Questions & Answers

Larry Dee Harper introduces some rather “novel” concepts—novel to our day, perhaps, but not to earlier generations of Christians. This page is intended to serve notice to those True Believers who still have “the love of the truth.”

A Bit of an Overview

All of The Elijah Project materials The Voice of Elijah® has made available for reading on the Online Libraryfor free or for acquisition through our website are based on some rather simple hermeneutical principles. This “unconventional wisdom” approach to understanding the Greek and Hebrew Scriptures, stated succinctly, is this: Jesus Christ spoke in parables because He was referring to things that Moses and the Prophets of Israel had already stated in parables. As God Himself said through the Prophet Hosea:

I have also spoken to the prophets,
And I gave numerous visions;
And through the prophets I gave parables.
(Hosea 12:10) —NASB

In addition to speaking in terms of the parabolic imagery inherent in the parables of Moses and the other Prophets of Israel, Jesus also spoke using the same Hebrew idioms—that is, expressions that have a figurative, rather than literal, meaning. Without insight into the meaning of the Hebrew idioms that Moses and the other Prophets of Israel—as well as Jesus and His Apostles—used, it is impossible for anyone to understand what these men of God were talking about, much less what they said.

On this page, you will find a brief introduction to an understanding of the Scriptures that is based entirely on the Prophets’ use of parabolic imagery and Hebrew idioms to conceal and reveal the Mystery of the Word of God in the Hebrew Scriptures. It is intended to serve notice to those True Believers who still have “the love of the truth” that Paul mentions in this passage:

And then that lawless one will be revealed whom the Lord will slay with the breath of His mouth and bring to an end by the appearance of His coming; {that is,} the one whose coming is in accord with the activity of Satan, with all power and signs and false wonders, and with all the deception of wickedness for those who perish, because they did not receive the love of the truth so as to be saved. And for this reason God will send upon them a deluding influence so that they might believe what is false, in order that they all may be judged who did not believe the truth, but took pleasure in wickedness.
(2 Thessalonians 2:8–12) —NASB

You will know if the shoe fits—that’s an apt idiom, considering the fact that it has to do with a king who was looking for a certain special someone—after you have finished reading what you find here. As the saying goes, “There is a whole lot more where this came from.”

The Questions

Parables Tell Us How One Thing Is Like Another

Most people assume that Jesus Christ spoke in parables to teach moral lessons. That is not true. The English word parable comes from the Greek word paraboles, which simply means “comparison.” That Greek word is best known for its use in the Scriptures, where it most often refers to the parables of Jesus Christ.

The Truth is, in the time of Christ, the Greek word paraboles was used to refer to any comparison between two things. Therefore, every one of Jesus’ parables is a descriptive comparison put in the form of a brief story that points out how two entirely different things are alike. That is why Jesus began many of His parables by saying, “the kingdom of God is like” this or “the kingdom of heaven may be compared to” that.

Learn more about what a parable is.

The Parables of Jesus Were Used to Conceal the Truth

Jesus spoke in parables for exactly the same reason that Moses and all the other Prophets of Israel spoke in parables in their prophecies. He was using parabolic images and Hebrew idioms to conceal and reveal how His birth, life, death, and Resurrection were like a variety of things in the known physical realm.

Believe it or not, God told all the Prophets of Israel—from Moses to Malachi—to conceal the Word of God in parables and other hard-to-understand sayings. The Prophet Hosea specifically states that God spoke through His Prophets using parables.

Learn more about why Jesus spoke in parables.

A Parabolic Image Is a Mental Image the Prophets Used

A parabolic image is the first of the two constituent parts of a parable, with the second constituent part being a Hebrew idiom. A parabolic image is a mental image that Moses and the Prophets of Israel used in their prophecies to speak concerning God’s purpose in the birth, life, death, and Resurrection of Jesus Christ. For example, the Prophets of Israel state many things parabolically concerning Jesus Christ in terms of “The House” of Israel and “The House” of David.

Learn more about parabolic imagery.

Hebrew Idioms Mean Something Other Than What the Words Literally Say

A Hebrew idiom is the second of the two constituent parts of a parable, with the first constituent part being a parabolic image. A Hebrew idiom is an expression, usually a verb with a noun as its direct object, that has a meaning which differs from the normal meaning attached to the words that comprise the idiom. In that regard, Hebrew idioms are no different than idioms in any other language.

