Shabbat Bible Study for March 30, 2019

Shabbat Bible Study for March 30, 2019

2019 Mark Pitrone and Fulfilling Torah Ministries

Year 3 Shabbat 51

Deut 34:1-12; Josh 1:1-18; Psalm 148-150; Matt 4:5-11

This is the final parshah of the Triennial Cycle. Next week we start over in B’reishith 1.1-2.3.

Dev.34.1-4 – Because Moshe overstepped his bounds in the second Meribah rebellion, when he both STRUCK the rock and said, “Shall WE bring water out of the Rock?” (Num.20.10-11), Y’hovah forbad his entrance into the land of rest. But because he was faithful to Y’hovah all his days, he was allowed to see the whole land, AND all of the future history of it, as well. In v.2, he got to see the “unto the uttermost sea.” The Hebrew words that are x-lated there are ha’acharon hayam or ha’acharon hayom. The word acharon means hinder, late or last. From this I see that he was shown the future, for in Hebraic thought, the future is that which lay behind our backs which we can’t see (the past is said to be before our face because we have already seen it and can make reference to it in our experience). Hayam, by the change of a vowel point, can be hayom. Thus the “uttermost sea” COULD actually be the “uttermost day”. I believe we see the ‘pashat’ of the sea and the ‘sod’ of the future day here. So Moshe saw not only the whole land, but also all of Yisrael’s future by the grace of Y’hovah. Way cool.

Vv.5-7 – Moshe died on Pisgah and was buried by Y’hovah himself. How this was accomplished we aren’t told. Jude 9 tells us that haSatan disputed with the archangel Michael over the body of Moshe. This had to be after Moshe’s death and burial, for Michael is not Y’hovah, unless you are a Jehovah’s Witness. 

Moshe’s eye was not dimmed nor his natural force abated. This means he was a 120 year old 30 year old. He had spent a LOT of ‘time’ in ‘spiritual space’; the very presence of Y’hovah, outside of our time/space/matter universe, where I think he never aged. He never left the prime of his natural life, as we all will (or already have). This is the way it really ought to be with all of us, but our negligence in being salt and light in the world has allowed society to devolve to the state we see everyday on the evening news. Even we who seek Y’hovah’s face are deprived of spiritual nutrition, which can be seen by our need for physical nutrition. I think that our land has become so depleted of nutrients that it is no wonder that our bodies cry out for more fuel, even though we are full to the brim with so-called ‘food’. Obesity is directly related to the nutritional depletion of our food supply, and our bodies saying to us, “I know you just ate, but I’m still hungry! NUTRITION, not a full belly!” And that obesity leads to all manner of dis-ease and mental and physical breakdowns. I think it may also be directly related to our spiritual leanness of mind and heart, for an unhealthy mind cannot be conducive to spiritual health.

Vv.8-9 tell us that chol Yisrael mourned Moshe for 30 days, that Yehoshua was filled with Ruach haKodesh due to Moshe’s laying hands on him, and that b’nei Yisrael shema’d to Yehoshua’s voice as they had to Moshe’s to obey Y’hovah.

Vv.10-12 says that Y’hovah knew Moshe face to face. Now how can this be? We are told “no man hath seen Elohim at any time.” I think the 3 instances of this phrase, all in Brit Chadashah, are references to the face of Ayn Sof, whom truly no man has ever seen. But numerous people have seen Y’hovah face to face – Adam, Noach, Moshe, Yechezkel, Daniel and his buds, Rav Sha’ul and the other schlichim, to name but a few – all in the person of, I think, the resurrected Yeshua. And, until Yeshua walked the earth 1500 years in the future, there was no prophet like Moshe

13 Thou shalt be perfect with Y’hovah Elohecha. 14 For these nations, which thou shalt possess, hearkened unto observers of times, and unto diviners: but as for thee, Y’hovah Elohecha hath not suffered thee so. 15 Y’hovah Elohecha will raise up unto thee a Prophet from the midst of thee, of thy brethren, like unto me; unto him ye shall hearken; 16 According to all that thou desiredst of Y’hovah Elohecha in Horeb in the day of the assembly, saying, Let me not hear again the voice of Y’hovah Elohai, neither let me see this great fire any more, that I die not. 17 And Y’hovah said unto me, They have well spoken which they have spoken. 18 I will raise them up a Prophet from among their brethren, like unto thee, and will put my words in his mouth; and he shall speak unto them all that I shall command him. 19 And it shall come to pass, whosoever will not hearken unto my words which he shall speak in my name, I will require of him. (Devarim 18.13-19) Q&C

Yehoshua 1 – Turn the page. Y’hovah encourages and exhorts Yehoshua to stay faithful and to lead Yisrael into the land he’d promised to Avraham, Yitzchak and Ya’acov. In this admonition is the command to be “strong and of good courage” 3 times in 4 verses. I imagine that the death of Moshe was a source of unease and discouragement to Yehoshua. But the appearance of Y’hovah to speak face to face with Yehoshua must have given the guy just a bit of a lift. And I would not be surprised that each admonition to courage was accompanied with another gracious bestowal of power from on high designed to move Yehoshua to action.

Y’hovah makes a prophetic promise as almost the 1st words out of his mouth to Yehoshua in v.3. He says that wherever they go baAretz, every piece of ground their feet shall tread upon, he has ALREADY given to them. 

Yehoshua’s first recorded action after this gracious provision of power to do Y’hovah’s commandment is to make ready to move and also to remind the Yisraelites of Gilead of their promise to fight for the rest of the tribes on the windward side of Yarden. Gilead Yisrael responds with 2 conditions to their keeping their promise: 1). That Y’hovah be with Yehoshua as he was with Moshe and 2). That Yehoshua be strong and of good courage. Not only had Y’hovah, as Avinu, Mashiyach and Ruach haKodesh admonished him to strength and courage, but so had his brethren from the leeward side of Yarden. Do you think Y’hovah was trying to tell him something? Cf.Dt.31.6, 7, 23. Q&C

Tehillim 148 – In the 14 verses of this psalm there are 14 overt references to HalleluYah’s. And there are 24 veiled references of as many created things and walks of life that bring praises to his Name. Don’t look now, but I think we are supposed to hallel the Name of Y’hovah.

Tehillim 149 – shows us that praises, joy, dancing, singing, playing musical instruments to him and thanksgiving are all the same when done unto Y’hovah. And our praises, etc. will help us to overcome the strength of the Adversary, if we go with the Word of Y’hovah (2 edged sword) in our hands and hearts. It is our honour to be the vessel of Y’hovah’s vengeance upon the heathen. There are 6 overt references to halleluYah’s in this Psalm, 6 more veiled references, as well as 5 ways that we will praise him by our actions in judgment in his Name.

Tehillim 150 – All the references to praise in this Psalm are overt – 13 in 6 verses. That’s a total of 33 overt hallels to Yah in 29 verses. That’s interesting – Yeshua has been said to be 33 years old in 29CE. Coincidence? 

Our Torah portion today is a source of Hallel to Y’hovah, as Moshe is ushered into eternity by Y’hovah after Moshe had used his last words to give a blessing of exhortation to Yehoshua. Our haftarah today is a source of hallels to Y’hovah as he gives Yehoshua 3 exhortative blessings and the trans-Yarden tribes add their own exhortative blessing, as well. Am I sensing a pattern here? In the last … I’d say about 20 minutes … Yehoshua was blessed 7 times by at least 3 separate entities with an exhortation to strength and courage. Is there anything we can do in Y’hovah that is not a hallel to him? When we are doing his will, we are praising his Name, even when the words HalleluYah and Praise Y’hovah are not on our tongues. The songs of assent are loaded with songs of praise to him, and those songs of praise should be on our tongues; on and in our hearts all the time. I think that was probably the result of all that exhortation and blessing to Yehoshua. And it can be to us as well, if we have his attitude of service to Y’hovah. Q&C

Matithyahu 4.5-11 – Have you noticed the similarities and differences between the Torah and the Brit portions today? The difference is in who is showing the kingdom and the land and the similarity is in what is expected of the one being shown. Y’hovah showed Moshe not just the physical land of the there and then, but the spiritual reality of the here and now of which that physical was but a shadow. HaSatan showed Yeshua from Pisgah (? V.8) what he ostensibly controlled and could legitimately offer – the mere physical. The offer paled in comparison to what Y’hovah Yeshua had shown Moshe. What haSatan seemingly failed to grasp is that it was this very man, Y’hovah in the flesh, who had made the offer to Moshe 1400 years before. He wanted from Yeshua what Yeshua had from Moshe, worship, service and obedience. Can you say, “FAT CHANCE?”

48). The temptation of Yeshua – Mat.4.1-11, Mark 1.12-13,  Lk.4.1-13 (read them all) – In Mark, Yeshua is driven by the Spirit into the wilderness, while in Matthew and Luke, he is led by the Spirit. The whole tone of Mark is different from the other gospels. He shows Yeshua as a tireless servant, often having no time to eat, working miracle after miracle to prove the divinity claimed by the author in 1.1. Relative to the other gospels, it seems as if the author is just getting the preliminaries out of the way so he can get to his main point. The audience is probably Roman or gentile believers, who would not know the OT prophecies and for whom they would be superfluous. Mark does not refer to anything close to the number of prophecies that Luke, Matthew, or Yochanan do. He is trying to show the suffering Son of Elohim. As usual, any minor differences in the fine points of the narratives are matters of perspective of the author or of their intended audiences.

Luke and Matthew both mention the 40-day fast, Mark only that Yeshua was in the wilderness 40 days. All the writers say that he was tempted of Satan for the entire time, Matthew even says the temptation was the reason for his going there. The details are very similar in Matt and Luke. The third last temptation has to do with Yeshua’s hunger for food, his need to feed his body. First Satan questions Yeshua’s divinity, ‘If thou be the Son of Elohim’, as if he could get him with the same ploy with which he’d gotten Eve. Then he worked on physical weakness, or rather, was depending on it and the lust of the flesh to defeat the Elohim who’d created him. But, as anyone who’s fasted any length of time can tell you, the body may be weak, but the spirit and mind are sharp as a knife at that time. Yeshua answered him with the Word of Elohim, Deut. 8:3, 

“And he humbled thee, and suffered thee to hunger, and fed thee with manna, which thou knewest not, neither did thy fathers know; that he might make thee know that man doth not live by bread only, but by every that proceedeth out of the mouth of Y’hovah doth man live.” 

The lesson for us is obvious. When confronted with sin we should rely on the scriptures to pull us out. Rom.6 says we are dead to sin and alive to Mashiyach. If we reckon ourselves dead to sin we will have an easy time defeating it in our lives. This battle is constant, because our evil inclination/sin nature is and will be still with us until the resurrection. But reckoning ourselves dead to sin must be done every time we are tempted to sin, and, I confess that I often forget this simple way to avoid sin. But Elohim has made provision for us in this as well. 1 Yochanan 2:1, 

“My little children, these things write I unto you, that ye sin not. And if any man sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Yeshua haMoshiach hatzadik:”

Q&C

The next 2 temptations are given in opposite order in the accounts of Matthew and Luke. The details of the temptations are nearly identical, but the order is switched. Why? Look to the purpose for writing and the intended audiences. 

Luke first goes to the mountaintop to show the kingdoms of the world, and he adds a detail that Matt leaves out. The gospel was written to a government official (perhaps the newly elevated Herodian High Priest?), ‘most excellent Theophilus’, and the appeal to power and glory would be more personal to him. Also Luke points out the fact that Satan is the prince of this world system in which Theo is a leader. Of course, being the Word of Elohim, Yeshua answers with … the word of Elohim – Deut. 10:20, 

“Thou shalt fear Y’hovah thine Elohim; him shalt thou serve, and to him shalt thou cleave, and swear by his name.” 

In order for us to be able to answer the temptations in our lives with the Word of Elohim, we must have it readily available. We can’t safely open a bible and search for a passage while driving on the road, or in any number of circumstances in which we may find ourselves. For this reason we must memorize scripture. It is not that difficult to do. We could try the 3X5 card with a passage written on it, kept in a pocket or on the visor of the car and work on that one until it is solid in memory. Then start another. In this way, it will not be difficult to memorize 1-2 passages a week. It is by the renewing of our minds that we are transformed into the image of Mashiyach. Yeshua said that we speak what we think about. What kinds of words escape your mouth on a regular basis? Philip. 4:8, 

“Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things honest, whatsoever things just, whatsoever things pure, whatsoever things lovely, whatsoever things of good report; if any virtue, and if any praise, think on these things.”

The only real source for true, honest, just, pure, lovely things of good report that are virtuous and praiseworthy is the scripture. When you memorize, meditate; Selah; think about what you’re memorizing. Ask Elohim to illuminate your mind so that you can see what he wants you to see in that passage. 

Matthew, on the other hand, goes directly to the pinnacle of the temple. He is writing to Jews to try to convince them that Yeshua is Mashiyach. Satan here quotes a well known Messianic prophecy from Psalm 91:11-12, 

“For he shall give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all thy ways. 12They shall bear thee up in hands, lest thou dash thy foot against a stone.” 

Satan says, “Well, I know the scripture every bit as well as you, better in fact! If you’re the Mashiyach, jump! Elohim has promised to protect you! Don’t you trust Him?” That was a Mark paraphrase, in case you didn’t know. Yeshua did not ‘fall’ for this one either (do you suppose that’s the source of that idiom?). He wanted Yeshua to misapply scripture, just like he wants, and often gets, us to do. But Yeshua knew the CONTEXT of the verse (Ps.91), and that Satan wrested it, as usual. The Psalm refers to how Elohim will protect us as we walk in him, but the main subject of the Psalm is Mashiyach. Noone else fulfills the description of the one who completely trusts in Elohim. Yeshua wasn’t fooled for a minute, because he knew the scripture. 

At times each of us realizes this kind of protection and guidance from Elohim. Though we are always under his wings, we do not always experience or feel the wonder of his providential protection. He has been protecting us all our lives, to bring us to this day and hour for his service. The better we understand this, the more humble we become. Elohim is my personal protection. No president, no king, no Mafia don has ever had security like we have in Mashiyach. The Secret Service doesn’t know security like Elohim does. He keeps us because we walk with him. And we walk with him because he keeps us.

Did you notice what haSatan left out of the quote? “To keep thee in all thy ways” is prominent by its absence. What more proof do you need that Satan may know the scriptures, but not believe them? If he believed them he never would have tried using this passage against Yeshua. For it says, “in all thy ways.” Since Yeshua is the fulfillment of this verse there’s no way he’ll apply it improperly, for ALL his ways are kept, that is guarded, by Elohim. And so are ALL our ways guarded by Y’hovah in Mashiyach Yeshua.

Satan’s next temptation in Matthew is designed to give the world over to the Mashiyach out of due time. He offers the kingdoms of the world that have been promised to Yeshua, he just offers them a bit early. It’s as if haSatan is saying, “They’re going to be yours soon, anyway. Why not take them now?” Remember Avram and Sarai? Elohim promised that they would have a son, from whom would come a great nation, but they were both old and ‘well stricken in years’. So Abe and Sarai decide to help Elohim out by way of Hagar. Now you don’t suppose haSatan had ANYthing to do with that, do you? Elohim is teaching the lesson of waiting on Y’hovah, and deferring gratification until his time. Yeshua is still waiting for the fulfillment of a bunch of prophecies – more, in fact, than were fulfilled during his life on earth. But he is waiting on the Father’s timing and not on his own, or in the case of this temptation, haSatan’s. You make the application to that your own life. Q&C

End of Bible Study

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Shabbat Bible Study for March 23, 2019

Shabbat Bible Study for March 23, 2019

©2019 Mark Pitrone and Fulfilling Torah Ministries

Year 3 Shabbat 50

Deut 33:1-29; no prophet; Tehellim 147; Matt 19:25-20:16

Links:  

www.youtube.com/watch?v=QzasQe6m0VA

www.yashanet.com/studies/revstudy/hillel.htm

www.yashanet.com/studies/revstudy/rev1a.htm

http://www.bible-history.com/geography/maps/map_canaan_tribal_portions.html

All links work

Devarim 33:1-29 – Many rabbis see this opening in v.1; v’zoth, ‘and this’; as linking this blessing to Ya’acov’s blessing in B’reishith 49.28 (where Moshe uses the same word to declare Ya’acov’s blessing on the tribes’ original zachanim, elders), so that the 12 tribes were blessed as they entered Egypt as a relatively large family to become a great nation and again as they got ready to enter the Promised Land and take their place among the nations of the earth. This DOES fit with the 2nd of the 7 interpretive ‘Rules of Hillel’, called G’zerah Shava, equivalence of expression. Where two unconnected texts use the same expression, those texts are linked by that expression. You can see an excellent video from Light in the Southwest where Benjamin Burton of Beit HaDerech in Odessa, Texas explains this principle of Hebraic interpretation in regards to the Virgin Birth of Yeshua at www.youtube.com/watch?v=QzasQe6m0VA. The virgin birth IS taught in Tanakh, by use of the Rules of Hillel. You can also read how the 7 Rules of Hillel are explained at www.yashanet.com/studies/revstudy/hillel.htm. 

The same rabbis see the references to Mounts Seir in Edom and Paran in the land of Ishmael in v.2 to mean that Y’hovah had offered Torah to Avraham’s and Yitzhak’s other sons, but they refused it, supposedly because they didn’t want the requirements Y’hovah expected of them to cramp their wicked styles. I’d say that that is at least an imaginative concept, and may even be true. It certainly fits what little evidence there is in the pashat. Schottenstein’s Chumash explains this on pg. 219 top left column, and more on v.2’s ‘fiery law’ on pg.220. 

Vv.3-5 continue and conclude Moshe’s introduction to his blessing on b’nei Yisrael. In v.3, he shifts the object of the sentence in mid-stream from Yisrael to Y’hovah. I think this shows that Yisrael and Y’hovah cannot be separated. Y’hovah’s right hand (Mashiyach) comes to Sinai to proclaim Torah to Yisrael accompanied by SOME of his myriads of malachim kodesh, holy angels. And then Yisrael is seen as sitting at his feet to learn Torah. If you accept that Moshe was the ‘right hand’ of Y’hovah at this time, it merely foreshadows the ministry of Yeshua as Mashiyach; as both ben Yosef and as ben David. Moshe appearing on Mount Hermon at Yeshua’s transfiguration and Avinu’s command to “Shema” Yeshua shows Moshe’s subordination to Yeshua in the same way that he’d submitted before him in the Wilderness. Yisrael sat at Moshe’s feet as Moshe sat at Yeshua’s feet, sitting at another’s feet signifying submission to authority.

In v.4, Moshe spoke the commandments of Y’hovah, as would Yeshua, with power, and that Torah is Yisrael’s heritage. Schottenstein’s Chumash shows a difference between ‘inheritance’ and ‘heritage’ on pg.220 right column AND has a note on who is included in k’hilah Ya’acov, the congregation of Ya’acov/Yisrael on pg.221. 

As the English reads in v.5, it looks like Moshe was ‘king of Yeshurun’, and in a way that may be true, since he was the intermediary between Y’hovah and Yisrael. But the King of Yisrael was, is and always will be Y’hovah in the person of Yeshua haMashiyach. The whole introduction shows Moshe as a shadow of Y’hovah’s Mashiyach, perhaps the fullest shadow seen in Tanakh. Not that the full shadow is seen in these 4 verses, but in the entirety of his ministry, except for his failure at Meribah. Again, Schottenstein’s Chumash has a good comment to v.5 on pg.221. Q&C

Vv.6-19 – There is a pretty good map of the tribal inheritances as they divided the land at the website http://www.bible-history.com/geography/maps/map_canaan_tribal_portions.html.  

The first blessing goes to Reuven, who had lost his birthright to Ephraim as a result of lying with Ya’acov’s wife/concubine Bilhah, the mother of 2 of his brothers; a major Torah transgression (Lev.18.8, 20.11, Deut.22.30, 27.20). However, even though Reuven had lost his birthright, he WAS the first of the tribes to receive his inheritance in Sihon’s land, north of Moav and south of Gad’s inheritance, from the River Arnon to wadi Nitzaryath. Because of his loss of birthright, Moshe prays first and specifically that Reuven not be lost to Israel, but that his numbers would always be counted with them; and not surprisingly, he is listed in every list in scripture of the tribes of Yisrael. You can see a comparative chart at www.yashanet.com/studies/revstudy/rev1a.htm. You’ll notice that only 6 of the tribes of Yisrael are in every list; Reuven, Yissachar, Zevulon, BenYamin, Naphtali and Asher. 

Shimon is skipped over in this list, presumably because his cities are all within, and his tribal inheritance was surrounded by (and essentially annexed into) Yehudah and because Shimon had a presence in every tribal inheritance. Again Schottenstein’s Chumash has a salient comment on Shimon’s omission on pg.222. From here there seems to be no rhyme or reason in the order in which the tribes are listed, at least in the pashat. So far, it is by birth order, but beginning w/Yehudah, the order is askew. But there MAY be a reason why, which we will explore. 

Yehudah is the 2nd tribe to be blessed in v.7, though he was 4th born. But it is possible that since Yehudah was the only tribe to actually wipe out or drive out all the Canaanites from his inheritance, and then would help all his brothers to subdue their portions, AND that a Yehudi would rule the eventual Kingdom, he was afforded this place in the blessings. Moshe prays specifically that Yehudah’s prayers be heard, the work of his hands blessed and that Y’hovah be ever present with him. This prayer HAS been answered with specificity for Yehudah to this day. Since the political ‘rebirth’ of Israel in 1948, Y’hovah has fought for Yehudah every time her back was up against it and she called out to him. 

The next tribe to be blessed is Levi in v.8-11. Levi was ALWAYS faithful to Y’hovah and his Word in the Wilderness Adventure; from Massah to Meribah to Zimri’s attempt to defile the Mishkan [Zimri was a Shimoni, BTW]. In Ya’acov’s prophetic blessing in Gen.49.7, both Shimon and Levi were told they would be dispersed among the tribes of Yisrael. Levi was dispersed among the Levitical cities, including the 6 cities of Refuge in order that they might teach Torah and execute righteous judgment to chol Yisrael. 

The 4th tribe to be blessed is the youngest of the brothers, BenYamin in v.12. BenYamin’s southern extremity was the Temple mount in the northern portion of Yerushalayim, which I assume was the reason that BenYamin was the other tribe that stayed with Yehudah in the divided Kingdoms of Yehudah and Israel [Shimon had been dispersed among the other tribes of Israel by then, in fulfillment of Ya’acov’s prophecy]. 

The 5th tribal blessing went to Yosef in v.13-17. Yosef is listed next, again way out of the birth order. Schottenstein’s Chumash makes the case that the reason Rachel’s sons are listed here is that BenYamin’s portion of Yerushalayim was one of Y’hovah’s shoulders mentioned in v.12 and that Shiloh, where the tabernacle dwelt for 200+ years before the Kingdom was established and which lay in Ephraim’s inheritance, was Y’hovah’s other shoulder. This is very plausible. The way I see vv.13-17, this entire blessing and prophecy has to do with Yeshua haMashiyach ben Yoseph. Yoseph was the patriarch most like Mashiyach. Look at the descriptions; the dew and the deep waters speak of the water of the Word, the bounty of the produce of her land bring to mind Yeshua’s agricultural parables, the thorn bush speaks of the burning bush Moshe saw on Sinai 40-something years before [which may have been of the same type of thorns Mashiyach would wear as a crown one day], the ox [or rheim] could be the offering for the priest and the sanctuary on Yom Kippur, the horns of the ox could be Ephraim and Menashe or Ephraim and Yehudah, or more specifically another allusion to Y’hovah’s shoulders of Shiloh and the Temple mount [these are the 2 places in the land where Y’hovah physically placed his Name]. There MAY be more.

