The Liberated Levite Land War

This brings us to the apocalyptic cries that Israel is becoming a fascist state from American liberal Jewry, the Israeli Left, and a good part of the Israeli center.

The Royal Janitor


John Presco

Copyright 2023

Chapter: The Naked Boy On The Mount

After dinner, Victoria and Starfish settled in the big reclining chairs in John von John’s living room to watch two videos he made on the Habsburgs. The lesson was interrupted by a call on Victoria’s phone from BAD headquarters. She was instructed to watch the news about more Iranian rockets being seized by British and American warships. Victoria asked John to turn on the news so the three can watch. At the close of the news there was a story about 600 hundred Levites gathering once more to announce a sixth heifer was found, denoting the Messiah was on his way.

Starfish bolted out or the chair, and cried as the song swelled to a cresendo;

“I have to go to Jerusalem – NOW! I must perform the Moab Ritual of Manhood. I must make a alter to Moloch so I can claim the Mount of Olives for my people!”

Victoria and John were filled with anxiety because Starfish was worked into a froth. Her eyes wee wide, looking far away, at a divine plan. Maybe – she has gone – MAD!

“I AM A LEVITE -TOO! But not of Moses, but of Aaron who never stopped worshipping the Golden Calf of the Moabites! There were – TWO SETS OF TABLETS! Moses didn’t break the first set. He gave it to the ORIGINAL LEVITES who owned land – PROMISED LAND – before is was Promised, by Moses to the New Levites anointed in the Wilderness. They were not given – ANY LAND! Jesus claimed the land of the Moabite Levites that was taken from them. This is why he read from the Book of Ruth – just before he got arrested – along with his wife – MARY MAGDALENE who was dressed as Asherah. She had dressed her son in white linen, and Jesus was going to perform a sacrificial ritual on his thirteen year old son! This is passage into a kingdom. He has sent his brother Judas to redeem their property. I will do the same – for my son – if I have a son!”

John and Victoria were captured in The Pregnant Moment of all Pregnant Moments and now watched Miriam’s face turn crimson – now that her BIG SECRET is out, that she became pregnant after making love to a Russian Levite in the microfiche room at the Knight Library,

John looked at Victoria who was at a loss for words as she took in these revelations from her lover that suggested she – they – were going to have a child. Not knowing much about Christianity and Judaism, Victoria was in shock to learn her wife was – HAD AN STOUNDING HIDDEN AGENDA!

To be continued

It is 9:12 A.M. March 6, 2023. An hour ago I found the video of the Levite Choir. In 1990 I dreamed I was in Hebron, in the home of the newborn Jewish Messiah. I then dreamt I was following him up a ancient road to the temple. A learned Jew said this to me;

“You are being honored because of your study of the Choirs1”

I was older in my dream, and surmised this walk would come at the end of my life.

British navy claims seizing Iran weapons shipment off Oman

Agencies Published March 3, 2023  Updated 3 days ago

A HANDOUT picture released by Britain’s defence ministry on Thursday shows seized weapons and components aboard HMS Lancaster in the Gulf of Oman.—AFP
A HANDOUT picture released by Britain’s defence ministry on Thursday shows seized weapons and components aboard HMS Lancaster in the Gulf of Oman.—AFP

DUBAI: A British warship intercepted a boat smuggling Iranian weapons, including anti-tank missiles, off the coast of Oman in a joint operation with US forces last week, officials said on Thursday.

Britain said the vessel was detected travelling south from Iran at high speed during the hours of darkness by an unmanned US intelligence surveillance and reconnaissance plane, and was also tracked by a British helicopter.

There is a buzz in Israel ever since the arrival of five, spotless red heifers.

Sine their arrival, Jews and Christians alike have been talking about what possible signs or events may occur regarding the Third Temple.

This excitement was palpable on the steps leading up to the Temple Mount on Thursday, Oct. 13.

Six hundred Levites, descendants of the tribe of Levi, held a joyful rehearsal in preparation for their duties as the priests of the Third Temple. Taking their roles as priest’s seriously, these 600 men were practicing so that they would be ready to provide the temple the musical needs that would be required upon its completion.

