Monday, September 19, 2011

Ponderings of the Pentateuch #51-52 Sep. 24, 2011

RaYBaSH’s Ponderings of the Pentateuch
Parashah # 51: Nitzavim “You are standing”
Devarim (Deuteronomy) 29:9-31:30
By: Rabbi Yehudah ben Shomeyr

Deut. 29:9-12 Keep therefore the words of this covenant, and do them, that ye may prosper in all that ye do. Ye stand this day all of you before the LORD your God; your captains of your tribes, your elders, and your officers, with all the men of Israel, Your little ones, your wives, and thy stranger that is in thy camp, from the hewer of thy wood unto the drawer of thy water: That thou shouldest enter into covenant with the LORD thy God, and into his oath, which the LORD thy God maketh with thee this day:
Is air important? Yep, if you have a pulse, air is probably THE most important thing out there, even before food and water. You can get along for days without food and water but you cannot go minutes without air. Is air only important to aristocrats or the rich? Nope, even if you’re a janitor at Grand Central Station, a convict on death row or a bum living in a cardboard box on the corner of 5th and Broadway; you need air, it’s for YOU! Everyone in the here and now needs and has a right to air. What about the unborn or better yet, what about the generation that is not even a twinkle in their father’s eye? Yep, they too need, must have and require air. Why all the drama about air you may ask? Well, because the Torah is like air; no matter who you are; a Hebrew baby that still breasts feeds, a gentile or a slave, the Torah is for YOU (Deut.29:11)! Even these who are yet to be born, the Torah is for everyone!

Deut. 29:14-15 Neither with you only do I make this covenant and this oath; But with him that standeth here with us this day before the LORD our God, and also with him that is not here with us this day:

If you asked a baby to tell you what air is, what it is made up of, how it works and how our body processes it and benefits from it, could he do it? No, he slobbers, defecates all over himself and babbles. There’s no way a baby could even begin to tell you the most elementary thing about air. But does the baby benefit from air regardless if it knows anything about it? Of course!

Like air, you don’t have to understand it to benefit from it and so when the Covenant of Torah was read and renewed by the people. G-d asked babies to be there. G-d also said that those who could not benefit from it right now nonetheless will eventually.

Deut. 32:46-47 tells us (like air) The Torah is ones life! The Torah is G-d’s Word (John 1) and G-d is inseparable and indistinguishable from His Word and thus G-d is Life (Deut. 29:20) and His Word are One!

Yeshua the Living Word, the Living Torah (John 1) the salvation of Israel and the world (Lk. 2:30-31, Matt. 1:21, Jn. 3:16, Lk. 2:32) prays that He, the Living Word, the Living Torah be beneficial to them that believe on Him and those not yet born who would believe on Him.

John 17:6, 9a, 20-21 I have manifested thy name unto the men which thou gavest me out of the world: thine they were, and thou gavest them me; and they have kept thy word… I pray for them… Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me through their word; That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that thou hast sent me.

Yeshua said:

Matt. 5:17-20 Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil. For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled. Whosoever therefore shall break one of these least commandments, and shall teach men so, he shall be called the least in the kingdom of heaven: but whosoever shall do and teach them, the same shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven. For I say unto you, That except your righteousness shall exceed the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, ye shall in no case enter into the kingdom of heaven.

Isaiah said:

Isa. 61:11-62:2 For as the earth bringeth forth her bud, and as the garden causeth the things that are sown in it to spring forth; so the Lord GOD will cause righteousness and praise to spring forth before all the nations. For Zion's sake will I not hold my peace, and for Jerusalem's sake I will not rest, until the righteousness thereof go forth as brightness, and the salvation thereof as a lamp that burneth. And the Gentiles shall see thy righteousness, and all kings thy glory: and thou shalt be called by a new name, which the mouth of the LORD shall name.

So G-d’s Torah, His Written Word and G-d’s Messiah, His Living Torah, His Living Word is, like air, for EVERYONE!