The 6th blessing in vv.18-19 was to Zevulon and Yissachar, together. These 2 tribes had a special relationship; one is seldom seen without the other. Zevulon had a knack for business, being traders and fishermen, while Yissachar had a deep understanding of Torah 

And of the children of Yissachar, that had understanding of the times, to know what Yisrael ought to do; the heads of them two hundred; and all their brethren at their commandment. 19 Of Zevulun, such as went forth to battle, expert in war, with all instruments of war, fifty thousand, which could keep rank: not of double heart. (I Chronicles 12:18-19),

so the rabbis see Zevulon as synergistically partnering in Yissachar’s Torah studies by supporting him with his own substance, each tribe concentrating on exercising the gifts Y’hovah had blessed them with. This may be where the church gets the idea that the pastor and the church get the tithe when nothing can be further from the truth; tithes being what they were, a 10th portion of the increase [profit] of the land’s produce. The tithe actually applies only in an agrarian setting. I suppose the application can be forced into an urban setting, but it must be forced. It was incumbent on all Yisraelites to make offerings, as they were required (sin) or as they would (free will), but the tithe was not essentially a monetary thing. Nazareth is in the tribal lands of Zevulon. Q&C

The 7th blessing, in vv.20-21, went to Gad, whose inheritance was on the east side of Yarden, opposite West Menashe’s and south of East Menashe’s. It extended to the east so far into the distance that Gad’s territory was larger than ANY on the west side of Yarden. The entire blessing reads to me as a blessing of Y’hovah, who is the one who enlarges Gad. So I see this as a reference to Mashiyach, as well. It says that ‘the lawgiver’s plot’ (Stone’s Tanakh), the burial plot is what I infer in the pashat, was in Gad, but Moshe died on Nebo in Reuven’s inheritance. And the last part of Gad’s blessing is that the lawgiver came at the head of the nation and judged by Y’hovah’s justice and ordinances. That applied to Moshe, but he was not buried in Gad, but in Reuven, if he was buried on Nebo or in the valley adjacent to Beth Peor, which is the pashat sense of what is written in 34.6. Therefore, I infer that Moshe is not the ‘lawgiver’ seen in Gad’s blessing. It must refer, at least metaphorically, to Mashiyach. Of course, Yeshua was ALSO not buried in Gad’s portion, but in BenYamin’s in the northern portion of Jerusalem, which did not become a part of Yisrael until its capture by David (1Chron.11.4-5). What to make of all this, I am unsure of at this time, but at least I am sure of what it is not; the burial plot of either ‘law-giver’ that is known to us. Perhaps there is an obscure passage that has a ‘g’zerah shava’ link to this. 

Dan received the 8th blessing in v.22. Dan’s descendants can be seen all over the world, the Danish and other Scandinavians, the Danube River and other appearances of his name in the West shows that he was a world traveler. He may have been among the folks that sailed to the west in search of stuff for Shlomo to study and for David to stockpile materials for the Mikdash that Shlomo would build. Dan had 2 places where he settled, in the southern portion of Israel along the Mediterranean coast on Yehudah’s northern border and also in the north, near Mount Hermon, where the ‘lion’s whelp’ ‘leaped forth from Bashan’, meaning the Yarden (which literally means ‘flows from Dan’) flows through North Dan on its way to feed the Sea of Galilee. 

The 9th blessing was for Naphtali in v.23. Naphtali was very fertile and with the Sea of Galilee as its southeastern border had plenty of water, so this prophecy of Naphtali’s  inheritance is pretty remarkable. This is the area that Yeshua made the home base of his ministry.

Asher received the 10th blessing in v.24. Chumash says that when Leah bore Asher, she said she was the most fortunate of women. Here Moshe expanded Leah’s blessing so that the entire nation of Yisrael would bless Asher. To dip his feet in oil was a metaphor for great abundance.

Vv.25-26 are Moshe’s epilogue to the blessing of the individual tribes, but further pronouncement of general blessings on Yisrael proper. By removing the added words and period at the end of v.25, we read

25 Thy shoes iron and brass; and as thy days, thy strength 26 none like unto the Elohim of Yeshurun rideth upon the heaven in thy help, and in his excellency on the sky. 

I take v.25 to mean that Yisrael would overcome her enemies as if she was walking right over them and that she would be unstoppable as long as she remained faithful.

Vv.27-29 are Moshe’s last words to Yisrael. The last words of v.26 speak of Y’hovah riding in majesty in ‘the upper heights’ (Stone’s Tanakh). Those ‘upper heights’ are the eternal abode of Y’hovah, our refuge under his ‘everlasting arms’ (KJV). Y’hovah shall cast or wipe the Canaanites out before us. Had we actually done as he commanded, and when we actually do as he commands, we will dwell safely in our land as he intended/intends. This will not see fruition, I am afraid, until Mashiyach ben David appears to handle our enemies as he intended for us to do. Metaphorically and personally, this applies to our complete destruction of sin in our lives. Unfortunately, it will not be we who accomplish this in our lives, but Mashiyach, because we are so inclined towards our ‘baser’ nature, our flesh, as Rav Shaul shows in Rom.7

12 Wherefore the law is holy, and the commandment holy, and just, and good. 13 Was then that which is good made death unto me? Elohai forbid. But sin, that it might appear sin, working death in me by that which is good; that sin by the commandment might become exceeding sinful. 14 For we know that the law is spiritual: but I am carnal, sold under sin. 15 For that which I do I allow not: for what I would, that do I not; but what I hate, that do I. 16 If then I do that which I would not, I consent unto the law that good. 17 Now then it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me. 18 For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh,) dwelleth no good thing: for to will is present with me; but to perform that which is good I find not. 19 For the good that I would I do not: but the evil which I would not, that I do. 20 Now if I do that I would not, it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me. 21 I find then a law, that, when I would do good, evil is present with me. 22 For I delight in the law of Elohim after the inward man: 23 But I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members. 24 O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death? 25 I thank Eloha through Mashiyach Yeshua our Master. So then with the mind I myself serve the law of Elohai; but with the flesh the law of sin. (Rom.7.12-25)

Fortunately, on the other hand, Sha’ul doesn’t end there, with us in a strait betwixt 2

1 Therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Mashiyach Yeshua, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. 2 For the law of the Spirit of life in Mashiyach Yeshua hath made me free from the law of sin and death. 3 For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, Elohai sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh: 4 That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. 5 For they that are after the flesh do mind the things of the flesh; but they that are after the Spirit the things of the Spirit. 6 For to be carnally minded death; but to be spiritually minded life and peace. (Rom.8.1-6)

So Moshe is correct when he says 

29 Fortunate thou, O Israel: who like unto thee, O people saved by Y’hovah, the shield of thy help, and who the sword of thy excellency! and thine enemies shall be found liars unto thee; and thou shalt tread upon their high places.

Q&C

No Prophet

Tehellim 147 – HalleluYah! There are 3 different terms used in v.1 that are translated as ‘praise’; the roots in order of appearance in KJV are H1984, halal, to radiate; H2167, zamar, to sing a wordless song; and H8416, t’hillah, a laudatory hymn. The reason we are to sing in a clear voice a laudatory hymn while playing a stringed instrument is because in v.2 Y’hovah is building up Yerushalayim and gathering the outcasts of Yisrael; he is recalling the 2 houses back to himself. He is taking Yisrael out of our exile and bringing us together with Yehudah to teach Torah to the nations. Both houses need healing. 

Y’hovah has the stars numbered and named and like a grandmother with her 10 kids and 30 grandchildren, remembers them all (grandfathers, not so much; I know a Mennonite man who has 3 and a ½ dozen children – 3 daughters and a ½ dozen sons. He doesn’t remember all his grandchildren’s names all the time, but his wife knows them cold). If Y’hovah knows the number and the names of each star in the universe, do you think he may have a plan for each one? Gadol Adonenu who is of infinite knowledge. But just because he is so great does not mean that he doesn’t care about what happens in our daily lives. He watches us and rewards our attitude of quiet strength while humbling the wicked. 

V.7 pretty much restates v.1, sing to Y’hovah while playing a stringed instrument, because he provides the needs of even the least creatures of his creation. Y’hovah doesn’t look on the physical strength of man nor beast, as they are sources of pride in most men, but he loves when people love and trust in him and wait on his mercy and grace. 

While I think it is applicable throughout history, I think vv.12-20 are alluding primarily to the Millennial Kingdom. Strengthening the bars of J’lem/Zion is the link (g’zerah shava?) to our portion today, as we saw the feet shod in iron and brass, which is the same idea as we see here. Of course this is figurative language, since Y’hovah in our midst is MORE than enough protection. He makes Shalom within our borders, which again links us to v.28 of our Torah portion, where we are dwelling safely and ‘alone’ (Stone’s Tanakh translation), with no worries about outside enemies. Again, this applies to the Messianic Kingdom and possibly New J’lem, since v.15 speaks of his Word going forth very promptly. In the Kingdom age, the Word of Yeshua will be sent out to his vice-regents at the speed of thought and be propagated immediately by them to their populations. 

Have you ever seen pictures of what happens when there is snow in Israel? They had some a while ago, and whole neighborhoods turned out to play in the snow. Snow can be a delight to people who only see it on rare occasions. That seems to be the tenor of vv.16-17. Then he sends out his Word to warm our hearts and chase away the ill effects of the cold, while using the water of the melted snow to nourish his people and land. 

Everything Y’hovah sends our way, whether it is cold or warm, light or dark, bitter or sweet to the taste, it is all for the good of Yisrael. What other nation has an Elohim like Y’hovah?

HalleluYah! Q&C

Matthew 19:25-20:16 – 175). Rich Young Ruler (Mat.19.16-30, Mk.10.17-31, Lk.18.18-30) – The young man asks in Mat. “what good work should I do to have eternal life (ti agathon poiayson ina exo zoein aionion)?” In Mark and Luke he says “what shall I do to inherit (ti poiayso ina zoein aionion klayronomayso)”. With me reading that, you probably didn’t see the differences. In Mat. he says ‘what good work to have’, while in Mk and Lk. he says ‘what work to inherit’. I think the rich guy wanted to inherit even more worldly goods than he already had, an assurance that he’d never lose the luxury he enjoyed on earth, even in his death. I think he figured that Y’hovah rewarded good works, works of charity that would get him noticed by the people as a ‘real nice guy’, with eternal enjoyment of the pleasures of this life, ala Muslim homicide bombers and the 72 virgins. In the realm of human morality that would be just. But the justice of Y’hovah is perfect justice and righteousness. He doesn’t see as we see, doesn’t think as we think. What we see as outwardly, morally good is often, in Yah’s eyes ultimately and inwardly wicked due to that expectation of reward. Attitude, baby! Attitude!

So Yeshua answers him. First, he tests the rich guy’s vocabulary, not to see if he’s well read, but to see if he means what our Father means by technical terms. “Why callest thou me good? There is none good but Eloha” He was asking “Are you acknowledging my deity?” The rich guy didn’t catch the Master’s drift. 

When Yeshua says “Keep the commandments,” this guy says ‘which should I do?’ The real answer to the question would be, “What do you mean, WHICH? ALL OF THEM!” When Yeshua enumerates them, he purposely leaves one out – “Thou shalt not covet”. He knew the guy’s heart. The rich young ruler was trying to buy his way into eternal life. Yeshua gave him the opportunity to do so, because when the young man said, ‘I have done all these commandments since I was a little kid’, Yeshua knew that he truly had done all these things all his life, against all odds. He was truly after the heart of Y’hovah in all societal areas but one. When Yeshua listed the commandments he’d been able to keep, he was thrilled! But that one societal area broke the five remaining commandments relating to our relationship with Abba. I’d be willing to wager that this youngster did business on the Sabbath to satisfy his covetousness, his lust for more wealth. His covetousness made riches his god, which abrogated the first 3 commandments, I.e.; 1) he had another god, riches, before Y’hovah, not necessarily preeminent to Y’hovah, but just in his face, 2) he had an idol, riches, that he bowed down to, and 3) he was therefore identifying himself with Y’hovah in his words, but not in his life. 

Having said that I must stop and ask, “What about you and me?” Do we have anything that could get between us and our Father? Money? Family? Possessions? Emotions? If it affects the way we see the word of Y’hovah, makes us do scriptural gymnastics to get the scripture to say what we want it to say, it is an idol to us. 

The point was driven home to the rich guy when Yeshua told him to sell all that he had and give it to the poor. The guy went from great elation to deep depression in about 1/2 second. He wasn’t so worried about how long it would take to comply, but that he’d have to comply at all. He was very attached to his wealth, and had no desire to rid himself of it. He wanted eternal life, but not at that cost. In Lk.17.32-33 we are told to remember the destruction of Sodom, and Lot’s wife looking back to her life there? She did not want to give up her comfortable life, and as a result she lost her life eternally, becoming a pillar of salt. The same principle applies here. The rich guy didn’t want to give up his temporal life and it could have cost him his eternal life. Q&C

Yeshua then turned to his disciples to illustrate the point of the encounter. The rich will find it hard to enter into the Kingdom of heaven/Kingdom of Eloha. Their riches on earth afford them no special treatment in the Kingdom, as they did on earth, because Y’hovah already owns everything. He can’t be bribed. Rich men are used to having everything their way because people defer to them in an attempt to get a bit of their money or influence. How do you bribe the Elohim that already owns the cattle and the hills and the gold you may find in them? It is Mark 10.24 that really makes the point here. Mark 10:24, 

‘And the disciples were astonished at his words. But Yeshua answereth again, and saith unto them, “Children, how hard is it for them that trust in riches to enter into the kingdom of Eloha!”’ 

He told them that the rich tend to trust their riches, and not their Y’hovah Elohim. Yeshua illustrates with the camel and the eye of the needle.

That ‘eye of a needle’ thing we’ve all heard so much about, how it’s the name of a gate into Jerusalem and it was short and camels had a hard time getting in through it, is a bunch of hogwash. First of all, while that was the case in most cities in the middle east, there was no such practice in Jerusalem because camels are unclean animals and not allowed into the city. But what could this text mean, if that’s not it? No scripture supports the idea, so let’s see if there’s an alternative. 

The word for “camel” in the Aramaic manuscripts (the Peshitta, a part of the Majority text) is GAMLA which can mean “camel” but can also refer to a “large rope,” which is very possibly the meaning here, especially in light of the uncleanness of the camel (grk. kamelos, Heb. gamal). The Aramaic-English New Testament has this at Mk.10.25

It is easier for a rope to enter through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter into the Kingdom of Elohim.

Have you ever tried to pass any size rope, much less a large one, through the eye of a needle? It is every bit as possible as someone who trusts in his riches to enter into the Kingdom of heaven/Elohim. And we didn’t have to do scriptural gymnastics to make the point, like the traditionalists do.

The fact that the disciples asked in amazement, ‘Then who CAN be saved?’ gives the idea that they were expecting rich guys could buy their way into heaven (that’s always been the conventional wisdom, anyway). But perhaps they were thinking, ‘If it is easier to string a needle with a large rope than to enter heaven, who can be saved?’ Yeshua said it best, “With men this is impossible, but with Eloha all things are possible.” In other words, men cannot get to heaven on their own right, or by their own merit, or with their own riches, but Y’hovah can do it for them. You see, a man can get a camel through the ‘eye of a needle’ gate by gymnastics, gyrations and a little patient work, but he ain’t pulling a large rope through an actual needle, NO WAY! I sit back and imagine a mooring line holding a battleship to a pier, and half way down the line between the ship and the pier the line is constricted through a #2 needle’s eye, and there hangs the needle for all to see. If my Father can do that, it will be relatively easy for him to figure a way to gain my entrance into his Kingdom. I just need to trust to Him and not my own worth or riches.

Peter then raised the point that the disciples had forsaken their families and businesses to follow Yeshua, who said, ‘Because you’ve forsaken your life to follow me, you will sit on thrones in the Kingdom.” This is pictured in Rev.4-5 by the 24 elders, who I think are the 12 patriarchs of Yisrael and the 12 apostles. Of course, this is not certain, but it makes sense in the 2 houses scenario (Yehudah, the patriarchs and Yisraelite Jews, and Ephraim, the apostles and the Hebrew and gentile ‘diaspora’ = the whole house of Jacob), Ezek.37.15ff, 1 Cor.11, Eph.2).

Before they got too elated though, Yeshua gave them a caveat. Not only would those who forsook all to follow him receive manifold blessings, but in Mk.10.30, they would get all that stuff with persecutions. The prosperity preachers will have none of that! “What do you mean I have to suffer persecution for the Kingdom’s sake?” Sorry, Rod and Ernest, but that is the clear teaching of scripture and you’d better get used to it. You’ll notice also that what they receive is not gold and disposable wealth, but relationships with more siblings and parents than they’ve ever imagined, as well as dwellings and places to resort to IN and THROUGH the persecutions. 

And by the way, when Yeshua says “now in this time” he is referring to the kairos (greek for set time – equivalent to the Hebrew word moad – set time or appointment – see Lev.23), the ‘set time’ that they were going up to Jerusalem to celebrate – Yeshua’s last pre-millennial Pesach on earth. And don’t you know, that is exactly what happened? During and after that particular ‘set time’ the disciples found out who their friends and enemies really were. They found out who would be their brethren and mothers, and who would open their homes and their lands to them to escape the persecution of the Iuaidoi Pharisees and Sadducees and Herodians and Romans. 

The time – I dare say the ‘set time’, the Moad or kairos – is coming when this will be our lot as well. Who will you be able to trust when the persecution comes? As things stand, I will not be able to trust my own brothers. They are unbelievers. I pray that changes, but for now, I will have to trust only true believers. We certainly can’t trust this ever more hateful and burdensome government, no matter how the leaders profess their ‘Xianity’. Constantine said he was a ‘Xian’, too. We are the remnant, and that means we are in the scant minority. Not everyone who says “Lord, Lord” or who does miracles can be trusted. In fact, it is safer to say that if they are performing miracles at this time in history, they are probably NOT to be trusted. Sorry, Benny and Kenneth, but that’s how it is. Q&C

176). Parable of the laborers in the vineyard (Mt.20.1-16) – This is a Kingdom of Heaven parable. Remember the difference between the Kingdom of Heaven and the Kingdom of Eloha? The KOH deals with the nation of Yisrael (I believe it refers to spiritual Yisrael) exclusively and the KOG deals with the overarching rulership of Y’hovah in all creation. They are often used interchangeably, but the KOH is also often exclusive.

In the two houses of Jacob scenario, the KOH includes all true believers, both in Tanakh (OT) and in Brit Chadasha (NT). The householder is Y’hovah, who is looking for laborers for his harvest. He hires (redeems) men all through the day (history from Adam to the eternal ages and the new heaven and earth), 5 different times. This can be seen in the dispensational view as the 5 dispensations in which salvation is available. The 2 dispensations in which there is no salvation is in the Innocence and the Perfect dispensations because all men are in full fellowship with Y’hovah in them. But between the fall of Adam and the Ages of Eternity, there are 5 dispensations in which man needs a Saviour, and the grace of Y’hovah to live a life of righteousness. 

These dispensations have nothing to do with how men are saved, but more with how much revelation is given by our Abba. Men have always been saved in the same way as they are now, by trusting Y’hovah to deliver on his promises. This trust, our faith, is a gift from Y’hovah, not something of ourselves. Look up Eph.2.8-10 and Phil.2.12-16. Hold your places there as we read and ask the questions that follow. 

Ephes. 2:8-10, “For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: the gift of Eloha: 9Not of works, lest any man should boast. 10For we are His workmanship, created in Mashiyach Yeshua unto good works, which Eloha hath before ordained that we should walk in them.” 

Philip. 2:12-16, “Wherefore, my beloved, as ye have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling. 13For it is Eloha which worketh in you both to will and to do of good pleasure. 14Do all things without murmurings and disputings: 15That ye may be blameless and harmless, the sons of Eloha, without rebuke, in the midst of a crooked and perverse nation, among whom ye shine as lights in the world; 16Holding forth the word of life; that I may rejoice in the day of Mashiyach, that I have not run in vain, neither laboured in vain.”   

These are familiar passages, but how often do we just breeze through them thinking we know what Y’hovah would have us know about them? 

Just what do you suppose they had obeyed? That was not a rhetorical question. I’d like someone to answer that. What had the Philippians obeyed [v.12]? Torah is the correct answer. Obedience to Torah is the way to work out your salvation with fear and trembling. I like to paraphrase it, ‘You say you belong to Y’hovah, now act like it!’ And how do you suppose they were able to be obedient? By the grace of our Father, which grace is power from the Spirit of Truth to live according to the Way of righteousness. Wisdom, which is the application of scripture knowledge, speaks in 

Proverbs 12:28, “In the way of righteousness life; and in the pathway no death.” 

2 Peter 2:21, “For it had been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than, after they have known, to turn from the holy commandment delivered unto them.” 

The way of righteousness is what Paul is speaking of in Philippians and Ephesians, the ‘good works’ and the ‘working out’ of our salvation, have to do with following Torah in the power of Abba through the indwelling Ruach haKodesh in the name of Yeshua. 

What has all that to do with our passage? I don’t know. It was a rabbit trail I got on and couldn’t leave. Actually, the fact is that the Kingdom of Heaven is shown in our lives by our obedience to the Father, when done in Yeshua’s name and the Spirit’s power. Our buddies in the vineyard were all hired for the same job, to harvest the crop, and were all paid the same wage, no matter the length of time they labored. The guys who complained the most were the ones who worked the longest and hardest. How hard do you work in the fields of Y’hovah? Is it you that’s working, or is it the Spirit of Abba working in you? The penny that each received represents our eternal life, I think. Are you working in your own strength, like the original hires (representing the Iuaidoi – the leaders of the Hebrew religion), or are you working in the strength provided by your Abba? 

Those who worked all day in their own strength were told to take what they’d earned and to go their OWN way. I may have thought wro…, wr-r…, incorrectly above when I likened the penny to eternal life or salvation. That doesn’t really fit the parable does it? The penny must just be the rewards earned in this life, or the general grace given by the Father to all men, like the rain and the sunshine. Matthew Henry’s Commentary has a comment worthy of note: 

“The riches of Divine grace are loudly murmured at, among proud Pharisees and nominal Xians. There is great proneness in us to think that we have too little, and others too much of the tokens of Eloha’s favour; and that we do too much, and others too little in the work of Eloha. But if Eloha gives grace to others, it is kindness to them, and no injustice to us. Carnal worldlings agree with Eloha for their penny in this world; and choose their portion in this life. Obedient believers agree with Eloha for their penny in the other world, and must remember they have so agreed.” 

In other words, you can have your reward where and whenever you want it, here and now, or in eternity. So if I have bargained for eternal life, I need to be content therein and not expect worldly wealth. But if I bargain for what this life has to offer, then I must not be disappointed if that’s all I get. It is, after all, what I bargained for. 

Notice if you will, by way of cementing the point, that the first word in our passage is, “For”. This tells us that this is an illustration of the point just made – the rich young ruler, who thought to earn his way into eternal life, as the all day laborers did. ALL the laborers were working for their wages. Entrance to the kingdom is not by works of Torah, for they are proof of our already having entered. Entrance is by faith alone in Y’hovah Elohenu Y’hovah echad (De.6.4). Abba gives his own and only begotten Son, Yeshua, by the power of his Ruach haKodesh so my sin debt can be not just covered but CANCELED, and then gives me the faith of Yeshua so I can trust him. Q&C 

End of Shabbat Bible Study

Shabbat Bible Study for March 16, 2019

Shabbat Bible Study for March 16, 2019

©2019 Mark Pitrone and Fulfilling Torah Ministries

Year 3 Sabbath 49

Deuteronomy 32:1-52 – Ezekiel 17:22-24 – Psalm 146 – John 17:1-26

Links: 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IyUTqr2XbeQ

http://tzion.org/Tree_Sefiroth.htm 

Devarim 32:1-52 (introduction) – This week’s Torah Parsha is ‘The Song of Moshe’ that we hear about in Paul Wilbur’s music and in

And they sing the song of Moses the servant of Elohim, and the song of the Lamb, saying, Great, great and marvellous are thy works, Adonai El Shaddai; just and true are thy ways, thou King of saints. 4 Who shall not fear thee, Y’hovah, and glorify thy name? for only holy: for all nations shall come and worship before thee; for thy judgments are made manifest. (Rev.15:3-4)

(Play the tune, Rip.) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IyUTqr2XbeQ . Those saints who are singing the song of Moshe are witnessing to the wickedness of the then present world system. By now, the entire world is likely of the physical seed of Avraham and quite possibly, due to world exploration and commerce as well as the various diasporas of Israel and Judah, of the seed of Yacov. As such, the whole world is subject to this judgment and the condemnation that it will bring. This is NOT capricious, but righteous judgment, since it is due to the idolatry of their intellectual Abbas and the general revelation given to all men of the existence of Elohim in the consistency of the physical creation, which proves his existence for anyone who is willing to look and consider. This righteousness will be shown without any kind of admixture in the end of days. 