One of the organizers, Yitzchak Weiss, spoke with Israel365News explained his reasoning for this momentous event:

“The idea is to bring back the singing of the Levites and to renew it,” Weiss said. “I wanted to make something special for Jewish music, not just to learn music to be a singer” Weiss explained. “I asked myself what is the essence, the plus that we can give to music. We thought about composing music to the text of the Bible that the Levites were singing in the Temple and to make [contemporary] music for it. We started the project, giving some students to compose music. And then we thought, why shouldn’t we make a living choir.”

The school that Weiss was the principle for, Mizmore music school in Givat Washington, put out the call for those of the tribe of Levi.

 About that time Jeroboam was going out of Jerusalem, and Ahijah the prophet of Shiloh met him on the way, wearing a new cloak. The two of them were alone out in the country, 30 and Ahijah took hold of the new cloak he was wearing and tore it into twelve pieces. 31 Then he said to Jeroboam, “Take ten pieces for yourself, for this is what the Lord, the God of Israel, says: ‘See, I am going to tear the kingdom out of Solomon’s hand and give you ten tribes. 32 But for the sake of my servant David and the city of Jerusalem, which I have chosen out of all the tribes of Israel, he will have one tribe. 33 I will do this because they have[b] forsaken me and worshiped Ashtoreth the goddess of the Sidonians, Chemosh the god of the Moabites, and Molek the god of the Ammonites, and have not walked in obedience to me, nor done what is right in my eyes, nor kept my decrees and laws as David, Solomon’s father, did.

And a young man followed him, with nothing but a linen cloth about his body; and they seized him, 52but he left the linen cloth and ran away naked.

So who exactly is this young man? We simply do not have enough evidence from Scripture to determine who he is with any certainty. However, there sure has been a lot of speculation.

Who do men say that he is?

There are a variety of opinions. Let’s touch on a few:

Some say he’s James.

In The Great Biblical Commentary, the eminent Jesuit exegete Cornelius à Lapide explores the various opinions held by several Church Fathers: “You will ask who this young man was: Saint Epiphanius and Saint Jerome think that he was James the Lord’s brother.” Eusebius of Caesarea (the Father of Church History) writes that James wore a linen garment all his life, purportedly the one he abandoned in Mark 14.

Some say he’s John.

Lapide furthermore informs us that: “St. John Chrysostom, St. Ambrose, St. Gregory, and Baronius, think the naked man was St. John the Apostle; for he was a youth, and the youngest of the Apostles. Moreover, Saint John remained faithful all the way to the crucifixion.” Lapide goes on to reject this opinion saying, “That it was neither John nor James, nor any of the Apostles, is plain from this, that Mark has just before said, ver. 50, then all His disciples, meaning, Apostles, forsook Him and fled.

Some say he’s Mark.

Lapide then moves closer to the predominant opinion held today, and the one I subscribe to: The naked young man in question is none other than Mark himself. “Theophylact and Euthymius think that the young man was some one from the house of John Mark, in which Christ had eaten the Passover. And more probably, Cajetan and others conjecture that this young man was a member or servant of a house adjacent to the garden, who, being awoke by the noise made by those who were apprehending Christ as they passed by, rose up from his bed, and ran to see what was being done. That he was a favourer or disciple of Christ appears from what Mark says, he followed Him.”

American Jewry is becoming ever more hostile to Israel because it does not reflect the idealized image of what a Western style democracy implanted in the hostile Middle East should be. Their indifference, non-Zionism, and in the case of Peter Beinart and his progressive ilk who are anti-Zionists, have much more in common with the ultra-Orthodox communities they disparage in both Israel and the US, who also believe Israel shouldn’t exist. One for messianic reasons, the other for progressivism.

Israel-US Jewry gap based on religion, politics, ignorance, nationality

An article published by the Begin-Sadat Center for Strategic Studies stated, “Many American Jews have simply stopped caring about Israel and Judaism. According to a 2020 study, only 4% of American Jewish voters identify Israel as their first or second most important election issue,“ overwhelmingly prioritizing domestic concerns.

