Torah Portion: Matot (Tribes) & Masa’ei (Stages) (Bamidbar) Numbers 30:2-36:13
HafTorah: Jeremiah 1:1-2:28
NT Matt 5:33-37; James 4:1-12
This week we finish the book of Bamidbar (Numbers) by looking at the last two portions of the book. We are also in the third week of mourning marked by the 17th of Tammuz which commemorates the day when the Romans broke through the walls of Jerusalem and ending with the fast day of 9th of Av which was the day the Romans burned Herod’s Temple. The sages say this catastrophe occurred because of brotherly hatred where the religious hierarchy was caught up in arguing and fighting among themselves. This fighting spread to the people causing them to fight among themselves more than fighting with the Romans. This can be tied into our current Torah sections of oaths and vows found in Numbers 30:2-3. Here we see the importance of being true to our word. If we make a vow or oath using G-d as our witness, we are to do all that proceeds out of our mouth. There are a lot of examples of oaths and vows in scripture. Genesis 21:31 Abraham and Avimelech made an oath at Beersheva. In Genesis G-d takes an oath to bless Avraham. He swears by His own name. In Hebrews 6:16 we read where an oath given was the end of every dispute. The point being we are to be truthful people. We are required to keep our word even if it costs us something or is embarrassing to us. Nothing but the truth is expected from G-d people. The New Testament takes this further in that it teaches we should be so honest that our yes or no should be seen by those around us as sufficient. No further word should have to be given.