18 For the wrath of Elohim is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness; 19 Because that which may be known of Elohim is manifest in them; for Elohim hath shewed unto them. 20 For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse: 21 Because that, when they knew Elohim, they glorified not as Elohim, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened. 22 Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools, 23 And changed the glory of the uncorruptible Elohim into an image made like to corruptible man, and to birds, and fourfooted beasts, and creeping things. (Romans 1.18-23)

V.1-4 – In v.1 Moshe calls the heaven and the earth to bear witness to his admonition to Yisrael. Moshe knew that the Israel going into the land would not turn from Y’hovah en masse, nor even the generation that would follow, but that at least 1 future generation would, so he did not call anything else to witness than the things that would remain in that day to testify to Israel’s receipt of this message; Creation itself. 

V.2 – How exactly would Moshe’s teachings drop as the rain and distill as the dew? 

That ye may be the children of your Abba which is in heaven: for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust. (Matthew 5:45)

Precipitation is ubiquitous. Rain falls in the rainforests and the dew settles in the desert, there is no place on the earth that is not watered in some way. In that same way, Moshe’s words are ubiquitous; there is no place on earth where they are not heard, even if it is only through the general revelation of Y’hovah to all men. Everyone KNOWS that there is a Creator; even those who say it ain’t so; perhaps ESPECIALLY those who say it ain’t so. The saying is, ‘there are no atheists in foxholes’, and that is true. Even the most ungodly call out to him for his help when the chips are down and there is no other way out. Sforno tells us in Schottenstein’s Chumash, on page 204, the difference between the rain and the dew to B’nei Yisrael. This is the reason for the reading of the entire Torah during the Feast of Tabernacles in the year of release; that those who had received Torah as the dew during the 6 previous years might receive it as the rain in the 7th year, as they hear it and then talk of what they heard for the rest of the day. 

V.3 – Because the Torah is ubiquitous, when Moshe witnesses to the Name of Y’hovah in the rain and dew of Torah, we need to proclaim his greatness. When we do a Sabbath Service, we recite portions of the Amidah (the standing prayer) and Aleinu prayers. Here are a couple of excerpts, 1st from the Amidah:

Unto all generations will we proclaim Your greatness, and unto all eternity will we proclaim your holiness. Great and mighty is Y’hovah our Elohim, who in love gave us Messiah to atone for our sins.

And next from the Aleinu

It is necessary for us to praise the Master of all; to exalt the Creator of the world; for He has made us distinct from the nations and unique among the families of the earth. Our destiny is not like theirs. Our calling is our task.

We bow down* (<<this is said while bowing>>) and acknowledge before the King of Kings that there is none like Him. For he stretched forth the heavens like a tent and established the earth (YeshaYahu 51:13). Truly there is none like our Y’hovah and King.

As the Torah says, “You shall know this day and reflect in your heart that it is Y’hovah who is Elohim in the heavens above and on the earth beneath, there is none else. (Devarim 4.39)”

All the world’s inhabitants will recognize and know that to You every knee should bend, every tongue should swear (YeshaYahu 45:23). Before You Y’hovah our Elohim they will bend every knee and cast themselves down and to the glory of Your Name they will render homage and they will all accept upon themselves the yoke of Your kingship that You may reign over them soon and eternally.

For then shall the words be fulfilled, “Y’hovah shall be king forever” (Shemot 15:18) and “Y’hovah shall be king over all the earth; on that day shall there be one Y’hovah and His Name one.” (ZecharYahu 14:9)

When we get together to study his Torah, we need to proclaim his greatness. I think we do that every week here at FT. 

V.4 is actually the end of the sentence from v.3. I think the KJV proofreaders sometimes applied punctuation while riding on the back of a mule with a short leg on the right front and another on the left rear. The period ending v.3 doesn’t belong there, nor do the opening words of v.4. It should read

2 My doctrine shall drop as the rain, my speech shall distill as the dew, as the small rain upon the tender herb, and as the showers upon the grass: 3 Because I will publish the name of Y’hovah: ascribe ye greatness unto our Elohim, 4 the Rock, his work is perfect: for all his ways are judgment: an Elohim of truth and without iniquity, just and right is he.

And just WHO is the Rock?

1 Moreover, brethren, I would not that ye should be ignorant, how that all our Fathers were under the cloud, and all passed through the sea; 2 And were all baptized unto Moses in the cloud and in the sea; 3 And did all eat the same spiritual meat; 4 And did all drink the same spiritual drink: for they drank of that spiritual Rock that followed them: and that Rock was Messiah. (1Cor.10.1-4)

That Rock = Y’hovah Elohenu and that Rock = Mashiyach, so as if a=b and a=c, then b=c and Y’hovah Elohenu is Mashiyach. And so, Mashiyach’s work is perfect (see note on v.4 in Chumash, pg.204), all his ways are judgment, his truth is without iniquity and he is both just and right in his judgment, which is to follow in vv.5-52. Q&C

Vv.5-9 – After Moshe acknowledged the rightness and perfection of Mashiyach’s judgments, he began to show how Israel would descend into idolatry and wickedness, going their own ways and forsaking Y’hovah’s Way. He tells us that the corruption and wickedness in the world does not originate in Y’hovah, but in the hearts of men. Ohr haChaim says that when we act corruptly, it is our iniquity and we proclaim that we are not his children; but when we Fulfill Torah, he lovingly accepts us as his children – sort of like human parents will say, “Did you see what little Shlomo just did?” and the answer comes back, “Yep! That’s my boy!” 

In this case, Moshe admonishes Israel about their iniquity and to guard against it. He says [Mp], “Is this how you thank Y’hovah for all he’s done for you? Did he not redeem you from bondage? Did he not make you into a great nation and establish you as a people through the Egyptian exile and the Wilderness Adventure? Did he not deliver to you and your fathers the promise he made to Avraham? Recall your family and national history. He divided the earth to the nations of the earth according to the number of YOU as you went into Egypt. He honored Ya’acov’s 70 descendants before they were born by dividing the earth up into 70 primary nations, so that YOU could represent THEM to Him. He chose YOU as his personal inheritance, and this idolatry and iniquity is how you thank him!?” And the guilt trip had only begun! When Moshe told them to remember the days of old (v.7), he meant that their errors will repeat themselves if they keep on doing what they have always done – kind of like Einstein’s definition of insanity, “Doing as you have always done, but expecting a different result”; and Paul’s words in 1Cor.10.11

11 Now all these things happened unto them [Yisrael in the Wilderness Adventure] for ensamples: and they are written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the world are come; 

and as Shlomo said in Ecc.1.9

The thing that hath been, it is that which shall be; and that which is done is that which shall be done: and there is no new thing under the sun (Ecclesiastes 1:9);

and in 3.15

15 That which hath been is now; and that which is to be hath already been; and Elohim requireth that which is past.

We need to LEARN from our past mistakes, or they will just come up again. To get out of your rut, change your routine. To escape his curses and to garner Y’hovah’s blessings, change your ways.

Vv.10-14 – Speaking of Ya’acov, Moshe said that Y’hovah had found him in a ‘waste howling wilderness’. ‘Waste’ is from H8414, tohu. This is the same word used to describe what existed before Y’hovah’s initial creation in Gen.1.2 (1.1 is a thesis statement)

And the earth was without form (tohu), and void (v’bohu); and darkness was upon the face of the deep… (Genesis 1:2a&b)

Nothingness is the essential meaning of tohu. ‘Howling’ is from the root H3213, yalal, to howl (with a wailing tone). And ‘wilderness’ is from H3452, yeshimon, a solitary desolation. That ‘waste howling wilderness’ says to me that Ya’acov was spiritually so far off the Way of life that he was completely alone, crying out for deliverance to no one in particular and anyone who would help – he had reached the end of himself. And that is when Y’hovah began to use Ya’acov – when Ya’acov gave up: surrendered. And that was when Y’hovah took Ya’acov ‘under his wing’ (v.11). 

I think the point in time to which Moshe referred was when Ya’acov wrestled w/the messenger [I think, with many rabbis, haSatan Esav’s ‘guardian’] at the brook Jabbok.

24 And Jacob was left alone; and there wrestled a man with him until the breaking of the day. 25 And when he saw that he prevailed not against him, he touched the hollow of his thigh; and the hollow of Jacob’ thigh was out of joint, as he wrestled with him. 26 And he said, Let me go, for the day breaketh. And he said, I will not let thee go, except thou bless me. 27 And he said unto him, What is thy name? And he said, Jacob. 28 And he said, Thy name shall be called no more Jacob, but Israel: for as a prince hast thou power with God and with men, and hast prevailed. (Gen.32.24-27)

This was the truly transforming incident in Ya’acov’s life. He still didn’t live in the change for quite a while, but it was where he began to be more selfless and less selfish, AND when he became less afraid of the eventual outcome of the situations that presented in his life, specifically in his dealing with Esav the very next day. I think that had the messenger not ‘wrestled’ with Ya’acov the night before (and left him with a painful reminder), Esav would have killed Ya’acov when they met, as Esav had already purposed in his heart to do. This was when Y’hovah began to really prosper Ya’akov materially, not that he hadn’t done so before, but Ya’acov’s riches had come by his own initiative – selective breeding. Now, he was headed for his Abba’s home in Mamre. There was where everything he touched turned to his profit, as alluded to in the metaphors, honey and oil out of the Rock, the same one spoken of here in 32.4 AND in 1Cor.10, Mashiyach. Q&C

Vv.15-29 (read through 35)- All the plenty that the nation of Israel experienced surely did exactly what Y’hovah had prophesied in ch.28-31, they got to thinking their blessing was their RIGHT; their DUE; and that it would never end (are you listening America?).  Chumash has a good note on Yeshurun on pp.208. This is EXACTLY what has happened to these united States of America. If only Xian America had comprehended what we spoke of earlier, that what was written in Torah was ‘for our admonition, on whom the ends of the world are come’, we might have escaped what is about to befall the world system. But, alas, we did not. We did not believe, as Israel before us didn’t believe, that Y’hovah would judge us! Were we not conceived in the Liberty of our Mashiyach? Were we not his children? Was not our national motto, “In God We Trust”? Unfortunately, we, like Israel before us, relied on our past successes and on the blessings that arose therefrom and we forsook the ‘ancient paths’, became complacent, and wandered to the right hand AND the left, depending on our own hearts’ leanings. We did not listen to Y’hovah’s warnings in Vayikra 26 or Devarim 28, and went after false gods. We thought and were taught, “God doesn’t work that way anymore. He will never judge a Xian the way he judged Israel. We’re bought by the blood of the Lamb!” Unfortunately, even if that is true, we STILL have to suffer the consequences of our actions; bear our iniquities in this life. The vulture of our national idolatry is coming home to roost, and he is very hungry. Yisrael was bought by the same blood and the same Lamb.

We, meaning Israel in the land and American Xianity today, ‘lightly esteemed’ the Rock of our Salvation. The Xian will say, “Torah is done away with; it no longer applies to us.” Xianity largely claims to have replaced Israel. If that is true, this passage appertains:

14 Neither with you only do I make this covenant and this oath; 15 But with that standeth here with us this day before Y’hovah Elohenu, and also with that not here with us this day: 16 (For ye know how we have dwelt in the land of Egypt; and how we came through the nations which ye passed by; 17 And ye have seen their abominations, and their idols, wood and stone, silver and gold, which were among them:) 18 Lest there should be among you man, or woman, or family, or tribe, whose heart turneth away this day from Y’hovah Elohenu, to go serve the gods of these nations; lest there should be among you a root that beareth gall and wormwood; 19 And it come to pass, when he heareth the words of this curse, that he bless himself in his heart, saying, I shall have peace, though I walk in the imagination of mine heart, to add drunkenness to thirst: 20 Y’hovah will not spare him, but then the anger of Y’hovah and his jealousy shall smoke against that man, and all the curses that are written in this book shall lie upon him, and Y’hovah shall blot out his name from under heaven. Devarim (29.14-20)

If you replaced Israel, church, then YOU are included in that covenant and oath. If you are the ‘city set on a hill’ America, as your founders thought, then that applies to you, too. Y’hovah is serious about it. It is high time for national repentance, America. It is high time for personal repentance all you who name the Name of Y’hovah, Yeshua or even Jesus but who have gone your own way, perhaps following well-meaning men who were sincerely wrong. America is very close to her judgment and condemnation, but even at this late hour she can repent and turn back the wrath of our Master, in whom we PROFESS to trust. And if America will not repent as a nation, YOU individuals can still do it. 

V.29 says 

O that they were wise, that they understood this, that they would consider their latter end!

‘Wise’ is the root chakam, from which is derived chochmah, wisdom. ‘Consider’ is the root biyn, from which is derived binah, understanding. ‘Understand’ is the root sakal, meaning to be circumspect. If one is wise, considering his ways and understanding how Y’hovah’s Word applies, he will be circumspect and see the possible outcomes. So, look at what Y’hovah says will occur if you turn away from him, and how he will deal with you. If you do not want that kind of misery in your life, turn back to the ‘ancient paths’ and observe to do Y’hovah’s Torah. Moshe tells us in this verse that it is Y’hovah’s will that we consider our latter end and take steps to avert the chastisement that he promises to his people if they pervert his Way. 

Vv.30-35 – If we do not repent and return to the Rock of our Salvation, he will sell us into bondage until we DO repent. Count on it, folks. It’s a promise, and Y’hovah does not renege on his promises. How can one heathen chase 1000 ‘believers’, or two put 10,000 to flight? By us relying on another rock that is not our Rock, that’s how. Remember that a believer can be ‘in Mashiyach’ and not be his talmid. Here is what Y’hovah has to say about this in YeshaYahu 1

7 Your country is desolate, your cities burned with fire: your land, strangers devour it in your presence, and desolate [it], as overthrown by strangers. 8 And the daughter of Zion is left as a cottage in a vineyard, as a lodge in a garden of cucumbers, as a besieged city. 9 Except Y’hovah Tzavaoth had left unto us a very small remnant, we should have been as Sedom, we should have been like unto Gamorrah. 10 Hear the word of Y’hovah, ye rulers of Sedom; give ear unto the Torah of Elohenu, ye people of Gamorrah. 11 To what purpose is the multitude of your sacrifices unto me? saith Y’hovah: I am full of the burnt offerings of rams, and the fat of fed beasts; and I delight not in the blood of bullocks, or of lambs, or of he goats. 12 When ye come to appear before me, who hath required this at your hand, to tread my courts? 13 Bring no more vain oblations; incense is an abomination unto me; the new moons and sabbaths, the calling of assemblies, I cannot away with; iniquity, even the solemn meeting. 14 Your new moons and your appointed feasts my soul hateth: they are a trouble unto me; I am weary to bear. 15 And when ye spread forth your hands, I will hide mine eyes from you: yea, when ye make many prayers, I will not hear: your hands are full of blood. 16 Wash you, make you clean; put away the evil of your doings from before mine eyes; cease to do evil; 17 Learn to do well; seek judgment, relieve the oppressed, judge the fatherless, plead for the widow. 18 Come now, and let us reason together, saith Y’hovah: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool. 19 If ye be willing and obedient, ye shall eat the good of the land: 20 But if ye refuse and rebel, ye shall be devoured with the sword: for the mouth of Y’hovah hath spoken. [YeshaYahu 1.7-20]

‘Devoured with the sword’ speaks of physical death, not spiritual, so I think that those who are in Mashiyach but are not learning of him will live their lives without reward and bear their iniquity; suffering the full consequences of their sins in the flesh. Q&C

Vv.36-43 (read through the end) – When Y’hovah judges his people, He will see that the ‘gods’ to whom they whored themselves have utterly abandoned them when they saw Y’hovah Tzavaoth personally enter the fray. The false elohim want nothing to do with Him. He’ll make the largest Nephil see himself as a grasshopper in comparison. Y’hovah will ask what had happened to the rock His peopled build their house of cards upon. That rock had loved imbibing the blood of the offerings and drinking the wine libations, but ran with his tails between his legs when he saw Y’hovah Tzavaoth coming to fight for the ‘very small remnant’. Y’hovah actually talks ‘stuff’ to his people who went after other gods. “What happened to your homey? Did his mama call them for dinner? Did he suddenly remember that he had homework to do? Now, you look and see that I am Y’hovah, and there is no god beside me. I decide who lives and dies, not him. I allow disease and heal disease, not him. What were you THINKING!?! 

The idea of intoxication with blood is seen here in Y’hovah’s arrows (Ephraim? Zech.9.13). Is the woman riding the beast in Rev.17 a satanic counterfeit of verse 42? I do not think Ephraim gets drunk from drinking enemy blood, but I think we will be happily zealous in our service to Y’hovah Yeshua upon his return to deliver us from the evil that we had brought upon ourselves. I think that Y’hovah will offer peace to the individual enemy soldiers just before he unleashes Ephraim to take vengeance on their nations. 

1 In that day Y’hovah with his sore and great and strong sword shall punish leviathan the piercing serpent, even leviathan that crooked serpent; and he shall slay the dragon in the sea. 2 In that day sing ye unto her, A vineyard of red wine. 3 I Y’hovah do keep it; I will water it every moment: lest hurt it, I will keep it night and day. 4 No fury in me: who would set the briers thorns against me in battle? I would go through them, I would burn them together. 5 Or let him take hold of my strength, he may make peace with me; he shall make peace with me. (Is.27.1-5)

Did you notice the change in number from v.4 to v.5? Those nations will be destroyed and condemned to destruction, but individuals FROM those nations shall enter the Shalom of his rest.

V.43 agrees with Is.27.1-5, that Y’hovah calls on the nations who have gathered against Yisrael/Zion, for whom he has come to fight, to rejoice WITH his people, for he has come to take vengeance against those nations who have fought and persecuted his people and caused them to suffer under their yoke of bondage. This is the last chance for the men of these ‘goat’ nations to turn to Y’hovah’s mercy and Shalom. And that is technically the end of “The Song of Moshe”. Cf. Ramban’s summary of the song in Chumash pp.216.

Vv.44-52 – Moshe is the one who actually ‘sang’ the song, but Hoshea was standing with Moshe as he told Yisrael what Y’hovah was going to do to and for his people. One reason Yehoshua stood with Moshe was that Y’hovah wanted him to be seen as his hand-chosen successor to Moshe as the leader of Yisrael and the prophetic mediator between Yisrael and Y’hovah. When Moshe concluded the song, he told Israel to set their heart on the words that Moshe had spoken that day – the restatement of Torah in Moshe’s own words and the song of warning to remain faithful to Y’hovah’s Torah – and to teach them to their children and admonish them to faithfulness. This word was their very life, if they remained faithful to it, and by guarding it in their lives they would prolong their days in the land into which they were going soon, to receive it in fulfillment of Y’hovah’s promise to Yisrael’s Abbas, Avraham, Yitzhak and Ya’acov. I think it would be well to see the introduction to Devarim in Schottenstein’s Chumash’s notes on pg.2.

There are 3 references in Torah of the idea of the ‘selfsame day’; the 1st being that Avraham CCd his entire house on the very day that Y’hovah had commanded him to do so (he also CCd Yitzhak a year later, on the 8th day of his life – perhaps the 1st complete fulfillment of the command to CC male children on the 8th day); the 2nd being that Israel left Egypt on the same day that Y’hovah smote Egypt’s bikkurim, which just happened to be the 430th anniversary of Y’hovah’s promise of the land to Avraham and his seed (Ex.12.41&51, Gen. 17, esp. vv.21-23). 

So, Y’hovah called Moshe to come up into the mountains of Aravim (on the east side of the Dead Sea and Yarden) to Mount Nebo so that he may see the entire Land of Promise at one time and then to die on that mountain and be ‘gathered to his fathers’, as Aharon had been a few weeks before. His sin at the 2nd Meribah rebellion of not sanctifying Y’hovah before Israel had been the catalyst for his exclusion from physically entering the Land. But his faithfulness at least got his physical eyes a complete picture of the inheritance. My opinion is that Moshe’s last sight was of the grandeur of Israel under Mashiyach about 3500 years in his future, and the sight was what made his personal exile and death bearable. We’ll see the end of this day in Moshe’s life next week and the week after. Q&C

Ezekiel 17:22-24 – We looked at Ez.17.2-6 last week in our discussion of Psalm 144. The whole chapter is about the destruction of Babylon, which many of you know I apply metaphorically to America in these last days. Vv.22-24 seems to say that Y’hovah is going to take the great power of Babylon, led by whom I assume is referred to prophetically as ‘the Assyrian’, and will overthrow him and replace him with a ‘tender twig’ and plant that humble twig in the Mount of Elohim. This can only correspond in future history to one of the people of the nations that came up against Mashiyach, who turned against his nation and accepted Mashiyach’s offer of Shalom. This may be a returning Ephraimite, or a ‘whosoever will’ of the nations. This, I think, will be the leader of the ‘sheep nations’ seen in Yeshua’s parable in 

31 When the Son of man shall come in his glory, and all the holy angels with him, then shall he sit upon the throne of his glory: 32 And before him shall be gathered all nations: and he shall separate them one from another, as a shepherd divideth his sheep from the goats: 33 And he shall set the sheep on his right hand, but the goats on the left. 34 Then shall the King say unto them on his right hand, Come, ye blessed of my Abba, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world: 35 For I was an hungred, and ye gave me meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me drink: I was a stranger, and ye took me in: 36 Naked, and ye clothed me: I was sick, and ye visited me: I was in prison, and ye came unto me. 37 Then shall the righteous answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungred, and fed thee? or thirsty, and gave thee drink? 38 When saw we thee a stranger, and took thee in? or naked, and clothed thee? 39 Or when saw we thee sick, or in prison, and came unto thee? 40 And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me. (Matt.25.31-40)

Remember that trees signify nations, as the fig tree signifies Israel in unbelief and the olive tree signifies Yisrael in belief. Speaking of the fig tree, can you see the connection between Yeshua’s cursing the fig tree that signaled its fruit being ripe, but that had no figs for Yeshua to eat?

18 Now in the morning as he returned into the city, he hungered. 19 And when he saw a fig tree in the way, he came to it, and found nothing thereon, but leaves only, and said unto it, Let no fruit grow on thee henceforward for ever. And presently the fig tree withered away. 20 And when the disciples saw they marvelled, saying, How soon is the fig tree withered away! (Matt.21.18-20)

What follows is my discussion of this passage in my study of “The Life of Yeshua haMoshiach”.

184).Cursing the fig tree (Mat.21.18-22, Mk. 12-14, 20-26) – The fig trees in Yisrael have as many as 3 crops every year. The first crop is ready for harvest in July/August; the 2nd in Oct/Nov; and the third, if there is one, in Mar/Apr. The fig crop that sometimes comes in Spring is called ‘untimely’ because it is not a crop they rely upon. The untimely figs develop on the tree before the leaves, so it is reasonable to assume that if a fig tree has leaves in spring, it is ready to harvest. 

This fig tree had all the trappings and appearance of being ready to harvest, but had no fruit. It pictured Israel’s ‘form of godliness’, but also it’s denial of the ‘power thereof’. We ought to take this lesson to heart in our own lives. Do we go through all the motions of playing ‘church’ but live after the flesh? When Yeshua comes to physically redeem and rule his Kingdom, will he find fruit on our tree? Will he find faith on the earth (Lk.18.8)? 

No! The believers who saw the ‘abomination of desolation’ (Mat.24.15) will have departed the pattern in J’lem. The Jews that are left after the Time of Jacob’s Trouble that follows his appearing (and it will not be many) will call on Y’hovah for deliverance, but have no idea in whom they are relying until he actually steps foot on the Mount of Olives and they realize their sin in rejecting their Mashiyach. After he redeems them anyway, despite their lifelong rejection of him and the time it took for them to call on him, they will exercise faith in their Mashiyach ben David, who will rule them from David’s throne for 1000 years.

The fig tree withering in a day is illustrative of how quickly his judgment is visited on those who will not follow him. When I say quickly, I do not mean it will follow necessarily in rapid succession after the refusal to follow. Y’hovah is slow to act on his anger, allowing the vials to fill before pouring them out (Rev.15-16). The time it takes for the vials to fill is the time we have to repent and have peace with our Elohim. If we allow them to fill, there will be no room for any more wrath and the bowl will have to be poured out. This will be done immediately as the vial is filled to overflowing. This may take years in our reckoning. But when the judgment comes it will be sudden, quick and complete. 

