Tuesday, April 30, 2013


“Today is thirty-six days which are five weeks and one day of the Omer.”

Theme of the Week: Yesod - Intimacy
Theme of the Day: Chesed – Loving-kindness
Overall Theme: The Loving-kindness of His Intimacy

John 4:5-10 Then cometh he to a city of Samaria, which is called Sychar, near to the parcel of ground that Jacob gave to his son Joseph. Now Jacob's well was there. Jesus therefore, being wearied with his journey, sat thus on the well: and it was about the sixth hour. There cometh a woman of Samaria to draw water: Jesus saith unto her, Give me to drink. (For his disciples were gone away unto the city to buy meat.) Then saith the woman of Samaria unto him, How is it that thou, being a Jew, askest drink of me, which am a woman of Samaria? for the Jews have no dealings with the Samaritans. Jesus answered and said unto her, If thou knewest the gift of God, and who it is that saith to thee, Give me to drink; thou wouldest have asked of him, and he would have given thee living water.

In Yeshua’s Day and culture men and women who were not married or were not related to each other never just “shot the breeze” or “chewed the fat.” Dialogue was considered intimate and was only reserved for same sex, spouse or close relatives of the opposite sex, like a sister.

So here is the woman some would consider, damaged goods, trash, a floozy, a hussy. She was an outcast of sorts even among her own in so much that she had to get water from the well at an odd time of the day so she would be harassed by the locals because of her reputation. And here we see Yeshua, a Rabbi striking up a conversation with her. Not only was she a woman of ill-repute, but a half-breed Jew, a Samaritan and to speak to such a person with a complexity of labels was taboo. Yet by dialogue, as we already established was a form of intimacy; He spoke to her about spiritual matters, instead of degrading her and sending her away displayed Messiah’s loving-kindness in an intimate way.

The Traditional Psalm to read is Psalm 94:12-33:

12Blessed is the man whom thou chastenest, O LORD, and teachest him out of thy law;
 13That thou mayest give him rest from the days of adversity, until the pit be digged for the wicked.
 14For the LORD will not cast off his people, neither will he forsake his inheritance.
 15But judgment shall return unto righteousness: and all the upright in heart shall follow it.
 16Who will rise up for me against the evildoers? or who will stand up for me against the workers of iniquity?
 17Unless the LORD had been my help, my soul had almost dwelt in silence.
 18When I said, My foot slippeth; thy mercy, O LORD, held me up.
 19In the multitude of my thoughts within me thy comforts delight my soul.
 20Shall the throne of iniquity have fellowship with thee, which frameth mischief by a law?
 21They gather themselves together against the soul of the righteous, and condemn the innocent blood.
 22But the LORD is my defence; and my God is the rock of my refuge.
 23And he shall bring upon them their own iniquity, and shall cut them off in their own wickedness; yea, the LORD our God shall cut them off.

“Loving Abba Elohim, help and enable me to be lovingly intimate as Yeshua was, through my words and actions. Especially toward those society and religion frown upon and help me make an everlasting difference in their lives. In the Name of Messiah Yeshua I pray, Ameyn.”

The Tribe of Judah, Levi and the Igbo

The Tribe of Judah, Levi and the Igbo

Rabbi Yehudah "Tochukwu" ben Shomeyr


Judah, thou art he whom thy brethren shall praise: thy hand shall be in the neck of thine enemies; thy father's children shall bow down before thee. Judah is a lion's whelp: from the prey, my son, thou art gone up: he stooped down, he couched as a lion, and as an old lion; who shall rouse him up? The sceptre shall not depart from Judah, nor a lawgiver from between his feet, until Shiloh come; and unto him shall the gathering of the people be. Binding his foal unto the vine, and his ass's colt unto the choice vine; he washed his garments in wine, and his clothes in the blood of grapes: His eyes shall be red with wine, and his teeth white with milk. – Gen. 49:8-12

And this is the blessing of Judah: and he said, Hear, Lord, the voice of Judah, and bring him unto his people: let his hands be sufficient for him; and be thou an help to him from his enemies. – Deut. 33:7

Just as Jews have made their home in exile in virtually every country of the world so too will you find the Igbo. Because of this trait and phenomena the Igbo have often been called, “The Jews of Africa” or “The Jews of Nigeria.”

Jews are made up of the Ancient Southern Kingdom of Israel which was comprised of the Tribes of Judah, Levi and a small portion of Benjamin. They were taken off into Babylonian captivity which eventually ended and some of them decided to stay in Babylon but the majority of them returned to the Land of Israel to rebuild Jerusalem, its walls and the Temple. The descendants of these Jews are who we recognize as the Jewish People today, who now reside on vitually every continent of the world.

Judah and Levi are one of these Tribes that traveled far and wide and can be found wherever Hebrews and or Israelites can be found. It is almost certain Judah can be found among the Igbo People. They likely traveled with Gad’s sons Eri, Areli and Arodi with Levi and Zebulon and others such as the Egyptians and Babylonians who made their way to Nigeria.

