Stay in the box, Jack!
I am sure many of us can remember the boxed toy “Jack-in-the-Box” that when the handle was cranked, that catchy song would play; leading up to “Jack” popping out of the box. The younger children would laugh and wait in anticipation for “Jack” to jump out of the box, but as the children grew older, were no longer interested in Jack-in-the-Box (Poor Jack!). But what if in life, following Adonai’s Path, HE wanted us to remain under HIS PROTECTIVE COVERING (a box, such as a Sukkah- awesome observation, TEKOA!). The Father wants us under HIS Covering in order to be protected from the serpents.
After receiving a hurtful text “I do not live in a box” after my loving reminder that not all movies are good choices just because they claim to be Christian, verifies this is truly a heart matter.
Teens today have many obstacles and side attractions that are taking preeminence; leading them with distractions that are turning the tables of what has real validity. Social media, movies and sitcoms of today’s desires (feeding the Nefesh), Facebook, and super heroes (shouldn’t Adonai be the real Hero?) are taking precedence of Torah- G-d’s Instructions.
Sadly, many teens today are becoming caught up in a snare by not having discernment, and the “Destroyer” has already set up the bait.
Many teens in the world have never lived a life where having a love for the Torah (G-d’s Instructions) are considered. Instead, they are raised up by their own” needs and wants” of the Nefesh. Unfortunately, they are not receiving good wisdom and godly counsel for guidance, only the poor guidance of their desires. “These desires mirror television, movies, games, and internet images of the beast; they do not look into the perfect Torah of Liberty as a mirror by which to measure their behavior.”
Unfortunately, many teens are becoming desensitized by self-deceptions that stem from fear and pride. Many feel as though they have to “fit-in” in order to be accepted. Believers feel as though they can’t speak the truth about their Savior in case they offend. Are stubborn agendas getting in the way of Abba’s Will? Yes! Believers, as well as unbelievers can easily fall into “self-deception.” Believers are not exempt from falling into self-deceit, which is a sickness of lies from the accuser- Ha’satan! We need to realize that Torah is written on our heart.
“The heart is more deceitful than anything else
and mortally sick. Who can fathom it? –Jeremiah 17:9 CJB
“A true disciple finds the word of truth through obedience to the Living Torah by practicing an ongoing lifestyle of leaning into the discomfort of finding or removing his own distorted beliefs and attitudes.” 
We need to fully rely on the Ruach Ha’Kodesh as our Comforter, and Compass, to keep us on the NARROW PATH. When we do not compare distortions to the Word of God, and begin to justify our ways and behaviors that do not line up with HaShem, we place ourselves on a slippery slope with an opened invitation for the Adversary. Some people deceive their own hearts when they believe that they are saved alone by grace, but continue to live in disobedience. We cannot continue to disobey the Living Torah!
Greg Bahnsen (1995), a Christian Apologist wrote, “There is something of a cognitive mess at the core of our lives. We are inconsistent in our choices, incoherent in our convictions, persuaded where we ought not to be, and deluded that we know ourselves transparently.” This describes Balaam and believers.
- Balaam was so distracted and arrogant that when the donkey wasn’t responding to his demands, and began to yell at a talking donkey –Self-deception misses the miracles.
- Balaam was so blinded by his own self-will that HaShem uncovered his eyes so that he could see the Angel standing in front of him. How interesting that he chose to not listen to sound advice, he had to see it instead. We are deceived when we don’t listen to “Good Counsel.”
- Balaam tells the Angel of Adonai, “I didn’t know you opposed me in the path I’m taking.” Really? Didn’t G-d already tell him “You shall not go?” –We lie to ourselves with self-deception.
- Balaam says, “If it is evil in your eyes (but not mine). I shall return.” He already knew HaShem knew it was evil, but his willingness to comply with HIS will was reluctant. He obviously didn’t agree that was a bad idea. When we question G-d’s will and think we know a better way, we self-deceive.
- Balak was so fearful of Israel’s’ presence 
We need to elevate ourselves, our attitudes, what we watch, say (Text), and do. We self-deceive and place ourselves in bondage when we ignore g-dly wisdom from others, disrespect our elders, think our way is better, justify our own desires, ignore the effects of our sins, remain unteachable by not listening to Good Counsel, and remain passive to Torah.
Self-deception is sorcery (witchcraft) and accompanies disobedience. The Father’s children should not depend on goods (materialistic items), money, titles, honors, accomplishments, or on people to make them feel good about themselves. We, as His children, need to depend on the Father in Heaven.
Yeshua tells us : The Truth Will Make You Free!
31 So Jesus was saying to those Jews who had believed Him, “If you continue in My word, then you are truly disciples of Mine; 32 and you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free.” John 8:31-32
A true Disciple is able to teach another person how to discern from “Self-Deceit” because they are obedient to Adonai’s Word–living and walking in the Way.
