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National Shabbat: What it Is, and What it Isn’t.

In North Georgia and surrounding states, a new grass roots move of the Ruach HaKodesh (Holy Spirit) has started inspired by the B’ney Yosef (Sons of Joseph) National Congress held at the end of May 2015 in Ariel, Israel. We are calling this the B’ney Yosef National Shabbat.

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Why the name?

It is a result of the reversal of a curse spoken of by the prophet Hoshea 1:8-11, “Now when she had weaned Lo-Ruhamah, she conceived, and bore a son. He said, ‘Call his name Lo-Ammi; for you are not my people, and I will not be yours.’ Yet the number of the children of Israel will be as the sand of the sea, which can’t be measured nor numbered; and it will come to pass that, in the place where it was said to them, ‘You are not my people,’ they will be called ‘sons of the living God.’ The children of Judah and the children of Israel will be gathered together, and they will appoint themselves one head, and will go up from the land; for great will be the day of Jezreel.”

Our greatness is our unity: a unity which can only be experienced through efforts to rebuild the nation of Bney Yosef / Ephraim. These are not our own efforts but inspired by Scripture and the Ruach HaKodesh.

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The Vision

On a quarterly basis, there will be a Shabbat experience that will bring Northern Israelites together from fellowships, congregations, and homes to express and declare to Avinu (our Father) that we are the people of Northern Israel. There will be no teaching, but occasional presentations about our national restoration and Scriptural discussions promoting a national outlook.

Through this initiative, in North Georgia, a desire to express ourselves as a people through praise, worship,  and dance arose.  The momentum is moving in a way that only the Ruach HaKodesh could orchestrate. The oil has been flowing and important connections have been made while sharing a meal. Some were close to tears during our initial Shabbat. Hearts were moved and inspired by seeing the reality of a people who were not a people coming forth once again. Will Bney Yosef be the next nation born in a day? We have learned that taking small steps really makes a difference.

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The Importance of Unity and Repentance

We as the people of Yosef are still walking in the sin of Jeroboam to this very day. We are erecting golden calves and altars to ourselves and we have made these doctrines as mighty ones. We’ve taken what we believe to be “important” doctrines and imposed them upon others;  yet imposing our own doctrinal views on others does not edify or encourage anyone. These discussions, for example, can include how to pronounce the name of YHWH / YHVH, the calendar, how and what form we should worship, etc. If someone attempts a discussion in these areas with someone, then they do not understand the National Shabbat’s purpose. There are so many areas we agree, but in the past we’ve been guilty of gravitating toward issues where there is a great diversity of opinion, and we’ve neglected to respect these diverse opinions. When we refuse to respect diverse Scriptural opinions, we re-enact over and over again the curse that we are “not a people.” (Hosea 1:9) Will we declare as we gather that we are one people again? It will only happen if we lay controversial doctrines down and embrace one another as a national people.

Let us make this clear, however, we do not want to encourage anyone who is walking defiantly against the Word of YHWH/YHVH. There are plenty of places in Scripture that clearly spell out what wickedness is. The B’ney Yosef National Shabbat will never be a gathering that tolerates wickedness.

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One last thing…

To make this abundantly clear: this is not a congregation. This is not a denomination. This is a meeting time, a quarterly Shabbat, where we can declare and believe that Avinu Malkenu (Our Father, Our King) is making a people once again!

Praise be to the Holy One of Israel. O King of Israel, bring us home!

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Encouragement from Switzerland:

“Your reports from the monthly Shabbat is so encouraging to do a similar thing in my region! Its time to talk about our common identity. Time is over for knowledge based fighting. Halleluyah!”