Shalom.  Our study this morning is from Genesis 49.33.

Read Genesis 49.33

Paul writes in Philippians 1.21, “For to me to live is Messiah, and to die is gain”.  Perhaps we can learn more of what he means from this study where he says, to die is gain.

I think Paul’s thoughts “to live is Messiah”, is finding the true meaning of life, loving GOD and Messiah and serving Him.  To paraphrase the words Abigail said of David in 1 Samuel 25.29, and her words also apply to us.  “Our soul is bound up in the bundle of life in the care of The LORD our GOD”.  Thus, there is no greater life than to live in Messiah, but to die, Paul writes, is gain.  Perhaps this study will explain why to die is gain for the Children of God.

GENESIS 49.33  Jacob died at the age of 147.  GENESIS 47.28

Jacob was 130 years old when The LORD GOD caused him and his family of 66 people, the whole house of Israel at the time, to move from Canaan, today’s Israel, to Egypt where GOD would make of Jacob a great nation.  That is, GOD made Israel a great nation over the 430 years Israel was in Egypt before GOD brought them out to the Promised Land, The Land of Israel by the leadership of Moses.

                            GENESIS 46.1-4

Case in point here?  Age means nothing to GOD.  He can and will use us for His purpose whether we are young or old.  Jacob was 130 years old when GOD led Jacob and his family out of Canaan to Egypt.  Moses was 80 when GOD called him to lead the children of Israel out of Egypt to The Land He promised to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, The Land of Israel.  David was a young man when GOD called him.  Samuel and Jeremiah were boys when The LORD GOD called them.  And Abraham was 75 when The LORD called him to be the Father of Judaism.  Thus as children of GOD, we should always be ready.

GENESIS 49.33  GATHERED – AHSAHF- gathered, gather together, or TAKEN AWAY TO HIS PEOPLE.

I believe where The LORD said, Jacob died and was gathered to his people, GOD means, Jacob died on earth and was reunited with his father Isaac and his mother Rebekah and his grandfather Abraham and his grandmother Sarah, and his wifes Leah and Rachel, and others of his people IN HEAVEN.  And since GOD is The GOD of the living and not the dead (MATTHEW 22.32), Jacob must be living with GOD in Heaven.

Let’s revisit the story Yeshua told of the beggar and the rich man to validate this truth of Jacob being gathered to his people in Heaven, because in the story, and why would Yeshua tell us this story, the beggar died and immediately went to Heaven to the side of Abraham who himself is in Heaven.  The rich man died and went to hell.

                            LUKE 16.22-23

Since we’re reading these words, let’s finish Messiah’s story, because here is the reason we preach obedience to The Law and the Prophets.

                            LUKE 22.31.

In Heaven, Jacob has a Heavenly body as all GOD’s special children have and will have a Heavenly body, the same Heavenly body Yeshua has.  And Yeshua is GOD, Elohim.  PHILIPPIANS 3.20-21

(Philippians 3.20)  CONVERSATION – citizenship, a citizen of Heaven

SAVIOUR – MOSHEEAH, or in Greek – SOTARE – meaning GOD Who is Messiah saves and defends us, delivers and rescues us, brings us Salvation and victory.

VERSE 21 VILE BODY – a body of low estate as compared to a heavenly body.

FASHIONED – similar

SUBDUE – to bring into subjection, that is everything and everyone is in subjection to GOD, even changing our earthly bodies to a magnificent Heavenly body like His.  ROMANS 8.17-18

VERSE 17 GLORIFIED – exalted and glorious and honored

Ishmael died, and he also was gathered to his people.  Wherever his people are, hopefully in Heaven.  GENESIS 25.27

The Bible, which is The Word of GOD, teaches that the spirit which is our life, never dies. 

ISAIAH 66.24, READ VERSES 15-24  This is end times teaching.  

VERSE 17 – SANCTIFY THEMSELVES – they say they are holy.

To break away from just authority and rebel against GOD.