Even when the Northern Kingdom of Israel was steeped deep I paganism and idolatry Judah faired not much better, but were nonetheless known as the keepers of custom, culture and traditions of the Hebrew People and even today the Jewish Faith is named after their Tribe.

Because the traditions and customs (Omeana) of the Igbo People parallel that of Judaism in most every way, testifies to the fact that Judah is most certainly among and apart of the Igbo. The Uda clan of Enugu state say they are from the Tribe of Judah.

Another way that Judah ended up in Nigeria is that the students of Babylonian Jewish Rabbi, Abba ben Ibo due to persecution fled to Africa via the Sahara, Nuba and eventually settled in Nigeria.

Some who claim the Ebonites were a faction or splinter group of the Essenes (some being students of descendants of the students of Rabbi Ibo) fled to Africa after the destruction of the Jerusalem Temple in 70 A.D.

Furthermore it is believed by some that Rabbi Ibo and even the Ebonites were black and that the word Ebony comes from the Ebo in Ebonite; Ebo meaning poor in monetarily and implied in a spiritual sense of being wealthy. Many ancient cultures revere the color black and the black man as a symbol of great wisdom and prophetic insight. But were some Jews Black?

It is believed that the handmaids Zilpah and Bilah were Canaanite or half Canaanite, thus from Noah’s son Hamm and therefore black women. Thus the tribes of Israel they bore would have been darker than the Tribes Rachel and Leah birthed. Rachel and Leah, like Jacob came from Noah’s son Shem, the father of the Hebrew and Arab peoples and is believed to be dark, but lighter than Hamm.

Also not that Judah had children by Tamar (Gen. 38) who was a Canaanite woman and therefore, black. King Solomon of Judah whose mother was from Sheba was a black woman and Solomon is rumored to have had a son by the Queen of Sheba. Song of Solomon reveals that Solomon definitely had at least one (albeit more) black wife. Also recall that Moses married a Cushite woman. Cush coming from Hamm and his son Canaan, therefore black and thus establishing black Levites such as is found among the Ethiopian Lemba Tribe who DNA tests prove them to be descendants of Levi, possibly sent back with Queen Sheba and the son her and Solomon was said to have with her.

Finally recall Abraham who married Hagar also believed to be a black Egyptian woman. All Egyptians were black people prior to the Hyksos. Thus the door is blown open wide for there to be plenty of black Jews and Hebrews. In fact, the White Jews and Hebrews may very well be in the minority considering all the Lost Tribes. Not to mention the exiles of Judah and Israel and them having children by peoples of the lands where they had been exiled, some of which were black. The Jews and Hebrews who found themselves in Nigeria intermarried with the indigenous people already occupying Nigeria when Gad’s son Eri and the others from Israel came. And so it is entirely plausible and almost certain that there are Jews of Judah among the Igbo.

Professor O. Alaezi in his book Ibo Exodus says on pages 128-129:

“The Ibo towns and villages are Jewish Item, to start with, is from the Jewish name “Etam” (pronounced as it is written in Hebrew) from the family of Zorathites of the tribe of Judah (see I Chronicles 4:3). There is a counterpart Item town, Itam near Utyo in Akwa Ibom, also pronounced as the original Etam. Our immediate neighbors are also of the same tribe of Judah. Examples. Alayi (see “Alayi” of the tribe of Judah I Chron. 2:31); Ugwueke (of “Eker” of the tribe of Judah – I Chron. 2:27); Edda of “Eldad” (See Numbers 11:27). Akaeze (“Eker Ezer”), and so on. Jewish family names that are still prevalent in Tem include Amaeke (of “Eker), Amukabi (or Umuakabia as written in other parts of Iboland) – of “Abia” I Chron. 3:10); Abieye from ‘Prohet Abieye’, one of the minor Prophets of Israel, Ete from “Ether” – Joshua 15:34), Amabo Okoko (“Akan” I Chron. 1:34). Eleke (“Helek”, - Numbers 6:30); Erinma (of “Eri” – Gen. 46:16); Eke (“Eker”, I Chron. 2:27) Eze (“Ezer”, Neh, 3:19); Offia (“Ophra”, I Chron. 4:13); Ubani (“Uban”, Ezra 2:10) Alaezi (“Eliezer”, Exd. 18:14). Onam or Unam (“Onam” I Chrn. 1:40) Iheaka (“El Iheaka”, one of the attribute nameas of God); Usa (name of person in Okoko Item) from the Hebrew name, Joshua pronounced as Yoshua. ‘J’ is pronounced ‘y’ in Hebrew. We also have Isi or Isi (See “Ishi”, I Chron. 4:20). Examples. Isiosu, Amabo, Okok Item, Umuisi in Igbere, Ishiagu, Isiokpo, Ishi Nnewi, Amichi, Umuichi, etc…”


Simeon and Levi are brethren; instruments of cruelty are in their habitations. O my soul, come not thou into their secret; unto their assembly, mine honour, be not thou united: for in their anger they slew a man, and in their selfwill they digged down a wall. Cursed be their anger, for it was fierce; and their wrath, for it was cruel: I will divide them in Jacob, and scatter them in Israel. – Gen. 49:5-7

