Torah Portion: Beha’alotcha(When You Set Up)B’midbar/Numbers 8:1-12:16
Haftorah Reading: Zechariah 2:14-4:7
Today we are studying a portion of scripture that has so much to say to us in our daily walk with the Father. I have several topics to cover, all of which I believe will speak to us. The first has to do with Moses. In this portion we read of the people’s complaints of having only manna to eat. They reminisced about the variety of food they had in Egypt. G-d told Moses He would supply the Israelites with enough meat for a month. In Numbers 11:22 Moshe shared with G-d his doubts that that was possible. G-d’s responded to Moses by asking if the L-rd’s power was limited? In Hebrew, Numbers 11:23 is expressed well, “Has the hand of the L-rd become shortened?” In effect He is reminding Moses how He delivered the people from Egypt, split the sea for them to cross on to dry land, brought them water from a rock and brought mana down each day.
Torah Portion: Shoftim (Judges) D’Varim (Deut.) 16:18-21:9
Haftorah Reading: Isaiah 51:12-53:12
Messianic Scripture Matthew 5:38-42; Acts 3:13-26; I Timothy 5:17-22
Today I want us to look at a couple of scriptures from our Torah portion this week. Much of my material will come from an article I read this week called, “The Mysterious Prophet” from First Fruits of Zion.
In Deut. 18:15 we read, “The L-rd your G-d will raise to you a prophet from your midst, from your brothers, like me, to him shall you listen.” We need to look also at Deut. 34:9-10 where we see the same promise of a prophet to come whom the L-rd knew face to face. So who is this person, this prophet?
Torah Portion: Balak Numbers/B’midbar 22:2-25:9
Haftorah Reading: Micah 5:6-6:8
Messianic Scripture II Peter 1:1-22, Jude 11, Rev. 2:14-15
Today we have some very interesting issues to cover in the next hour. I would like to begin with my question of the week and talk about the reading from the prophet Micah found in Micah 5:1-6:8. Does anyone know why we read from the prophets each Shabbat?
Torah Portion: Pinchas Numbers (B’Midbar) 25:10-30:1
HafTorah: I Kings 18:46-19:21
This week we read the Torah section named Pinchas. In it we read the end of the story from last week where Pinchas stopped the plague of G-d by killing Zimri and Cozbi who were blatantly sinning before G-d. In this weeks section we read where G-d says that Pinchas was zealous with the zeal of G-d. Numbers 25:11. In I Kings 19:10 we see Elijah saying that he was zealous for the L-rd. Because of this use of the word zealous, the Rabbis picked this reading in I Kings 18:46-19:21 to be read along with the Torah portion named Pinchas. What motivated Pinchas to this zeal that he displayed in B’Midbar? I would like to suggest that possibly it could have been his love of G-d and his brothers and sisters who were dying around him because of G-d’s plague.
Torah Portion: Shoftim (Judges) Deut. 16:18-21:9
HafTorah: Isaiah 51:12-52:12
Tonight I want to look at a couple of things from this week’s Torah portion. These will cover the two questions I sent out this week. I would like us to spend a few minutes looking at Deut. 20:19. In my translation it reads, “for the tree of the field is man’s food.” However in Hebrew it reads, “Man is a tree of the field.” So, what are we to make of this? How are we trees of the field? In Psalms 1:3 David compares a righteous man to a tree with fruit and leaves that don’t wither. Why? Because it is connected to its life source – water. How do we not wither and turn brown? We do it by staying connected to our life source – the living G-d who through Yeshua nourishes us daily. And as this tree bears fruit so must we. (John 15:2,6) This can only happen as we stay connected to our source. In fact the Torah says non- fruit bearing trees are to be cut down and used to lay siege to a city. In these verses of John Yeshua says the same things. So we are to be trees who reproduce good fruit, our leaves are to stay green, and our roots should be strong and deep. All of these hearken back to this verse that we looked at tonight.
Weekly Torah Section: Pinchas Numbers 25:10-30:1, HafTorah I Kings 18:46-19:21
This week we pick back up with the saga of Elijah after the conflict on Mt. Carmel with the prophets of Ba’al, his pinnacle of success as a prophet to the northern kingdom. G-d has answered him in a wonderful way. Rain comes, Elijah tells Ahab to hurry home before the rains make it impossible. In verse 46 it says the Hand of G-d was on him and he ran before Ahab. The idea here is that after his victory Elijah was considered part of the king’s entourage now. Ahab included him in the company going before him. So why does he run as soon as Jezebel threatens him two verses later? Maybe his new position gave him a false sense of security, maybe he trusted Ahab to protect him. Is it easy to take our eyes off of G-d as our protector and shield? So Elijah takes his servant and runs to the wilderness – to Beersheva. The wilderness is often used as a place of refuge. Israel, David, Yeshua, all had experiences in the wilderness. It is also a place of revelation. Think what we have said about the word for desert. In Hebrew the word for desert is midbar. To speak is ledaber. The root word is the same in both words. People went to the desert to hear from G-d.
Weekly Torah Section: Tzav (Command) Leviticus 6:8-8:36, Haftorah: Malachi 3:1-4:6
I would like to start with the Torah section, Leviticus 6:8-8:36 and then finish with Malachi 3:1-4:6. The first verse of the Torah section begins with the word, Tzav. In English this word means “Command.” What is interesting is that this word is used rather than some other Hebrew word that would mean to tell or to speak. These words are often used when the person wishes to get across a sense of urgency. Command, on the other hand, seems to say do it now and keep on doing it. So, the question arises why did G-d feel He had to use this word here? Would G-d have doubted the commitment of Aaron and his sons? After all, they were at the top of the religious hierarchy. One thought that carries a hint was that maybe G-d wasn’t worried about the immediate future but as time went on would their attentiveness wane. It is one thing to be excited and committed early in our walk with G-d and another to hold on to that zeal as time goes on. So like Aaron and his sons we are challenged to not lose our fire but to stay close to G-d no matter what we experience in life.
Weekly Torah Section: Vayeshev Genesis 37:1-40:23, Haftorah: Amos 2:6-3:8
Amos lived in the mid 8th century BCE in a small village near Bethlehem named Teoka. There is a modern Jewish settlement by the same name on the site of this ancient village. He delivered his message at Beit El. What importance does Beit El have and who have we read about that also used this place as a platform? Beit El was the place of Jacob’s dream. It was also used by many prophets including Obadiah.