Scriptures for Shabbat:
Torah Reading: Deuteronomy 26:1-29:8
Haftorah Reading: Isaiah 60:1-22
Brit Chadashah Reading: Luke 21-1-4
Within this week's Pasha named Ki Tavo, we find instructions from Moshe telling the elders of Israel to make sure that once they cross the Jordan River, they were to stand up two large stones, coat them with plaster, and then write all the words of Torah on them. Below are those words:
Deuteronomy 27:1 Moses and the elders of Israel charged the people, saying: Observe all the Instruction that I enjoin upon you this day. 2 As soon as you have crossed the Jordan into the land that the Lord your God is giving you, you shall set up large stones. Coat them with plaster 3 and inscribe upon them all the words of this Teaching.
stones are to be a monument and memorial for all to see where Israel
crossed the Jordan to enter the Land. However, they were not just
markers of a passage only; they were markers of a journey that would
continue throughout the history of Israel. They were constant reminders
of a covenant contract that was entered into and reconfirmed just before
Israel entered the land. Israel had forty years to make up their minds
about this covenant. They have seen the hand of Ad-nai work over and
over through those years and as they prepared to cross the Jordan River,
they chose again to live according to Torah. These stones were placed
in the land to show that Ad-nai had kept His word and to remind us even
through today that He expects us to keep our part of the covenant. If we
want His blessings in our lives, then we must choose to love Him with
Scriptures for Shabbat:
Torah Reading: Deuteronomy 21:10-25:19
Haftorah Reading: Isaiah 53:13-54:10
Brit Chadashah Reading: Matthew 22:23-32
this week's Parsha, we have entered into a long list of commandments
that deal with interpersonal relationships and also business
relationships. One of the verses we read is posted below.
1 If you see your fellow's ox or sheep gone astray, do not ignore it; you must take it back to your fellow.
this one verse are a number of things we need to understand and respond
to. First of all, it begins by speaking about if we see our fellow's ox
or sheep which lets us know that as part of a community we need to be
looking out for not only our things but also our neighbor's things. It
goes on to tell us that if we see our neighbor's ox or sheep, we are not
to ignore them. We have a responsibility to not only look out for them,
but if we see them; we need to do something about them. Secondly, if we
see them, we are to return them to their owner. This law or mitzvah
does not just apply to animals, but it really deals with anything that
belongs to our neighbor. We need to keep a watchful eye out for each
other. When we see a neighbor's things, we cannot just ignore them and
hope they are taken care of, but we are to be accountable for our
neighbor's things. Thirdly, when we find something belonging to our
neighbor's position is not really 9/10th of the law. It belongs to them,
and we need to return whatever it is to them. Imagine how our world we
be today if each person took this mitzvah and applied it to their lives.
How different would things be if we went out of our way to preserve and
protect not just. What is ours but also what belongs to our neighbor?
Scriptures for Shabbat:
Torah Reading: Deuteronomy 16:18-21:9
Haftorah Reading: Isaiah 51:12-52:12
Brit Chadashah Reading: Matthew 18:15-20It
is amazing how many places throughout the Torah we find can find
references to Yeshua. This week's Parsha we find one of the clearest
series of verses foretelling Yeshua, we will find. Parsha Shoftim
includes these verses from Deuteronomy 18.
The Lord your God will raise up for you a prophet from among your own
people, like myself; him you shall heed. 16 This is just what you asked
of the Lord your God at Horeb, on the day of the Assembly, saying, "Let
me not hear the voice of the Lord my God any longer or see this wondrous
fire any more, lest I die." 17 Whereupon the Lord said to me, "They
have done well in speaking thus. 18 I will raise up a prophet for them
from among their own people, like yourself: I will put My words in his
mouth and he will speak to them all that I command him; 19 and if
anybody fails to heed the words he speaks in My name, I myself will call
him to account.
