What is the significance of the red heifer to the Jewish Temple? Find out with guest Jeanne Nigro on the show Christ in Prophecy.
Air Date: June 16, 2019
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Dr. Reagan: From time to time a perfect red heifer is born in Israel and the Orthodox Jews begin rejoicing. Why is that? What is the significance of a red heifer? What relevance, if any, does it have to end time Bible prophecy? And why should Christians be concerned about it? Stay tuned.
Dr. Reagan: Greetings in the name of Jesus, our Blessed Hope, and welcome to Christ in Prophecy. My co-host, Nathan Jones, and I have a very special guest in the studio with us today. She is a wonderful Bible teacher named Jeanne Nigro. She used to live here in the Dallas, Texas area but she now resides in New York City. Welcome back, Jeanne. We are glad to have you.
Jeanne Nigro: Thank you so much! It is wonderful to be here.
Dr. Reagan: Okay.
Nathan Jones: So good to have you on.
Dr. Reagan: Well, Jeanne your website says that the purpose of your ministry is quote and I’m quoting here, “To empower people to stand strong in these uncertain, turbulent times through a more intimate relationship with God. I would say that is a very relevant ministry. And your latest book “Unshaken” certainly focuses on that mission goal. The subtitle of that book is, “Standing Strong in Uncertain Times.” But I happen to know that there is another aspect of your ministry, and that is for a long time you have been involved with the Messianic Jewish movement because I know that you are a speaker at all their major conferences across this nation.
Jeanne Nigro: That’s correct.
Dr. Reagan: And what I would like to know is how in the world did you get involved with the Messianic Jewish Movement?
Jeanne Nigro: Well, God has a way.
Dr. Reagan: He sure does.
Jeanne Nigro: With me, David, the way was actually my daughter. My daughter was attending a Jewish preschool. We were living in Newport Beach, California at the time. And she was learning about all of the feasts, and all her crafts in preschool are Seder plates and things like that. And I wanted her to learn about Jesus in the feasts. So, I took her to a Messianic Passover Seder and she knew all the songs, she was only about three or four, but anyway through that the teaching that I heard at that Messianic Passover Seder I felt, David, like I was born again, again. It just increased my intimacy with Jesus so much, and gave me such an appreciation for what He had done for me. And how God is in all the details. And how He had this planned through everything pointed to Jesus throughout the entire Old Testament. And so, it was just an amazing experience for me. And so from that point on I started attending a Messianic congregation. And then learning about the Torah, and here we are.
Dr. Reagan: Well, it is a real compliment to you that the Messianic Jewish Movement has embraced you the way they have. And have you constantly speaking at their conferences because they don’t do that much with outsiders.
Jeanne Nigro: Yeah. It took a little while but I think what I have to offer that is a little bit different is I always make everything very practical. So, for example I was teaching on healing strongholds of the heart prior to attending a Messianic congregation. And when I started studying the book of Leviticus, and Numbers I could see such a relationship between the truths of the Torah and healing, and real practical application, so I take these complex truths of the Torah, and make them very practical. And that is what we’re going to do today.
Dr. Reagan: Alright. Nathan, how about us getting into the topic for today?
Nathan Jones: Yes, I would like to hear more about this red heifer. I’m reading through Numbers 19:1-10 and it talks about the need of a red heifer. You hear it when you read all the Jewish news, like you probably follow the Jewish news. And they’re saying, “Hey, we need to get a red heifer.” Why are the Jews so interested in getting what looks like a red cow?
Jeanne Nigro: Well, it’s really tied to, for me I like to–the red heifer I can’t speak enough about the red heifer, so you are going to have to time me because there is personal significance for us as believers in studying the red heifer. But then there is also very exciting prophetic significance. So, when we were talking about why I was teaching at the conferences and so forth I was sharing that I love to make the Torah very practical. And from what I’ve learned about the red heifer has made more of a difference in my life. Do you know every morning I start out my day focusing on the red heifer in my prayer time?
Nathan Jones: Really?
