Home

joy

Parasha Eikev: Because; We Have it All!

Luke 1; 41 When Elizabeth heard Mary’s greeting, the baby leaped in her womb; and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit. 42 And she cried out with a loud voice and said, “Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb! 43 And how has it happened to me, that the mother of my Lord would come to me? 44 For behold, when the sound of your greeting reached my ears, the baby leaped in my womb for joy. 45 And blessed is she who believed that there would be a fulfillment of what had been spoken to her by the Lord.”

I am picking up this year with the Torah Sedra- Parasha- portion of Eikev. The word comes from the same root as the word Ya’acov, Jacob, meaning heel, it can also mean BECAUSE. This is the context of our opening verse. God states, because you listen and do His commandments you will be blessed. There are promises of numerous blessings all of which include increase and elevation. The theme of not trampling underfoot the Land, or God connects with the ‘heel’ definition. There is a concept wherein we notice there are ‘levels’ of life. The lowest level being inanimate objects such as water. Next would be the level of plant life, grass, etc. Next up would be the animals, birds, etc. and finally at the top Man. One might think well man being at the top is most important. In actuality it is the opposite. Without water no plant life can thrive, without plant life no animals could eat, without all the uses humans have for animals food, clothing, etc. we could not survive. Furthermore even more essential to the top, man can not survive without water (the bottom rung inanimate). There are many interpretations but, grain is the sustenance we need to survive, wine is symbolic of our joy and delight in life, oil represents our anointing as a holy nation. Perhaps the greatest blessing of all is the blessing of fertility. No man or woman would be barren, without child. God would bless the wombs of their animals to provide for the needs of their growing families. The biggest blessing a human being can be granted is the humbling, honor of being a parent. For the woman, it means carrying, growing, nourishing, incubating life inside her…within her, at her center and innermost being this fruit is contained until is comes forth to life, a new being with all potential and capability to become a servant of Yeshua. It is no coincidence that the Promised seed of the mother of all, Chavah, came forth…the one who would crush the head of the one who would bite his HEEL, Eikev. These are the very texts Elisheva (Elizabeth) hearkens us back to when she greets Miriam (Mary) in whose womb rested the form of that promise…Yeshua. “Blessed IS the fruit” of that womb! A blessing for all people, for all time. May He return soon in our days.

eikev 6

Devarim 7;11 Therefore, you shall keep the commandment and the statutes and the judgments which I am commanding you today, to do them.12 “Then it shall come about, because you listen to these judgments and keep and do them, that the Lord your God will keep with you His covenant and His lovingkindness which He swore to your forefathers. 13 He will love you and bless you and multiply you; He will also bless the fruit of your womb and the fruit of your ground, your grain and your new wine and your oil, the increase of your herd and the young of your flock, in the land which He swore to your forefathers to give you. 14 You shall be blessed above all peoples; there will be no male or female barren among you or among your cattle.

Eikev

–When God first tells the people who have a willing heart to bring of the fruit of their produce, oil, spices, animal skins, metals to construct the Mishkan (Tabernacle), they are asked to do so for a specific reason. Not so that they might find a place to bring offerings to atone for their sin, not so that they can have a place to gather for worship, not even to find a set way of study and teaching…he asked that they make a place for Him. God asked that they make a Tabernacle, so that He might dwell among them. A better translation would be, make me a Tabernacle so that I may dwell WITHIN them. In the center most part of their being.

H8432 tavek taw’-vek- from an unused root meaning to sever; a bisection, i.e. (by implication) the center.

Exodus 25; Let them construct a sanctuary for Me, that I may dwell among (tavek) them.

-In our Torah portion we read that God is preparing the nation for battle. He is strengthening them to know not for reasons of their righteousness, not even for the reasons of the wickedness of the inhabiting nations, not because of anything they could produce or muster…but because of the power He already displayed, His desire to choose them, His love of their forefathers, because of His oath…He would give Israel the Land and dispossess the people therein. A dread will fall over all the enemies of Israel, why? Not for their own might or merit, but because the Lord is in their midst, HE IS in their center, their nearest part.

H7130 qereb keh’-reb -from H7126; properly, the nearest part, i.e. the center, whether literal, figurative or adverbial (especially with preposition).

Deuteronomy 7;17 “If you should say in your heart, ‘These nations are greater than I; how can I dispossess them?’ 18 you shall not be afraid of them; you shall well remember what the Lord your God did to Pharaoh and to all Egypt: 19 the great trials which your eyes saw and the signs and the wonders and the mighty hand and the outstretched arm by which the Lord your God brought you out. So shall the Lord your God do to all the peoples of whom you are afraid. 20 Moreover, the Lord your God will send the hornet against them, until those who are left and hide themselves from you perish. 21 You shall not dread them, for the Lord your God is in your midst (qereb), a great and awesome God.