And of Levi he said, Let thy Thummim and thy Urim be with thy holy one, whom thou didst prove at Massah, and with whom thou didst strive at the waters of Meribah; Who said unto his father and to his mother, I have not seen him; neither did he acknowledge his brethren, nor knew his own children: for they have observed thy word, and kept thy covenant. They shall teach Jacob thy judgments, and Israel thy law: they shall put incense before thee, and whole burnt sacrifice upon thine altar. Bless, Lord, his substance, and accept the work of his hands; smite through the loins of them that rise against him, and of them that hate him, that they rise not again. – Deut. 33:8-11

Knowing that the Tribe of Levi has been dispersed and scattered amongst all the 12 tribes during the Babylonian and Assyrian Captivities one may wonder, “Are there Levites amongst the Igbos or Gad?” That is a very good and valid question; one we can only speculate on because if Gad did leave prior to the Exodus of Moses, the Levites may not have known or operated in their priestly capacity prior to Adonai’s revelation to them at Sinai, therefore a portion of Levi may not have left with Gad’s son Eri, his brothers and their other companions. If Eri and the others left after the Exodus of Moses it is likely some from Levi did go with them. Either way it is speculated that some of Levi did travel with Gad’s sons because there is a priestly cast among the Igbo that preformed sacrifices and ministered among the people. But this question will remain unresolved until officials come and test for the Cohen Gene in the DNA of the priestly caste of the Igbo. To date I am unaware of any test such as this being performed. But it wouldn’t surprise me at all if the Cohen Gene is found among the Igbos.

Levites not having an inheritance in the Land (Num. 18:21, Deut. 10:8, 18:1, Josh. 13:14, 33) was a Tribe without home except in the Tabernacle/Temple. Thus Levi lived amidst every Tribe of Israel and we see were coveted as personal and household priests (Judges 17). So it is entirely possible for Levites to have traveled with Eri or other Gadites during other Gadite and Israelite migrations throughout history to be found in Nigeria among the Igbo. Perhaps some felt their journey would be blessed if they have a son of Levi with them.

The Nri Priesthood functions in much the same way as the Levitical Priesthood but it is questionable whether the Nri are Levites, seeing as the Nri come from Eri’s son (a Gadite) Menri, that is unless his mother was a Levite, but then again this would not show up in a DNA test because the Cohen Gene is passed down by the father. Perhaps it was Levites that Instructed Mneri and the Nri clan in the Levitical ways. Regardless of Nri being Gadites or Levites, for them to function as Levites it would not surprise me to find Levitical blood somewhere among the Igbo.

Monday, April 29, 2013


“Today is thirty-five days which are five weeks of the Omer.”

Theme of the Week: Hod - Glory
Theme of the Day: Malchut - Majesty
Overall Theme: The Majesty of His Glory

Exodus 19: 16-20 And it came to pass on the third day in the morning, that there were thunders and lightnings, and a thick cloud upon the mount, and the voice of the trumpet exceeding loud; so that all the people that was in the camp trembled. And Moses brought forth the people out of the camp to meet with God; and they stood at the nether part of the mount. And mount Sinai was altogether on a smoke, because the LORD descended upon it in fire: and the smoke thereof ascended as the smoke of a furnace, and the whole mount quaked greatly. And when the voice of the trumpet sounded long, and waxed louder and louder, Moses spake, and God answered him by a voice. And the LORD came down upon mount Sinai, on the top of the mount: and the LORD called Moses up to the top of the mount; and Moses went up.

Have you ever witnessed a natural event from a far, like a tornado or volcano? The sheer size and power, the sights and sounds stagger the mind and instill a tinge of fear. No wonder pagans believed such events to manifestations of gods.
A kings displays his glory with great pomp and circumstance with trumpets and a show in some way of his wealth. In modern day, a parade of his military prowess and might is on display, a show of what he commands, what power is at his fingertips is seen.

At Shavuot (Pentecost), like a king displaying all his awe inspiring majesty, YHWH manifests Himself and His Power through a thick cloud, wind, earthquake, thunder, lighting and a blast of an unseen shofar. Such display invoked fear in the Israelites to get them to fully understand that their G-d is not like all the other gods. Indeed, it must have been a majestic sight of His Glory.

The Traditional Psalm to read is Psalm 93:1-5:

 1The LORD reigneth, he is clothed with majesty; the LORD is clothed with strength, wherewith he hath girded himself: the world also is stablished, that it cannot be moved.
 2Thy throne is established of old: thou art from everlasting.
 3The floods have lifted up, O LORD, the floods have lifted up their voice; the floods lift up their waves.
 4The LORD on high is mightier than the noise of many waters, yea, than the mighty waves of the sea.
 5Thy testimonies are very sure: holiness becometh thine house, O LORD, for ever.

“Majestic Almighty King of the Universe, I stand in awe and reverential fear of Your Awesome Majestic Might. May that respectful fear enable me to agree to keep Your Torah as those at Sinai agreed to do. In Yeshua’s Name, Ameyn.”