(Photo: Jez Coulson)

Boqer Or (Good Morning Light)!

Shalom Friends,

One of the things I find grieving with the current generation here in the Land of Israel is the spoilage of powerful Biblical concepts/words brought down, degraded and replaced by the new phenomena of modern Hebrew slang. This morning’s fresh manna will bless you in the fact that my latest investigation to correct several Israeli associates belittling Hebrew slang has led me into a rich word study of explosive proportions that will also stimulate your faith for exploits in this hour!

I found living here at times that a certain Hebrew slang word is used to describe someone who tries to become a hero to prove something in the eyes of others or is used mockingly to describe someone’s self absorbed attempt to exonerate oneself thru heroic actions to only be noticed by others. There are so many people here (Jew and Arab) with a identity crisis that seems to drive them to prove they are successful and have gained a level of public notoriety. In other words, to overcome the system here whether it be massive delays and red tape, economic flat times, peer pressure, or anger towards the disenfranchisement young people feel they suffer when they postpone their higher education, to live at near poverty level, and risk their lives serving in the IDF for the defense of this tiny nation. Thus what has developed here is a very strong clamoring for self approval and to be noticed as one who will not be controlled by Israeli authorities and has “beat the system”!

The word that I’m talking about this morning is the Hebrew word “Gibbor” and it is a very powerful concept that seems to be lost in this day and age. Basically this root (Gabar) occurs 328 times in the OT and appears in many other Semitic languages, including Arabic. It is translated in English as “to prevail, be mighty, have strength, be great”. What is so interesting about this phrase used in the context of ancient Israelite history is that it is commonly associated with warfare and has to do with the strength and vitality of the successful warrior!

The Theological Wordbook of the Old Testament (TWOT) states this about this word,

“Might and mighty men were causes for celebration in the OT. During much of the Biblical period Israel was in a heroic age. Thus the feats and exploits of her champions were causes for delight and storytelling. Such an exploit was that of David’s three mighty men as they broke through the Philistine lines to bring in water from Bethlehem (I Chr. 11:15-19). I Samuel is a lament for the fallen heroes, Saul and Jonathon, extolling their valiant deeds. Similarly II Sam. 23 records the glories of various references to the mighty men of Israel, commonly employing the phrase Gibbor Hayil or mighty man of valor to describe them. …It is not surprising that in such a society God was often depicted as a warrior. God is the true prototype of the mighty man, and if an earthly warrior’s deeds are recounted, how much more should God’s be. Thus the psalmists recount God’s mighty acts (Ps. 106:8, 145:4,11,12; etc.) and in various places those attributes which a warrior-king might expect to possess-wisdom, might, counsel and understanding—are attributed par excellence to God (Job 12:13; Prov. 8:14). Isaiah (9:6; cf. 10:21) indicates that these attributes of the Coming King, whose name is Mighty God (El Gibbor) as well as the Prince of Peace, but He also makes it plain that justice and righteousness will accompany His might (cf. Ps. 89:13-14).

So by examining this word in it’s true Biblical concept of ancient history, we see it employed not only to God Himself as a mighty champion and warrior, but also to those who were considered the champions and heroes among the armed forces! Yet, today this character trait of wanting to be a strong, valiant warrior is actually ridiculed and belittled by too many of the secular generation of Israelis’. Why? One is due to bitterness and pessimism of members of their family or friends who sacrificed everything on the battlefield only to be treated with less honor by the majority “because all of us have the scars of past wars and have our own heroes in our families, so what makes you so special?” Then there are many others here who look at those who make a career in the IDF as ones who have drunken the systems “poison” and are mentally scratched. And still there are others who hold the military in high view, but view with utter contempt the politicians who have needlessly sacrificed soldiers lives for their own political agenda and survival. It’s not that morale is at a low ebb in the IDF now because it has improved greatly since the fiasco of the 2nd Lebanon war. But what has transpired here is that there is no reward or future in wanting to be a hero and sacrifice oneself when there is much self centeredness and no true Father type leader has arisen to lead the nation since Ariel Sharon’s medical tragedy. This is why the mighty men of valor here are degraded or not upheld as it was in the early years of Israel’s existence (i.e. Palmach, Unit 101, etc.) and thus the derogatory phrase ‘hero” has crept into the slang of modern secular culture.

So who is there out there who can step up and fill this gap of the needed mighty men and women who will humbly serve the King without any need for public notoriety or self gain? Who are the mighty warriors that will arise in these last days that will do exploits in a warfare environment birthed and directed from Heaven? Where are those who desire to be nothing more than the scum of the earth (click to read past EMM hereand here) and yet move in the greater works of God of the last days that will supersede the exploits of the Gospel accounts (see John 14:12)? The time has come for the evaporation of the self made heroes that a secular humanistic society breeds and the resurrection of the true new champions from Heaven!

Stay tuned for Part 2 in your mailbox soon….

In His service for your faith,

Scott