Torah Portion: Ekev (Because)D’Varim(Deut.) 7:12-11:25
Haftorah Reading: Isaiah 49:14-51:3
Today I want us to look at Deut. 11:7. This verse reads, “Because your eyes are the ones seeing all the great works of the L-rd that He has done.” In the first nine verses of chapter 11 Moshe was speaking directly to the current generation of the children of Israel. They were the ones about to cross over the Jordan to enter the land of Israel. Earlier he had stressed to the people how important it was that they follow G-d’s word, His commandments as they crossed the Jordan.
Haftorah Reading: I Kings 7:40-8:21
Tonight we finish the book of Exodus. Let’s take just a moment and think of how far this book has taken us. We began this book seeing Jacob and his children going down to Egypt. Then we read tonight about the people leaving Egypt behind and beginning their forty year boot camp in the desert. This forty years was school for these former slaves. This time of learning was not just for them but for us as well. Even with all their failures G-d never gave up on them nor does He give up on us. He called them His prized possession. Think of that whenever you fall. Our G-d is a loving G-d and wants the best for each of us. All He requires is our faith and our obedience to follow Him each day.
Today I want us to look at some interesting things about the man called Moshe. I want each of us, as we look at his life, to also use this time to contemplate my question for this week, “Who am I?” I believe we often sell ourselves short with words like, “I’m not anybody special,” or “I’m just an ordinary person.” I pray when we get to the end of this study together your picture of who you are will be changed. We will look at Moshe’s life to give us a picture of how G-d sees us.
Torah Portion: Noah B’resheet/Genesis 6:9-11:32
Haftorah Reading: Isaiah 54:1-55:5
Today we read the second portion from the book of Genesis. In this portion there are many subjects we can cover. I will try to pick two or three for our time together.
To begin, I want to look at Genesis 7:2, 8. In these two verses we see Noah is commanded by G-d to take seven pairs of clean beasts and one pair of unclean beasts. What are we to make of this? Why did G-d specifically tell him to bring seven pairs of clean animals and only one pair of unclean? Remember, this is 400 years before we will see this again appear in Torah in Leviticus chapter 11. In Leviticus the scripture goes into more detail about what animals are clean and which ones are unclean.
Nitzavim(Standing) D’Varim (Deut.) 29:9-30:20
Haftorah: Isaiah 61:10-63:9
I read a very interesting essay about our Torah portion this week. I would like to share with you some of the thoughts that arose from this reading.
What do you believe is the point of our faith? Is it life on earth or death and being in heaven? There is a famous quote from a book about Sherlock Holmes that might help us find an answer to my question. “I draw your attention”, he said to Dr. Watson, “to the curious incident of the dog at night.” “But the dog did nothing at night,” said Watson. “That,” said Holmes, “is the curious incident.” Sometimes to know what a book is about you need to focus on what it does not say, not just on what it does say.
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.”
: Vayigash (And He Approached) B’resheet/Genesis 44:18-47:27
Haftorah Readings: Ezekiel 37:15-28
This week we read of the reunion of the sons of Jacob with their brother Joseph. We also read of the eventual settling of the people in Egypt. There they would spend hundreds of years as slaves before G-d would send Moshe to bring them out and lead them to Israel.
There are many questions that arise in our reading this week. However, we will look at only a couple. I pray we all can grasp how things unfolded in this family’s story and what we can learn from these events. When we read Genesis 45:5-7 we see how Joseph was able to see the hand of G-d in the things that had happened to him over the last years. He understood G-d had a plan and purpose to what he had suffered. G-d always has a purpose, a plan. That plan may involve discomfort or even suffering on our part. Our challenge is to hold on, to be faithful, to continue on and not give up or lose our faith.