It is therefore obvious that Y’hovah’s wrath over the play-acting of the Jews was full. The Jews, like us, always – I repeat, ALWAYS – relied on their own righteousness, or a pagan god to get them through any scrape, and it was only when they saw that they could not prevail by their own wits or actions that they resorted to Y’hovah. Jer.14 & 15 are illustrative of this point. Y’hovah was tired of their play-acting, mouthing words of repentance while still harbouring their iniquities in their hearts.

In Ex.19-32 we see another illustration. There, Yisrael had accepted the covenant that Y’hovah offered. In the next few chapters they confirmed the covenant 2 more times. I would like you to notice that Ex.20-24 took place over a period of ONE DAY. Y’hovah had laid out the covenant requirements in Ex.19.3-6, to which Yisrael agreed in vv.7-8. Y’hovah then laid out the rules in Ex.20-23 and gave them a chance to rescind the covenant, but Yisrael accepted once again in 24.3. Then Moshe wrote down the covenant on paper and prepared a peace offering of blood of bullocks, placing 1/2 the blood in basins and 1/2 on the altar. Then he read the newly written book, Torah’s covenant, to Yisrael and gave them yet another opportunity at recision, but they agreed a third time. Well, as the saying goes, ‘Three’s a charm.’ That was when Moshe sprinkled the blood of the covenant on the people. Only then did the marriage supper commence. It took place on the plateau on the sides of Sinai, or possibly in the throneroom of heaven itself, on the sapphire sea as clear as glass (Rev.4.6), with Moshe, Aharon and his sons, and the elders of Yisrael (75 men, cf. Acts 7). 

The Iuaidoi Jews of Yeshua’s day (the leaders of the religion in J’lem) had filled the vial of Y’hovah’s wrath and the covenant they refused to follow was about to be renewed with Hebrews who would follow it, later to be joined by multitudes of Gentiles.

This is the covenant that was renewed in the blood of Yeshua. The covenant has not changed, it’s provisions are the same. We agreed to them when we yoked ourselves to Yeshua, when we decided to follow him and became his bride, as Yisrael had agreed to them when they decided to follow Y’hovah and became his bride.

Only after Yisrael had made the golden calf (Ex.32) was the trespass offering established, and that not for many days or months, for there was no trespass for which they could be guilty until after the covenant was established and subsequently broken. The sin offering was for unknown or inadvertent sins (Ex.29.14 – first mention, Lev.4.1-3 – definition) while the trespass offering was for knowing, presumptuous sins (Lev.5.5-6 – first mention & definition). The trespass offering is the basis of the ceremonial laws, the ordinances that were added as shadow pictures to lead them to a knowledge of Mashiyach and the atonement he would provide. He is the fulfillment of the trespass offering, as well as the sin offering. This was the ‘law’ to which they were yoked, the one that was ‘added because of transgressions (trespasses) till the seed would come to whom the promise was made’ Gal.3.19. Once the seed of the woman, the seed of Avraham, came to fulfill the shadow-picture, the shadow was done away with and there is now no need of the sacrifice of bulls and goats to cover our transgressions (trespasses). In fact, resorting to the sacrificial system is now as wicked as it was for the people of Yehudah to resort to the pagan gods of the land (Jer.11) or for the gentile believers to resort to their pagan rituals, the ‘weak and beggarly elements’ of Gal.4.9 (in context). To resort to ceremony to cover our transgressions is to trample the blood of the covenant with which we’ve been sprinkled, the very blood of Yeshua, our Mashiyach (Heb.10.29). The substance of which the ceremony was a shadow was completed in the atonement of our Saviour on the cross of Zion’s hill. It was truly ‘finished.’ Any sacrifice for atonement which is or has been offered since the murder of Yeshua is faithlessness, rank paganism and idolatry.

As the leaders of the religion in J’lem were shunted to a siding so that the faithful Netzarim (branches) could call their Ephraimite brethren out of the nations along with ‘whosoever will’, so will Mashiyach ben David offer Shalom to the nations, even as they come against him to battle. Those who accept his offer will be set apart to him. Those who do not; Oh, well! Q&C

Psalm 146 – V. 1 says, הללו-יה הללי נפשי יהוה HalleluYah halleli naphshi Yhwh – You praise Yhwh while my soul praises Yhwh. The admonition is for us to praise Yhwh as a group and also the author’s personal commitment to praise Him. He says in v.2 that as long as he lives he will bring the proper praise and worship to his King. The root of the word translated ‘being’ is H5750 od, which is rooted in H5749 ood, to duplicate or repeat. He’s saying that as long as Yhwh continues to speak him into existence in this life, בעודי b’udi, “I will continue in”, אזמרה azamrah, making music of praise to Yhwh. 

In v.3 the author says to not waste your time in trusting to men, when Yhwh is right there awaiting your request for his help. The man you want help from may croak the second after you ask, or even as the words are leaving your lips in v.4. Of what use is THAT!? 

But if you rest your trust in Yhwh [v.5], he will ensure a happy outcome [even though you may not like the process], because [v.6] he made everything you see with the Words of his mouth, which are as faithful and true as He is. He will ensure that the oppressed will see His justice. Look at the references to the dispersed into exile in vv.7-9; the oppressed, the hungry, prisoners, the blind, the burdened; the tzadikim are His beloved in vv.7-8. He shamars the gerim, causes the orphan and the widow to be relieved of their need, but he makes the way of the wicked, rashim, twisted or contorted. Those [v.9] who would oppress the tzadikim will find it difficult to walk [or even find] their road to Avinu. 

The psalm ends with a reiteration of the beginning. Yhwh, Zion’s Elohim, shall reign in the olam haba, which will be continuously expanding throughout all ‘generations’, which actually means through endless generations, each generation born in the olam haba will go on for eternity, as we have discussed countless times from

6 For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace. 7 Of the increase of government and peace no end, upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to order it, and to establish it with judgment and with justice from henceforth even for ever. The zeal of the LORD of hosts will perform this. [YeshaYahu 9.6-7]

Q&C

Read the 1st paragraph before reading the chapter.

Yochanan 17:1-26 – To get a little context, we ought to look at the final words of Yeshua before his prayer to Avinu;

24 … Hitherto have ye asked nothing in my name: ask, and ye shall receive, that your joy may be full. 25 These things have I spoken unto you in proverbs: but the time cometh, when I shall no more speak unto you in proverbs, but I shall shew you plainly of Abba. 26 At that day ye shall ask in my name: and I say not unto you, that I will pray Abba for you: 27 For Abba himself loveth you, because ye have loved me, and have believed that I came out from Elohim. 28 I came forth from Abba, and am come into the world: again, I leave the world, and go to Abba. 29 His disciples [talmidim] said unto him, Lo, now speakest thou plainly, and speakest no proverb. 30 Now are we sure that thou knowest all things, and needest not that any man should ask thee: by this we believe that thou camest forth from Elohim. 31 Yeshua answered them, Do ye now believe? 32 Behold, the hour cometh, yea, is now come, that ye shall be scattered, every man to his own, and shall leave me alone: and yet I am not alone, because Abba is with me. 33 These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world. (Yochanan 16.24-33)

Next comes what OUGHT to be called “Y’hovah’s Prayer”. Here he is actually praying to glorify his Abba and for US, not laying out a template for prayer, like he gave us in Matt.6. NOW read the chapter.

After that interaction with his talmidim, Yeshua lifted his eyes heavenward and prayed to his Abba in thanks for his power to fulfill his ministry, to glorify his Abba and for the talmidim. Yeshua was about to cross Kidron and go up the Mount of Olives to the garden to pray and to be taken by the Temple guard for a kangaroo ‘Star Chamber’ trial.  He knew that his time was short for life in that flesh he’d walked in for the last 30-something years. He asked first of all for the power to trust through the ordeal he was about to face, to bring glory to Y’hovah Avinu AS Abba had empowered him over all flesh and to garner  and give eternal life for all who had trusted and who would trust him. 

In v.5, Yeshua says something that just kills any argument that Yeshua never claimed to be Y’hovah. He asks to be returned to the glory he had with Abba in eternity past. Yochanan makes no bones about Yeshua being Y’hovah in the flesh; the verbiage is irrefutable. One may ask why he needs to make this supplication of Abba. In Philippians 2.4-8 Rav Sha’ul says

4 Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others. 5 Let <<^^this^^<< mind [the mind of Mashiyach in v.4] be in you, which was also in Mashiyach Yeshua: 6 Who, being in the form of Elohim, thought it not robbery to be equal with Elohim: 7 But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: 8 And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the tree.

This is a very deep, mystical teaching of the rabbis from WAY back. They call it “The Tzimtzum, or ‘contraction’, of the Ayn Sof. I am about to quote a kabbalistic text by Ramchal, Rabbi Moshe Chaim Luzzatto entitled “138 Openings of Wisdom”, which is so deep I am unable to get much passed Opening 30. 

“Opening 24 – the act of Tzimtzum

Note:The Hebrew word tzimtzum denotes the act of contraction, pressing, squeezing or forcing into a close confinement.

“In bringing back the creation as a work outside of Himself, the Eyn Sof, blessde be He, willfully set aside His limitlessness and adopted a path of limited action. This is called the Tzimtzum [contraction] of Eyh Sof, blessed be He.”

Yeshua, knowing that he was Y’hovah in the flesh, made a conscious decision to be exactly like you and me, giving up the independent use of his attributes as Y’hovah so that he could experience all that we experience, yet without sin (Heb.4.13), so that he could have a very real compassion for us, not just by intellectually ‘knowing’ what it is like, but by experientially knowing it. He has literally FELT what we feel and therefore KNOWS exactly what we go through and can identify with it. When Y’hovah Yeshua performed a miraculous act, he did so in complete submission to Y’hovah Ruach haKodesh and in Y’hovah Abba’s Name, not his own. Remember that ALL 3 “parts” or “aspects” of the “Godhead” are manifestations of the same Eyn Sof, blessed be He. Yeshua, haBein, stayed in absolute submission to Ruach haKodesh right up to the moment of his death (which Eyn Sof also experienced through Yeshua’s flesh). 

Yeshua said he had ‘manifested’ Y’hovah’s Name to his talmidim. To ‘manifest’ Y’hovah’s Name, he had to reveal, demonstrate, prove or establish it. Yeshua not only USED Y’hovah’s Name, but he was the physical expression of it in time and space. His manifestation of Y’hovah’s Name was all the proof his talmidim needed to guard Y’hovah’s Word in their lives for they HAD been after Y’hovah’s heart before they ever laid eyes on Yeshua. They recognized how special a prophet he was immediately (largely due to Yochanan haMatbeel’s witness in Yochanan 3) and came to recognize that he was who he claimed to be. 

In v.9 Yeshua begins his pastoral prayer over them. He asks his Abba in light of the fact that he would be leaving the world and returning to him, to keep his talmidim through his Name and to make them one, as he and Abba are one. They had been kept by Yeshua, but now he was leaving and he asked Abba to keep them. He says that since they have heard Abba’s Word from him and believed it that the world hates them for the Word’s sake. So he does not pray that Y’hovah take them out of the world, but that he guard them while they are in it and protect them from being corrupted by it because they are not OF the world system any longer, any more then Yeshua was of it.  

In V.17, he asks Abba to set them apart by and unto the truth of his Word because he was sending them out into the world as Abba had sent Yeshua into it. In v.20, Yeshua makes the same point that Moshe did in Devarim 29.10-20

10 Ye stand this day all of you before Y’hovah Elohecha; your captains of your tribes, your elders, and your officers, all the men of Israel, 11 Your little ones, your wives, and thy stranger that is in thy camp, from the hewer of thy wood unto the drawer of thy water: 12 That thou shouldest enter into covenant with Y’hovah Elohenu, and into his oath, which Y’hovah Elohecha maketh with thee this day: 13 That he may establish thee to day for a people unto himself, and he may be unto thee an Elohim, as he hath said unto thee, and as he hath sworn unto thy fathers, to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob. 14 Neither with you only do I make this covenant and this oath; 15 But with that standeth here with us this day before Y’hovah Elohenu, and also with that not here with us this day: 16 (For ye know how we have dwelt in the land of Egypt; and how we came through the nations which ye passed by; 17 And ye have seen their abominations, and their idols, wood and stone, silver and gold, among them:) 18 Lest there should be among you man, or woman, or family, or tribe, whose heart turneth away this day from Y’hovah Elohenu, to serve the gods of these nations; lest there should be among you a root that beareth gall and wormwood; 19 And it come to pass, when he heareth the words of this curse, that he bless himself in his heart, saying, I shall have peace, though I walk in the imagination of mine heart, to add drunkenness to thirst: 20 Y’hovah will not spare him, but then the anger of Y’hovah and his jealousy shall smoke against that man, and all the curses that are written in this book shall lie upon him, and Y’hovah shall blot out his name from under heaven.

Yeshua’s prayer, I think, had Moshe’s reasoning in it, that Abba guard his talmidim that they not go after other gods and have a root of bitterness spring up in their midst, or in the midst of their talmidim. 

Looking diligently lest any man fail of the grace of Elohim; lest any root of bitterness springing up trouble you, and thereby many be defiled; (Hebrews 12:15)

Yeshua’s prayer is that his talmidim and theirs would all be one in, and as Yeshua and his Abba are, one. If you and I are one in Yeshua and Abba the world will know that Abba sent Yeshua into the world. So, shame on us for our factionalism that witnesses to the world that we are NOT wholeheartedly in Mashiyach or in Abba. Our differences are obviously not due to differences between Abba and Yeshua. WE are not allowing Mashiyach to live through us and to guide our lives or we would show a lot more compassion and forbearance with each other. And v.22 shows that it isn’t that Yeshua didn’t give us the unity or manifest it to us. It is the denominationalism and religious spirit that live in us that causes this. It is, I think, a leftover of the religious spirit that held (and holds) Rabbinic Judaism from taking Torah to the world; covetousness making that which was supposed to make us holy into that which merely makes us different. This spirit is rampant in the body of Mashiyach, whether it is in Xians, Jews or Notzrim. Why would they WANT to be a part of something so contentious that masquerades as a part of the Creator’s plan to draw all to himself? 

In v24, Yeshua makes another open statement of his eternal oneness with Abba. “That they may be with me where I am” has at least 2 applications; 1) that we may be in him spiritually from the moment he said it and 2) that we be physically together with him in the Nesuin portion of the marriage, which has a prophetic fulfillment in history – to us it is future history while to Y’hovah Yeshua it’s all the same; we look forward to it and he already lives in it and has forever. It shows that Yeshua is conscious of his inherent eternality of Ruach, and that he, as Y’hovah, is transcendent of the world. Then in vv.25-26 Yeshua says that the world doesn’t know Abba, but that Yeshua has, and that the love with which Abba loves Yeshua is the same love with which Yeshua loves his talmidim.

Making one’s Name known is another concept that is wrought with various shades of meaning. To make Y’hovah’s Name, Y’hovah, known was different enough for the time. But to make known the mysteries of Y’hovah to mere mortals was another thing, and that is what Yeshua did with his talmidim. All the kingdom parables had some aspect of the Name of Y’hovah revealed within it.  For instance, when Yeshua revealed an aspect of the Malchut l’Y’hovah, he revealed something about Y’hovah’s character, which is one meaning of the phrase, ‘in the Name of’; and each Kingdom parable revealed another aspect of Y’hovah’s power over everything. These are just 2 of the things to look for in Yeshua’s parables. Q&C

End of Shabbat Bible Study

Shabbat Bible Study for March 9, 2019

Shabbat Bible Study for March 9, 2019

©2019 Mark Pitrone and Fulfilling Torah Ministries

Y3-W48

Deuteronomy 31:14-30 – Judges 2:1-15; Daniel 4:28-37 – Psalm 145 – John 12:35 – 14:26:

Links:

http://tzion.org/Tree_Sefiroth.htm 

Vv.14-22 are Y’hovah’s final commands to Moshe before his ascent up Mt. Nebo to be gathered to his fathers. Y’hovah told Moshe to take Yehoshua to the Mishkan for his instructions. In vv.16-18, Y’hovah prophesied the backsliding and idolatry in Yisrael’s future, the subsequent loss of blessings and added curses that would follow, worst of which would be that Y’hovah would conceal himself from Yisrael due to their departure from his covenant. Y’hovah said he would hide his face from them, but NOT that he would not be watching for their repentance and reveal himself to them if they would turn back to him in humility and contrition. This would apply to the nation as a whole (usually as the leadership made teshuvah, like ChizkiYahu), OR to individuals as they repented (1Chron.7.14 applies to individuals AND the nation). 

In v.19, Moshe is told to ‘write this song’ as a witness against Yisrael’s idolatry, and then he enumerates some of that idolatry in vv.20-21. And v.22 shows Moshe obeying immediately, both writing the song and teaching it to Yisrael. It doesn’t say that he just told them the song, but he TAUGHT (vay’lamdah וילמדה– and he taught) them the song, so at least this generation would not forget it. But would they teach their children?

Then in v.23, Y’hovah charges Yehoshua to ‘chazak ve’ematz’ be strong and courageous, for He will be with him and Yisrael as they go into the land and take it from the Anakim. This can only be Y’hovah speaking, for Moshe is about to go up Mt. Nebo to die; Moshe will not be going with Yehoshua and Yisrael to conquer the land. 

It is possible that Yehoshua’s writing begins at v.24, for the Torah is about to be placed ‘in the side of the ark’, from whence Yehoshua could open it and write the rest of Devarim Y’hovah (the Words of Y’hovah). In v.26-27, he told the Levitical priests to place Torah where it belonged for a witness to Yisrael’s rebelliousness. 

In vv.28-30, Moshe called the zachanim, elders of Yisrael and the captains of 10s, 50s, and 100s so that he could reinforce the song in their ears before the whole congregation of Yisrael, so that B’nei Yisrael would expect the highest order of obedience from their leaders and have good examples to follow. Next week we’ll see the ‘song of Moshe’, which may be the anthem in the Millennial Kingdom. Q&C

Judges 2.1-15v.1 This is AN angel of Y’hovah, not necessarily THE Angel of Y’hovah. This could be one of his ministering spirits, like Michael or Gavriel, it could be Metatron, which is Mashiyach – THE Angel of Y’hovah – IM[not so]HO, or it could be a human prophet, perhaps a ‘prophet-for-hire’ like Yithro or Bila’am, appearing as Agent of Y’hovah. This angel came up from Gilgal [H1537] to Bochim, so it seems to be a human prophet [cf. Stone’s Tanakh note to 2.1 on pg.584]. The emissary is delivering the message verbatim as Y’hovah told him to tell it, so it doesn’t matter if this was a human or an angelic being. 

Now on a deeper level, one can go to the 3-letter root H1534 galal, to rotate or roll, like a wheel [the word for wheel is H1536 galgal]. The messenger has come to Bochim. Bochim, H1066, is the plural active participle of H1058, bachah, which means ‘to weep due to inner or outer impulse’; therefore Bochim = weepers . So, in a deeper sense, the messenger is coming from a wheel [Ezek. 1, wheels within wheels] either to weep over Yisrael or because Yisrael is weeping. 

Ch.1 was about the successes and failures of the Israelites to drive out the Cana’ani from their inheritances. No tribe was completely successful in driving all the Cana’ani out, though Yehuda got really close under the leadership of Kalev, the Kenite, nephew of Yithro. Yoseph got almost as close as Yehudah had, but seem to have just not BOTHERED to drive all the Cana’ani out of his inheritance. I think that the rest of Yisrael was weeping in v.1 over their inability or refusal to trust Y’hovah as Kalev did [ch.1] and He sent this messenger to give them hope and the means to succeed – trust Y’hovah, be strong and of a good courage and go take the inheritance Y’hovah gave you by driving or wiping out the Cana’ani who stand in your way. 

Y’hovah had not gone back on his covenant with Yisrael, but Yisrael had forsaken its covenant with Him. Yisrael had been told numerous times to not enter an alliance with the people of the land, but to utterly destroy them or drive them from the land and tear down and destroy [grind to powder] the altars to their false deities. This is the allusion Yeshua made when he said,

And whosoever shall fall on this stone shall be broken: but on whomsoever it shall fall, it will grind him to powder. [Matt.21.44, Lk.20.18]

That stone is the Rock that followed Yisrael through the Wilderness Adventure – Mashiyach [1Cor.11.4]. Y’hovah will complete the destruction of his adversaries in His time, even if we won’t in our time. 

Y’hovah wants to know in v.2 why they had refused to do so. Remember Vayikra 26 and Devarim 28? They had been given the parameters of their blessing and cursing and seem to have forgotten them. Y’hovah said [v.3], “I will not chase them out, if you want them here, but they will be a snare to your relationship to me.” Y’hovah is NOT a bully. He will not force you to do what he says. But he has made promises that IF you do what he wants, he will shower blessings on you like the former and latter rains; AND He also promises that IF you will NOT do what he says, he will remove the blessings and add cursings until you wake up, smell the offal of your life and turn from your ways and back to His Way. The choices are OURS to take. He promises prescribed results, measure for measure; the Cana’ani will be ‘thorns in your sides’ and their gods [Allah, et al] will be traps for you to fall into. By the measure you allow them to stay in your inheritance they will be the thorns and snares. Same goes for us; as we allow sin to remain in our lives, so they are thorns and pits for us. This may put a different light on Rav Sha’ul’s words in 

7 And lest I should be exalted above measure through the abundance of the revelations, there was given to me a thorn in the flesh, the messenger of haSatan to buffet me, lest I should be exalted above measure. 8 For this thing I besought Y’hovah thrice, that it might depart from me. 9 And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Mashiyach may rest upon me. 10 Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Mashiyach’s sake: for when I am weak, then am I strong. [2Cor.10.7-10]

It is not any SIN that Rav Sha’ul commits in which he revels, but in the testing his flesh puts him through so that he may rest it all in the power of Mashiyach’s Spirit. The Cana’ani were that kind of thorn in Yisrael’s sides and that kind of testing to idolatry. For those who trusted entirely in Y’hovah’s Ruach to overcome the testing, they were strengthened in their faith and faithfulness to Him. Those who succumbed to the testing or fell into the traps were reminded, when they did, of the covenant they had eschewed and Y’hovah’s Ruach witnessed to the remedy – teshuvah.

When they heard the words of the messenger [v.4], Yisrael wept en masse, as one voice. And that place got the name of Bochim, weepers, that day. This was [IMO] a day of personal teshuvah for all the bochim that day, for they offered their sin and trespass offerings there that day. Later in Yisrael’s history, this same order would be followed to the deliverance of Yisrael,

And Sh’muel took a sucking lamb, and offered a burnt offering wholly unto Y’hovah: and Sh’muel cried unto Y’hovah for Yisrael; and Y’hovah heard him. 10 And as Sh’muel was offering up the burnt offering, the Plishtim drew near to battle against Yisrael: but Y’hovah thundered with a great thunder on that day upon the Plishtim, and discomfited them; and they were smitten before Yisrael. 11 And the men of Yisrael went out of Mizpeh, and pursued the Plishtim, and smote them, until under Bethcar. 12 Then Sh’muel took a stone, and set between Mizpeh and Shen, and called the name of it Ebenezer, saying, Hitherto hath Y’hovah helped us. 13 So the Plishtim were subdued, and they came no more into the coast of Yisrael: and the hand of Y’hovah was against the Plishtim all the days of Sh’muel. [1Sam.7.9-13]

I think that the narrative parenthetically returns to the original conquest of the land in vv.6-10 when Yehoshua sent Yisrael out to take possession of the micro-plots of land the Cana’ani had returned to while the army was out doing the macro-conquest. V.7 speaks to individuals then subduing the land itself to their personal use and that generation’s memory of the conquest and of the elders who had led them in the Wilderness Adventure. 

But when all the WA elders died off [vv.8-15], the memory went with them to their graves and Yisrael succumbed to the idols and the altars to those false gods that were left in the land. And that brought the curses that Y’hovah had promised would follow their backsliding. And there they were on this day in Bochim, weeping and getting their hearts right before him. And then he raised up judges to guide them in Torah obedience and application of ‘right rulings’. Q&C

Daniel 4:28-37 – Here we have an episode where the heathen king of a heathen nation is held to Torah observance, since he had seen plenty of witness to the fact and ultimate power of Y’hovah’s Ruach haKodesh. Imagine for a minute the ahava Y’hovah had for Nebuchadnezzar, that he judged his pride in such naked terms as we see in His enunciation of judgment and humiliation on the king along with its immediate fulfillment. There is a term used in this passage that the Xian church’s so-called ‘exegesis’ tends to assume means years, found in 

32 And they shall drive thee from men, and thy dwelling with the beasts of the field: they shall make thee to eat grass as oxen, and seven times shall pass over thee, until thou know that the most High [Eloai] ruleth in the kingdom of men, and giveth it to whomsoever he will.