Numbers 35; 33 So you shall not pollute the land in which you are; for blood pollutes the land and no expiation can be made for the land for the blood that is shed on it, except by the blood of him who shed it. 34 You shall not defile the land in which you live, in the midst (tavek) of which I dwell; for I the Lord am dwelling in the midst (tavek) of the sons of Israel.’”

eikev 7

Deuteronomy 7;22 The Lord your God will clear away these nations before you little by little; you will not be able to put an end to them quickly, for the wild beasts would grow too numerous for you. 23 But the Lord your God will deliver them before you, and will throw them into great confusion (hamam,mhuwmah) until they are destroyed. 24 He will deliver their kings into your hand so that you will make their name perish from under heaven; no man will be able to stand before you until you have destroyed them. 25 The graven images of their gods you are to burn with fire; you shall not covet the silver or the gold that is on them, nor take it for yourselves, or you will be snared by it, for it is an abomination to the Lord your God. 26 You shall not bring an abomination into your house, and like it come under the ban; you shall utterly detest it and you shall utterly abhor it, for it is something banned.

H2000 hamam haw-mam’-a primitive root (compare H1949, H1993); properly, to put in commotion; by implication, to disturb, drive, destroy. KJV: break, consume, crush, destroy, discomfit, trouble, vex.

H4103 mhuwmah meh-hoo-maw’- from H1949; confusion or uproar. KJV: destruction, discomfiture, trouble, tumult, vexation, vexed.

–God is constantly reminding the people of the wonders He performed in Egypt and at the Sea of Reeds. Why? There is no ego in God, He needs nothing from us…He reminds the people of where their parents and grandparents came from. He saved them before He gave them any requirements or guidelines for the relationship He wished for them to pursue for them. In short, the giving of the Torah and its adherence came after Salvation came. They were delivered from oppression of Egypt and led into the freedom which He offered them at Sinai. The freedom to choose a life aimed at the Holiness which being in union, in the presence of a Holy God REQUIRES. Does that mean we have to be perfect to come to God? Of course not, but what is the goal? “Be Holy for I am Holy.”

In the Deuteronomy text above we read God promises a reproduction of the confounding force which will discomfit the enemies of Israel to their destruction. Where have we seen this confusion before? At the sea of Reeds while the enemies of Israel pursued them to overtake them and drive them off the face of the earth.

eikev 8

Exodus 14; 19 The angel of God, who had been going before the camp of Israel, moved and went behind them; and the pillar of cloud moved from before them and stood behind them.20 So it came between the camp of Egypt and the camp of Israel; and there was the cloud[k]along with the darkness, yet it gave light at night. Thus the one did not come near the other all night. 21 Then Moses stretched out his hand over the sea; and the Lord swept the sea by a strong east wind all night and turned the sea into dry land, so the waters were divided.22 The sons of Israel went through the midst of the sea on the dry land, and the waters a wall to them on their right hand and on their left. 23 Then the Egyptians took up the pursuit, and all Pharaoh’s horses, his chariots and his horsemen went in after them into the midst of the sea. 24 At the morning watch, the Lord looked down on the army of the Egyptians through the pillar of fire and cloud and brought the army of the Egyptians into confusion (hamam) . 25 He caused their chariot wheels to swerve, and He made them drive with difficulty; so the Egyptians said, “Let us flee from Israel, for the Lord is fighting for them against the Egyptians.”

Exodus 23; 27 I will send My terror ahead of you, and throw into confusion (hamam) all the people among whom you come, and I will make all your enemies turn backs to you. 28 I will send hornets ahead of you so that they will drive out the Hivites, the Canaanites, and the Hittites before you. 29 I will not drive them out before you in a single year, that the land may not become desolate and the beasts of the field become too numerous for you. 30 I will drive them out before you little by little, until you become fruitful and take possession of the land.

hornet bites

H4161 mowtsa‘ mo-tsaw’ -or motsai {mo-tsaw’}; from H3318; a going forth, i.e. (the act) an egress, or (the place) an exit; hence, a source or product; specifically, dawn, the rising of the sun (the East), exportation, utterance, a gate, a fountain, a mine, a meadow (as producing grass).