Moshe is speaking to Israel about a
prophet who would come that would be from among the people of Israel,
who would have the words of Ad-nai in His mouth, and that rejection of
His words would cause one to be called into account. In other words, a
Prophet was coming and that prophet would speak the word of Ad-nai and
those who reject His words would be held accountable for their reject.
This prophet who was spoken of by Moshe is Yeshua and all those who
reject His words will be held accountable and will be judged by Ad-nai
This should cause us to evaluate our lives to see if we have rejected
any of the words of The Prophet.
This week we are
reading Parsha Re'eh, which is found in Deuteronomy 11:26. The first word in
this verse in both Hebrew and English is "Re'eh" of "See".
This word is different from "Henay" of which is translated
"behold" or "pay attention to." This word is the physical
seeing or viewing as if we are commanded to look directly at something rather
than an idea or thought. For instance, we are told to "behold how good and
pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity." Can we really see
unity, or do we actually see the expression of unity? With the word
"Re'eh", we are in fact seeing the choice offered as if G-D was
presenting a written contract for use to view and choose to enter the agreement
or not to. In these verses, Israel was in fact presented a covenant opportunity
they were to choose either blessings or curses. However, the part I wanted us
to focus on this week is the end of verse 28 which many times is overlooked
because of the powerful words of verse 26. The end of verse 28 says whom you
have not experienced.
26 See, this day I
set before you blessing and curse: 27 blessing, if you obey the commandments of
the Lord your God that I enjoin upon you this day; 28 and curse, if you do not
obey the commandments of the Lord your God, but turn away from the path that I
enjoin upon you this day and follow other gods, whom you have not experienced.
The Children of
Israel were being offered a covenant contract with two options, two choices,
either the G-D of the Torah or "other gods." The end of verse 28
should have made this choice easy for them because they had only experienced
G-D, up until now. This experience has always shown G-D to be faithful and
powerful. Truthfully, we today are presented daily with this same choice. We
are offered the opportunity to walk in blessings or to experience curses. We
have all known, felt and experienced the goodness of Ad-nai! This choice should
be so easy for all of us, but, somehow the unknown seems to tempt us. This week
I really want us to review the faithfulness of Ad-nai in our lives; renew our
commitment to obey His Torah; and walk in His blessings. The old saying
"what you don't know can't hurt you" is not true. Spiritually, what
we have not known cannot only hurt us, but it can bring curses into our lives!
Torah Reading: Deuteronomy
Reading: James 5:7-11
This week's Parsha
begins with the following words as Moshe is restating Ad-nai's promises of a
covenant with Israel.
12 And if you do
obey these rules and observe them carefully, the Lord your God will maintain
faithfully for you the covenant that He made on oath with your fathers: 13 He
will favor you and bless you and multiply you; He will bless the issue of your
womb and the produce of your soil, your new grain and wine and oil, the calving
of your herd and the lambing of your flock, in the land that He swore to your
fathers to assign to you.
In our world today
which has in many ways removed all responsibility on the part of a believer in
Yeshua, these words should make some people rethink their understanding of
Ad-nai's covenant. When we read these words, they should cause us to pause and
look at our lives to see if we are receiving the promises made here. If we are
not receiving them, we should look at our commitment to obey and observe the
things Torah teaches. This is not an issue of redemption, but it surely is an
issue of blessings and provision. If we are not receiving these blessings, it
is not because Ad-nai has run out of blessings, and it isn't because Ad-nai
doesn't want us to receive them, it is only because we are not living according
to the teachings and instructions given by Ad-nai to His people. When we line
up with His Word, He will pour out His blessings upon us.