That word that is translated ‘times’ by KJV and assumed to mean ‘years’ by Xian eisogesis [‘reading into’ as opposed to exegesis, ‘reading out of’; the rapture is assumed in expounding Daniel in dispy, fundy Xianity – hence it is said to refer to 7 years here and in ch.9] is H5708 עדנין iydaniyn. Could this be alluding to moedim [seasons] rather than years? The root, iydan, is used 13 times, only in Daniel. and 3 times in 7.25 [time, times and ½ time], and it is translated ‘time’ or ‘times’ all 13 times. Including the time I quoted v.32 above, I have now used the word time 13 times. Go ahead and count them. 😉 

When KJV says ‘that hour’ it means from that moment. A ‘moment’ in physics is the time it takes the electron of a hydrogen atom to complete one orbit around its nucleus. So as soon as the Word was spoken, Nebby went off the reservation; eating grass, lying in the fields without shelter, his hair was unkept and grew ragged and long and his nails grew to look more like claws than nails. But, when the end of his exile arrived, Nebby recognized the righteous judgment of the court and asked clemency. And I believe it was awarded and that Nebuchadnezzar shall be in the Kingdom of Mashiyach as a vice regent. 

It is possible that the time Nebby was out of his gourd was as little as 6 months and a week, from Pesach/ULB1 [15th of the 1st month] to Sukkoth [22nd of the 7th month] or 7 miqroth kodesh, as in Moedim – times. The phrase in KJV ‘the end of the days’ [v.34] can also possibly speak of the 7 high days of Y’hovah’s calendar. Just an alternate possibility. At the end of the days of this particular prophecy, Nebby used his regained senses to praise and extoll the greatness of Y’hovah, and the commonness of even the most powerful human kings. And when he did that, his mind, his place and his Kingdom were returned to him; he was restored to his former greatness and more [v.36]. And I think the object lesson he was taught remained in the center of his thinking for the rest of his days. Q&C

Tehellim 145 – This is an acrostic psalm; each verse begins with a successive letter of the aleph beit. However, there are only 21 verses and there are 22 letters, so one letter was skipped – the letter ‘nun’. This is a curiosity to me. Why did David leave out the ‘nun’? Stone’s Tanakh has only one note concerning this psalm and it deals with this verse (14)

“Although the first letters of the verses follow the aleph-beit, the letter נ is omitted, since it can be taken as an allusion to נפילה ‘downfall’. Nevertheless, knowing that downfalls would take place, the psalmist comforted Yisrael by saying, “Hashem supports all the fallen ones.””

I think there is a reference to the Tree of Sefiroth (http://tzion.org/Tree_Sefiroth.htm) in this psalm, as well. We’ll check to see. 

In V.1-7 David sings praises to Y’hovah, his King and will keep him ever in his mind to bless his Name and his unfathomable greatness. The Almighty is too wonderful for us to fully grasp in this fallen flesh; so wonderful that I cannot imagine being able to know all there is to know about him, even in our resurrected bodies in eternity. The fathers will teach their children of the wonders of Y’hovah’s works for them and their ancestors, of his majestic honor and the mighty and terrible acts of Y’hovah’s greatness; terrible here meaning ‘intense’ or ‘acute’, not in either a bad or good sense. V.7 transitions from this ‘stanza’ to the next, I think, from Y’hovah’s greatness and incomprehensibility (Keter/Da’ath) to his Beautiful combination of righteousness and mercy (Tifereth).

In Vv.8-14 David speaks of the tifereth of Y’hovah, alternating from his righteous severity to his loving grace and mercy. Vv.8-10 speak of his mercy towards us, while 11-13 speak of his glorious, eternal Kingdom. V.14 is the one that SHOULD begin with a ‘nun’ but skips passed it to begin with a ‘samech’. It speaks of how Y’hovah upholds his people who sometimes fall. It is also the transition to the 3rd ‘stanza’ dealing with the Foundation (Yesod) of Y’hovah. This level of Sefiroth is the transition between the general knowledge of Y’hovah to the ‘deep’ knowledge of Y’hovah. This might be seen as the ‘remez’ or ‘hint’ level of understanding.

In vv.15-21 David speaks of the foundational revelations of Y’hovah; his victory (Netzach) and glory (Hod) that are more-or-less the ‘general revelation’ that makes all men without excuse, knowing that there is an Elohim. This may be seen as the level of Elohim’s direct intervention in his creation, the ‘pashat’ or literal level of understanding. See how verses 15-16 have Y’hovah dealing with some sensory human input; eyes and food, hands and desires. Then 17-19 speak of how Y’hovah fulfills the desires of those who call on him; who trust him; whom he preserves. And then in v.21, David promises to publish the greatness of Y’hovah to all who will hear, and encourages all to praise Y’hovah together with him. Q&C

John 12:35 – 14:26 – In vv.35-36 Yeshua referred to himself as the light. He had done this before (cf Jn.8.12, 9.5) and I think he is referring to the healing of the man born blind again, recalling it to their minds as a backdrop for this scene, an ensample by which to contextualize what he’s teaching here. He told them to keep his word, not the traditions they’d been taught by these Pharisees, scribes and such. They all knew that he’d healed a man who had been born blind, and that he’d raised Lazarus from the dead. He told them to believe what he was telling them based on, if nothing else, the witness of his miracles. Had they done that, they would have probably believed that he was Moshiach upon his resurrection from the dead. 

198). Discourse on unbelief (Jn.12.37-50) v.41 says Isaiah prophesied of this very event. They’d seen all the miracles, heard all the proper interpretations and midrashes on scripture, and yet they would not believe. Many did believe, or rather understood, in their minds, but what they knew to be true did not take form in their actions because they were afraid of what the Pharisees would do to them; i.e., excommunicate them, like they had the FBM in Jn.9. They liked the praise of men, which they could hear with their ears, above the praise of Y’hovah, which they could not perceive with their senses. They were carnal, in other words. Perhaps the resurrection would change that. Perhaps not.

Note in Yeshua’s teaching the basis of the whole thing is in the first line (v.44), “He that believeth on me, believeth not on me, but on him that sent me.” The gospel has always been the same down through the ages. Avraham believed it (Gal.3.8, Gen.12.3), it was preached to the Yisraelites in the wilderness (Heb.3.14- 4.6), and the same gospel is preached to us (Gal.3.7-29, look especially at vv. 7-9, 16-19, 28-29). That gospel is not what most in the western gentile church teach (1Cor.15.3-6, which is the way the gospel is delivered [Yeshua’d] to us), but the good news that we have been promised peace with Y’hovah. PEACE with Y’hovah is the gospel that has been preached throughout the ages, and it has NEVER changed since the fall of Adam. Sin, both that which we commit and that which we’ve inherited, puts us at enmity with Y’hovah. The blood of the covenant brings PEACE with him and all; Jew or Gentile, bond or free, male or female; any and all who believe that he will perform his promises are Avraham’s seed – even if we don’t see the promise performed until after our earthly demise.

Yeshua makes some pretty bold statements about who he is; ‘He who sees me sees him who sent me’, ‘I haven’t spoken my own word, but the word of my Father who sent me’, and ‘What the Father told me to say is what I say. Nothing more or less.’ (All Mark paraphrases.) He said, in effect – and his audience could not help but understand, was, ‘I am the express image of the Father. I do what he wants, because we are one.’ This was the Sh’ma in action, and the Pharisee Iuaidio hated him for it. 

208). Washing Disciple’s feet, (Jn.13.1-17) – Notice that the 1st thing Yochanan says is that it was before the Feast of Passover, as I said [^^right up there^^] in 205 above. I assume that Yochanan is also speaking of the Jews’ traditional passover and not what Y’hovah commands Passover to be, since Yochanan knew when he wrote this besorah [gospel – meat] that Yeshua was THE Passover, offered at the proper time, and that the meal the night before could not possibly have been the passover meal. Moshe Koniuchowski, founder of Your Arms To Yisrael ministries, wrote in an article in 2008:

15 And He said to them, With desire I have desired to eat this Pesach with you before I suffer:16 For I say to you, I will not any more eat of it, until it be fulfilled in the malchut of Y’hovah. (Lk.22)

We see He desired to eat the Passover but did not. What did He do that night?

Every Chabad orthodox rabbi even to this day has an extra Passover, as a training lesson. Today this practice is seen in the Lubavitch movement when they gather on the last night of Unleavened Bread for what they call the Messiah’s Supper, looking forward to the coming of Messiah. Rabbi Yisrael Baal Shem Tov instituted the custom of partaking of a “Messiah’s meal” on the afternoon of the last day of Unleavened Bread. Some consider it a Pesach, even though it is officially just a preparation for Messiah’s coming.

In Yahshua’s day, the added “Meal of Messiah” was held a day before the actual Passover. Yahshua looked and acted as if it were the Passover, without it actually being the Passover. This seeming contradiction is fully understood from a Hebraic mindset. [bold added – Mark]

The discrepancy is only in our western gentile minds. 

So, after the Mashiyach’s Meal, Yeshua prepared himself to wash the talmidim’s feet. After removing his festive garments and wrapping himself in a towel [KJV lention, a linen cloth – his own tallith gadol?] he filled a bowl and began to wash the talmidim’s feet. Remember when he went to the Pharisee’s house for dinner and the woman washed his feet with her tears and wiped them with her hair? The master of the house had not even offered Yeshua a bowl of water to wash his own feet, much less did he wash Yeshua’s feet himself. That was not his place but a servant’s, at least in his own mind and quite probably in Israelite society’s mind, as well. But Yeshua, as the Master of these ceremonies, displayed to his talmidim the proper attitude for a man in leadership; service, even toward his juniors. 

[Sam Walton, the founder of Wal-Mart, was ALL about customer service. His business was built on customer service, a thing I wish his progeny had learned. His greeters did not just greet folks. They were trained to help the customer find whatever they were after and would TAKE a customer to the product he was looking for. In fact, Sam used to dress as the hayseed farmer he truly was and pay surprise visits to his stores and ask the greeter where something inexpensive, like chewing gum, was. If the greeter just directed, rather than LEAD, the customer to the chewing gum Sam would close the store ON THE SPOT, fire the manager, promote the assistant and retrain the entire staff for the rest of that day, or for as long as it took to drive the point home. He used to say, “The guy coming in to buy a 5 cent pack of gum today MIGHT be the guy who spends 10 thousand times that much tomorrow. The service he receives here will make him WANT to spend that money here.”] True Dat!

Yeshua went around the table and washed their feet, that part of the body that came into contact with the flotsam and jetsam of the streets, which were veritable minefields of refuse in some towns. Now, I THINK they had washed their own feet upon entering the room for the meal, but that is an uncertainty. Perhaps Peter had NOT washed his feet before the meal and did not want Yeshua to have to clean the refuse off his feet, the REASON for his original refusal of this service is unknown. But Yeshua implies (or I infer) that if he did not learn this lesson, Peter would have no part in him. Then Peter told him in a Mark paraphrase to ‘go ahead and pour the dregs of the others’ feet over my head’. And then Yeshua made the point. [Mp] “You have been taught, and learned well, to trust Y’hovah and to live Torah. You are, therefore, altogether clean (grk. katharos, heb. tamim – complete). All you need to do is wash away the stuff you happen upon in your everyday walk.” The application being that you are perfect [tamim, kathartos], as your father in heaven is perfect, and just need to confess and repent of those things you do that are imperfect, grk. koine, and heb. tamei. IOW, keep your accounts short by repenting of your faults immediately.

Notice the change of number in the middle of v.10. He goes from speaking directly to Kefa to speaking to the whole group when he says ‘YE are clean (tamim, kathartos), but not all.’ He is about to dismiss Yehudah to betray him, but not until after he washed his feet. Interesting, isn’t it? Q&C

209). Betrayal predicted and traitor designated, (Mat.26.21-25, Mk.14.18-21, Lk.22.21-23, Jn.13.21-30) – Yochanan gives the most detailed, well the LONGEST anyway, account of this episode. In the synoptics, the disciples each ask if he is the one who will betray him. In Yochanan, the talmid whom Yeshua loved [generally accepted to be Yochanan himself] asks, at Kefa’s beckoning, “Who is it?” I think it’s interesting that Yochanan seems to know he will not betray Yeshua. Yeshua answers, I suppose quietly enough that no one else hears it, that the one to whom Yeshua will give the sop after dipping it will be the one. Even Kefa, who is generally accepted as being the one who dictated Mark’s besorah to him, doesn’t mention this. Yochanan says that ‘after the sop’ haSatan entered Yehudah ben Shimon Iysh Kerioth, city dweller. [Torah assumes that the average Israelite will work his inheritance for his living. Cities are almost always hotbeds of sinful lifestyles in Tanakh. Witness Babylon, Nineveh, Sedom, and Kiriath Arba or Hevron.] 

When Yehudah got his command to do quickly what he was to do, he left and Yochanan says the others, presumably even Kefa, thought he was going to purchase something or to make an offering to the poor. No one except, I assume, Yochanan knew where he was going. And it seems Yochanan did not tell anyone, either. Or perhaps no one believed it of Yehudah. We will see, though, that Kefa was ready with a sword, so perhaps he at least questioned Yehudah’s intentions. 

‘It was night’ is a term that implies spiritual darkness was settling in. HaSatan at this point thinks he has charge of the situation. His plan is moving forward quite nicely. He THINKS!

Yochanan 14:1-31Immediate background – In ch.13, Yeshua had told his talmidim that he was going for a while to a place they could not follow him, referring to his death

33 Little children, yet a little while I am with you. Ye shall seek me: and as I said unto the Jews, Whither I go, ye cannot come; so now I say to you.

and Kefa asked why he couldn’t follow, not understanding the sod nature of Yeshua’s words. Yeshua answered him with a prophecy of what would transpire that very night while he was being ‘tried’ by the Jews (which word, I believe, refers to the Idumean political leadership of the religion in Yerushalayim, not the ‘man in the street’).

38 Yeshua answered him, Wilt thou lay down thy life for my sake? Verily, verily, I say unto thee, The cock shall not crow, till thou hast denied me thrice.

And that is what set the stage for 14.1. 

Remember that there were no chapter divisions in the original manuscripts; chapters and verses are a relatively modern convention. Yeshua was still addressing Kefa about the thrice denial he’d just prophesied. I think that the exchange between Kefa and Yeshua in 13.36-38 was in confidence, and then in ch.14, he changed to addressing the whole group of talmidim to quell their similar apprehension at his last words to the group in 13.33-35. 

All 4 gospel writers recounted this event, but this time Yochanan agrees with 2 of the synoptics (Matt and Luke), but the 2 synoptics are slightly different than Kefa’s own account of the story in the book of Mark, which I think has an additional detail the other writers left out; that the cock would crow twice. Kefa knew ‘the REST of the story’, having known the whole thing first hand. Now, as you read ch.14, think ‘sod’ level, not just pashat. If you just think in the concrete, word on the page, sense and disregard the metaphorical sense, you will never understand Yeshua’s words. All through ch.14 (in fact, almost every word of Yeshua in Yochanan’s besorah is sod), Yeshua is speaking with at least a dual meaning. 

He told the group (Mp) “Don’t be concerned! y’all believe Elohim, believe me, too.” He says that he is Y’hovah in human flesh right there. Remember what ‘in my name’ means; ‘in my authority’ or ‘in the same Ruach as mine’. Same thing here; ‘in me’ and ‘in Elohim’ are synonymous terms and he equates his Ruach with the Ruach of Y’hovah, which are echad and the same on ALL levels of PaRDeS. 

He goes on to say that there are many mansions, or dwelling places, in Abba’s house. Again, this has at least 2 levels of understanding; in this life (Temple and kehalim) and in the one to come (New Creation). He then makes reference to two things that he will do in the future, in the time his flesh is in the grave and also after his bodily ascension 40 days after his resurrection. He is preparing a place for each of us and for all of us in both spheres, temporal and eternal. And since he is preparing for us, he will return to receive us unto himself. This is Hebraic wedding-speak. Once the Ketubah (betrothal and legal marriage, but not co-habitation) was entered into, the husband would go back to his father’s house and prepare for his bride; he would build a home for them to live in and a business to support her. Only when his abba said the husband was ready to receive his bride to their new life would the Nesu-in, the marriage celebration and consummation, take place. This is the allusion Yeshua is making to his ‘macho-man’ talmidim, and they understood it full well. Then he said in a remez, or hint, that they knew where he was going and the Way to get there, but Thomas asks for clarification, being somewhat denser to the metaphor than even Kefa was. Yeshua answers with an even deeper reference in v.6. He said 

I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life; no man comes to haAbba, but by (or through) me.

Each of those direct objects is a reference to the Word of Y’hovah. The Hebrew word for “Way” is Derech, as in Ramchal’s book Derech Hashem, “The Way of Y’hovah”. The Hebrew word for “Truth” is emeth, as in Yochanan 17.17, “Thy word is truth”, and Ps.119.160, “Thy Word is True”. The Hebrew word for “Life” is chai, as in Prov.3.1-2

 1 My son, forget not my law; but let thine heart keep my commandments: 2 For length of days, and long life, and peace, shall they add to thee.

Yeshua is affirming the truth that Yochanan spoke in ch.1.1-4, 14,

1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with Elohim, and the Word was Elohim. 2 The same was in the beginning with Elohim. 3 All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made. 4 In him was life; and the life was the light of men… 14 And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.

Q&C

In v.7 Yeshua uses another remez to tell them that he and Avinu are echad and the same. He says that because they know him they know Avinu. Now, I think Philip is asking Yeshua to reveal the glory of Y’hovah to them right there on the spot in v.8. Perhaps Kefa, Yacov and Yochanan had told them about Y’hovah speaking to them on the Mount of Transfiguration

1 And after six days Yeshua taketh Kefa, Yacov, and Yochanan his brother, and bringeth them up into an high mountain apart, 2 And was transfigured before them: and his face did shine as the sun, and his raiment was white as the light. 3 And, behold, there appeared unto them Moshe and EliYahu talking with him. 4 Then answered Kefa, and said unto Yeshua, Master, it is good for us to be here: if thou wilt, let us make here three tabernacles; one for thee, and one for Moses, and one for Elias. 5 While he yet spake, behold, a bright cloud overshadowed them: and behold a voice out of the cloud, which said, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased; hear ye him. 6 And when the disciples heard it, they fell on their face, and were sore afraid. 7 And Yeshua came and touched them, and said, Arise, and be not afraid. 8 And when they had lifted up their eyes, they saw no man, save Yeshua only. 9 And as they came down from the mountain, Yeshua charged them, saying, Tell the vision to no man … (Matt.17.1-9a)

If it were I, I’d have a REALLY hard time not telling the other 9 about it. And I think it was the same for the ‘inner circle’. Do you think that, if YOU were up on the Mount and saw the glory of Y’hovah, YOU’d be able to contain YOURself? If so, get over yourself and think again. Anyway, Yeshua says to Philip in vv.9-11 (Mark paraphrase), “Are you dense? I have been revealing his glory to you since the day I called you. I and Avi are ECHAD! (Jn.10.30)” 

He speaks in the remez again in vv.10-11 when he tells them that he is in Avi and Avi is in him. Y’hovah is the Ruach of Yeshua. Yeshua says he will cause the resurrection of the dead (Jn.6.39, 40, 44, 54). I don’t think that the flesh of Yeshua does any resurrecting or any other miraculous work by its own power, but by the power of Ruach of Y’hovah that indwelt him from the moment of his conception. In the literal sense, then, Y’hovah is IN Yeshua, and in the metaphorical sense, Yeshua is IN Y’hovah. He then makes the same statement as he did to the Pharisees, “Believe me or believe my works; it’s all the same.”

Then in vv.12-14 he drops a bomb on them (Markp), “You think I’VE done some wonderful works? YOU will do GREATER works than these! If you ask anything in MY NAME, I will do it.” There is no doubt in my mind that Yeshua is telling his talmidim that he is Y’hovah in human flesh. Moshe never told Yisrael to ask Y’hovah for anything in Moshe’s name, but Yeshua is telling his talmidim to ask in Yeshua’s Name, and that HE, Yeshua, will do it! To paraphrase C.S. Lewis, either he is as crazy as a man who claims that he is a poached egg, or he is a liar, or he is who he claims to be. There isn’t any other valid option. ALL of the men present with him in that room believe he is who he claims to be – and so do I. 

In vv.15-18 Yeshua drops another bomb. He again equates himself to Y’hovah by saying that the commandments are HIS and he expects us to obey them. Only AFTER that does he say that he will pray, or ask, Abba to give you another Comforter, as if the one follows the other. I infer that to mean, ‘show me your active, volitional choice to obey and I will give you the Spirit of Y’hovah to empower your obedience’. That’s the grace by which we are ‘saved’ (Eph.2.8). As to the Ruach who comforts us, Yeshua also equates himself to that Spirit of Y’hovah,

18 I will not leave you comfortless: I will come to you. (John 14.18)

But when the Comforter is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, Ruach haEmeth, which proceedeth from the Father, he shall testify of me: (John 15:26)

Y’hovah is echad (Dev.6.4) and the Spirit of Y’hovah is the Spirit of Yeshua, there is no differentiation between them. Only the flesh of Mashiyach Yeshua is different in any way; Y’hovah, Elohim, and Mashiyach are all one Spirit of the Almighty, echad. 

Vv.19-20 are another bomb, I think. He says that the world, by that I infer the world’s system, can’t see the spiritual truth that he is presenting, but the talmidim can because they understand, at least ‘in utero’, what he is saying to them and that they shall truly ‘get it’ when Y’hovah’s Ruach comes on them at the upcoming Feast of Shavuoth, Pentecost. Then they will know experientially that as Y’hovah is in Yeshua and Yeshua in Y’hovah, Ruach of Yeshua and Avinu will reside in them. And, in v.21, when Ruach haKodesh takes up residence in the spirits of men, he will empower them to shema, hear, know and do, Y’hovah Yeshua’s commandments, and thereby prove our love for him. Q&C

Vv.22-31 – Yehudah asked him how it will be that the talmidim will see him, but the world will not. So Yeshua goes into an explanation of how Ruach will illuminate our minds to his truth. If one loves Yeshua and his Word, Y’hovah will love him and Ruach of Y’hovah Yeshua will live in him, and that Spirit of Truth will reveal the truth to us, 

But Elohim hath revealed them unto us by his Spirit: for the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of Elohim. (I Corinthians 2:10)

Yeshua says that we can know those who love him by how they walk. Are they walking in his commandments? If yes, you are looking at a brother or a potential brother, because these are not the words of the man Yeshua, but the very Words of Y’hovah Elohenu. He tells them that Ruach will bring all things that he has taught them to their remembrance when they need it. I pray Y’hovah that he will do that with us when we need it in the not too distant future. 

Yeshua knows that the talmidim are feeling some apprehension because of his words about leaving and sending his Ruach to guide them, so he tells them that the Shalom he has with Y’hovah is the same Shalom he will leave with them. When Yeshua said that he followed up by telling them to not be troubled or afraid, because it is by his going to Avinu that he will be able to come to them by the instrumentality of Ruach haKodesh dwelling in them. Then he said (Mp), ‘I tell you this now, so that when it comes to pass you will believe and KNOW without any doubt that I am who I claim to be and will do what I promise to do. I won’t say a lot more in this world, because the enemy is about to be given some more rope with which to hang himself. But, so the world will know that I love Abba, and as Abba has told me, I now tell you – keep my commandments. 

I have another appointment tonight, so let’s make like a tree.’ Q&C

Shabbat Bible Study for March 2, 2019

Shabbat Bible Study for March 2, 2019

©2019 Mark Pitrone and Fulfilling Torah Ministries

Year 3 –  Shabbat 4 Adar Alef

Exodus 12:1-20 – Ezekiel 45:16 – 46:18 – Psalm 48 – Col.2:1-3:7

Shemoth 12.1-10 – This first month is determined – how? First of all, this day is probably on or shortly after the new moon day – Rosh Chodesh. If it were the end of the month, this statement wouldn’t make much sense. But how did they know when the year was to change? Some say it has to be when the equinox occurred, the day when the light and the darkness were of equal length. This would happen in the month of March, according to our reckoning, on either the 20th, 21st or 22nd. But is the equinox the beginning of the biblical year/1st month? Perhaps, but not necessarily. In fact, the word month derives from moon. And the new moon is when the month begins. The new moon COULD coincide with the equinox, but seldom does. But without direct revelation from Y’hovah how would Moshe be able to know which new moon would begin the new year?

