Haftorah Reading: Judges 13:2-25
This afternoon we study a very important Torah portion. At first glance Naso seems to be a portion of disconnected subjects. We read the account of the Levitical families of Gershon and Merari and their tasks to carry part of the Mishkan when the Israelites journeyed from place to place. We read of the sota or the wife whose husband became jealous and accused her of being unfaithful. We also read of the laws of the Nazarite. Next is the priestly blessing. This prayer has been used by faiths other than Judaism. It is the oldest prayer in the world still being used today. This prayer is followed by a listing of the gifts brought by the princes of each tribe at the dedication of the Mishkan.
Torah Portion: Mishpatim (Judgements) Sh’mot/Ex. 21:1-24:18
Haftorah Reading: Jeremiah 34:8-22; 33:25-26
Today we read and study together the Torah portion Judgements. This is usually not one of the most gripping portions we read during the year. In this portion we read more than fifty laws covering a wide range of subjects. I would like for you to consider how we as believers in Yeshua consider the issue of laws found throughout the scripture. Have you ever heard, “Why study all these laws, we as believers are under grace now. Laws are the opposite of grace. Since we are believers in Yeshua there is no reason for us to be concerned with all these laws we read in the Torah.”
: Ki Tetze (When You Go Out) D’Varim (Deut.) 21:10-25:19
Haftorah Readings: Isaiah (Yesh’yahu) 54:1-10
Our Torah portion this week contains more commandments than other portions. It seems like Moshe, knowing his time was limited, was trying to do all he could to prepare these people before they crossed over the Jordan and entered their inheritance. These commandments cover a wide range of subjects starting with how to deal with a captive woman and how to handle a rebellious son.
Torah Portion: Balak (Numbers) 22:2-25:9
HafTorah: Micah 5:6-6:8
Tonight we study one of the most perplexing scriptures of the year. We read of a man Bilam, a seer who is hired to curse Israel. In the verses we read where he asks G-d about this job that has been offered to him, whether he is free to do this or not. In the course of a few verses we read where first G-d says don’t go, later He says go. Then when he does go G-d is very angry with him. What are we to make of this?
Torah Portion: Pinchas B’midbar (Numbers) 25:10-30:1
HafTorah: I Kings 18:46-19:21
Tonight we read the Torah portion Pinchas. The incident which began last week ends in the opening verses of this week’s portion. We read where Pinchas is rewarded for his actions with a covenant of peace and an everlasting priesthood. All of this brings up questions. How would you describe Pinchas? Fanatic might come to mind. How do we normally look at fanatics? We don’t think positively of them especially when they are religious fanatics. We have all heard or been taught that religious fanaticism is to blame for much of the evil in the world today, and is the underlying cause of many or even every conflict around the globe. Think of ISIS, Boko HaRam, Al Quida to name but a few. And yet here we see it rewarded. How do we reconcile the two? Now think for a bit about Zimri and Kosbi. They may not seem all that strange today. We live in a time when boundaries are being constantly re-examined and changed, sometimes publicly. In the 60’s we had free love, today marriage is fast becoming old fashion or no longer needed.