. In three short quotes from His own Scriptures, God spoke of Yeshua as being a King, a Servant and a Son willing to sacrifice Himself. This one sentence reveals Yeshua as Prophet, Priest and King encapsulating the Gospel of our Redemption. A wonderful example of the use of stringing pearls.
God is speaking today, through His Word.
Our communion each week is the celebration we share, when we remember the price paid for us. And while Yeshua’s sacrifice on the cross is more than enough to demand our gratitude, God has placed His Spirit within us to lead and guide and comfort us and of course He has left for us His Word. We long to hear the voice of God…and yet God is speaking louder than ever if only we would open His Word and read it. “His divine power has granted to us everything pertaining to life and godliness through the true knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and excellence. For by these He has granted to us His precious and magnificent promises, so that by them you may become partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world by lust.” – 2 Peter 1:3 The attaining of a life of godliness comes through the process of the Word working in us. “For the Word of God is living and active and sharper than any two-edged sword, and piercing as far as the division of soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart.” – Hebrews 4:12 All Scripture points to Yeshua as He is pre-eminent in all creation. Yeshua said to the Pharisees during one of their discussions; “You search the Scriptures because you think that in them you have eternal life; it is these that testify about Me.” – John 5:39 If you want to know Yeshua, know His Word. Genesis to Revelation is God’s revelation of Himself to us and His plan–in detail–to rescue us from the power and destruction of sin. And all this has been provided freely to us because of the completed work of Christ on the cross.