Just using what information we have in scripture, I think we need to accept that the time was when the barley was ready to harvest and the wheat was still green grass, because the plague of hail and fire destroyed the flax and barley grain and straw and not the wheat or rye grasses

31 And the flax and the barley was smitten: for the barley in the ear, and the flax bolled. 32 But the wheat and the rie were not smitten: for they not grown up. (Ex.9.31-32).

Therefore, I think that the new moon that falls when the barley is ready for at least parching (in the ear) is what Y’hovah was talking about. This new moon could be before the equinox or after. What SEEMS to happen every year (with very few exceptions) is that the first day of unleavened bread falls out on the full moon following the vernal equinox. What MUST happen are 2 things; 1) The 1st day of unleavened bread falls out on the full moon of the 1st month – the 15th day of the lunar month is ALWAYS a full moon, and 2) The barley MUST be harvestable for the day following the next weekly shabbat so that there can be a sheaf of ripe barley waved before Y’hovah as a firstfruits thanksgiving offering. So the sun must have been warm enough to ripen the barley and flax in the southeastern Mediterranean area and the moon must be full for the Feast of unleavened bread to begin. And the evening offering before that full moon is the Pesach/Passover offering. Without BOTH of those conditions the new biblical year cannot begin. So the sun and moon together witness to the beginning of the biblical year and the cycle of the Feasts of Y’hovah. The sign in the heavens is the sun and moon, the earth sign is the Aviv Barley; the first [earth sign] usually precedes the second [heaven sign], sometimes closely.

As an aside: this coming Thursday will be dark of the moon. I believe that this next new moon (dark of the moon on 6Mar2019 at 1103AM EDT about; 1803/6:03PM in Israel – sliver probable in Israel the next evening, 7 Mar) will be the beginning of the Adar Bet, but COULD be the beginning of the new biblical year. We’ll see when Nehemiah has his Aviv search, probably in about 2 weeks. If the barley is NOT aviv, Pesach will be 20April, making for a very cold Sukkoth in northern Ohio.

Israel’s zachanim [elders] went out to look over their flocks to see which yearling lamb was the best to offer to Y’hovah. They were to separate this lamb from the flock and not allow it to go into the fields with the other sheep. They were to watch it and care for it for 4 days, examining it for any character defects; they had already examined it for physical defects and found it to be the best of the yearlings. Then they were to kill it and drain its blood into a basin. This basin was often built into the threshold of the main entrance to a home. They were to use a branch of hyssop (v.22) to apply the blood of their lamb from the basin to the lintel and doorposts of their homes. Then they were to roast the lamb whole. It was not to be eaten raw, boiled or fried, but roasted. After the blood was applied to the doorposts and lintel, they were not to leave the house until Elohim was finished killing all the firstborn of the Egyptians. I assume that if they were outside the house and not under the protection of the blood on the threshold, lintel and doorposts, they were fair game for the ‘Death Angel’. After all the plagues Y’hovah had sent on Egypt, LOTS of Egyptians knew who the only true Elohim was, and MANY of them followed Moshe’s instructions as well. When they painted their doors with lamb’s blood, they marked themselves out as Israelites and renounced their membership in the Egyptian club. And Y’hovah honored their decision to identify with him. What remained of the lamb was to be eaten or burnt by the time of, or at, the morning offering.

Vv.11-20 – Next Y’hovah gave instruction on their demeanor and style of dress and HOW they were supposed to eat the lamb, herbs and bread. They were to eat the lamb ready for fight or flight; loins girt, shoes on, staff in hand. They would, therefore, necessarily have had to eat one handed. There is no provision to sit or recline to eat, so I assume they ate on their feet and probably with go-bags packed, strapped firmly on their backs and ready to move out. They were supposed to make sure they didn’t cook too much lamb and to eat it quickly, so they wouldn’t need to take the time to burn it. Is this how WE are supposed to remember the Passover? It is not required, for in Yeshua’s day, they were keeping a much more traditional Passover:

16 And his disciples went forth, and came into the city, and found as he had said unto them: and they made ready the passover. 17 And in the evening he cometh with the twelve. 18 And as they sat and did eat, Yeshua said, Verily I say unto you, One of you which eateth with me shall betray me. (Mk.14)

14 And when the hour was come, he sat down, and the twelve apostles with him. 15 And he said unto them, With desire I have desired to eat this passover with you before I suffer: 16 For I say unto you, I will not any more eat thereof, until it be fulfilled in the kingdom of God. (Lk.22)

We should probably do as Yeshua did, for even the Passover Yeshua kept with his talmidim was a commemoration of what had happened about 1500 years before. 

Who would go through the land of Egypt? Y’hovah, not a man. Who would smite the Egyptians? Y’hovah, not a messenger. Who would kill the firstborn of every critter in Egypt? Y’hovah, not an angel. Y’hovah was going to go through the land and kill the firstborn in every house on which the blood was NOT found on the lintel and doorposts. The father of the house took a sprig of hyssop in his hand (yud) and, after dipping it in the blood from the basin he would paint the lintel and doorposts (chet) with the blood. The significance is the word spelled with those 2 letters, chet yud, or chai; life. So Y’hovah would not bring death to the house marked twice by life, the Word that means life painted in the substance that is the life of the body, the dom or blood. 

We are commanded to keep this feast in remembrance throughout our generations – all our descendants are to celebrate chag haMatzah for 7 days, following the Passover. The 1st day and the 7th are each a Kodesh Miqra, a set-apart gathering of believers. There are 3 such gatherings every year, Passover/Unleavened Bread, Shavuoth/Pentecost and Feast of Tabernacles/Sukkoth. It is these days, along with the weekly shabbats on which we are not to forsake the assembling of ourselves together (Heb.10.25, Lev.23.3, 7, 8, 21, 24, 27, 35, 36), at least 52 weekly sabbaths + 7 special yearly mikroth which can fall on any day of the week. Beginning not later than sundown ending the 14th day of the 1st month we are to eat matzot until sundown ending the 21st day of the 1st month – 7 full days. Why? For the same reason that there is a Red Heifer for the water of purification – because Y’hovah commands it. It is not ours to question why. It is our part to obey. For those same 7 days we are to not have chametz in our homes. Why? Same reason, ultimately. Y’hovah wills it. It is this kind of obedience that leads us to garner wisdom from Torah. When we choose to obey Y’hovah, he rewards us in the best manner possible, the way that is designed to bring us closest to him in the shortest possible time.

Chametz is any gluten bearing flour mixed with H2O that will gather the yeast out of the air and begin to freely ferment. The Yeast itself is not chametz. It is the 3 ingredients taken together that are chametz. It generally takes the flour/H2O mixture about 18 minutes to gather enough yeast from the air to begin to ferment and rise. Q&C

Ezekiel 45:16 – 46:18 – Since 1] this Temple has never been built, 2] there is no Temple in the NEW Jerusalem (for Y’hovah and the Lamb will be the Temple of it) and 3] it is prophesied by a true prophet of Y’hovah, I assume that this will be the Millennial Kingdom Temple. The only way that cannot be true is if there is another epoch of future history of which scripture gives absolutely no clue. People are going to bring their oblation to the prince of Israel, who just happens to be Mashiyach ben David, Yeshua. And then he will bring the offerings to the Temple from those oblations. Why would that be? Why would Yeshua prepare sin, meat, burnt and peace offerings in the Temple? Is it possible that he is acting as mediator? It sure looks like he is taking people’s offerings and bringing them to the Temple, doesn’t it? And he only prepares the offerings for the priests to offer. We know that he will not be offering any sin or trespass offerings for his own reconciliation. The bullock will be offered to reconcile the Temple, to cleanse it to receive the freewill offerings of Y’hovah’s people. 

45.21-25 make it clear that there are but 2 ‘presentation’ Feasts to be observed in this Temple, Pesach and Sukkoth – the spring and fall 7 day Feasts. Shavuoth, Yom Teruah and Yom Kippur are conspicuous (to me) by their absence. Perhaps the Feasts and the fast have seen their completion by then. We may see final fulfillment of Shavuoth this or next year, and the final fulfillments of Yom Teruah (Resurrection Day, Last Trump) and Yom Kippur (and Yovel) 3 – 3½ years after that. I think the final fulfillment of Shavuoth will see the anointing of the 2 witnesses, and possibly the 144K on Shavuoth (some year very soon, if I don’t miss my guess). I believe there will be at least 1 Adar Bet during those 3 years, perhaps 2. If 2 Adar Bets occur in that time, it will set the stage for Rev.11,

3 And I will give unto my two witnesses, and they shall prophesy a thousand two hundred threescore days, clothed in sackcloth. 4 These are the two olive trees [ZecharYah 4] , and the two candlesticks standing before the Eloha of the earth. 5 And if any man will hurt them, fire proceedeth out of their mouth, and devoureth their enemies: and if any man will hurt them, he must in this manner be killed. 6 These have power to shut heaven, that it rain not in the days of their prophecy: and have power over waters to turn them to blood, and to smite the earth with all plagues, as often as they will. 7 And when they shall have finished their testimony, the beast that ascendeth out of the bottomless pit shall make war against them, and shall overcome them, and kill them. 8 And their dead bodies in the street of the great city, which spiritually is called Sedom and Egypt, where also our Master was crucified. 9 And they of the people and kindreds and tongues and nations shall see their dead bodies three days and an half, and shall not suffer their dead bodies to be put in graves. 10 And they that dwell upon the earth shall rejoice over them, and make merry, and shall send gifts one to another; because these two prophets tormented them that dwelt on the earth. 11 And after three days and an half the Spirit of life from God entered into them, and they stood upon their feet; and great fear fell upon them which saw them. 12 And they heard a great voice from heaven saying unto them, Come up hither. And they ascended up to heaven in a cloud; and their enemies beheld them. (Rev.11.3-12)

IF there are 2 Adar Bets, 1260 days from Shavuoth would put us in the ballpark of Yom Teruah 3+ years after. IF I am correct on this, the 2 witnesses would be slain by Anti-messiah perhaps on the 26th of the 6th month [Elul] around sunrise. 3½ days later to be resurrected (at the end of the 29th as the 1st of the 7th month begins) and called up to the heavens just as the last trumpet blows in the heavens and the vials begin to be poured out. Rev.9.13-11.14 = first 2 woes, the 5th and 6th trumpets. 11.15 = last woe and the 7th trumpet. Please remember all the qualifiers I just put out – if, may, I think, etc. This idea about the 2 witnesses and Shavuoth just came to me as I was studying, so I certainly COULD be wrong. But I DOUBT it! But there were a LOT of ‘ifs’ and ‘I thinks’… so …

On the 14th of the 1st month, in this Temple, there is a bullock offered as a sin offering, which is offered for inadvertent or ‘had to do it’ sins (‘had to’ break a lesser command, like walking over a grave, to perform a greater commandment, like preserving a life). V.23 recalls Shavuoth metaphorically with 7 bulls for each of the 7 days, and 7 rams for each of the 7 days (49 of each) and a goat for each of the 7 days. 49 +1 = 50. And Shavuoth metaphorically points at Yovel, which is proclaimed every 50th Yom Kippur. The trespass offering is also conspicuous by its absence. The trespass offering is the one that Yeshua completely fulfilled on the tree. There is one, as we’ll see in a few minutes, but I don’t think it is associated with Yom Kippur. All the same offerings are made on all the days of Sukkoth, according to v.25. Q&C

46.1- – The Millennial Temple will be open to the people only on Shabbats. THE New Moon is a Shabbat in accordance with,

Speak unto the children of Israel, saying, “In the seventh month, in the first day of the month, shall ye have a sabbath, a memorial of blowing of trumpets, an holy convocation.” (Leviticus 23:24)

I think THIS is THE New Moon that was required to be observed by Israel as a Shabbat, not necessarily EVERY new moon. I think every new moon will be acknowledged, as they should be now. But this is the only New Moon that is designated as a Shabbat. 46.1 says, “the day of the new moon” the Temple will be opened. It is a singular day. It doesn’t say, “the new moon days”, or “the days of the new moons”. In v.3, the people will worship in the Shabbats and the new moons. There will be 1000 years in the millennium, so 1000 New Moon Shabbats, 2000 Pesach Shabbats, 2000 Sukkoth Shabbats and 51000+ weekly Shabbats for the people to worship Y’hovah in. Of course, this does NOT mean that Y’hovah will not be worshipped on other days, as well. It DOES mean that ALL days designated as Shabbats SHALL be observed by EVERYONE. And that will be one of the sources of chafing and rebellion at the end of the Millennium.

It surely looks like Mashiyach offers offerings in the Millennial Temple. Why? He certainly is not offering because he needs justification, for he is justified enough that his justification justifies US! So these offerings cannot be for his own NEED to be reconciled to Avinu. I think these offerings he offers are done for a witness to us and that the animals offered are metaphors to teach us something. The witness to us is that if the prince/king does this, then we ought to, as well. When he walked the earth in his ministry years, he told his cousin, Yochanan about this attitude:

13 Then cometh Yeshua from Galilee to Yarden unto Yochanan, to be baptized of him. 14 But Yochanan forbad him, saying, I have need to be baptized of thee, and comest thou to me? 15 And Yeshua answering said unto him, Suffer now: for thus it becometh us to fulfil all righteousness. Then he suffered him. (Matthew 3.13-15)

“It becometh us” means that they need to stand out for people to see. The word is prepo, and literally means “to tower up” or “be conspicuous”. The people needed to SEE that what they did was different from the Iuaidoi Jews, by which I THINK the gospels mean the political leaders of the Hebrew religion, and NOT the Hebrew people. I see the Mashiyach’s offerings as exactly the same thing. He is conspicuous in his righteousness and is an example for the people to follow. I think the metaphor in the animals sacrificed is that the lambs represent the 6 work days and the ram represents the Shabbat, i.e.; that we worship everyday, but the Shabbat is set apart in every way, including our offerings. This burnt offering is a freewill offering that the prince offers for the people as an example and a metaphor, not because it HAS to be offered for any atonement. The ‘meat’ offering for the ram is prescribed, but the offering for the lambs is to be given ‘as he is able’, or ‘as Y’hovah prospers’ the one who offers, in this case, as the people provide the stuff of the meat offering. “Meat” ≠ flesh food, but = grain or flour.

The prince also offers a special offering for ‘the new moon’. I’ve already told you what I think that means – the 1st of the 7th month. It COULD be every new moon day, but I lean toward it being specific to the 7th month’s new moon that sets apart the beginning of Creation. At any rate, it includes all the offerings for the Shabbat and adds a bullock for this special Shabbat, designated as such in Lev.23 and alluded to in Gen.1.14, where the month is conspicuous by its absence (signs, seasons, days and years – no months). 

Vv.1&12 designate the prince’s gate as the East Gate, while v9&10 shows the people using the north and south gates. The prince approaches and departs using the same gate, while the people go straight through; enter from the north, depart to the south and vice versa. I think that if we left by the gate we entered, it would symbolize repenting of going Y’hovah’s Way. Meanwhile, there is no mention of a west gate. The prince stays throughout the Shabbats – he doesn’t leave until the last of the people has departed. Once again he is conspicuous to the people every Shabbat at the Temple; weekly, monthly (if applicable) and yearly. V.10 could be metaphorical as well as literal. I think he arrives at the festivals with the first of the people and leaves with the last of them. But he may also arrive spiritually with each worshipper and go out with him – a literal spiritual battery recharge.

Why the change of number in vv.13&14, from 3rd person singular he, meaning the prince, to 2nd person singular thou? Is he speaking to the reader or the priest or the prince? I lean towards it being instruction for both the prince and the priest on duty, because v.15 changes number again to 3rd person PLURAL, they. Remember that the people bring their oblation to the prince and he then brings all these offerings from out of that oblation (45.13-16). The prince is offering our offerings FOR us, as he offered himself FOR us. 

The monkey wrench that gets thrown into the works is in 46.16-18, where the Prince can give an inheritance to his sons, or a gift to his servants. The part about the servants being given a gift is pretty straightforward, and I have no problem with it. But will Mashiyach the Prince have physical sons to whom to give an inheritance? Or are the servants from among those who are NOT members of his body, while the ‘sons’ ARE members of his body? The inheritances given are in perpetuity, l’olam va’ed. But the gifts to his servants revert back to the Prince in the Yovel year. I think that v.18 points up the wickedness of inheritance taxes. They rob the people of their property and scatter the people to the winds. Q&C

T’hellim 48 – Mount Zion is ‘beautiful for situation. ‘Situation’ is translated from H5131, נוף, noph. Its root is H5130 נוף nuph. Nuph means shake, wave or bend. Noph means ‘high’ or ‘height’, but the idea is the heights of a tree, waving in the wind, as if it is raising its hands in praise. So David is saying that Mt. Zion/Yerushalayim is praising Y’hovah. ‘On the sides of the north’ is used in another place, as well – Is.14.13:

For thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of Elohim: I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north:

Sounds like the same place as Ps.48, doesn’t it? Where the spiritual worship of Y’hovah occurs. HaSatan covets Y’hovah’s worship. In this psalm, we see haSatan’s forces coming against Y’hovah in his place, the ‘sides of the north’ and trembling in fear. Elohim is the refuge of all who call on him. All the kings of the earth will come up against him in the last battle of this age (sounds almost Tolkienian, doesn’t it?). I think the reason they will marvel is that their familiar spirits will see the spiritual defenses and tremble at them, affecting their human hosts who will want to turn tail and run. Remember the orcs in The Return of the King movie? The fear was very evident when they saw Gandalf’s light driving away their covering darkness, and they’d have run had it not been for the Nazgul king flying overhead, driving them forward. I think it will be similar at Armageddon. The further I get into this psalm, the more I’m reminded of that movie – not the actual events of it, but the underlying likenesses to the prophetic scriptures. In v.7 Y’hovah breaks the ships of Tarshish, like Aragorn, his companions and the dishonored dead do the Southron ships. As it was prophesied, so it will be in the city of the Great King (v.2), the city of Y’hovah Tsavaoth, the city of Elohenu, who will establish it l’olam va’ed. The Great King = Elohenu = Y’hovah Tsavaoth. There is no separating them, and the rabbis have told us that the Great King is MashiachTzidkenu. Elohim’s grace and mercy are seen in the midst of his Temple and according to his Name his strength is righteousness. We are going to have to give account of the graciousness of Y’hovah’s righteousness to the new generation (creation) that follows this generation because there will be no sin or need for his grace in the generation to come – the olam haba, for Y’hovah will have subdued sin from human nature 

He will turn again, he will have compassion upon us; he will subdue our iniquities; and thou wilt cast all their sins into the depths of the sea. (Micah 7:19)

The Hebroot 5753 behind the KJV word ‘iniqiuties is avah עוה, ‘to transgress, to deviate from the proper way’. The ‘proper way’, the Way of Y’hovah, is to do Torah without ‘deviation’, and that deviation comes about through the working of our ‘evil inclination’; what fundy, dispy Christianity calls the ‘old sin nature’ [OSN in Mark shorthand]. Micah tells us outright what Jeremiah alludes to in 31.31-34,

31 Behold, the days come, saith Y’hovah, that I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel, and with the house of Judah: 32 Not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt; which my covenant they brake, although I was an husband unto them, saith Y’hovah: 33 But this the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel; After those days, saith Y’hovah, I will put my law in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts; and will be their God, and they shall be my people. 34 And they shall teach no more every man his neighbour, and every man his brother, saying, Know Y’hovah: for they shall all know me, from the least of them unto the greatest of them, saith Y’hovah: for I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more.

Colossians 2.1-10 – When the scripture speaks of a mystery, it is revealing a deep thing of Elohim. This is something that is not readily apparent in the Peshat, but is hidden from plain view in the Sod. This was done so that the plans of Elohim would not be open to the understanding of everyone, including haSatan. If haSatan had known what Y’hovah’s plans were, he would have at least tried to not do some of things he did – for example, he would have worked hard to NOT crucify Mashiyach’s, as Paul revealed in

Which none of the princes of this world knew: for had they known it, they would not have crucified the Master of tifereth. (I Corinthians 2:8)

Please notice that it says the mystery is singular, but the mystery of Elohim has 2 descriptors, Avinu and Mashiyach’s. I think that this says that Avinu and Mashiyach both reveal Elohim. And the simplest and most contextually correct way of reading v.3 has all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge being hid in Mashiyach’s. The grammar and syntax of the sentence (vv.1-3) says that the mystery of Mashiyach is that all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge of Elohim and Avinu are hid in him. 

Vv.4-7 tell us to not even listen to anyone who would turn us away from the Truth of Torah. If anything would draw us away from Torah Truth we ought to ignore it, no matter how good it sounds. But we need to stay in the Truth and ensure that we are rooted in Mashiyach’s, who is the Root. The whole ‘Roots and Branches’ analogy that Paul uses in Romans and alludes to here is a very ancient biblical teaching that the rabbis use to great effect in their deeper teachings. For a taste of that, look at Derech Hashem, by Rabbi Moshe Chaim Luzatto, RaMChaL, which is the closest thing to a Jewish systematic theology I’ve ever read. That may have actually been his purpose in writing it back in the 18th C. CE. If you DO read it, you will be amazed at the Pauline character of it, at least in part. But be wary, since Luzatto was a kabbalist, and I think Rav Sha’ul was also.

V.8 begins a treatise on the difference between life in Mashiyach and life according to oral law, life in Torah liberty and life in bondage to the traditions of men. Philosophy means traditions of men and vain deceit means rudiments of the world, all of which is contrasted to Mashiyach. Philosophical traditions and the useless meanderings in the base things of the world’s systems do nothing but spoil the believer’s savour to Y’hovah. When we get caught up in them, we stink. V.9 says that all that is Elohim dwelt in the person of Mashiyach Yeshua, not 1/3 of the Trinity. Y’hovah is ONE! And we are complete in him. The greek word there is pleroo and means crammed full, like the net in Jn.21. Yeshua is also the head of all principality and power, both designations for spiritual beings in the heavenlies (Eph.1.21). Paul is the only author who uses the terms, and the aforementioned Luzatto refers to the ideas in his Derech Hashem, where he talks about angels and shedim (demons). These principalities are very real, though to our limited physical perception are invisible (cf.1.16). Many modern day kabbalists, like Madonna, Angelina Jolie and such, are misusing the ability we have to affect things in the spiritual realms, not to draw closer to Y’hovah, which is the legitimate purpose of Kabbala. The problem with messing with kabbala is that the enticement to power in spiritual realms plays into our covetousness, and will tend to witchcraft in most of us. For that reason I will steer clear of it, and recommend that you all do the same. I don’t trust myself to not aggrandize my own lusts and thereby walk to the right hand or the left. Q&C

V.11-23 V.11 says we are CCd in Mashiyach, which is the CC of the heart. We are not just CCd in him, we are also buried with him in our immersion and raised in him by our coming out of the mikvah, according to Yeshua’s faith and faithfulness. The ordinances in ch.2 have nothing to do with Tanakh. They have to do most with the practices of the pagan religions of the world.

As in all of Paul’s letter to the Kehalim in Asia and Europe, the pronouns he uses are important in knowing to whom or about whom he is writing. He uses a LOT of you’s and ye’s in this letter, by which he means the gentiles in the kahal. When he uses the pronoun we or us, he is generally talking to Jews/Hebrews. And when he says our, he is generally speaking of both Hebrew and gentile together in Mashiyach. 

The context at this point is CC, and there were a bunch of Pharisee CCers going out into the kehalim trying to force CC on the new gentile converts against the instructions of the Netzari Beit Din in Acts 15. Sore losers, eaters of sour grapes, don’t you know. These are the same guys who brought false accusation against Sha’ul in J’lem in Acts 21. (On pg.751 of the AENT is a good treatment of CC that I will not go into, because it is 4 pages long in REALLY minuscule type. If there’s time read the 6-7 marked paragraphs.) 