Torah Reading: Deuteronomy 3:23-7:11
Haftorah Reading: Isaiah 40:1-26
Brit Chadashah Reading: Mark 12:28-34
This week we
read Parsha Vaetchanan, which starts with Deuteronomy 3:23:
pleaded with the Lord at that time, saying, 24 "O Lord God, You who let
Your servant see the first works of Your greatness and Your mighty hand, You
whose powerful deeds no god in heaven or on earth can equal!
all the interactions between Moshe and Ad-nai this conversation is one
of those that we can all relate to. Some conversations between Moshe and
Ad-nai seem to be above our level so to speak. However, I know of very
few believers that have not at some point tried to convince Ad-nai to
change His mind about something in our life. In this text, Moshe is
pleading with Ad-nai hoping that Ad-nai would change His mind and
rescind the punishment that Moshe had received for disobedience. As we
remember Moshe was told to speak to the rock and because of Moshe's
anger and frustration, he beat the rock. This resulted in Ad-nai telling
Moshe he would not lead Israel into the promised land. Now as Moshe is
about to turn over leadership to Yehoshua, he pleads to have a reprieve
of punishment. Like the rest of us when he speaks to Ad-nai he tries
buttering Him up with nice words and praise. The reality is that Ad-nai
could not change His mind because He made a direct statement of what
would happen and as with all of Ad-nai's statements that is truth, and a
change would cause Him to become a liar whom He cannot be. For
thousands of years, men have been disobeying Ad-nai and then trying this
same tactic to reverse the repercussions of our bad choices. We need,
however, to understand that the promises of Ad-nai are always sure, and
we can always depend on Him doing everything that He promises to us. The
real question becomes-- Can He trust us to do the same.
Torah Reading: Deuteronomy 1:1-3:22
Haftorah Reading: Isaiah 1:1-1:27
Brit Chadashah Reading: John 15:1-11
This week we begin to read the last
book of the Torah, Devarim or Deuteronomy. This book is the closing words of
Moshe's life as he is about to turn over leadership of Israel to Joshua.
The Children of Israel had journeyed for forty years together on their way to
the land, on the promise that Ad-nai had made to Avraham. This information is
important for us to know as we begin to read the words from Deuteronomy 1:8-10
which are posted below.
8 See, I place the land at your disposal. Go, take
possession of the land that the Lord swore to your fathers, Abraham, Isaac, and
Jacob, to assign to them and to their heirs after them. 9 Thereupon I said to
you, "I cannot bear the burden of you by myself. 10 The Lord your God has
multiplied you until you are today as numerous as the stars in the sky.
As we read these words, we can miss some of
the context or some of the content if we do not keep them in the correct
perspective. As these words are being said to Israel through Moshe, Ad-nai is
re-enforcing his promises to Israel by reminding them of His promise to Avraham
in a way that was designed to increase their faith. First, he tells them to
take possession of the land which was promised or sworn to Avraham, Isaac, and
Jacob. He does not tell them they have to do anything other than possess it.
Then it goes on to remind them of the promise that the Children of Avraham
would be as many as the stars in the sky. These words which we read today had
to have brought them a burst of faith as a new generation was arising to enter
the land. For us today, it should also increase our faith as we see example
after example of Ad-nai keeping His promises in His word because every promise we see kept only assures us
that He will keep His promises today.
Yeshua, the Spirit of Truth
1Loved ones, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see if they are from God. For many false prophets have gone out into the world.c 2You know the Spirit of God by this—every spirit that acknowledges that Messiah Yeshua has come in human flesh is from God, 3but every spirit that does not acknowledge Yeshua is not from God. This is the spirit of the anti-messiah, which you have heard is coming and now is already in the world. 4You are from God, children, and you have overcome them, because greater is He who is in you than he who is in the world. 5They are from the world, so they speak from the world and the world listens to them. 6We are from God; whoever knows God listens to us, but whoever is not from God does not listen to us. By this we know the Spirit of truth and the spirit of error.
Messianic Jewish Family (2011-06-06). Tree of Life Bible: The New Covenant (Kindle Locations 11643-11651). Destiny Image. Kindle Edition.
Scriptures for Shabbat:
Torah Reading: Numbers 30:2 - 36:13
Haftorah Reading: Jeremiah 2:4-28; 3:4
Brit Chadashah Reading: Matthew 5:33-37; James 4:1-12
This week we read Parsha Mattot, which starts with the following words from Numbers 30:3:
"If a man makes a vow to the Lord or takes an oath imposing an obligation on himself, he shall not break his pledge; he must carry out all that has crossed his lips."