For instance, the English idiom “kick the bucket” means “to die,” as does the English idiom “buy the farm.” The meaning of these two idioms is obviously not derived from the normal meaning attached to the words kick and bucket, or buy and farm. The same is true of all of the Hebrew idioms that Moses and the other Prophets of Israel used to conceal and reveal the meaning and significance of the Word of God.

Learn more about Hebrew idioms.

Without Meaning and Significance, One Cannot Accurately Understand

The Scriptures contain a completely coherent message, which is called both the Mystery and the Word of God. However, that message cannot be properly understood if those who read the Scriptures do not accurately understand the meaning of what is said or the significance of why it was said.

As with any written or spoken form of communication, if a reader or hearer fails to grasp the meaning or the significance of a statement, there is a breakdown in communication. Although it is easy to see why an accurate understanding of the meaning of words is crucial to communication, it is not as easy to see why an accurate understanding of their significance can be just as essential.

Learn more about meaning and significance.

The Prophets Spoke in Parables to Reveal and Conceal

The Scriptures make it clear that one of the reasons why Jesus spoke in parables was to conceal the Mystery of the Word of God from those who had not been “granted” the right to understand those mysteries while revealing it to those who had been “granted” that right:

And the disciples came and said to Him, “Why do You speak to them in parables?” And He answered and said to them, “To you it has been granted to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it has not been granted. For whoever has, to him shall {more} be given, and he shall have an abundance; but whoever does not have, even what he has shall be taken away from him. Therefore I speak to them in parables; because while seeing they do not see, and while hearing they do not hear, nor do they understand.” (Matthew 13:10–13) —NASB

Jesus’ point is, most of us have the physical eyes and ears necessary to see and hear things in the physical world, but only a few have been “granted” the spiritual eyes and ears needed to apprehend the meaning and significance of the parables of Scripture which unlock the Mystery of the Word of God that Moses and the other Prophets of Israel concealed in their writings.

Learn more about parables revealing and concealing the Truth.

The Old Testament Prophets Talk Concerning Jesus Christ

In one way or another, all of the prophecies found in the Hebrew Scriptures are talking about Jesus Christ. Jesus said as much Himself when He claimed that the writings of Moses, the Prophets of Israel, and the Psalms—that is, the entirety of the Hebrew Scriptures—are all talking about Him.

And beginning with Moses and with all the prophets, He explained to them the things concerning Himself in all the Scriptures. … Now He said to them, “These are My words which I spoke to you while I was still with you, that all things which are written about Me in the Law of Moses and the Prophets and the Psalms must be fulfilled.”
(Luke 24:27, 44) —NASB

Despite the fact that the prophecies of the Hebrew Scriptures are filled with constant allusions to the birth, life, death, and Resurrection of Jesus Christ, most Christians can only cite a few well-known passages that talk about Jesus Christ.

Learn more the prophecies of the Old Testament.

God Called Moses to Be His “Mouth”

It is commonly believed that God called Moses to lead the sons of Israel out of the land of Egypt. That is true; He did. However, it is also true that God called Moses to be His “mouth,” the Prophet through whom He would speak to the sons of Israel and convey to them The Teaching of Moses. God did that in spite of Moses’ argument that he lacked the oratory skills for the job:

Then Moses said to the LORD, “Please, LORD, I have never been eloquent, neither recently nor in time past, nor since Thou hast spoken to Thy servant; for I am slow of speech and slow of tongue.” And the LORD said to him, “Who has made man’s mouth? Or who makes {him} dumb or deaf, or seeing or blind? Is it not I, the LORD? Now then go, and I, even I, will be your mouth, and teach you what you are to say.
(Exodus 4:10–12) —NASB

Although God explained to Moses the things He had called him to teach the sons of Israel, Moses was not totally ignorant of the concepts God incorporated into The Teaching of Moses.

Learn more about why God called Moses.

The Oral Teaching Is The Teaching of Moses

The Teaching of Moses was, and still is, a specific body of knowledge which began as an oral Teaching that God instructed Moses to hand down to the sons of Israel in the wilderness of Sinai. Although many Christians believe the Mosaic Law and the writings of the Pentateuch (the first five books of the Old Testament) comprise all that Moses taught the sons of Israel, the Jews have long known that is not so. They accurately insist that Moses delivered both an oral Torah (oral Teaching) and a written Torah (written Teaching) to the sons of Israel at Mt. Sinai. (The Hebrew word torah, which is normally translated “law,” actually means “teaching.”)

Learn more about The Teaching of Moses.