The ‘handwriting of ordinances in v.14 is talking about the traditions of men and the oral law, and it makes reference to the bitter water in Num.5.22-24. Yeshua drank of that bitter water for us and the curse didn’t fall on him, as it would have on every one of us. It was the handwriting of the priest against the woman with the jealous husband, the accusation against us that is unfounded because we are found in Yeshua, which accusation was nailed to the tree with him, not his instructions in Torah. V.15 shows us the source of the false accusations and traditions of men; the very principalities and powers that Yeshua showed up on the day of his resurrection. 

In v.16, notice the word therefore, and look at the previous verses to see what it’s there for. The Handwriting that was nailed to Yeshua’s tree; the false accusations of the enemy against us were contrary to us and died with him. HE took those false accusations on himself, drank of that bitter water and blotted them out. So don’t let any man rob you of the liberty that you have in Mashiyach and his Torah, and don’t you even THINK of going back to the rudiments of this world system. In v.16, Paul is speaking to whom? The pronoun you tells us that he is writing to the gentiles in Colosse. He is warning them against letting their gentile acquaintances bully them back into doing the ‘rudiments of the world system’, i.e.; their paganism. He says don’t let those guys who haven’t a clue judge you about your keeping the instructions of Lev.11. Let the body of Mashiyach judge you in your righteousness, not your former pagan buddies in your lack of iniquity as they try to steal away your fellowship with Y’hovah. Vv.20-23 brings us to the conclusion of the matter – the rudiments of the world are the doctrines of men, not the instructions of Elohim. Living in the world is not obedience to Y’hovah, but it is being subject to ordinances – the ‘commandments of the doctrines of men’. Therefore being subject to ordinances is living in disobedience to Torah’s instructions. Those commandments of the doctrines of men may have the appearance of wisdom, but are, in fact, unbeliever’s foolishness.

Ch 3 begins with an admonition to quit worrying about keeping men’s ordinances, and to start keeping the Word of Y’hovah. As Paul tells us in Rom.6, we are to consider ourselves dead to sin and alive to Mashiyach with whom our lives are hidden in Elohim. V.5 tells us to mortify, or consider dead, the works of the flesh. This is not to literally kill our bodies, but to submit to the Ruach haKodesh and thereby to nullify the deeds of the flesh. All those 5 deeds of the flesh in v.5 deal with a sensual desire and are a part of the pagan temple worship. Vv.6-7 shows that all of these things will be judged in the tribulation and especially in the vial judgments of Y’hovah’s wrath and that these gentile believers have been delivered from them by the work of Yeshua on the tree. These ordinances of men (as well as the 2nd person pronouns) make it plain that his main audience in Colosse was gentile, for no religious Jew would consider doing any of these things as a part of their worship of Y’hovah. Q&C

End of Shabbat Bible Study

Shabbat Bible Study for February 23, 2019 

Shabbat Bible Study for February 23, 2019 

©2019 Mark Pitrone and Fulfilling Torah Ministries

Year 3 – Shabbat 3 Adar Alef

Num 19:1-22; Eze 36:16-38; Psalm 109; 1 John 1:1-10

B’Midbar 19 – speaks of the red heifer and the rites appertaining thereto. There doesn’t seem to be an age requirement, only that it be without blemish and never have had a yoke on her neck. Webster tells us it is a “young cow”, so it is a female. Webster also tells us it is a yearling, which means it is at least a year old, but not yet 2. I infer this to mean that the red cow would likely show white hairs after her 2nd birthday. In Judges 14 it speaks of a man plowing with another man’s heifer, or, working a man toward a desired end by using his wife to convince (or, in Samson’s case, NAG [v.17]) him to do it. The heifer was taken without the camp and slain before the priest, who would take of her blood and sprinkle it 7x before the tent of the congregation (into which the congregation was NOT allowed to go – only priests). She was then burnt entirely with the priest adding hyssop and cedar wood and scarlet to the fire. The priest would wash his clothes and himself and be unclean until evening. Then a third clean man would gather up the ashes and store them in a clean place for the people to use for waters of sanctification, for the purification of sin. All 3 men were unclean until the evening AFTER a mikvah. Schottenstein’s Chumash has excellent prefatory notes on pg.133. 

This parsha is called “Chukath” – Decrees. Y’hovah’s Chukath are things that he said that don’t make sense to us puny humans. For instance, the red heifer is burned by the 12 tribal elders of the people before the priest (I assume this is the case, since the KJV is very clear that it is the people who do this, using the 2nd person plural pronoun, ‘ye’, when Moshe and Aharon are speaking to B’nei Yisrael), and the act makes the elders unclean until they do a mikvah and then await the evening offering. The priest officiating (NOT the Kohen Gadol, but his deputy) adds hyssop, cedar and scarlet wool and is also contaminated, needing to do a mikvah and await the evening offering. Then a 3rd man or group of men gathers the ashes of the red heifer and takes them to a clean place without the camp, after which he also must mikvah and await the evening offering. All of this was done to create the additive to the water of purification. Everyone acting to create the additive is contaminated by that action, but the ashes added to the water would allow purification of that which would be sprinkled by the water. It doesn’t make sense to us. This is the nature of a chukah. The fact that the decree does not make sense does not mean that we can ignore it or not obey it, any more than our inability to understand the truth makes the truth less true. We obey the chukim/decrees because Y’hovah commanded us to.

The Hebrew root of heifer is parah, from the root (H6565) parar פרר, ‘to separate out parts’. It is used 22 times and usually is xlated as kine or cow, but 6 times KJV has heifer, 5 times in Num.19 and once in Hosea 4. Stone’s Tanakh xlates it ‘cow’ all 22 times it is used. The water of separation, made with the ashes of the red heifer, were used to sanctify the vessels of the tabernacle, the basins and such that were used in the Mishkan service. Application of the ‘heifer water’ was by sprinkling from a sprig of hyssop. W/o the red heifer, there could be no approach to Y’hovah’s presence. Until just a few years ago, there had not been a red heifer in Israel in almost 2000 years. There is still question about the kosher nature of the red heifer that they did breed. How many NON-red hairs will make it unfit for use? 2? 10? Even 1? With the breeding of the red heifer and assuming that it is kosher, the vessels can be purified and the actual practice of Hebrew Torah observance can once again take place – if they had a tabernacle to work in. TSK has this interesting note on the red heifer;

The following curious particulars have been remarked in this ordinance:

1. A heifer was appointed for sacrifice, in opposition to the Egyptian superstition, which held these sacred, and worshipped their goddess Isis under this form; and this appears the more likely, because males only were chosen for sacrifice. So Herodotus says, they sacrifice males, both old and young; but it is not lawful for them to offer females.

2. It was to be a red heifer, because the Egyptians sacrificed red bulls to the evil demon Typhon.

3. It was to be without spot, having no mixture of any other colour. Plutarch says, the Egyptians “sacrifice red bulls, and select them with such scrupulous attention, that if the animal has a single black or white hair, they reckon it αθυτον, unfit to be sacrificed.”

4. Without blemish. (See note on Lev 22:21.)

5. On which never came yoke. Because an animal which had been used for a common purpose was deemed improper for sacrifice. 

I believe the necessary vessels and tabernacle are already available. It’s the Mount being closed to Jews that’s keeping it from occurring, though they COULD go up to Shiloh in Ephraim, West Bank, where Y’hovah’s Name – יהוה – is actually written in the earth. I saw a satellite photo of it on line a number of years ago, and I am having trouble finding it now. It may have been taken down. The Hebrew letters יהוה were clearly seen in the satellite photo in the shadows of the hills.

Vv.11ff show one use of the water of separation. If a man touched a dead body, he was unclean for 7 days. On the 3rd day, he would purify himself w/water of separation and on the 7th day, after another sprinkling, he would be clean. Why the wait? Perhaps the separation on the 3rd day has to do with resurrection and clean on the 7th has to do with Sabbath rest?  Good possibilities. Does the 3rd day mean the 3rd day after the defilement or the 3rd day of the week? I’m curious what Rashi has to say about it. It says in v.12 that if he was not separated on the 3rd day he was not cleansed on the 7th. THIS gives some credence to the assertion that if one does not believe in the resurrection of the dead, one is not purified for the Kingdom.

It did not have to be a priest who sprinkled the water on the people and vessels; any clean man could do it. The clean man who is doing the sprinkling becomes unclean until evening after the required mikvah, because he touched the water of separation, though he did not have to be sprinkled with the water first (more evidence of a chukah). I assume that each person who needed to be sprinkled would have to find a clean man willing to sprinkle him. Both would remain unclean until evening.  Q&C 

Yechezkel 36.16-38 – The first 15 verses of this chapter show us that in the same way that Israel had to be cleansed of defilement from the ‘golden calf’ by sprinkling with the ‘water of separation’, so will Aretz Israel have to be cleansed from its defilement by the people of Israel when they went their own way instead of Y’hovah’s Way. They had shed blood on the land in making offerings to idols and so they had to be put ‘outside the camp’ and the land now needed to be washed clean. V.17 speaks of ‘the uncleanness of a removed woman’. Dahekizzat? MAYBE 

And if a woman have an issue, and her issue in her flesh be blood, she shall be put apart seven  days: and whosoever toucheth her shall be unclean until the even. 20 And every thing that she lieth upon in her separation shall be unclean: every thing also that she sitteth upon shall be unclean. 21 And whosoever toucheth her bed shall wash his clothes, and bathe in water, and be unclean until the even. 22 And whosoever toucheth any thing that she sat upon shall wash his clothes, and bathe in water, and be unclean until the even. 23 And if it on bed, or on any thing whereon she sitteth, when he toucheth it, he shall be unclean until the even. 24 And if any man lie with her at all, and her flowers be upon him, he shall be unclean seven days; and all the bed whereon he lieth shall be unclean. 25 And if a woman have an issue of her blood many days out of the time of her separation, or if it run beyond the time of her separation; all the days of the issue of her uncleanness shall be as the days of her separation: she unclean. 26 Every bed whereon she lieth all the days of her issue shall be unto her as the bed of her separation: and whatsoever she sitteth upon shall be unclean, as the uncleanness of her separation. 27 And whosoever toucheth those things shall be unclean, and shall wash his clothes, and bathe in water, and be unclean until the even. 28 But if she be cleansed of her issue, then she shall number to herself seven days, and after that she shall be clean. 29 And on the eighth day she shall take unto her two turtles, or two young pigeons, and bring them unto the priest, to the door of the tabernacle of the congregation. 30 And the priest shall offer the one a sin offering, and the other a burnt offering; and the priest shall make an atonement for her before Y’hovah for the issue of her uncleanness. 31 Thus shall ye separate the children of Israel from their uncleanness; that they die not in their uncleanness, when they defile my tabernacle that among them. 32 This the law of him that hath an issue, and whose seed goeth from him, and is defiled therewith; 33 And of her that is sick of her flowers, and of him that hath an issue, of the man, and of the woman, and of him that lieth with her that is unclean. [Lev.15.19-33]

But we are all as an unclean and all our righteousnesses as filthy rags; and we all do fade as a leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away. [YeshaYahu 64.6]

Y’hovah sees the uncleanness of the woman with an unusual issue of blood as if it were like idolatry, or perhaps the unclean issue is a punishment FOR idolatry. This might shed light on the woman with the 12-year issue of blood in Lk.8. Let’s also look at the 2 verses immediately preceding the woman with the 12 year issue, as it MAY also shed light on that passage.

And, behold, there came a man named Yair, and he was a ruler of the synagogue: and he fell down at Yeshua’s feet, and besought him that he would come into his house: 42 For he had one only daughter, about twelve years of age, and she lay a dying. But as he went the people thronged him. 43 And a woman having an issue of blood twelve years, which had spent all her living upon physicians, neither could be healed of any, 44 Came behind and touched the border of his garment: and immediately her issue of blood stanched. 45 And Yeshua said, Who touched me? When all denied, Peter and they that were with him said, Master, the multitude throng thee and press and sayest thou, Who touched me? 46 And Yeshua said, Somebody hath touched me: for I perceive that virtue is gone out of me. 47 And when the woman saw that she was not hid, she came trembling, and falling down before him, she declared unto him before all the people for what cause she had touched him, and how she was healed immediately. 48 And he said unto her, Daughter, be of good comfort: thy faith hath made thee whole; go in peace. 49  While he yet spake, there cometh one from the ruler of the synagogue’s saying to him, Thy daughter is dead; trouble not the Master. 50 But when Yeshua heard he answered him, saying, Fear not: believe only, and she shall be made whole. 51 And when he came into the house, he suffered no man to go in, save Peter, and James, and John, and the father and the mother of the maiden. 52 And all wept, and bewailed her: but he said, Weep not; she is not dead, but sleepeth. 53 And they laughed him to scorn, knowing that she was dead. 54 And he put them all out, and took her by the hand, and called, saying, Maid, arise. 55 And her spirit [breath] came again, and she arose straightway: and he commanded to give her meat.

These 2 seemingly distinct occurrences are linked, IM[not so]HO, by the 12 years, which I think links us back to the Torah portion and its reason for being; namely, Israel’s idolatry of the golden calf at the foot of Sinai. If the rabbis are correct that the red heifer was for cleansing the defilement Israel received because they bowed before the golden calf and called it Y’hovah, perhaps the woman with the issue and all the people who were defiled by the woman with the issue of blood were cleansed by the water of separation; that water being made the water of separation by the ashes of the red heifer, then does it not possibly follow that the woman with the issue in Luke 8 had been guilty of idolatry? She had tried everything shy of confession and repentance, which I think is typified by her resorting to going to Yeshua for her cleansing, but on the ‘down low’. The 12 years comes into play because 12 tribes had participated in the worship of the golden calves; only Levi refraining; and that shows that chol Yisrael can make the same approach to and through Y’hovah Yeshua, who is the antitype to the red heifer. Let’s see if there are any other links we can make from this haftarah to the Torah parsha or the Brith Chadasha. Q&C

V.21 shows us that it was the pity Y’hovah took for his Name’s sake, which was dragged through the mud by Israel’s idolatry, and the subsequent judgment Y’hovah brought against them in and through their captivity. Therefore, in vv.22-23, Adonai Y’hovah told Zeke to tell Israel that he was going to show both Israel and their captors the power and Set-Apartness of his Name by bringing judgment against Israel’s captors for their profanation of his Name. 

Then he switches gears in vv.24, saying that he will bring Israel out of the nations, presumably as idolaters still [which the majority of Israelis are today], and deliver them to Israel, perhaps as ‘secular Jews’ and ‘political Zionists’. But in v.25 he begins to show what he will eventually do for these Israeli idolaters. He will do exactly what he did for Israel in the wilderness; sprinkle them with clean water of separation to cleanse them of the sin of idolatry. He will also give them a new heart [v.26] like the one Yeshua gave to the woman with the 12 year issue. He will use that water of separation to remove the stoney heart and replace it with a fleshy one. And he will put his own Ruach in them [v.27], as Yeshua did for Yair’s daughter, reviving them to lovers of Y’hovah who will prove their love by keeping his commandments.

V.28 he begins to refer to the Millennial Kingdom, but also to the present day nation of Israel, for even in its lack of fealty to Him and his commandments, he still blesses her for the fathers’ sakes. Yisrael SHALL be his people and He will be their Eloha. He promises physical multiplicity, the mark of obedience, in vv.29-30. And it seems as though the result of that physical multiplicity will be Israel’s realization that it has been wicked and she repents, for he cleanses them of ALL their uncleannesses. But why does he say that he will ‘call for the corn [grain; barley, wheat, etc; grasses] and increase it, and lay no famine upon you’? Obviously he implies [or at least I infer] that SOME one is experiencing famine. If my opinion is correct that this refers to the Millennial Kingdom, the only people who will be experiencing famine of grasses/kernels will be those who refuse to make aliyah for the Feast of Sukkoth – and probably for the 2nd time.

16 And it shall come to pass, that every one that is left of all the nations which came against Jerusalem shall even go up from year to year to worship the King, Y’hovah Tzavaoth, and to keep the feast of tabernacles. 17 And it shall be, whoso will not come up of the families of the earth unto Jerusalem to worship the King, Y’hovah Tzavaoth, even upon them shall be no rain. 18 And if the family of Egypt go not up, and come not [aliyah], that there shall be the plague, wherewith Y’hovah will smite the heathen that come not up [make aliyah] to keep the feast of tabernacles. 19 This shall be the punishment of Egypt, and the punishment of all nations that come not up to keep the feast of tabernacles. [ZecharYahu 14.16-19]

What were the plagues that struck Egypt? Hail to destroy the barley that was in the ear and then Locusts to destroy the wheat and other grain grasses.  

The blessings on Israel continue in v.30 where he grants even MORE physical multiplicity to her, even in her unbelief. Perhaps the famine that comes on Egypt and the nations that refuse to make aliyah to Chag haSukkoth awakens Israel to her need to repent, for v.31 says that she remembers her sinful ways, loathes her own walk in idolatry and disdain for Y’hovah’s Way and does repent and start to walk in it.

And WHY does Adonai Y’hovah bring this physical multiplicity to his people in their land [vv.32-34], even before she turns from her own way and unto His Way? For His Land’s sake! He didn’t just promise the Patriarchs the land, but he promised haAretz that His People would dwell in it and care for it. 

He commands the house of Israel [just Ephraim? or BOTH houses?] to be ashamed and confounded for her ways. 

42 Then will I remember my covenant with Jacob, and also my covenant with Isaac, and also my covenant with Abraham will I remember; and I will remember the land. 43 The land also shall be left of them, and shall enjoy her sabbaths, while she lieth desolate without them: and they shall accept of the punishment of their iniquity: because, even because they despised my judgments, and because their soul abhorred my statutes. 44 And yet for all that, when they be in the land of their enemies, I will not cast them away, neither will I abhor them, to destroy them utterly, and to break my covenant with them: for I Y’hovah Elohehem. 45 But I will for their sakes remember the covenant of their ancestors, whom I brought forth out of the land of Egypt in the sight of the heathen, that I might be Elohehem: I Y’hovah. [Lev.26.42-45]

Those same heathen that watched Y’hovah bring Israel out of Egypt and deliver them to the Promised Land in the ancient Exodus will notice that He is blessing his land with Israel again in vv.35-36. The transformation the heathen see baAretz, in the Land, in v.35 will witness to them of the power and majesty of Y’hovah, who does this for Israel; both the people and the land in v.36.

In vv.37-38, Y’hovah likens Israel to the flock of J’lem that was kept in BethLechem and from which the Pesach Lamb was selected each year, the flock whose shepherds came to witness the arrival of Y’hovah Yeshua haMashiach. Truly Yeshua and Yisrael are inextricably linked. Y’hovah will increase, give physical multiplicity, to Yisrael as his set-apart flock and will show it to the world in the return of the King and of the cities that had lain waste. Q&C

Tehellim 109 – This is a perfect example of an imprecatory psalm. David prays down judgment on his enemies who hate Y’hovah and his servants. The enemy in this psalm, I think, is Absalom. V.4 says that because David loves Y’hovah they are his adversaries – yis-tenuniy – satan, even though he has prayed for them. So he asks that Satan be the right hand of their adversary. Imprecation is very often Y’hovah’s will for us. Yiremyahu, Yeshayahu, and Yechezkel all prayed against Y’hovah’s enemies who were within the camp, often the priests of Judah who were sucking up to the king to gain political power. David does the same here in vv.6-20. V.8 is my prayer for the American President, regardless who he is, until the President turns from his wickedness and to the righteousness of Y’hovah.

In vv.21ff, David asks Y’hovah’s blessing on himself. In v.21 he says Y’hovih Adonai, which is the appellation of the Divine Name that Encompasses all 3 of the major titles of the Almighty Ain Sof; YHWH is vowel pointed as is Elohim and then he is called my Master. In v.26, David addresses Abba as Y’hovah Elohaiy. I know for certain that the ending on Eloha makes that personal – MY Master, MY Mighty one. 

Vv.28ff, make it clear that David isn’t worried about their cursing if Y’hovah is blessing him. ‘Let them curse me, as long as you bless me. No matter what they do or say, I will Bless Y’hovah.’ When David says ‘the poor’, he is speaking of the poor in spirit, not necessarily the financially poor. When Yeshua said, “Blessed are the poor in spirit”, this is who he was talking about, those who are not necessarily after monetary riches, but the richness of the Ruach of Y’hovah and HIS Kingdom.

But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. (Matthew 6:33)

Q&C

1Yochanan 1.1-10 – Yochanan puts his own imprint on this letter immediately by saying ‘the beginning’ – B’reishith, as he did when he opened his besorah, ‘gospel’. The Aramaic primacy of Yochanan’s writings is very apparent, as Andrew Gabriel Roth makes abundantly clear in  note 2 (on pg.650) of the Aramaic-English New Testament. The Word of Life is none other than Mashiyach Yeshua, as Yochanan has pointed out both here and in his witness to the good news by which we know that we can be made partakers of the Shema and made one with Avinu through the shed blood of our Mashiyach Yeshua. Yochanan tells us in v.2 that the eternal life of Yeshua was with Avinu and manifested in Mashiyach to Yochanan and the other Shlichim (is that right?), Peter, James, Sha’ul, etc – the ‘we’ of v.1. It looks as if Yochanan was writing for a group, or perhaps that what he wrote was checked or approved by a group, even as was the letter sent from Yerushalayim to the kehalim in the nations in Acts.15.19-28. Perhaps it was the same group of zechanim and shlichim. The fellowship Yochanan refers to is the outworking of the echad nature of Y’hovah, the ultimate goal of our halacha, and the ultimate truth of the gospel – Y’hovah wants us to be echad with him, and has made the way himself in the life of Mashiyach Yeshua (Gen.22.8 KJV). And even at that, the revelation that Yochanan had was only a small part of all there is to understand about our Master Yeshua haMashiyach. He said what we understand OF him, which tells me Yochanan knew he’d merely scratched the surface of the Truth that will unfold to us when we see him as he is.

Yochanan just loved the account of Creation, it seems, because he is always alluding to it. Here he goes to the first thing Y’hovah created ex nihilo – light. In fact, it CAN be said to be the ONLY thing he formed ex nihilo, if you want to, because it can be shown via Einstein’s famous equation e = mc2, that all matter is a condensation of light energy. To show this in reverse, think of nuclear fission, where a hydrogen atom is split in two by a charged neutron. The original atom has a known mass, or weight. When the atom is split in 2, the weight of the 2 resulting atoms is slightly less than the weight of the original. The difference is the radiated energy that is used to heat the water into steam to drive the turbines for electrical generation, or to sustain the reaction in an explosion. All radiation is light in motion, whether that light is visible or not. The visible spectrum is a very tiny fraction of the total light spectrum. And what does Yochanan say in v.5? Elohim is light and in him is no darkness at all. IOW, Elohim is the full spectrum of light. He makes everything manifest by his light, both in a physical and in a metaphorical sense. If we have no physical light, we are blind – in the dark. If we have no spiritual light, we cannot comprehend Y’hovah’s truth and our hearts are full of darkness. When his spirit is at work in us, we are able to ‘see’ or understand things in his Word that may not be apparent in the words written on the page, as I think I have with some of the inferences I’ve drawn in our Studies of his Toroth. That is not to say that light is Elohim, for it certainly is not. But when he formed light, he was manifesting and explaining himself in a way that we could understand, and by his light we can ‘see’ his truth. Look at Is.45.7;

I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I Y’hovah do all these things. (Isaiah 45:7)

When he said he ‘formed’ light, he was saying that he gave it shape, as it were, or made it so it would be apparent to the matter he would shape from it, and as a consequence something came to be that had never existed before – darkness, or the absence of light. Before he ‘condensed’ the light into physical matter, there was no darkness because there was nothing physical to get in the way of the light to cast a shadow. As we remove our man-made traditions and dogmas from our thinking, it allows the light of his Truth to shine into us, through us and out from us. 

In v.6 remember that fellowship with him is oneness with him, we internalize his Word in us and begin to let the Light of his Word shine through us. But if we walk in darkness, don’t do what his Word says (starve our inclination to good) OR do what his Word forbids (feed our inclination to evil), we make ourselves liars and prove that the truth has no place in us. I used to think this was right – that it didn’t matter how I lived my life, as long as I’d said the ‘sinner’s prayer’, I was going to be in the Kingdom. Look at how v.8 amplifies v.6. If we say our sins are gone, but have our halacha in darkness, we lie to ourselves and really care nothing for the truth. But even worse is how v.10 amplifies 6&8. If we say that we haven’t sinned we make HIM a liar, and the truth isn’t a part of us. 