Jeanne Nigro: And that helps me deal with stress, and fear, and insecurity, and everything. So, it is very, very practical because really the red heifer is a sacrifice. And everything you want to know about it is in Numbers 19. And it was a sacrifice that was required because of what is called corpse contamination. And so basically anyone who had ever, any time you had touched a corpse or been in the same place as a corpse, or you could have even walked over a grave or anything to do with death really.
Dr. Reagan: You could have walked in a hospital where a person died.
Jeanne Nigro: At any time, yeah, you become contaminated.
Nathan Jones: You are ceremonially unclean then?
Jeanne Nigro: You can’t come into the temple, you can’t go into God’s manifest presence. Well why is that? Because God is so holy that anything to do with death would burn up. So it is really out of His grace, protection that you couldn’t come into His presence and burn up. So, the only way that you can become clean, ritually clean, to be able to come into His presence in the temple or tabernacle is through this red heifer purification.
Dr. Reagan: What is that sprinkling with the ashes or water?
Jeanne Nigro: What they do is they take the red heifer, and the red heifer is the only sacrifice that was sacrificed outside of the temple, just like Jesus. So, it was on the Mount of Olives and there is amazing detail. The ritual that they had to go through is incredible.
Nathan Jones: Yeah, God Himself seemed to give quite a lot of detail about what was supposed to be done with the sacrifice of the heifer, and then the sprinkling of the ashes.
Jeanne Nigro: And what does that say about who God is? That He’s so holy which is something we’ve forgotten about in these times. So, what is required is a certain way the priest has to slaughter the red heifer. And then they take the blood and they sprinkle it toward the tabernacle. And then the burn the red heifer. Bu within the red heifer as they’re burning it they put scarlet wool, a lot of references to our sins made were as scarlet, yet they be white as snow. And cedar wood which has a lot of meaning with the cross, and with being incorruptible. And also hyssop which we know has a lot to do with Psalm 51 with purifying, and hyssop used at Passover. So, that is burned within the red heifer. And the ashes are mixed with pure water, living water, and there is a whole story about that that we could share a whole program on but how they would make sure that the person was pure.
Dr. Reagan: It’s only a pinch of the ash was necessary.
Jeanne Nigro: Yeah, so they would take a little bit of the ashes, and with the pure water and sprinkle the person. The priest would sprinkle the person who was unclean on the third day, and the seventh day. So, it took seven days to be clean to go into–
Dr. Reagan: So, these ashes could last a long time.
Jeanne Nigro: A red heifer could be used for the entire nation of Israel. And that’s how many ashes. And what was very, very interesting is that each person who was involved, each priest, or each person who was involved in the ceremony, or not really ceremony, but in the slaughtering and burning they became unclean. So, in the process of making someone clean, they became unclean.
Nathan Jones: Unclean, interesting.
Jeanne Nigro: And also for them to be even be able to do it, to even touch the red heifer, to start to be anywhere in that process they had to be clean, and this was an important point to remember as we start talking about prophecy, that the person who is slaughtering the red heifer, who is burning the red heifer and so forth, they have to be ritually clean.
Nathan Jones: Is that necessary then for temple worship?
Jeanne Nigro: Yes. I’m so glad you mentioned that. Because even for example even if they were to build the temple now, or they have a portable altar, they could probably do it really anywhere you know offer sacrifices even without being able to build the structure yet, they still can’t offer the sacrifices because they are ritually unclean, because all of us have had contact you know if you’ve been in a hospital.
Dr. Reagan: Well, what have the Jews done for 2,000 years without this ashes when then encounter a dead body? What do they do?
Jeanne Nigro: Well that’s why when you look at it that way the entire nation of Israel, well the entire world is unclean ritually because we’ve all had contact. We’ve all walked over an area not even knowing if it is a grave or not, you know if somebody has ever been buried there. Or even a hospital where people have died. Or we’ve been in a funeral home, you know whatever, we’ve been around. And it was something that was contaminating as well. So even if you hadn’t gone, say that I didn’t actually go into a room that had a dead body, but you did, and I touched you I would become unclean because you were contaminating. So, it was all that to say this, I always go back to what does that say about who God is, and how He sees you? Well, the fact that He required all of this ritual, and all of these details, and everything had to be so perfect because nothing to do with death could come in His presence. It tells you how holy He is. And then it tells us well that same God in the form of Jesus that nothing was more defiling than death, and required all of this red heifer. That same God would become a corpse, become defiling, become unclean. Jesus would become unclean, become a corpse for you. That has healed my heart of so many strongholds of being unwanted. When I get up in the morning I focus on that because what do I have to fear? What do I have to stress? When I’m so wanted that God loved me so much. That He desired me so much, intimate relationship with me so much that He would become there is nothing more defiling. I think when we realize how defiling death was, otherwise we get a little bit flippant, oh Jesus died for me. But we don’t realize how–
Nathan Jones: Yeah, we don’t wash ourselves after going to a funeral.
