Parshas Vayishlach
Genesis 32:4 - 36:43

G-d Said to Me ©

By Dr. Akiva G. Belk

This study of the weekly parsha is dedicated in the loving memory of Mrs. Ethel Sakash Belk, my mother, may she rest in peace.

"Yaakov said, 'G-d of my father Avraham, and G-d of my father Yitzchok, Hashem who said to me, 'Return to your land, to your birthplace and I would do good with you.'...' " Genesis 32:10

For years I've heard it said so many times, "G-d said to me ..." "Something said to me ..." "Hashem spoke to me ..." Holy reader, it is an awesome thing when G-d's voice is heard! When I hear such comments, I wonder, Do they really know what they're saying?

The Story of Messianic Who said "G-d Said To Me...
Years ago as a much younger man I was working on a program called Aizer, meaning "helper or helpmate." Aizer was a program designed to assist Jewish education. It was like a Jewish 'Goodwill' so to speak. We had a storage location for our new and used contributions but not a retail location. When we sold our contributions it was necessary to load them on a truck, shlep to a flea market miles away, unload them there and sell them. At the end of the day we would reload the truck, shlep them back to the storage location, unload them and store them again. This was a very difficult task!

It was on one of these days at the flea market when a Christian / Messianic man approached me. It was easy to see I was Jewish by my appearance with my black yarmulke and white beard, etc. This man approached me and immediately attempted to share his beliefs about Jesus being the messiah ... He was very aggressive! I stopped him!! Our conversation was short and fierce like a train hitting a wall! This Messianic could not support his position ... He said that he was a former prisoner sentenced to life for murder when he found Jesus ... when Jesus spoke to him... {Christians / Messianics are confused. Unfortunately they believe that Jesus is G-d.} This man believed that G-d spoke to him. His brief story was powerful! He was convincing! His story was charged with emotional appeal! I wondered, What did this man really see? What did he really hear?

His testimony did not agree with the Torah!!

Hashem cautions us about such encounters. The Torah states, "Everything that I am commanding you-- be careful to fulfill it; do not add to it and do not subtract from it. If a prophet arises among you or a dreamer of a dream, and he gives you an omen or a miracle, and the omen or the miracle happens-- the one he told you about-- saying, 'Let us go after other gods, that you do not know, and let us serve them.' Do not listen to the words of that prophet or to that dreamer of a dream because Hashem, your G-d is testing you to know whether you love Hashem, your G-d wholeheartedly and with your entire beings. After Hashem, your G-d are you to go, fear Him, keep His commandments, heed His voice, serve Him and cleave to Him." Deuteronomy 13:1-5

Now regardless of what this Messianic claimed... his vision or his declaration of what he believed G-d said, IT WAS ONLY A TEST!! One must be careful not to be persuaded by such emotional appeals!! One must be careful not to be persuaded by miracles used as devices to pry one away from fearing Hashem, keeping His commandments, heeding His voice, serving Him and cleaving to Him! One must be very careful not to change their course in observance of the Torah... in observance of what G-d has commanded us in the Torah just because someone {even a prophet} says "G-d told me..." or because they ascribed what they heard or what they thought they heard to have come from G-d.

In our parsha this week Yaakov claims "Hashem spoke to him." "...'G-d of my father Avraham, and G-d of my father Yitzchok, Hashem Who said to me, 'Return to your land, to your birthplace and I would do good with you.' " Genesis 32:10 Then last week in Parshas Vayeitzei the Torah records that Yaakov had a dream and that Hashem spoke to him... Genesis 28:12-15 And that Hashem spoke to him again... Genesis 31:3

G-d did speak to Yaakov as the Torah records. Yaakov did have a dream. The difference between Yaakov's dream/ vision and this Messianic's dream / vision is Yaakov's dream agreed with the Torah, the Messianic's didn't. Yaakov's dream embraced Torah values. The Messianic's didn't. The words Yaakov heard directed him to observe Torah. The words the Messianic spoke to me were intended to challenge me to believe in Jesus... G-d forbid! The Messianic's words were intended to persuade me into believing that Jesus is the messiah... G-d forbid! His intention was for me to believe Jesus is the son of G-d... G-d forbid! To believe Jesus is G-d... G-d forbid!!

Now, dear reader, there is a great difference between Yaakov's dream and this Messianic's dream. There is a vast separation between what Yaakov heard G-d say and what this Messianic claims G-d said. We must be very careful not to fall into their traps and listen to their cunning words. They do not agree with Torah!!

So when you hear someone say, "G-d said to me ..." "Something said to me ..." "Hashem spoke to me ..." be very careful!

Holy reader, Hashem's voice is awesome. Hashem's voice cannot be compared to anything you will ever hear! And, dear reader, so few will ever hear Hashem's voice or experience a dream given by Hashem. IT IS NOT COMMON! In terms of mathematics it is like one in a million so to speak. The point is, hearing Hashem is extremely rare. So when I hear such comments, I wonder, 'Does this person really know what they're saying?'

Holy reader, one could daily view dozens of religious programs making claims, "G-d said to me ..." "G-d spoke to me ..." "G-d said this..." One could also listen to dozens of religious radio broadcasts making identical proclamations. This is NOT how G-d communicates!

In an audio visual telecommunications world we do not receive second by second ticker-tape communications from G-d! Hashem has already declared in the Torah His desires and His intentions. The Torah Hashem gave is not like many computer software manuals that use unfamiliar terminology requiring 1-800 clarification. The Torah is complete! The Torah is concise!! The Torah is precise! The Torah communicates what Hashem wants us to know. The Torah communicates what we need to know. Yet there are so many people who cannot read or understand three words in Hebrew, telling us on television and on radio and in person "G-d spoke to me ..." "G-d said this..." Dear reader, don't believe that nonsense!!

Hashem is very selective to those He communicates with. Do not take this lightly! All this talk going on throughout the universe from the thousands of people claiming, "G-d spoke to me ...," "G-d said this..." greatly distracts from what G-d does say!! Making such pretentious and unvalidated claims dulls the ears. This sensationalism has to be topped by greater sensationalism... Dear reader, if G-d wanted sensationalism He could have described every stroke and every detail of Creation in the Torah but He didn't.

The point to this lesson is simply this, when someone says, "G-d said to me..." remember this lesson. When Hashem does speak He NEVER CONTRADICTS HIS TORAH! Hashem's Word is always in agreement with what He has already established!

Wishing you the best!

Dr. Akiva G. Belk

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