–How are we to restore our souls? Where can we seek wisdom, the kind of Wisdom of true value in God’s estimation? What makes our hearts rejoice? Where is enlightenment seen? How do we fear the Lord our God? What is the Torah of the Lord? How long does it ‘stand’? What are these words considered? What is their value? How are we warned when we go astray? What do we find in keeping the Torah of the Lord? With what ‘measure’ and ‘standard’ do we discern error and how are hidden faults brought to light?

Psalm 19;  Its rising (mowtsa) is from one end of the heavens, and its circuit to the other end of them; and there is nothing hidden from its heat. The Torah of the Lord is perfect, restoring the soul; the testimony of the Lord is sure, making wise the simple. The precepts of the Lord are right, rejoicing the heart; The commandment of the Lord is pure, enlightening the eyes. The fear of the Lord is clean, enduring forever; The judgments of the Lord are true; they are righteous altogether. 10 They are more desirable than gold, yes, than much fine gold; sweeter also than honey and the drippings of the honeycomb. 11 Moreover, by them Your servant is warned; In keeping them there is great reward.12 Who can discern errors? Acquit me of hidden faults13 Also keep back Your servant from presumptuous sins; Let them not rule over me; then I will be blameless, and I shall be acquitted of great transgression.14 Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in Your sight,O Lord, my rock and my Redeemer.

eikev 5

–What we have in our hands, before our eyes, within the grasp of our hearts is something wondrous, magnificent, literally heavenly…for it is the bread which came down from heaven, it is the Living Word who became flesh and dwelt among us. The Torah is His word, it completely points to Yeshua, consists of Yeshua, it wholly is His and ours, we have it ALL! We read it is active and tests us to know what is in our hearts, to humble us as we are torn open before Him and all is exposed by His spirit working through the Word to convict us and make us understand that we need Him, all of Him, all of His Word to really go beyond simply surviving…and LIVE.

Hebrews 4; 12 For the word of God is living and active and sharper than any two-edged sword, and piercing as far as the division of soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart. 13 And there is no creature hidden from His sight, but all things are open and laid bare to the eyes of Him with whom we have to do.

sword

H3605 kol kole or (Jer. 33:8) kowl {kole}; from H3634; properly, the whole; hence, all, any or every (in the singular only, but often in a plural sense).

Deuteronomy 8;1 “All (kol) the commandments that I am commanding you today you shall be careful to do, that you may live and multiply, and go in and possess the land which the Lord swore to your forefathers. You shall remember all the way which the Lord your God has led you in the wilderness these forty years, that He might humble you, testing you, to know what was in your heart, whether you would keep His commandments or not. He humbled you and let you be hungry, and fed you with manna which you did not know, nor did your fathers know, that He might make you understand that man does not live by bread alone, but man lives by everything (kol) that proceeds(mowtsa) out of the mouth of the Lord.

Matthew 4;4  Then Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil.And after He had fasted forty days and forty nights, He then became hungry. And the tempter came and said to Him, “If You are the Son of God, command that these stones become bread.” But He answered and said, “It is written, ‘Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God.’”

Eikev 9

H7227 rab rab -by contracted from H7231; abundant (in quantity, size, age, number, rank, quality).

–Let me share a treasure with you one will not see reading in the English that will tie in quite nicely. When Jacob and his family were set to meet with his brother Esau they come together for the first time since the deception of Isaac. There is a train of gifts Jacob sets out for Esau to take as a gift, he is repenting to his brother and hoping the gift will appease him. Esau answers Jacob “I have plenty…” not that he wouldn’t take such a gift, he does. But this term he uses is Rab, meaning much…I have much. What does Jacob say? “I have all.” The word Kol, the whole, all of it, everything! What do you think Jacob refers to? I believe it is the same thing the Lord refers to when He places the commandments before the people, All of His precious, as David says “perfect” ways are for His people, for All people, for All time. That heavenly gift which descended and is not too far off, but in our minds and hearts to perform.

Genesis 33; 8 And he said, “What do you mean by all (kol) this company which I have met?” And he said, “To find favor in the sight of my lord.” But Esau said, “I have plenty (Rab), my brother; let what you have be your own.” 10 Jacob said, “No, please, if now I have found favor in your sight, then take my present from my hand,  for I see your face as one sees the face of God, and you have received me favorably.11 Please take my gift which has been brought to you, because God has dealt graciously with me and because I have plenty (kol).” Thus he urged him and he took. 12 Then Esau said, “Let us take our journey and go, and I will go before you.” 13 But he said to him, “My lord knows that the children are frail and that the flocks and herds which are nursing are a care to me. And if they are driven hard one day, all the flocks will die.14 Please let my lord pass on before his servant, and I will proceed at my leisure, according to the pace of the cattle that are before me and according to the pace of the children, until I come to my lord at Seir.” 15 Esau said, “Please let me leave with you some of the people who are with me.” But he said, “What need is there? Let me find favor in the sight of my lord.”

eikev 11
H3256 yacar yaw-sar’ -a primitive root; to chastise, literally (with blows) or figuratively (with words); hence, to instruct.