The Torah is a mirror that removes the distortions from man’s ideas. A person who does not remain in the teachings of the Torah is a poor marksman. His eyes deceive him. Sadly, deceived believers may be a leader and misleading many others.
According to Crosswalk (dot) com .70% of teens end up leaving the churches, but after a while two-thirds return. But it said mainly they leave because it’s not important to them.
Though one would hope they would actually leave the churches because of “Doctrines of Man” and the antisemitism of “Replacement Theology” to study Torah, sadly, this isn’t the case, I believe, in most cases for teens alone.
So the question is, “Why don’t they feel church is important?” I conclude that many place their Nefesh (a bundle of appetites, desires, and intellect) above their Ruach (spirit), and they are allowing the Nefesh to lead. I would suggest that social media and “other” worldly interests are taking priority. Some may see hypocrisy and they want to hang out with friends; having no interest in obedience to the 10 Commandments, and a good portion of students do not want to have accountability for their choices and/or lifestyles (so much corruption in movies , TV and music) with much confusion.—Self-Deception runs deep.
There is another issue that teens struggle with and that’s with concrete evidence. If they do not understand something, and it really doesn’t pertain to them as a tangible, they find it hard to believe it if it doesn’t appear to fit their needs personally. It really doesn’t help when school curriculum is all based on concrete evidence, not faith. Obviously, one doesn’t need faith to believe that 2×2=4. That understanding is learned.
Ha’satan is working overtime whispering lies to our children—adding to self-deception. If Ha’satan can convince our children that not all of the 10 Commandments are important (becoming passive and ignoring HIS SABBATHS), prey on their weakness, or puff them up on their strengths, then he (Ha’satan) can get them to sabotage themselves (in sin) just like when Balaam deceived the Israelites to mix sexually (corruption) with the Moabites. It was the Moabites who tempted the Israelite men to commit adultery and idolatry. The Adversary will use what people “like” against them to fall. The Nefesh (a bundle of appetites, desires, and intellect) is very strong, and if we allow it rise up above our Ruach (Spirit), we place our Ruach under our heel—at ground level. That isn’t a good place to be (ground level is placed in the dirt).
It seems today that most teens in America are given almost everything instantly. For example, they have an abundance of clothing, car, play money, trips, the newest devises, music downloads, X-boxes and more. I am not alluding to they shouldn’t have any clothes, and a phone, I am just pointing out that in the Western world it doesn’t appear many are working hard for “wanted” items. It is as if it’s given just as quickly as getting results from a touch screen instant gratification. The Nefesh doesn’t like the words “no” or “wait”. It thinks it is going to die. If you can recall Esau, he sold his birthright for some red soup. He thought he was going to die, He wasn’t going to die, he wanted what he wanted and NOW!
Balaam’s sin was a heart matter and left to his Nefesh (Soul/flesh) to lead, not his Ruach (spirit). Because of that being left unchecked to accountability in HIS righteousness, he devised wicked plans. His sin came from the fourth of the “Wicked Lamp” which is an abomination. Interestingly enough, the presence of the Adversary can work for good if it reveals a heart sickness that the individual can choose to remove with the Helper, the Ruach Ha’Kodesh (Holy Spirit).
It is very interesting that “Balaam” means “Burning” such as the burning of the desires of the Nefesh. Balak” means Destroyer-no promise of Eternal Good.
“This is the sin of Balaam, setting our minds on our own interests, not Adonai’s, which calls for suffering, which call for suffering at times. To resist the times of suffering is to resist the Spirit of Adonai, which demands suffering in order to demonstrate the Holy Spirit of Resurrection Power. Resisting the suffering transforms us, like the Angel of the Lord against Balaam, into an Adversary, a Satan, because our way was contrary to the Father’s!”
What or who do we “mirror” with our actions and attitudes? Our hearts really are a heart matter and reflect who we are. Who/what are we listening to? Do we want our ears tickled? What kind of movies are we watching at the expense of our Spirit being forced to watch? Are we holding our Ruach captive to the desires of the Nefesh? Are we entertaining our Nefesh by justifying poor reasoning, and dancing with forbidden fruit? –A heart matter, indeed. “WWJD?” Yeshua/Jesus would be following the Ancient Path of the Father in obedience (Living the 10 Commandments, keeping Sabbaths, keeping dietary laws, keeping the Feasts, and living Torah), not entertaining HIS thoughts with corruption.
We, as believers, and even unbelievers, need to understand the despondency of the 7 abominations that G-d hates.
- A proud look
- A lying tongue
- Hands that shed innocent blood
- A heart that deviseth wicked imaginations/plans
- Feet that be swift in running to mischief/evil
- A false witness that speaketh lies
- He that soweth discord among brethren.