Jeanne Nigro: –defiling death was, that He would do that for us. And so again as we studied the Torah in the Old Testament we get such a deeper appreciation for how much Jesus sacrificed for us. And how intensely He desired us, and that brings healing too. We all have you know lies we believe about ourselves in our heart, and areas that need healing and so forth. And we all need help dealing with the uncertainties of today. So this helps us to be unshaken to have that intimacy with God and to see how much He loves us. And the red heifer really screams that out to me, and I hope to you too.
Nathan Jones: Well, something that you were teaching about symbols, and your video which is great about the red heifer, it’s super unique, right? I mean you can’t just go to the farm and pick a red heifer out, they are uber rare, right?
Jeanne Nigro: Well, there have only been since Moses, Moses had the first red heifer, nine red heifers since Moses.
Nathan Jones: Nine, in what over 1,000 years?
Jeanne Nigro: 5,000 years.
Dr. Reagan: That was from Moses to the destruction of the Temple.
Jeanne Nigro: And until now because there hasn’t been, there’s not been a red heifer since the temple.
Dr. Reagan: Well, but they really haven’t been looking for one because they didn’t have a temple.
Jeanne Nigro: Well, but they’ve been working to–
Nathan Jones: Yeah, they seem to be really interested in finding one now.
Dr. Reagan: Only in recent years it seems to me they’ve been looking for one, and they found one, you know from time to time. But it has to be about two years old, and by that time it has some hairs that are not red.
Jeanne Nigro: Oh it has to be perfect.
Nathan Jones: Yeah, what is the detail? Like what makes it so uber rare?
Jeanne Nigro: You know it has to be, there can be no more than two hairs on it that are not red.
Nathan Jones: So totally.
Jeanne Nigro: It has to be perfect. Never been pregnant. Never worked. And you know what includes work? Never even been leaned on. Because if you leaned on a red heifer that would imply it was holding you up, and it did work. So, and it has to be at least two years old. So, the one that was born in August, actually the last one that was born they really think like this is the one is was August 28th of 2018, is perfect. But they had to actually for this one bring in an embryo from outside of Israel and implant into a cow in Israel.
Dr. Reagan: I’ve seen pictures of the Orthodox with magnifying glasses.
Jeanne Nigro: Looking for those two hairs, or more than two hairs, yeah.
Nathan Jones: So they’ve been genetically trying to breed it since they can’t seem to find them in nature?
Jeanne Nigro: Yeah, they can’t bring in livestock into Israel so they bring in the embryo that way, and implant it into a cow there.
Dr. Reagan: Well I want to pause here for a moment. And when we come back I want to take a look at why any of this relevant to a Christian.
Nathan Jones: Welcome back to Christ in Prophecy and our discussion with Jeanne Nigro about the Jewish search for a perfect red heifer. Well Jeanne, the Jews are all looking for a red heifer what does that mean to Christians?
Dr. Reagan: And before you answer that I want to interject something to help you define your answer. You made a comment in the first half of this program that really disturbed me and the comment was the whole world is ceremonially unclean. I’m not because I’ve been cleansed by the blood of Jesus. I don’t think that comment refers to Christians.
