Permeating Divinity and Penetrating Joy

A Spiritual Classroom Report.

Last week Brad dreamed of being sent to a spiritual library where important books and manuscripts are held. There he saw a number that led us to two very old sacred words, one Greek and one Hebrew. Here is his account:

I sat down in the library and read a page from a book that highlighted a particular number: 2305. Staring at this number, I knew that it must be remembered so I immediately woke up and wrote it down. When I researched the number the next day, I was led to the book I had been reading in the dream. It was published in 1890 and was originally called The Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible, authored by Dr. James Strong, an American professor of theology. Later called Strong’s Concordance with Greek and Hebrew Lexicon, it is a special index that cross-references every English word in the Bible with the original Greek or Hebrew word that was translated.

Each original word is assigned an entry number and listed at the end of the concordance. This became known as “Strong’s Number.” Whereas the main concordance lists each English word of the KJV Bible in alphabetical order and specifies every Bible verse in which it appears, Strong’s Number appears on the right of the reference. This number enables the concordance user to check the meaning of the word in the original language found at the end of the reference book where there are 8,674 Hebrew words and 5,624 Greek words presented in two separate lists.

I found that 2305 is the Strong number for the Greek word, θειότης, ητος, ἡ, or theiotes. It is a feminine noun derived from theious, meaning “divine,” which is derived from theos, meaning “God.” Strong’s Concordance defines it as “deity manifested, i.e. the revelation of God (His attributes) which reveals Himself for people to know.” The word is used only once in the Bible, usually translated into English as “Godhead”: “For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead [theiotes]; so that they are without excuse.” (Romans 1: 20 KJV)

In other words, there is no excuse for your feeling distant from divinity because the properties of God permeate and radiate throughout the world. You were made to feel the energizing vibration, the inspiring sound, the illumining mystery, and the exciting emotion of God. Many early scholars and translators like Thayer[1] incorrectly defined theiotes as referring to the Godhead, but the specific Greek word for the latter is theotes. Theotes refers more to substance (deity) whereas theiotes refers to its attributes or properties (divinity) manifested through what God creates. As W.E. Vine concludes in his Expository Dictionary of New Testament Words: “Theotes indicates the Divine essence of Godhood, the Personality of God; theiotes, the attributes of God, His Divine nature and properties.”[2] Rather than quibble over the possibility of perceiving the matter and substance of God, remove the obstacles that block you from feeling divinity, the properties of God that are revealed through all of creation.

 

 

A Sharpened Joy

The same Strong number, 2305, is also found in the Hebrew lexicon where it indicates the Hebrew word: חדוה, or chedvah. Defined as joy, it is a particular kind of joy that is not contrived, but spontaneously received when one is adjoined with Yahweh. According to Strong’s Concordance, the word chedvah corresponding to 2305 is only used once in the scripture: “And the children of Israel, the priests, and the Levites, and the rest of the children of the captivity, kept the dedication of this house of God with joy” (Ezra 6:16). Chedvah comes from the root, chad, which means “sharp,” describing “the initial ‘point’ of joy, which as a laser beam pierces through one’s hitherto unrelated state of consciousness.”[3] Being pierced by chedvah signifies directly felt contact with the divine.

The Paleo-Hebrew pictograph of chedvah is shown as a fence or wall with a door. As Harold Smith explains: “this [door] not only represents ‘a way in,’ but it is also considered a way into covenant with someone.”[4] Smith proposes that the joy of God “is the gladness of providing a door in the fence [for you] to enter into covenant with Him— a path for coming into His Presence!” In other words, God is waiting eagerly to greet you at the door and once you enter, you will be spontaneously struck by a joy that can escalate into utmost ecstasy.

Chedvah is the first entry of sacred joy known to saints speared by God and Bushman n/om-kxaosi shot by God’s arrows and nails of n/om. This sharpened joy crosses the somatic border, installing the sacred elation vibration in your body and setting a fire in your bones. Chedvah is the “joy on the inside that wells up so strong we can’t keep still”[5]. This joy-fire is a special kind of sacred emotion that makes the body sing and dance, and is the point of entry into full divine union.

 

 

God’s Number

The two words derived from a single Strong number—theiotes and chedvah—summarize what is most essential about Sacred Ecstatics—seeking and experiencing sacred divinity as ecstatic, heart-piercing, spontaneous joy.

God has your number and once you make your way to the threshold you are made ready to receive God’s number, the strongest number in the universe. It is the combination that unlocks the door in the fence that stands between you and the divine. These elements combined – permeating divinity and penetrating joy – are the ultimate dance partners and co-conspirators of spiritual ecstasy. In order to be pierced by sacred joy you need to fully meet, greet, and welcome the divinity that radiates throughout. Likewise, when struck by God’s joy-arrow, you will feel, rather than just know, that all is one and divine in nature, without exception. It is time for you, every part of you, to be in complete concordance with holiness as it is revealed in all things, and thus to be penetrated by the truest, sharpest joy that is the natural emotion of God.

As the old gospel hymn celebrates this entry into sacred ecstasy: “What a fellowship, what a joy supreme, leaning on the everlasting arms.” Get on board the ship of ecstatic fellowship and prepare for an adventurous pilgrimage to the big room. There are no more excuses for you to delay making your way to the always available and never-ending manifestation, aspect, attribute, quality, or gift of God that was made for everyone. Mine eyes have seen the glory! Mine ears have heard the songs! I’m marching and dancing to Zion! Gather the ecstatic ingredients, blend them to form a prayer wheel that turns, and God will pierce you with the joy that sweetly burns.

P.S.

Interestingly, prior to this vision Brad went to a classroom where author Wendell Berry was writing on a blackboard in Hebrew and Greek. Read it here.

-The Keeneys, November 23, 2017. Adapted from the forthcoming book, The Spiritual Engineering of Sacred Ecstasy.

 

 

[1] Thayer’s Greek-English Lexicon, p. 285

[2] Cited in Ottuh and Ojighoro, “The Concept of Elohim and Theos in an Urhobo Cosmological Context: A Biblical Perspective,” International Journal of Philosophy and Theology, June 2015, Vol. 3, No. 1, p. 148.

[3] From Glossary of Kabbalah and Chassidut http://www.inner.org/glossary/gloss_c.htm

[4] http://hethathasanear.com/Joy.html. para. 3.

[5] From the quote, “There is a joy on the inside and it wells up so strong that we can’t keep still. It is fire in the bones.” Johnson, Clifton H. 1969. God Struck Me Dead: Religious Conversion Experiences and Autobiographies of Ex-Slaves. Philadelphia: Pilgrim Press. p. 74

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