We need to have GOOD COUNSEL and HIS discernment where we are getting our information from. Are we seeking those who have no relationship with the Father and/or despise HIS name and willfully living in sin for advice? Are we listening to others who are speaking negatively (Evil Speak) without hope for others? Are we listening to Ha’satan whisper lies into our ears? Perhaps we should go to the individual for truth (having godly wisdom) before seeking to have our ears tickled.
The Adversary has many angles to work on our children. After all, he is an expert in his work—the father of lies!
When teens (and people in general) are unable to accept certain Biblical truths because there are no tangibles, and it doesn’t meet their needs personally, have lost interest in Biblical teachings (Tanakh- OT), fallen into false teachings that the law was abolished, become desensitized from loving-kindness by disrespecting elders, expecting instant gratification, and to be compensated (lusts of the flesh/Nefesh from feeling slighted), it really comes down to “heart” matters and self-deceit, as well as listening to the lies of Ha’satan.
Eve (Chavah) was asked by the serpent, “Did He really say……?” Had Chavah gone back to the Father before answering, the outcome for her would have been different. Also, we have “Doubting Thomas” who wouldn’t believe the resurrected Christ/Yeshua without feeling HIS Wounds, seeing it for himself. This is a tangible. Faith by believing in the hope He has given us is to be praised!
John 20:29—Yeshua said to him, “Have you trusted because you have seen me? How blessed are those who do not see, but trust anyway!” 
Abba loves us so much. He desires for us to Follow HIM—HIS WAY, no ours. Man’s ways lead to destruction, HIS WAY leads to Life Eternity through the Living Water. He is the Bread of Life through YESHUA!
We need to be careful how we treat HIS Messengers.
Proverbs 14:12 —There is a way which seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death. 
Perhaps, we, like Jack, need to get back in the box, THE SUKKAH, under HIS Covering—HIS PROTECTION—HIS RIGHTEOUSNESS.
“The seventh (and final) feast given to Israel is called Sukkot (סֻכּוֹת) or the “Feast of Tabernacles.” Sukkot is observed in the fall, from the 15th to the 22nd of Tishri. During this time many Jewish families construct a sukkah (סֻכָּה), a small hastily built hut in which meals are eaten throughout the festival. The sukkah is used to remember the huts [plural: sukkot] Israel lived in during their 40 year sojourn in the desert after the exodus from Egypt.
You shall keep the Feast of Sukkot seven days, when you have gathered in the produce… You shall rejoice in your feast… because the LORD your G-d will bless you in all your produce and in all the work of your hands, so that you will be altogether joyful. (Deut. 16:13-15)
From a spiritual perspective, Sukkot corresponds to the joy of knowing your sins were forgiven (during Yom Kippur), and also recalls G-d’s miraculous provision and care after the deliverance from bondage in Egypt (Lev. 23:43). Prophetically, Sukkot anticipates the coming kingdom of Yeshua the Messiah wherein all the nations shall come up to Jerusalem to worship the LORD during the festival (see Zech. 14:16). Today Sukkot is a time to remember G-d’s Sheltering Presence and Provision for us for the start of the New Year. In light of the work of Yeshua as our Kohen Gadol (high priest) of the New Covenant, we now have access to the Heavenly Temple of G-d (Heb. 4:16). We are now members of the greater Temple of His body; we are now part of His great Sukkah!” 
We need to have Teshuva (repent and return to HIM), and have a desire to follow HIM –HIS WAY. We need to stop justifying our own ways (Spiritual adultery), and value HaShems’ Word (TORAH-YESHUA) completely. We need to have a change of heart—one that is flesh, not hardened. It is so important we have a true relationship with our Father Abba, our Creator; honoring HIS Name on High. And allow the Ruach Ha’Kodesh in our lives for comfort and good counsel.
I pray that believers in the body will stop acting like the wild beast of the field, stop allowing the lil’ Esau’s from selling their birthright for red soup (desires by justifying, which is self-deceit), and set fear and pride aside (under the heel) by honoring one another; giving all glory back to Father Abba.
Let’s join together under Adonai’s protective covering, HIS Cloud of righteousness, His sukkah, and allow HIS provision to surround us, not remaining opened to the world.
Blessings and Shalom,
Shamira the Shepherdess (P. Miller)
 Alewine, Bamidbar, Creation Gospel pp 159
 Jeremiah 17:9 (CJB)
 Alewine, Bamidbar, Creation Gospel pp130
 Alewine, Bamidbar, Creation Gospel, pp 130
 Alewine, Bamidbar, Creation Gospel, pp 131
 Alewine, Bamidbar, Creation Gospel, pp 130
 Alewine, Bamidbar, Creation Gospel, pp 131
 John 8:31-32 (NASB)
 Alewine, Bamidbar, Creation Gospel, pp 141
 Alewine, The Wicked Lamp, Creation Gospel series, pp 10
 Complete Jewish Bible