Shabbat Shalom and Shavuah Tov!
-- Rabbi Yehudah

RaYBaSH’s Ponderings of the Pentateuch
Parashah # 52: Va’yelech: “And he went”
Devarim (Deuteronomy) 29:9-31:30
By: Rabbi Yehudah ben Shomeyr

In the past I have dealt with the obvious passages dealt with in this Torah portion, such as having courage, Moses’ song, etc. This time around I want to deal with things that are usually left out.

Deut. 31:12-13 Gather the people together, men and women, and children, and thy stranger that is within thy gates, that they may hear, and that they may learn, and fear the LORD your God, and observe to do all the words of this law: And that their children, which have not known any thing, may hear, and learn to fear the LORD your God, as long as ye live in the land whither ye go over Jordan to possess it.

Last Torah portion we discovered how Torah is like air and is beneficial to everyone, regardless of ones age, status, ethnicity or understanding and we see in this Torah portion this fact is reiterated again as well as the importance to pass the Torah on to each generation. Joel 2:15-27 reiterates that Torah and repentance and returning to Torah is for everyone when one strays from the narrow path.

Deut. 31:2 And he said unto them, I am an hundred and twenty years old this day; I can no more go out and come in: also the LORD hath said unto me, Thou shalt not go over this Jordan.

Moses dies on his birthday at the age of 120! We have a saying, a well wish, a blessing in Judaism on peoples birthdays, “May you live to be 120!” We desire others to be blessed as Moses was who was still healthy and youthfully vigorous at 120 as at 20! Deut. 31:2 reminds me of…

Gen. 6:3 And the LORD said, My spirit shall not always strive with man, for that he also is flesh: yet his days shall be an hundred and twenty years.

In Micah 7:18-20, Micah talks about G-d’s mercy and compassion and though Moses couldn’t enter the Promised Land He nonetheless Gloryland (Heaven) on his birthday.

Deut. 31:4 And the LORD shall do unto them as he did to Sihon and to Og, kings of the Amorites, and unto the land of them, whom he destroyed.

Because these kings were powerful and the descendants of the paranormal, human-demonic hybrid giants, this pep-talk reminder is brought up again and again to encourage Israel, belay fear and doubt and remind them of their past accomplishments through Him (Deut. 1:4, 2:26-3:11, 4:46-47, Num. 21:23-35, 32:33).

Deut. 31:16-18, 29 And the LORD said unto Moses, Behold, thou shalt sleep with thy fathers; and this people will rise up, and go a whoring after the gods of the strangers of the land, whither they go to be among them, and will forsake me, and break my covenant which I have made with them. Then my anger shall be kindled against them in that day, and I will forsake them, and I will hide my face from them, and they shall be devoured, and many evils and troubles shall befall them; so that they will say in that day, Are not these evils come upon us, because our God is not among us? And I will surely hide my face in that day for all the evils which they shall have wrought, in that they are turned unto other gods… For I know that after my death ye will utterly corrupt yourselves, and turn aside from the way which I have commanded you; and evil will befall you in the latter days; because ye will do evil in the sight of the LORD, to provoke him to anger through the work of your hands.

G-d told Abraham about the Egyptian slavery (Gen. 15:13-14_ and G-d told Moses about the Babylonian and Assyrian exiles. Hosea gives us the solution for the slavery and exiles.

Hosea 14:1 O Israel, return unto the LORD thy God; for thou hast fallen by thine iniquity.

Deut. 31:6 Be strong and of a good courage, fear not, nor be afraid of them: for the LORD thy God, he it is that doth go with thee; he will not fail thee, nor forsake thee.

Hebrews 13:5-8 Let your conversation be without covetousness; and be content with such things as ye have: for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee. So that we may boldly say, The Lord is my helper, and I will not fear what man shall do unto me. Remember them which have the rule over you, who have spoken unto you the word of God: whose faith follow, considering the end of their conversation. Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and to day, and for ever.

Shabbat Shalom and Shavuah Tov!
-- Rabbi Yehudah