“Many American Jews have simply stopped caring about Israel and Judaism. According to a 2020 study, only 4% of American Jewish voters identify Israel as their first or second most important election issue.“Begin-Sadat Center for Strategic Studies

Those who graduated from universities after 1967, when Israel morphed from a victim into a victor, see Israel through a different lens than their parents’ generation. The post-’67 professors became overwhelmingly progressive and evolved from educators into activists. They convinced unsuspecting students that Israel was not a liberal cause because it was an imperialistic, racist, apartheid project that needed to be challenged, if not uprooted. The lack of knowledge of Jewish history and tradition that afflicts most of American Jewry contributed to this anti-Zionist approach being ineffectively challenged.

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To those American Jews of yesteryear, before the rise of the Nazis and today’s politically liberal American Jews, Judaism is primarily a religion. Ironically, this gives succor to anti-Zionists who also claim Judaism is nothing more than a religion, in an attempt to erase the 3,000-year history of Jews in the Levant and delegitimize the national dimension of Judaism.

But ask yourself, if Judaism is only about religion, then how can you be an atheist and still be Jewish? You cannot if you are a Muslim or many other religions.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and then-chief justice Aharon Barak during a tour of the Supreme Court in 1997. (credit: REUTERS)

Judaism is more than just a religion

What is ignored, or at least under-appreciated by American Jewry, is that Judaism in the 21st century, and for millennia before, is not only a religion but a people, nationality, civilization, and tradition that encompasses many cultural elements because of their diverse diasporas. Religion was the glue that bonded disparate Jews, as was the hope for a return to Zion, Jerusalem.

In America today, Orthodox Jews and the ever-decreasing number of religiously liberal Jews who care about religion or belong to any denomination do see Judaism in its totality. I say this as a member of the Conservative movement which, to my regret, is diminishing in the US despite having so much to offer.

In Israel, Jews cross the whole spectrum. From secular Left and Right-wing Zionists to ultra-Orthodox anti-Zionists to the largest group, traditional Mizrahi and Sephardi Jews who lean Right. Most American Jews are Ashkenazi and don’t appreciate the beautiful cross-section of Israelis who are part of the miracle of the ingathering of the exiles of the Jewish nation.

Most American Jews think they understand Israelis, yet may have never even visited Israel. American Jews tell me they know Israel because their cousin lives in Tel Aviv. Or they tell me their Israeli friend who left Israel 40 years ago really knows, even if he has no Jewish associations, belongs to no house of worship, and prays at the church of progressivism or capitalism.

What American Jewry does not understand or make an attempt to appreciate is that in Israel, the vast majority of the people feel very Jewish, whether they are a hi-tech person in Tel Aviv who abhors Orthodox Judaism or a Religious Zionist living anywhere in Israel or anything in between. They remain very Jewish because they live in a Jewish state, speak Hebrew, follow a Jewish calendar, fight in a Jewish army, and marry Jewish if for no other reason than four out of five citizens are Jewish. That is a prescription for Jewish survival.

American Jewry is becoming ever more hostile to Israel because it does not reflect the idealized image of what a Western style democracy implanted in the hostile Middle East should be. Their indifference, non-Zionism, and in the case of Peter Beinart and his progressive ilk who are anti-Zionists, have much more in common with the ultra-Orthodox communities they disparage in both Israel and the US, who also believe Israel shouldn’t exist. One for messianic reasons, the other for progressivism.

This brings us to the apocalyptic cries that Israel is becoming a fascist state from American liberal Jewry, the Israeli Left, and a good part of the Israeli center. Three people I highly respect – Yossi Klein Halevi, Matti Friedman, and Danny Gordis, all true Zionists – penned “An open letter to Israel’s friends in North America, to speak out against a government that is undermining our society’s cohesion and its democratic ethos.”

Much of what they say is true. However, they gave very short shrift to why changes are needed in Israel’s judiciary. What American Jews are unaware of is that Israel does not have a constitution but only Basic Laws. Israel’s court system was respected and apolitical until the mid-1990s when it profoundly changed under Supreme Court Justice Aharon Barak. He turned the judiciary into an activist court despite not having a constitution and created the precedent to overrule the Knesset whenever the court felt a decision was “unreasonable.”

If the direction of Barak’s court were conservative, not liberal, the American Jewish Diaspora and the Israeli Left would have been in an uproar. The ends don’t justify the means. Because the activist Israeli court reflected the majority of American Jewish liberal political leanings, American Jewry put it on a pedestal. Most Israeli people felt estranged by the court’s direction, which did not reflect their values, and asked for judicial reforms for a quarter of a century but was ignored.