Jeanne Nigro: I’m glad you mentioned that David, because that is important to think about because that is the Jewish perspective that the entire world is unclean ritually. And what I actually read was their belief that the red heifer is basically like the salvation of the world, will cleanse the entire world. That impurity is because of being passed down from the sins of the golden calf, the time of Moses. That’s what I love. I mean I talked a little bit about how with the red heifer sacrifice tells us about how God sees us, and how we apply that personally. But then I also think it’s so critical that we wake up to deception that is going on in Israel. Because what happens is I think sometimes we as believers think, “Well, whatever Israel is doing is good. We need to support Israel.” And we need to have God’s heart for Israel, but that includes not just the land of Israel, but the people of Israel. So, we need to have a heart, and be aware of how they’re being deceived, and not be deceived ourselves. To support things that are going to cause them to I believe follow the Antichrist instead of Yeshua.
Dr. Reagan: Well, I’m glad you clarified that because I did not know that they thought this applied to Gentiles as well as Jews. I thought this was something they thought only applied to the Jewish people.
Jeanne Nigro: Well, no one can come into the temple. No one can sacrifice. No one can really have access to God.
Dr. Reagan: Oh, I see, yeah.
Jeanne Nigro: If they’re in that state. And that is an important thing to remember too is that when we say Yeshua, or Jesus we think of He is the one who brings eternal life, He is the one who brings relationship with God. However, to a Jewish Orthodox person that’s why they want the temple so badly because they believe the temple is what will bring relationship with God. The temple is what will bring eternal life.
Dr. Reagan: And that’s a real deception.
Jeanne Nigro: The temple solves world problems. The temple bring peace. So, whenever you have the word Yeshua replace it for temple and that’s what they believe. And you can see how that would block them from receiving Yeshua, Jesus as their Messiah. And we shouldn’t be supporting something that will block that.
Dr. Reagan: Well, I often make the point that God has perfect will, and He has permissive will. His perfect will is everyone be saved. That is His perfect will. But His permissive will is He allows those to be lost who don’t put their faith in Yeshua as their Messiah. And the same thing is true with the temple, God’s perfect will for the Jewish people is that they accept Yeshua as their Messiah. But in His permissive will He is going to allow them to rebuild that temple, but that is in His permissive will. And Christians get so deceived when fund raisers come over here and go to the big churches and raise money from Christians to rebuild the temple.
Jeanne Nigro: That’s exactly right.
Nathan Jones: And this third temple is not going to be a blessed temple, it is going to be the Antichrist temple.
Jeanne Nigro: That’s what I call it.
Nathan Jones: That is where his capital of his religion will be eventually, right?
Jeanne Nigro: It is the Antichrist temple. So, we think about the red heifer, well did you know that there’s an association with the red heifer, the tenth red heifer will accomplish the Messiah, according to Rambam, and they follow Rambam who did commentaries on the Talmud and the Mishnah, and Torah, and so forth, he wrote the Mishneh Torah. So, we’ve got to be aware that when we see these things go viral on social media, like I’ve seen the videos of the portable altar, and everyone is like, “Yay, this means Jesus is coming back.” This means the Antichrist is close. And when they see pictures of the red heifer being born it goes viral, and people e-mailing it and sharing it.
Nathan Jones: Most like supporting the red heifer is to bring the Second Coming?
Jeanne Nigro: Yes, this means the temple. This means Jesus. No, this means the Antichrist. This means deception. So I want to change the name of ministry from Jeanne Nigro Ministries to Deception Busters, because I am ready to bust deception because we are being deceived. And also if you think about it we are to be lights to our Jewish friends and to Israel. And so we need to wake them up to this deception as well. And that is an important part of our role is to have, when we have God’s heart toward Israel. Again, it’s not just the land of Israel, or the state of the nation, our heart needs to be for the Jewish people.
Nathan Jones: Yes.
Jeanne Nigro: And if anything is standing in the way of them receiving Jesus as the Messiah we need to be aware of that and not be supporting it, and be able to in a loving way let them know that hey we have had nine red heifers, the fact that this might be a tenth red heifer. When I read that I thought, “Oh, my goodness. It’s happening.” You know the third temple of the Antichrist, the deception.
Nathan Jones: Nothing will stop it, right? No matter what the Jews will eventually get the red heifer. They will purify a newly rebuilt temple.