The Prophets of Israel Were Sent to Restore

The Prophets of Israel were God’s “mouth.” They were responsible for conveying the Word of God to the sons of Israel so that everyone in Israel might have sufficient knowledge of the Truth to be saved through faith (belief) in the Truth of the Word of God. Contrary to what many Christians today believe, New Testament Believers were not the first to be saved by faith in the Word of God. As the author of the Book of Hebrews plainly states, Old Testament Believers were also saved by faith (belief) in the Truth of the Word of God.

Learn more about what the Prophets of Israel were trying to accomplish.

Parabolic Images and Hebrew Idioms Are the Key to Understanding Parables

The key to understanding the meaning and significance of the parables of the Scriptures lies in understanding the meaning and significance of the parabolic images and Hebrew idioms that provide the foundation for those parables. Each parabolic image and Hebrew idiom gains its meaning and significance from the time when the Prophets of Israel first used it in a parable. Therefore, to understand the parables of the Scriptures, one must first understand the historical and cultural context from which each one derives its meaning and significance.

Learn more about understanding parables in Scripture.

A Parabolic Pantomime Explains What Some Future Event Will Be Like

A parabolic pantomime is an event orchestrated by God to explain what some future event will be likeparabolically speaking. Therefore, a parabolic pantomime has one unique characteristic that sets it apart from all other events—it always involves the direct intervention of God into human affairs. It doesn’t matter whether God intervenes in an immediate, supernatural way, as He did when He destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah with fire and brimstone (Gen. 19:24), or whether He intervenes by specifically directing the actions of others, such as Abraham’s sacrifice of Isaac (Gen. 22:1–18) or the repetitive actions of the priests of Israel described in the Pentateuch. The purpose of a parabolic pantomime is always the same: to establish a parabolic image that the Prophets of Israel could use to describe some future event.

Learn more about parabolic pantomimes.

The Mystery Is a Body of Knowledge That Is Hidden in Parables

The Mystery is a designation that the Apostle Paul often uses in his epistles to refer to what Moses and the Prophets of Israel explain in their parables. This information provides insight into the meaning and significance of all the parabolic images and Hebrew idioms that are the basis for the parables that Moses taught the sons of Israel in the wilderness of Sinai. It also explains the meaning and significance of the parabolic pantomimes that the sons of Israel were directed to carry out according to the dictates of the Mosaic Law.

Learn more about The Mystery of Scripture.

The Word of God Is the Truth That the Scriptures Seek to Convey

Although it has become commonplace for Christians to think of the Scriptures as the Word of God, the original Greek and Hebrew/Aramaic text of the Scriptures is not, in and of itself, the Word of God. The Truth is, the Word of God is the Truth that the written text of the Scriptures seeks to convey. The point is, any statement, no matter whether it is written or spoken, carries a meaning and significance that can be misconstrued or misinterpreted by anyone who hears or reads it. That happens all the time. People often make statements that are misunderstood by others, which results in a distortion of the message the author or speaker was trying to convey.

Learn more about the Word of God.

The Purpose

The purpose of this page is to introduce you to some rather “novel” concepts—novel to our day, perhaps, but not to earlier generations of Christians. These concepts were all part of The Apostolic Teaching, which was well-known to the Apostolic and Early Church Fathers but was distorted by “Christian philosophers” who took over leadership of the Church around A.D. 200. Subsequently, The Apostolic Teaching was lost completely.

Most Christians are not even aware the concepts explained here were ever the basis for an understanding of the Scriptures. Yet anyone who reads the writings of the Apostolic and Early Church Fathers who wrote prior to A.D. 200 with an open mind will find that it is true.

The Church lost the Truth of The Apostolic Teaching because Pretenders who came to power in the Church around A.D. 200 distorted it for no reason other than their own aggrandizement. Shortly after A.D. 1500, the Protestant Reformers realized the Church had somehow lost the Truth, but they were not able to restore all that had been lost.

For nearly four hundred years, various Protestant groups continued to try to restore what the Church lost. Many thought what had been lost was some form of church government—or lack thereof. Others thought it was some part of the salvation experience. But the Protestant search for what the Church lost ended just over a century ago when the Pentecostals decided it was the “Baptism of the Holy Spirit.”

Now that most Protestants are convinced their group is the one that found what was lost, The Elijah Project and The Voice of Elijah® are—in preparation for the Second Coming—restoring The Apostolic Teaching, thereby restoring the “hearts” of the fathers to the children (Mal. 4:6).

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