What Israel needs is a constitution, but that won’t happen. It requires an updated political system that raises the threshold for Knesset seats, stops parties from joining together to rig the system, and perhaps again votes directly for the PM. However, that is unlikely to happen any time soon.

But what can and should occur, but only with care, moderation, and consensus, is a change in how the parliament deals with laws the court deems unconstitutional or, as they say, unreasonable. That should be the goal, but it is up to Israelis to decide. Their proposal for a simple majority to overrule the Supreme Court is dangerous. But perhaps no different from what happened in the US when Democratic Senator Harry Reid laid the precedent of blowing up the “nuclear option,” allowing US Supreme Court justices to be confirmed with a simple majority. Again, this a wrong choice that has come back to bite liberals when there is a Republican Senate and president.

Israeli society, like the US, is divided and hears but does not listen. We Jews need to get out of our echo chambers and respect different points of view and compromise. The Second Temple was destroyed because of intra-Jewish acrimony.

From a Zionist who loves Israel but resides in America, the idea of a 70-vote majority in the Knesset to overturn Supreme Court decisions is something to be considered. Reforms to end the practice of allowing current judges to choose their successors aren’t unreasonable. In the US, our Supreme Court members are selected by politicians. Israel could do better by incorporating different groups in the decision process. This is not the end of democracy but a reasonable choice. Israel, like the US, is a beautiful, exceptional experiment in democracy that needs to be cherished, balancing precedent with new realities.

Former attorney-general and Supreme Court Justice Elyakim Rubinstein, writing for the Begin-Sadat Center for Strategic Studies, rightly cautions that the destruction of the judiciary is easy; but rebuilding a new one is hard. He urges Justice Minister Yariv Levin and, ultimately, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, to “engage in a thorough discussion of his proposals with the president of the Supreme Court and public jurists and explore his proposal on ‘positions of trust’ with an open mind…. The weakening of the legal system that would result from the enactment of Justice Minister Yariv Levin’s (current) proposals would represent a weakening of the State of Israel.”

The decision to reform the courts is a strategic decision that will affect not only Israel’s internal workings but will have repercussions for the military, diplomacy, and economic outlook for Israel’s future. Changes should be deliberated and not taken purely for political considerations but for the good of the nation’s future.

For American liberal Jews who legitimately feel rejected by Israel’s ultra-Orthodox system, keep on fighting and lobbying the Israeli government to accept their conversions and their ability to marry Israelis under a more moderate Halachic law, the way Israel used to be under Rav Abraham Isaac Kook or chief rabbi Yitzhak Halevi Herzog before the haredim were allowed to take over religious decisions.

The place to begin is for American and Israeli Jewry to look inward and reevaluate why we have succeeded and are now so argumentative, unwilling to see the humanity of the other. Israel’s large majority of secular and traditional Jews need to find a place for liberal American Jewry.

For American Jews, we must begin by educating ourselves about Judaism, not only as a religion but as a people with the absolute legitimacy of its national dimension, Israeli. We need Israel to be strong, Jewish, and democratic for our survival. ■

Dr. Mandel is the director of MEPIN (Middle East Political Information Network) and regularly briefs members of Congress and their foreign policy aides.

American Jewry

Almog mentioned that there are about 3 million Reform and Conservative Jews in the US. He revealed that he receives many letters from Reform and Conservative Jews, “with concerns and fears. They openly say that in the US there may be antisemitism, but they do not feel discrimination [in the US] like they do here in Israel.”

Almog, a former IDF general, took up his role at the Jewish Agency in August, seven months ago. In the time since, he has barely spoken or given interviews, maintaining a strict silence despite the rift that is growing wider between Israel and the Diaspora, which the Jewish Agency is meant to represent within the country.

It is important that Almog has finally made his voice heard. Israelis might be hyper focused right now on the terrorism that has been plaguing our streets, as well as the ongoing parliamentary and public battles over the coalition’s judicial reform, but we cannot pretend that this will not impact our relationship with Jews in the Diaspora. It will and it already is.