But if we walk in the spiritual light of his Word of Truth, as he IS that light, we will be echad with each other as Mashiyach and his Abba are echad, and we will also be echad with Y’hovah. And that Word of Truth will enlighten our minds to any sin in our lives so that we can repent of it and confess it to Avinu, applying Mashiyach Yeshua’s blood to it, washing it away as with the water of purification so we can get back to living in his True Light, and reenter the camp. Q&C

End of Shabbat Bible Study

Shabbat Bible Study for 16 February, 2019

Shabbat Bible Study for 16 February, 2019

©2019 Mark Pitrone and Fulfilling Torah Ministries

Year 3 – Shabbat 2 Adar Alef

Deut 25:17-19; 1 Sam 15:1-34; Psalm 140; 2 Thess 2:1-17

Devarim 25.17-19 – Amalek! Y’hovah commanded Israel to remember Amalek for the purpose of destroying him, completely wiping his memory off the earth so that noone else would EVER remember him. Unless I misunderstand scripture here, this is the root of ALL the problems of the Middle East today – Israel did not remember her charge, which was given her less than 2 weeks before she crossed Yarden to enter her promised inheritance. She was to destroy Amalek and his memory from the earth. When Mashiyach comes in his glory, HE will remember this command that he gave Israel and he SHALL carry it out, with cool deliberation and dispatch.

Amalek was one of the ‘Dukes of Esav’, Esav NOT being a county in Tennessee, nor did he drive a beautiful, built-up stock car and lead the rebellion, good-natured as it was, against Boss Hogg and Sheriff Roscoe ‘PEEE’ Coltrane. Amalek was a seriously bad duke, and, if it was possible, his progeny got worse as it progressed through time. Amalek was Esav’s grandson, the son of Eliphaz and Timna. Eliphaz’ mother was Adah, whose name (H5711) means ‘ornament, or morning’, but the root of whose name (H5710) means ‘to decorate or adorn or, in Arabic, broad stone for covering a grave’. So Eliphaz’ (H464 – my god [el-H410] is gold [pazaz – H6337]) wife, (gravestone-like scab) bore him Amalek. BDB has no meaning for Amalek’s name, as if Y’hovah has never taken enough thought of him to characterize him. Names are important in scripture, because they tell you their owners’ character. This is why it is so incredible, to me anyway, that Y’hovah actually WANTS to give us his Name – it denotes the gift of a change of character. I don’t know about y’all, but I surely need it.

In Ex.17, immediately after the gift of manna [which followed quickly after the water gushed forth from the rock at Rephidim], Amalek attacked Israel at Rephidim. Had they attacked BEFORE the manna had been given, I suppose that Israel would have despaired for lack of strength to fight. This is what Y’hovah referred to in our Torah passage. Amalek came up against the stragglers, usually the old or injured who were least likely to put up a vigorous fight. It is a particularly cowardly way to fight, something like the rotten Amalekites who struck down the Israeli family in their sleep 3 years ago – including the 4-month old infant girl. That little girl looked just like my grandson Micah did at her age. Of course, all babies look pretty much alike – Winston Churchill, sans cigar. But that fact should drive the point home to each of us who is a parent or grandparent (hard to be the latter without being the former) that the scum that perpetrated that cowardly attack truly deserve to die an ignominious death.

Here’s what Y’hovah has to say about Amalek after the battle at Rephidim:

14 And Y’hovah said unto Moshe, Write this a memorial in a book, and rehearse in the ears of Yehoshua: for I will utterly put out the remembrance of Amalek from under heaven. 15 And Moses built an altar, and called the name of it Y’hovah-Nissi: 16 For he said, Because Y’hovah hath sworn Y’hovah war with Amalek from generation to generation. [Shemoth 17.14-16]

In light of Moshe’s words in Ex.17, it looks like the promise to ‘utterly put out the remembrance of Amalek from under heaven’ is a prophecy for the end of days.

Besides king Agag, whom we’ll see in a few minutes for our haftarah reading and study today, who else of prominence in Israel’s history was an Amalekite?  The first name that comes readily to mind is Haman (p-tui), a distant son of Agag (Esther 3.1), which is kind of topical since it is Purim time [this Tuesday evening, the 19th]. 

And he thought scorn to lay hands on Mordecai alone; for they had shewed him the people of Mordecai: wherefore Haman sought to destroy all the Jews throughout the whole kingdom of Ahasuerus, the people of Mordecai. (Esther 3:6)

Is this not the Moslemist creed today? To the Moslemist, the only Satan greater than the United States is Israel. Please hear this, because it could very well tell you a person’s character. If a person sees Israel or Jews as the greatest evil on earth, an evil that needs to be wiped off the earth and their very memory removed from the earth, think ‘Amalekite spirit’. In that light, you can see that the spirit of Amalek and the spirit of Esav/Edom are one and the same – haSatan, the adversary of Y’hovah. Isn’t it interesting that the Amalekite and the Israelite are of diametrically opposed spirits, Israel of Y’hovah, the Spirit of Liberty and Amalek of Allah, Y’hovah’s adversary, the spirit of conquest and domination? I think the Enemy really thinks he stands a chance BECAUSE Y’hovah will not force compliance on his children, like haSatan does on his. Q&C

1Sam.15.1-21 – It was time for Israel to do Y’hovah’s will with Amalek, to thoroughly remove even his memory from the earth. And that is the instruction Y’hovah gave through Schmu’el – nothing that drew breath was to live in all of Amalek. Sha’ul numbered his troops – not really a census, so no need to pony up the ½ shekel for the Temple. Why the differentiation between 200K footmen and 10K men of Yehudah? Were the footmen all from Ephraim? Were the Yehudim mounted? Perhaps the Yehudim were all captains? So there are 210K soldiers of Israel to go against Amalek. Sha’ul wisely told the Kenites to get out of Dodge, so the innocent would not be condemned with the guilty. The Kenites had NOT done to Israel what Amalek was being condemned for.

“Utterly destroy” means utterly destroy. Nothing of what Y’hovah told Sha’ul to destroy was to remain. These marching orders were clear and concise. There was no room for asking questions or creating loopholes. When Sha’ul started the smiting, he kept it going until he got almost to the border with Egypt. I think this may have been in the area we now know as “the Gaza Strip”. It was here that Amalek was soundly defeated and everyone but Agag (and presumably his children) was killed. Now that ONE exception would come back to haunt the Israelites in their captivity when Ahasuerus (Artaxerxes) of Persia came to power and had as his vice-regent Haman (p’tui), the Agagite, as well as today in the Moslemist hordes. 

Sha’ul and the people spared Agag and the best of the sheep, etc., and WOULD not utterly destroy them. This was not a mere slip, or a pang of conscience at the bloodshed. This was willful disobedience, disguised as reverence to Y’hovah. Sha’ul had become too big for his britches, and the people had decided that they knew better what Y’hovah wanted than he did himself. What it REALLY was was the same kind of thorn in the flesh that Paul had – covetousness. They weren’t coveting what the Amalekites had, but what Israel already had. Paul coveted his position as a Jew, a Pharisee and likely successor to the chief rabbinate of J’lem. That was his motivation in persecuting the Way, I think. As to king Sha’ul and the people in 1Sam.15, why give offerings to Y’hovah out of their own flocks, when these were perfectly good, clean and acceptable (in the people’s eyes) animals to offer to Y’hovah? The answer lies in David’s response to Ornan’s offer of his threshingfloor free of charge in 2Sam.24

And the king said unto Aravna, Nay; but I will surely buy it of thee at a price: neither will I offer burnt offerings unto Y’hovah Elohai of that which doth cost me nothing. So David bought the threshingfloor and the oxen for fifty shekels of silver. (II Samuel 24:24)

As David would not offer that which had cost him nothing to Y’hovah, so should Israel not have been offering someone else’s flocks to Y’hovah. These flocks were NOT theirs to offer as Y’hovah had commanded them to be slaughtered along with all of Amalek. Weren’t these flocks Y’hovah’s to begin with? Had he wanted these animals offered to him, would he not have said so? What they’d done was destroyed the Amalekites’ ‘traif’ [unclean garbage] and kept the good stuff for themselves. 

Y’hovah told Schmu’el that he repented of making Sha’ul king. Had Sha’ul stayed true to the course Schmu’el had started him on, what would have been the result? I think Yehonathan would have made an excellent king of Israel. Schmu’el loved Sha’ul, there can be no doubt, and he had very high hopes for him and his line. Schmu’el interceded for Sha’ul through the night. When Schmu’el arose the next AM from his intercession, he was told that Sha’ul had gone to Gilgal, one of the places in which Schmu’el judged Israel (7.16), so it looks like Sha’ul had no idea that what he’d done was sin, because he drove all those sheep before him to offer them to Y’hovah through Schmu’el. I think haSatan’s spirit of Amalek was already upon him and deluding him. 

But the Ruach haKodesh was upon Schmu’el. When Sha’ul said, “I have performed the mitzvah of Y’hovah” with the accompanying satisfied grin, Schmu’el said, “Then what’s all this bleating and lowing that I hear?”, implying strongly, “You were told to kill everything that breathes in Amalek.” Sha’ul answered (I assume kind of ‘taken aback’ by the condemnatory tenor of Schmu’el’s words), “The people saved the best of Amalek’s animals to offer to Y’hovah?” Schmu’el interrupted the king, knowing that what he said was an excuse. He said, in effect, “Shut up, and LISTEN to what Y’hovah told me last night.” Sha’ul said, “Go ahead.” 

Schmu’el said [Mp], “You were humble once. What happened to the man who I anointed king? Y’hovah sent you out with a simple mission: utterly destroy the Amalekites and their property. Why did you take their property as spoils of war, when you were told to kill all the Amalekites and their field animals that took breath?” But Sha’ul protested [Mp], “I DID exactly what Y’hovah said, and I brought Agag, their king and killed all the Amalekites. It was the PEOPLE who took the spoil to sacrifice it to Y’hovah in Gilgal. That’s what we came here for!” This, as I read this passage, was true, but it was not righteous. Do you see that distinction? What Sha’ul said was true – their motive was to offer all these animals to Y’hovah, not to keep them for themselves. But behind their motive was their covetousness over what they had. Why offer what has cost you time and energy to acquire, when you can offer the fruits of someone ELSE’s labor, which happens to ALSO be theirs as spoils of war? Schmu’el should have changed Sha’ul’s name to ‘Buck’ at this point, because he was so good at passing it. Q&C

Vv.22-34 – To obey is better than sacrifice. Y’hovah didn’t ASK for sacrifice, He commanded the utter destruction of Amalek. If we obey, we have no need to sacrifice anything. And this particular sin was rebellion against the command of Y’hovah, which is exactly the same to Y’hovah as witchcraft. And then trying to excuse it was as bad as Torahlessness and idolatry. Sha’ul and the people had made themselves gods this day. Schmu’el told Sha’ul [Mp], “Since you’ve rejected Y’hovah’s Word, he has rejected you as king.” 

Now that he’d been called out, Sha’ul was remorseful, but the remorse was over his punishment, not that he’d sinned and truly desired repentance. He said in v.24 that he’d transgressed Schmu’el’s words, as if Schmu’el was concerned about people obeying him. I can’t help but think that Schmu’el was getting sicker and sicker of Sha’ul’s fawning and brown-nosing with each word that left his mouth. He actually asked for Schmu’el’s forgiveness and that Schmu’el turn WITH HIM! But who is Schmu’el to forgive Sha’ul’s sin? Sha’ul was completely deceived by the evil spirit; to the point of thinking Schmu’el would turn away from Y’hovah’s commands with him and follow after the spirit he was after. The sin was transgression of Y’hovah’s Word. 

Whosoever committeth sin transgresseth also Torah: for sin is the transgression of Torah (I John 3:4)

Schmu’el could and WOULD not step into Y’hovah’s place and pronounce him guiltless. Schmu’el got it, now. 

As Schmu’el turned away from Sha’ul, Sha’ul grabbed his mantle, the kanaph of his me’il from Hebroot ma’al מעל, ‘to deceive or cover up’ with a cognate of ‘garment’. This MAY have been his tallith Gadol, the skirt of which is ‘kanaph’, the same word translated as ‘wings’ in 

But unto you that fear my name shall the Sun of righteousness arise with healing in his wings; and ye shall go forth, and grow up as calves of the stall. (Malachi 4:2)

The kanaph is the hem of the tallith, as we see in Mat.9:

20 And, behold, a woman, which was diseased with an issue of blood twelve years, came behind, and touched the hem of his garment: 21 For she said within herself, If I may but touch his garment, I shall be whole. 22 But Jesus turned him about, and when he saw her, he said, Daughter, be of good comfort; thy faith hath made thee whole. And the woman was made whole from that hour [Mark edit – that instant].

When Sha’ul grabbed his mantle, it ripped. Ruach used this as an object lesson, “So has the kingdom been rent from you and given to a friend of yours.” Of course, David had yet to meet the king, as far as we know, so Sam is speaking in the ‘prophetic perfect’, as if it had already occurred (it won’t until the NEXT chapter). Schmu’el told Sha’ul that Y’hovah would not repent of this decision. He MAY forgive the sin, but the decision was made and would not be changed. Sha’ul was the last of the Benyamite dynasty in Israel. Yehonathan would not sit on the throne of Israel. The Strength of Israel [v.29] = Mashiyach Yeshua, the right arm of Y’hovah, the Word of Y’hovah, the Lamb of Y’hovah and the Lion of Yehudah. 

In both vv.15 and 30, Sha’ul calls the Almighty, “Y’hovah Elohecha” and not “Y’hovah Elohenu”. The distinction is really quite glaring. Sha’ul did not worship Y’hovah in spirit and truth, but in the flesh. Schmu’el knew that Sha’ul would not carry out the Word of Y’hovah in regard to Agag, perhaps out of fear that if he raised his sword against a king, it might portend the same for him. So Schmu’el had Agag brought before him. Agag, the ever-jovial tyrant, says “Hey! Sam! Good to see you! Put her there, old chum!” So Schmu’el did – he put his sword about 2½ feet deep into Agag’s chest and sliced him into pieces. Maybe he did the same thing tradition says Shem did to Nimrod, and sent his pieces all over the known world as a warning to fear Y’hovah and NOT men. So, Schmu’el went his way to Ramah and Sha’ul to Giveah, and never in this world would the twain meet again. Q&C

Tehellim 140 – Do not vv.1-2 speak of conditions in American government: indeed, MOST human governments of late? It seems that if America is not engaged in a war, she is looking for an excuse to go to war. The American government already has military men stationed in over 190 nations to combat ‘terrorism’. Is it any wonder that many people see the American government as the greatest terror threat in the world? Is it not possible that they see America as a fulfillment of v.3 (Selah – stop and consider that): forked tongues and poisonous words that weave a web of deceit that can easily take in the unwary or unscrupulous? Please notice that after David considered v.3, he immediately asked Y’hovah to keep him safe from those adders and spiders. All of vv.4&5 amplify v.3 and then David stops to consider it all again. A gin, in the way the word is used in KJV, is a snare for catching game. After considering the wickedness of those who arrayed themselves against him, David calls on Y’hovah to shema his voice and his requests, and asks his guidance and protection from his enemies and their gins. By the way, another definition of ‘gin’ is a device that supplements human strength to multiply the effectiveness of work done, like the ‘cotton-gin’ [probably short for ‘engine’] of Eli Whitney.

In vv.9-11, David gets down to specific imprecations against his enemies; that they be entangled in their own words, that they get burned by their own devices, and fall into the pits they’d set for him. The wicked spirits that drive these violent men will eventually turn on them, overthrow them, and tear them to pieces. Then in vv.12-13, David shows that his trust in Y’hovah will be his strength and assurance; that Y’hovah will take up the cause of his righteous men who are afflicted by the wickedness in the world. Remember that ‘afflicted’ and ‘poor’ (v.12) are references to exile and dispersion from Y’hovah and his land. V.13 shows that even though we may be in dispersion and exile, if we are after his heart, desire to be righteous, and exalt his Name, he will regather us to himself so that we may dwell with him in his Kingdom. Q&C

2Thes.2.1-5 – The chapter opens with Rav Sha’ul admonishing the Thessalonians about what people are saying he said that may be contrary to what he told them when he was with them. Someone had told them that Mashiyach had gathered the dispersed of Israel and they were ‘Left Behind’ – he’d forgotten about them. So Paul had to do some damage control. Recent news has been pretty bad, and I take all the news in the world as warnings of judgment from Y’hovah that has the purpose of causing his people, both Jew and gentile, Yehudah and Ephraim, male and female, bond and free, to repent of going our own ways and to turn back to His Way. Recent world events should NOT be causing us to fear that he is not faithful to us, but is evidence that he IS faithful to his Word and that, if we will walk in it, he will also be faithful to keep his promises to us. What we need to remember is that, even if this is marking the beginning of the Great Tribulation, these are but the beginning of birth pangs. There will be about 3½ years of sorrows to follow and they will get worse and worse until Mashiyach bursts through the clouds to cut short the days of judgment before ALL life is destroyed. The Thessalonians, being very new believers, and not well-grounded in Tanakh, were easily shaken by the twisting of the scriptures perpetrated by Paul’s antagonists – the Iuaidoi/Judaizers/circumcisers. These Pharisees were not so worried about teaching the truth of Tanakh, as in assuring that these gentiles be traditionally proselytized and CCd into Judaism BEFORE being allowed membership in the Netzari kahal. These guys were still mad at Paul for abandoning his enviable place as the chief talmid of Gamaliel and, I think, his possible position as the next chief rabbi of Jerusalem. 

The day of Mashiyach was not ‘at hand’. That phrase means ‘immanent’. He told them not to worry that that day was close or had already happened, but that there were signs that MUST be fulfilled before the Day of Mashiyach was on the horizon. The BIG one that Sha’ul had told them about was the ‘apostasy’, the ‘great falling away’, that had to take place and also the revealing of the ‘man of sin’ [MoS] or ‘son of perdition’ [SoP]. I think this is speaking of the anti-Mashiyach [A-M]. Anti can mean against, but it can also mean counterfeit – one who LOOKS like Mashiyach, but is NOT. V.3 says he must be revealed, and v.4 tells us what to look for – that which will reveal him. The anti-Mashiyach will go into the Temple of Y’hovah and sit in the Temple, showing himself that he is Elohim. Of ALL the furnishings in the Temple, is there anything on which one can sit? The Menorrah? The Incense Altar? The Table of Showbread? The Ark with the Mercy Seat? UH-OH! There it is. The Mercy Seat, on which the blood of the goat and bull of Yom Kippur is offered. 

How will sitting on the mercy seat show the son or perdition that he is Elohim? Remember when David wanted to bring the Ark up to Jerusalem?

And when they came to Nachshon’s threshingfloor, Uzzah put forth his hand to the ark of Elohim, and took hold of it; for the oxen shook it. And the anger of Y’hovah was kindled against Uzzah; and Elohim smote him there for his error; and there he died by the ark of Elohim. And David was displeased, because Y’hovah had made a breach upon Uzzah: and he called the name of the place Perez-uzzah to this day. (II Samuel 6:6-8)

Now, what should happen if the SoP, MoS, A-M actually sits on the mercy seat? Well, if history were to repeat itself, he should be struck dead on the spot. If he wasn’t killed on the spot like Uzzah was, this would be a powerful witness to the deity of Anti-Mashiyach for those who are not intimately familiar with prophetic scripture, wouldn’t it? 

Of course, the glory had long since departed the mercy seat:

Then the glory of Y’hovah departed from off the threshold of the house, and stood over the cherubims.19 And the cheruvims lifted up their wings, and mounted up from the earth in my sight: when they went out, the wheels also beside them, and stood at the door of the east gate of Y’hovah’s house; and the glory of the Elohim of Israel over them above. (Ezekiel 10:18,19)

23 And the glory of Y’hovah went up from the midst of the city, and stood upon the mountain which on the east side of the city. (Ezekiel.11.23)

Ruach haKodesh left the Temple and never returned until it came in the body of Yeshua haMoshiach ben Yoseph, but never took up its proper place between the cheruvim then. Anti-Mashiyach will take that seat, if my guess is right, based on our passages in Yechezkel, and here in 2Thes.2. Ruach will return to the Millennial Temple in the person of Yeshua ha Mashiyach ben David. Q&C

Vv.6-12 – So, “what withholdeth”? The canned Xian response is, ‘The Holy Ghost’, but I think that’s forcing a meaning on the text. What is the purpose of that which withholds, unless it is ‘that he might be revealed in his time’? I think it’s the ‘mystery of iniquity’ that is holding back the revelation of MoS, SoP, AM, because that is the most natural flow of the letter. Why would the mystery of iniquity be withholding the revelation of AM? Thinking out loud, here. Iniquity = Torahlessness. Perhaps the refusal of the apostates to consider Torah relevant to them makes it unnecessary for the AM to be revealed. Maybe haSatan hasn’t needed to reveal himself in man by lying wonders, signs and spiritual power because the church has made iniquity a watchword of what they call faith, which is really just an excuse to live in disobedience to Y’hovah. This shouldn’t be seen as an indictment of the whole church, but definitely it is for most, if not all, of the ‘pop-culture’ church that’s on TV, the web and radio that I’ve seen. Now that some of the church is coming out from among them, becoming separate and refusing to touch the unclean things, haSatan will have to show some miraculous events at the hands of his personal Beast and False Prophet (who you will remember I think are the counterfeit of Y’hovah, Moshe and Aharon) to keep the church complacent. 

Are vv.8-9 saying that Yeshua’s coming is waiting for haSatan’s revelation of power? The word ‘after’ MAY mean ‘in accord with’ or ‘seeking’, as in ‘after my own heart’, or it could be a time reference. If it is a time reference Yeshua will not come until after haSatan shows his power by the unrighteous deceit of the Beast (MoS, SoP, AM – all designations of this Amalekite spirit; haSatan) and the False Prophet, and that is exactly what we see in Rev.13-19. Them that perish are those who believe the deceitful power of haSatan is actually the working of Y’hovah. And Y’hovah will allow them to believe that lie because they have no love of Torah, which IS the Truth of Y’hovah. The fact that they do not love Y’hovah’s Torah is why Y’hovah will make the working a haSatan look truly miraculous, perhaps so that even HE thinks he can work miracles like Y’hovah can. When you know that you are a charlatan, but begin to believe that the illusions you perform are really spiritual power, you are the most deceived of all. I think it may be true that even haSatan will believe he has creative power because of the strong delusion Y’hovah sends into the earth – otherwise, why would he have any idea that he has a chance to defeat Yeshua and his Abba in the ultimate Gog uMagog rebellion at the end of the Millennium? Strong delusion indeed!

Vv.13-17 – Do you see that Y’hovah has chosen all his children from the beginning to salvation through setting us apart by his Ruach and the accompanying love of the truth – his Torah? If you have no love of the Truth, you can pretty well be assured that you have no spiritual life in you. If that is your situation, turn from your wicked ways, abandon your iniquity and turn to the Living Torah of Truth, Y’hovah Yeshua haMashiyach, to walk in the same manner that he walked while he lived on this earth – in complete submission to his Father by the leading of his Ruach haKodesh. V.14 says he called us to salvation by ‘our gospel’ or ‘preaching’, to be to the kavod, glory, of our Master Yeshua haMashiyach.  In v.15, Paul makes mention of ‘the Commandment’ that they were taught. Paul did not have time in Thessalonica to teach them Talmud/Mishnah traditions. He was only there for 3 weeks, so they got a crash course in Ex.20 and some specific commands that came under the 10 ‘outline headings’, I’m sure. This is the 2nd letter we have in our possession, but there is evidence of a possible 3rd letter to Thessalonica. In his closing to this chapter, Sha’ul gives them more comfort which is what he has tried to do throughout. They had heard from some CCers that Mashiyach had already returned and left them, which is what Paul started out to try to calm. In comforting them, he gave us a pretty brilliant treatise on what MUST happen before AM is revealed, which occurs, according to the rest of scripture about 3-3½ years before Mashiyach comes at the end of this age. And they can take consolation in the fact that they love Y’hovah’s truth and walk in it, and so ARE established in every Word of Torah and in their performance of it as evidence of the same. BTW, IF AM, MoS, SoP is revealed THIS year, it MAY happen on 15 April [OOO! Tax day], or 10 Aviv, the anniversary of Yeshua’s entry into J’lem on the back of a donkey [just to complete the counterfeit]. Q&C

End of Shabbat Bible Study