Jeanne Nigro: Well, in fact this is really interesting to me, I hopefully to you too. You know as I mentioned earlier in the program you have to be ritually pure in order to be the priest who slaughters and burns the red heifer. But there is no one who is ritually pure because the only way to be ritually pure is by the ashes of a red heifer. Well, there are no ashes, right? So, it is really interesting because there are searches going on looking for Moses’ ashes because they believe they will find them somewhere. Now, I don’t know if they will have a post-it on it that says, “These are Moses’ red heifer ashes.” But how are they going to know they are actually the one? But what I, and there are many other things that I could share if we had more time, but there are all these different efforts to find a way to kind of get around that. And you know what I think in the end it is going to be deception again because one of the ways is Moses was the first one to offer the red heifer sacrifice that God commanded him to do. So they believe that when the one like Moses comes, that he would have that same authority in a sense even though he’s not ritually pure. So the Messiah is to be the one just like Moses, and the Messiah brings on the tenth red heifer. Messiah is also associated with building the third temple. So, I think that–and whoever is the Antichrist they will be deceived into thinking that will be the person who has the ability to sacrifice the red heifer even though they are not ritually pure because they are the one like Moses.
Dr. Reagan: Well, let’s bring this home now to Christians. I learned a long time ago that just about everything in the Old Testament is a symbolic indicator of the Messiah to come and represents the Messiah in some way. Would this be true of the red heifer?
Jeanne Nigro: Definitely.
Dr. Reagan: Alright, talk about that now.
Jeanne Nigro: It reminded me, I love teaching Passover Seders and that reminded me of how there is so much symbolism to a Passover lamb, and the same thing is true that is why this is so exciting because it is the same thing is true with the red heifer.
Dr. Reagan: Lead us through that.
Jeanne Nigro: You know it’s the only sacrifice that was outside of the temple, all of the other sacrifices are, as Jesus was, it was on the Mount of Olives. We have those three elements that all point to Jesus that are burned within the red heifer, the cedar wood, so many links to the cross, and the red and the blood. And this theme of it is the blood that purifies, it is the blood that purifies. And again with Jesus there is the hyssop as white as snow, the scarlet wool. Nothing can change something that’s been red wool other than a miraculous, divine, we are made white as snow, just like our sins, nothing can make them white as snow except for Jesus blood. So there’s those aspects of it. And then also the aspect that the one who offered the red heifer, they in the process of doing something to make someone clean, they became unclean. It’s called the paradox of the red heifer. And when I was reading about it the Orthodox call it a “hok” because they feel it is unexplainable. But I said this is completely explainable in my eyes. This is not a “hok” this is something that I can clearly see. Jesus is that same paradox, in the process of Jesus making us clean.
Dr. Reagan: All the sins put upon Jesus.
Jeanne Nigro: He became unclean.
Dr. Reagan: Yes.
Jeanne Nigro: He took on death.
Dr. Reagan: So we could be clean.
Jeanne Nigro: Nothing could be more defiling, or contaminating, and He would do that for us.
Nathan Jones: Isn’t it amazing that God would hundreds of years before Christ came create a symbol that would point to Jesus Christ in so many details?
Jeanne Nigro: And that helps me today to be unshaken because I think this is a God who nothing is a coincidence, nothing is a surprise to Him. He had the redemptive plan for Jesus laid out from the beginning of time, and He was continually revealing it. He is not a God who hides. Sometimes you think, you know He won’t tell. Well, He’s not a God who hides. He wants to reveal. He wants to draw us into intimacy with Him. And so, that He would have that plan from the beginning. He has a plan for your life too. You know we don’t always see it. We don’t see Him working behind the scenes. But just like with you, you know the red heifer, the Passover lamb, everything pointed to Jesus, everything revealing Jesus. It shows me that He is into the details, and He is into the details of my life too. He cares about every single detail of our life, nothing is insignificant to Him, or a coincidence. Just like in His Word we see wow, there is nothing insignificant or a coincidence about this red heifer.
Nathan Jones: Not at all.