When the country appears to be sliding away from being a liberal democracy, many Jews question their connection with this country. When senior ministers call to wipe out an entire Palestinian village because a terrorist attack took place on a road there, that deepens the question. 

And while we welcome the decision to allocate NIS 500m. to programming through the Diaspora Affairs Ministry, we cannot pretend that this is enough. The connection is not just about Israel putting money into helping to fund informal education programs or tuition at Jewish day schools across the globe.

Those are all important, but when progressive Jews feel that they are discriminated against in Israel and that the country is moving away from its democratic foundations, something more needs to be done.

There is a second option: understanding the consequences and living with them. Israel’s government can move ahead with its assault on the judiciary and pluralistic Jewish life but it needs to know that there will be a price.

We need to ask if it is worth it.

What is the significance of high places in the Bible?

High places, very simply, were places of worship on elevated pieces of ground. High places were originally dedicated to idol worship (Numbers 33:52Leviticus 26:30), especially among the Moabites (Isaiah 16:12). These shrines often included an altar and a sacred object such as a stone pillar or wooden pole in various shapes identified with the object of worship (animals, constellations, goddesses, and fertility deities). It seems that, at times, high places were set up in a spot that had been artificially elevated; 2 Kings 16:4 seems to differentiate the “high places” from the “hills.”

The Israelites, forever turning away from God, practiced Molech worship and built high places for Baal (Jeremiah 32:35). Although Solomon built the temple of God in Jerusalem, he later established idolatrous high places for his foreign wives outside of Jerusalem and worshiped with them, causing him the loss of the kingdom (1 Kings 11:11). The people were still sacrificing at the pagan high places before the temple was built, and Solomon joined them. After the Lord appeared to him in a dream at Gibeon, the king returned to Jerusalem and sacrificed offerings; however, he continued to waver between the two places of worship.

Not all high places were dedicated to idol worship. They played a major role in Israelite worship, and the earliest biblical mention of a site of worship, later called a “high place,” is found in Genesis 12:6–8 where Abram built altars to the Lord at Shechem and Hebron. Abraham built an altar in the region of Moriah and was willing to sacrifice his son there (Genesis 22:1–2). This site is traditionally believed to be the same high place where the temple of Jerusalem was built. Jacob set up a stone pillar to the Lord at Bethel (Genesis 28:18–19), and Moses met God on Mt. Sinai (Exodus 19:1–3).

Joshua set up stone pillars after crossing the Jordan (Joshua 4:20) and considered this a high place of worship because the Israelites “came up from” the Jordan onto higher ground. The high places were visited regularly by the prophet Samuel (1 Samuel 7:16). High places as sites of Canaanite idol worship (Judges 3:19) extended into the period of Elijah (1 Kings 18:16–40). God would name only one high place where sacrifice was authorized, and that was the temple in Jerusalem (2 Chronicles 3:1). God commanded that all other high places be destroyed. King Josiah destroyed them in 2 Kings 22—23.

The Priests

Aaron’s descendants had their own set of duties, honors, and responsibilities. Expected to be ready to serve in the Temple at a moment’s notice, they were forbidden to drink too much wine, defile themselves by coming into contact with corpses, or marry certain women.

In the Temple, they had their own uniform: a linen tunic, turban, and trousers, and a colorful sash.

The priests were given the mitzvah to bless the people of Israel using a special formula, which is still done today.

In every generation, there was a High Priest (Kohen Gadol), heir to Aaron, who was tasked with performing the most sacred Temple duties. His uniform comprised eight garments, richly woven of golden thread, and adorned with gems. On Yom Kippur, he performed the most sacred service, which included entering the Holy of Holies where the Ark of the Covenant was housed.

Everyone a Levite

Despite the importance placed on the Levite lineage, it is important to note that anyone can accomplish greatness, and that G d is equally accessible to all. In the words of Maimonides:

Not only the tribe of Levi [was chosen by G d], but any human, man or woman, who is spiritually motivated and has the intellectual understanding to set himself aside and stand before G d to serve Him and minister to Him and to know G d, proceeding justly as G d made him, removing from his neck the burden of the many plans people pursue, he is sanctified as holy of holies and G d will be his portion and heritage forever…


About Royal Rosamond Press

I am an artist, a writer, and a theologian.
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