In our society, a man honoring his word has become a rare thing. Politicians regularly make promises that they are certain they will not be able to keep. The vow of marriage "Till death do us part" has become in many cases little more than a cliche which is spoken during a ceremony with no commitment attached to the words at all. Parents promise their children things as a means of getting them to behave with no intention of fulfilling those promises. However, it is clear from Scripture that Ad-nai not only desires us to keep our word, but commands us that we should carry out all that crosses our lips. We as believers are being formed into the image of Ad-nai which has been distorted by sin. Ad-nai has not been distorted just his image or reflection, to mankind. The Torah in these verses is trying to clear up one of those distortions, remembering that Numbers also tells us in 23:19 that Ad-nai is not a man whom he should lie. One of the distinctions of a believer in Yeshua has to be our commitment to truth. Our commitment should be to fulfill our words when given. When we understand this instruction, we will better guard our words and commitments, and we will begin to be re-created in the image of Ad-nai.
Torah Reading: Numbers 25:10 - 30:1
I Kings 18:46 - 19:21
Brit Chadasha Reading:
This week we are reading through Parsha Pinchas the first verses are posted below.
And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying , 11 Phinehas, the son of
Eleazar, the son of Aaron the priest, hath turned my wrath away from the
children of Israel, while he was zealous for my sake among them, that I
consumed not the children of Israel in my jealousy. 12 Wherefore say ,
Behold, I give unto him my covenant of peace:
I wanted to point out a couple of things from this text. First, Pinchas
(Phinehas) was zealous for Ad-nai's sake and as a result of his
zealousness, he acted to protect Israel from the sin that had entered
the Nation. The second thing we notice is that the actions of Israel had
caused Ad-nai to become jealous. The third thing we notice is the
resulted blessing Pinchas received was a covenant of peace from Ad-nai.
The reason I wanted to point out these three things are because a
pattern is presented that is consistent for those who serve Ad-nail. The
pattern is this, when Israel strays from Torah, Ad-nai will raise up
someone who is zealous for Torah for Ad-nai's sake and when this happens
Ad-nai blesses that person with peace. Now in order to qualify, the
reason for the actions must be zealousness for Ad-nai and not for our
own benefit or notoriety. The resultant peace will not only be peace in
the way we think, but rather wholeness or completeness. The question for
this week is, "As we are zealous for Ad-nai's sake and when we see the
way the people of Ad-nai have strayed from Torah, what are we going to
do about it?"
Torah Reading: Numbers 22:2-25:9
Haftorah Reading: Micah 5:6-6:8
Brit Chadasha Reading: Jude 1:11, Rev. 2:14-15
week we are reading through Parsha Balak and the appearance of Bilam in
Torah. This section of Scripture is very powerful and interesting in
light of Spiritual warfare, especially to those who are believers in
Yeshua. As we read our text, we find that Israel has been victorious in
their journey to the point that King Balak of Moav has become very
fearful of Israel. He contracts Bilam to speak a curse over Israel. The
events that follow end up with Bilam speaking a blessing over Israel
instead of the curse he was contracted to speak. This blessing that
Bilam spoke is not only part of our reading this week, but it is also
part of the liturgy we pray on Shabbat. Ma tovu ohalekha Ya'akov,
mishk'notekha Yisra'el. Numbers 24:5 "How lovely are your tents,
Ya'akov; your encampments, Isra'el! This is what has happened here is
that Bilam was not able to curse Israel because the Spirit of G-D
directed him not to. Because of the unity of Israel being joined
together under the authority of the word of G-D the attack of the enemy
was stopped and turned around into a blessing. There is a key to walking
out our faith in Yeshua. If we walk in unity of faith and according to
the Word of G-D, the attacks of the enemy against us will be turned
around, and we will have victory and blessings.