Today we finish the book of Numbers or B’Midbar by reading two portions of scripture. In these readings we will see many things that still speak to us today. In Masa’ei we read about the setting of boundaries for each tribe. G-d laid out exactly where each tribe would settle and told them they were responsible to cleanse to the land of its former inhabitants. They were told to destroy the idols and high places of the former inhabitants.
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.
Naso (Take) Numbers/B’midbar 4:21-7:89
Haftorah Reading: Judges 13:2-25
Messianic Scripture John 7:53-8:11, Acts 21:17-32
This week we read the portion named Naso. When you read this portion you will find it filled with details of the gifts brought by each family head. However, buried in these details we read the verses laying out a prayer. This prayer was given by G-d to Moshe to be used by the priests to speak over the people. This is what I want us to spend our time on today. The verses are found in Numbers 6:22-27.
Torah Portion: Naso (Take) B’midbar (Numbers) 4:21-7:89
Haftorah Readings: Judges 13:2-25
Tonight we read and study the longest Torah portion of the year. It contains many subjects we could spend hours studying. However, tonight we will only look at two or three topics that I think will give all of us a deeper insight into spiritual principles that can help us in our life.
First, I want to start with Numbers 5:6-7. In these verses we read the process to be taken when we have sinned. In verse 7 we read, “Then they shall confess their sin which they have done.” Let’s talk about this for a moment. We are to speak out loud our confession to G-d. Why do we have to verbalize our words of remorse and confession of guilt before G-d? He knows our every thought and action. So why are we to speak it out loud? Maybe the point of speaking our confession out loud is for our own benefit. When we speak the words out loud they become more real to us, more intense. The sin is no long just in our memory but the words have been spoken. I believe when we speak the words out it cannot be easily swept under the rug. We can’t pretend it didn’t happen. The sin becomes more real to us. It causes us to consider just how we could have done such a thing. Our actions are out in the light. We can look at our actions more clearly.
Torah Portion: Shoftim (Judges) D’varim(Deut.) 16:18-21:9
Haftorah Reading: Isaiah 51:12-52:12
Tonight we read a Torah portion filled with many different commandments and situations. I want us to take a few minutes and see what we might discern from several of these verses. I also want us to remember these scriptures form the foundation to what we read in the New Testament and should give us a deeper, more complete understanding of what we read there. My goal as a teacher is to always better equip each of us to grow deeper in our faith as G-d’s grafted in ones.
Torah Portion: Hayei Sarah (Sarah’s life) B’Resheet (Gen.) 23:1-25:18
HafTorah: I Kings 1:1-31
Today, in this Torah section we read of the death of both Avraham and Sarah. Yet the name of the portion is, “Life of Sarah.” What do we learn from this? Death comes to us all but it is only a door to the world to come. What is really of importance is how we live – what defines our lives? How are our days spent? In this section of Torah we get a hint of how both of these people lived. Of Sarah we read these were the years of Sarah’s life in verse one. Back in Genesis 18:11 we read of both Sarah and Avraham, “entered their days.” This phrase is translated in English as advanced in years. Think of it as entering your home. A better translation would be, they connected with each moment and held it close. As we would ay today they were totally “there.” Wherever and with whom ever, they were in the moment. They had many hardships in their life but they, in the midst of it all held on to G-d and His promises. They were not “under the circumstances,” but were able to rise above everything life brought to them. They fully entered each day.