Jeanne Nigro: It is revealing something about Jesus. And what kind of God that we have. And the fact that also out of His, I think out of His grace, He commanded this because He wanted people to be able to come into His presence without burning up. So, He was always providing a way for us to draw near to Him. And He did that with Jesus and He continues to do that every day in our life. He is the God who desires intimacy with us. And also but at the same time He’s a God who requires it in His terms, in His terms. And I think we need to remember that in these days when deception is telling us that there are many ways to God, and Allah is the same as God. We need to remember, He desires intimacy with us, and we have a relationship with Him, but it’s on His terms. He’s holy too.
Dr. Reagan: The last time you were with us you were talking about the temples. And you pointed out there are two future temples. One will be the Tribulation Temple, the other the Millennial Temple.
Jeanne Nigro: Yes.
Dr. Reagan: The Tribulation Temple is in God’s permissive will, it’s not–He wants people to turn to Yeshua not to a temple. But the Millennial Temple is in God’s perfect will and it’s going to be something glorious. And is there any mention of the red heifer in that time?
Jeanne Nigro: Are you sure you haven’t been to my teaching before? Because that’s how I usually end it with a PowerPoint of: Is there a Red Heifer in the Millennium? So, you read my mind if you haven’t heard my teaching already.
Dr. Reagan: No.
Jeanne Nigro: So, you know it doesn’t say specifically because I always go to Ezekiel 40-48, you know that’s where you find all the detail about the Millennial Temple, and it doesn’t say red heifer, but it’s implied because it talks about people dying in the Millennium. It talks about priest teaching the people between, the difference between the holy and the common, the difference between the clean and the unclean.
Nathan Jones: And that confusing thing about animal sacrifices.
Jeanne Nigro: Oh, that’s a whole another program, I’ll teach about that. I love to talk about that, although I have to wear a bullet proof vest sometimes. But anyway. So, it implies obviously that people are dying, it talks about how long they’re going to be living in the Millennium. And then it talks about the priests, and unclean and the clean, and the parallel scriptures with Leviticus. So there’s very much obviously an implication that there’s death. So there would have to be, if there’s death then there’s corpse contamination. So, I thinks implied that there would have to be because otherwise you would not be able to come into the manifest presence of God if you had exposure to death, if you had that corpse contamination, if you had defilement. So, I would have to vote yes, but that’s also based on what I teach and my perspectives on why are there sacrifices in the Millennium which you are just going to have to wait until next time.
Nathan Jones: There won’t be a red heifer sacrifice in the Millennium, but maybe to institute the temple?
Jeanne Nigro: There might be. There might be.
Dr. Reagan: Yeah, well we know for sure that things are going to be little bit different with the Millennial Temple because it doesn’t mention all the feasts that–
Jeanne Nigro: Some of the feasts.
Dr. Reagan: –and it doesn’t mention there’s no Ark of the Covenant.
Jeanne Nigro: Right, we talked about that last time.
Dr. Reagan: Because Jesus has fulfilled it.
Jeanne Nigro: You’re right, and I think it’s important when we think about–we’re not going to go into all the detail obviously, but when we think about sacrifices or why there might be a red heifer, or why not in the Millennium and the Millennial Temple. The key is remembering that we will have spiritual bodies in the Millennium. But there will be others that are having children that still mortal, fleshly bodies.
Dr. Reagan: I prefer to call them glorified bodies.
Jeanne Nigro: We’ll have glorified bodies but they’ll be a population of people who will have the same flesh we have now.
Dr. Reagan: Our time is almost up and I’d like for you to look at that camera right in front of you and tell people how they can get in touch with your ministry.
Jeanne Nigro: Well the best way to get in touch with our ministry is through our website and that is jeannenigro.com. And there you’ll be able to find our book “Unshaken” and the CD’s of the red heifer and the Millennium, and biblical feasts, lots of other things, healing strongholds, as well as blogs and other information that will be really helpful to you to stay unshaken no matter what’s going on in your life or in this world.
Dr. Reagan: Well Jeanne thanks for being with us, and may the Lord continue to bless you, your family, and your ministry, may He magnify your voice. Folks, that’s our program for today. I hope it’s been a blessing to you, it certainly has been to Nathan and I. And we hope you’ll be back with us next week. Until then this is Dave Reagan speaking for Lamb & Lion Ministries saying, “Look up, be watchful, for our redemption is drawing near.”
End of Program