How Did You Come To Believe Something Like This? ( My Personal Testimony )

Posted on 01/12/2013

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How did you come to believe something like this? 

I believe that now would be a good time to interject my personal testimony regarding this truth that I promote on this website.  My hope and prayer is that this testimony will help others come to a fuller revelation of scriptural truth.

My name, is Hiram Ben Yisrael, although my legal name is Donald Dwight Sewing II.  At the present time, I am about a month away from being 42 years old.  Also at the present time I am a husband of one wife, and a father of seven children.  We have a home fellowship which consists of my family, a brother who lives in the local community, and those who tune in to our podcast.

About four years prior to when I was born, my family was the first “black” family to move into a particular suburb in Kansas, which was part of the metro Kansas City area.  It was a big deal at the time, but things simmered down somewhat by the time that I was born.  I was raised amongst primarily “white” people.  I attended a private university for four years and graduated, and was a member of a primarily “white” fraternity.

I was not the kind of person that had particularly “black” interests.  Of course I knew the typical things that I learned in school and at home about “black” history ( MLK, Rose Parks, Harriet Tubman, etc. ), but I was never into anything remotely nationalistic.  I was told time and again by my peers growing up, “You’re just like us” and “We don’t see color”, and I wanted to believe that.  My thought was that I wanted to see my people do better, but I didn’t want to be perceived as “too black.”  Since I came to faith in Yahusha ha’Mashiach in 1992, my fellowship over the past 20 years has been with primarily “white” brothers and sisters.

I was a truth seeker from the very beginning, and began my journey out of the Christian churches and into scriptural truth in 1997 when I accepted the truths about the shabbat and the dietary laws.  A few years later, I accepted the truths of the festivals of Yahuah, and the original names of the Father and the Son.  I eventually came to realize that all of the Torah is right, and that if we are to walk as the Messiah walked, then we need to walk in the Torah.

I have made references to “black” and “white” up until now in this post because I want the reader to understand that the truth that I promote on this website is not something that I readily received because of my nationality.  Some may have the wrong idea that when I first heard that the true children of Yisrael were and are a “black” people, it was something that I just up and ran with because it puffed up my flesh.  In all actuality, the opposite is true.

I was presented with this truth for the first time in 2001 when I searched the internet and saw some writings from the Rastafarians.  I read their take on the curses of Deuteronomy 28 and saw somewhat where they were coming from, but their promotion of smoking marijuana was a stumbling block for me.  I was also presented this about a year or two later in northeast Texas by a member of  the Nation of Yahweh, but I was too turned off by the man’s staunch promotion of “Yahweh ben Yahweh” as the Messiah.

In addition to all of that, I was in fellowship with primarily “white” brothers and sisters at that time.  Some of these people with whom I had fellowship believed that the true Yisraelites were the “white” Europeans.  This caused me to be turned off by anyone who claimed Yisraelite heritage based upon skin color or ethnicity.  To me, the Yisraelite identity issue was a bunch of confusion.  I said, “The blacks believe that they are Yisrael because of the curses, and the whites believe that they are Yisrael because of the blessings.”  I felt that both groups were off track, and that what we needed to do was focus on following the Messiah and the Torah, and forget about all of that other stuff.

About ten years later, I was living in Louisiana, I had gotten married and had a few children, and was in fellowship with a primarily “black” congregation.  The was a certain sister who lived in Texas that sent me some information about a few different topics.  One of the things that she sent was a DVD documentary about the curses of Deuteronomy 28.  When I saw the title, I recoiled in disgust and put the DVD out of sight and out of mind.  A couple of months later, I felt moved to take that DVD off the shelf and put it in.  I said to myself, “Oh well.  I don’t believe this stuff, but I don’t want to answer matters before I hear them so I will check this out.”  I checked it out, and rest is history.

For the first time, I was being presented a thorough, scriptural, and sound explanation of this truth from a group that seemed to be sound and not out in left field.  I was challenged to search the scriptures like never before.  My wife and I both fasted, prayed, and cried out to Yahuah, “Please reveal the truth to us!  We don’t want to receive anything erroneous or cultic.  We only want the truth!”  After watching the DVD about five times, continuing to searching the scriptures, and continuing to pray, my wife and I came to the conclusion that it was true.

What made the difference for me was not necessarily the curses of Deuteronomy 28.  I had heard people explain the curses over the years, but it did not click with me.  What made the difference for me was seeing how all of the writings of the prophets confirmed the curses.  Having been in the Christian churches for so long, I was always taught that the writings of the prophets were either “for the Jews” and something that we as Christians could glean from, or that they were to be applied to us as “spiritual Israel.”  When I read these writings without the Christian goggles, I saw the truth of this matter.

The truth of the matter is this:  Yahuah chose a specific nation of people to fulfill the Abrahamic promise, and to be a kingdom of priests and a qodesh ( separated ) nation to bring salvation to the sons of Adam ( Ex. 19:6; I Pet. 2:9 ).  This nation consists of and has always consisted of the descendants of Abraham, Yitshaq, and Ya’acob, and those of the other nations who also came into covenant with Yahuah.  The gifts and calling of Alohym are without repentance ( Rom. 11:29 ), therefore this calling to the nation of Yisrael has not been revoked.  This is a national calling, not a religious calling.

Some of you may be reading this and say to yourselves, “You were doing well when you felt that all this stuff doesn’t matter, and that all we need to do is follow the Messiah and the Torah and leave the rest alone.”  Allow me to explain to you why I changed.  While it is more politically correct, and one could gain more fellowship and more open doors for ministry if they took that viewpoint, I cannot deny that the writings of the prophets speak of a specific nationality of people whom the Most High has promised to revive and restore in these last days.  If we spiritualize those scriptures, then we are doing no different than the Christian churches.

Furthermore, the fact that many do use this truth to puff up their flesh and put others down is NO EXCUSE to deny the truth of the scriptures and “throw the baby out with the bathwater.”  Ha’shatan will muddy the waters whenever and wherever he is given the opportunity.  It is our responsibility as truth seekers, however, to prove all things and hold fast that which is good ( I Thess. 5:21 ).  Every major restoration truth is under attack, and this one is no different.

In conclusion, I will say that all who come into covenant with Yahuah through the shed blood of His Son Yahusha are equally a part of the restored nation of Yisrael, regardless of their nation of origin.  We are all one body in the Messiah.  Too many times, however, I have seen brothers and sisters use this reality to marginalize or even eradicate the truth that there is a specific nationality of people on the earth today with whom the Most High is dealing in a special way because of the promises He made to the fathers.  Brothers and sisters of other national origins who marginalize or eradicate this truth are boasting against the natural branches ( Rom. 11:18 ), whether they realize it or not.

While we are all glad that Yahusha has come to redeem us from our personal sins, let us not forget that He is the promised Messiah of the Hebrew scriptures who will regather, revive, and restore the twelve tribes of Yisrael.  If we love Him, then let us be His hands and His feet and co-labor with Him in that great work.  If we are going to co-labor with Him in that work, then we need to know who the twelve tribes of Yisrael are, right?  Well, that is the purpose of this blog.  I encourage all who are reading this testimony to read all of the posts on this blog and allow yourself to be challenged, even as I did.  Shalom.

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