THE WORM SHALL NOT DIE – I believe what is being said here is that the spirit and soul, or the life never dies.  And the fire of hell is never quenched or put out.  This is why we preach so often, obedience to GOD’s Law and Commandments.  DEUTERONOMY 30.8-10

For the righteous, those who believe in Yeshua and are saved by His shed blood, and lead a GODly and righteous life, will spend eternity in Heaven with Messiah forever.

                            PSALM 17.15, PSALM 71.20-21

GOD also uses the term in The Bible, “He slept with his fathers”.  What does that mean?

Speaking of Moses  DEUTERONOMY 31.16
and David.  1 KINGS 11.21; Hadad was an Edomite from Esau, VERSE 14. 
Manasseh was an evil King in Jerusalem.  2 CHRONICLES 33.1-2, 20

So what does it mean that someone slept or sleeps with his father?  First, let’s define the meaning of two words in this Scripture.  The word “with” comes from the Hebrew word EEM also meaning “like” as in, you shall sleep “like” your fathers.  The word “fathers” comes from the Hebrew word AHVOTE also meaning ancestors.  Thus The LORD said to Moses in Deuteronomy 31.16, “Behold, you shall sleep “like” your fathers or ancestors”.

Therefore at death, whether buried in the ground or by cremation, or wherever the body may be, the body sleeps.  And like sleep, GOD will cause the body to awake and live at Messiah’s future return at the end of days.  This is the Resurrection.  It is not soul sleep.  JOHN 5.28-29.

And those who are alive at Messiah’s return will also be raised and changed to the same spiritual body as the resurrected to meet The LORD in the air.  And together with the resurrected, GOD will bring us to The Land of Israel where the 1,000 year Millennial Kingdom will start.

                            1 CORINTHIANS 15.42-44

(1 CORINTHIANS 15.43)  RAISED IN GLORY – honor, praise, dignity and magnificence
SOWN IN WEAKNESS – frail and sick
RAISED IN POWER – Greek DOONAMIS – raised a miraculous, powerful, mighty and wonderful body.

(1 Corinthians 15.44)  SOWN A NATURAL BODY – a physical body on earth.
                                RAISED A SPIRITUAL BODY – a supernatural body, similar to GOD

                            ZEPHANIAH 3.17, ZECHARIAH 2.10-11, ISAIAH 35.10

The Bible explains what happens after the 1,000 year Millennium to those whom Messiah says have done good to the Resurrecti
on of Life, and to those who have done evil to the resurrection of damnation or judgment.  REVELATION 20.6-15

VERSES 14-15 – those are the ones who did evil and are of the resurrection of damnation and judgment.

How do we remain written in The Book of Life?  EXODUS 32.33

Forgiveness of sins comes from The New Covenant, or The New Testament Who is Yeshua The Messiah, by His shed blood for the atonement or forgiveness of our sins.

And then GOD requires us to walk with Him and obey Him.  Living by every Word that proceeds out of His Mouth.  His instructions, His teachings, His Laws and His Commandments.  And GOD will keep you in His Book, The Lamb’s Book of Life to live and spend eternity with Him in Heaven in His likeness.  That is the substance of Paul’s words, “For to me to live is Messiah, and to die is gain”.

Let’s see what happens after the 1,000 year Millennium and after the Great White Throne Judgement to those whom Messiah says have done good to The Resurrection of Life.

                            REVELATION 21.1-27 AND REVELATION 22.1-5

So yes, to live is Messiah.  To live in Messiah is the absolute meaning of life.  Loving GOD and Messiah Yeshua, and serving Him.  Bundled up with GOD Who cares for us, living by every Word He speaks.  There is no greater life.  There is no greater future.

And to die is gain.  That gain is GOD and Messiah Yeshua.  That gain is eternal life in Heaven in His Likeness with songs and everlasting joy and gladness.  And sorrow and sighing will flee away where GOD Himself, Yeshua Ha Mashiakh will dwell in the midst of us.  He will rejoice over us with joy, and He will rest in His love, and He will joy over us with singing.  And we will be His People, and GOD Himself will be with us, and be our GOD. 

Shalom,  Ira Weinstein