Psalm 94; 12 Blessed is the man whom You chasten (yacar), O Lord, and whom You teach out of Your Torah;
13 That You may grant him relief from the days of adversity, Until a pit is dug for the wicked.

Deuteronomy 8;4 Your clothing did not wear out on you, nor did your foot swell these forty years. Thus you are to know in your heart that the Lord your God was disciplining (yacar) you just as a man disciplines his son. Therefore, you shall keep the commandments of the Lord your God, to walk in His ways and to fear Him.

Revelation 3; 19 Those whom I love, I reprove and discipline; therefore be zealous and repent. 20 Behold, I stand at the door and knock; if anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and will dine with him, and he with Me. 21 He who overcomes, I will grant to him to sit down with Me on My throne, as I also overcame and sat down with My Father on His throne.

eikev 12

–Another treasure found in the Hebrew, Proverbs 3;11-14 speaking of the “discipline” of the Lord. There are three different Hebrew words which capture the essence of the character of the Lord’s reproof. The discipline of our Father is for our own growth and good, that we may be warned of a dangerous course of life or mode of action, that we might embrace His correction which aides in our drawing near to Him and seeking a life lived aimed toward holiness, it is for our conviction that we might feel remorse when we have sinned, that we might return to Him in repentance and allow Him to clear us of the charges against us.

Proverbs 3;11 My son, do not reject the discipline ( muwcar-chastisement; fig. reproof, warning or instruction) of the Lord or loathe His reproof (towkechah– chastisement; fig. correction, refutation, proof (even in defense).12 For whom the Lord loves He reproves ( yakach– to decide, justify or convict.), even as a father the son in whom he delights.13 How blessed is the man who finds wisdom and the man who gains understanding. 14 For her profit is better than the profit of silver and her gain better than fine gold.

Proverbs 13; 22 A good man leaves an inheritance to his children’s children, and the wealth of the sinner is stored up for the righteous.23 Abundant food is in the fallow ground of the poor, But it is swept away by injustice. 24 He who withholds his rod hates his son, but he who loves him disciplines (yacar) him diligently. 25 The righteous has enough to satisfy his appetite, but the stomach of the wicked is in need.

eikev 13

Hebrews 12;7 It is for discipline that you endure; God deals with you as with sons; for what son is there whom his father does not discipline? But if you are without discipline, of which all have become partakers, then you are illegitimate children and not sons. Furthermore, we had earthly fathers to discipline us, and we respected them; shall we not much rather be subject to the Father of spirits, and live? 10 For they disciplined us for a short time as seemed best to them, but He for good, so that we may share His holiness. 11 All discipline for the moment seems not to be joyful, but sorrowful; yet to those who have been trained by it, afterwards it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness.

eikev 15

Deuteronomy 7; 6 Therefore, you shall keep the commandments of the Lord your God, to walk in His ways and to fear Him. For the Lord your God is bringing you into a good land, a land of brooks of water, of fountains and springs, flowing forth in valleys and hills; a land of wheat and barley, of vines and fig trees and pomegranates, a land of olive oil and honey; a land where you will eat food without scarcity, in which you will not lack anything; a land whose stones are iron, and out of whose hills you can dig copper.

In scripture we often find that men are likened to trees. There is a tradition wherein a boy’s hair is not cut until his third year of life. After he turns three there is a celebration where he is blessed and his hair is cut symbolizing the transition from babyhood to boyhood. He is now able to be pruned, expected to produce more fruit, to give more and interact at a deeper level with the world around him. So too there is a Torah mitzvah, not to make use of any of the fruit of a tree until the fifth year. (Leviticus 19; 23 ‘When you enter the land and plant all kinds of trees for food, then you shall count their fruit as forbidden. Three years it shall be forbidden to you; it shall not be eaten. 24 But in the fourth year all its fruit shall be holy, an offering of praise to the Lord. 25 In the fifth year you are to eat of its fruit, that its yield may increase for you; I am the Lord your God.) The fourth year all the fruit is dedicated to the Lord as an offering, in the fifth you may eat of it and its yield should increase. We should aide our children, boys especially- for typically males are the leaders in government, etc. (I am not sexist, its just that males are to be the head, and we need good men in charge. It starts with our boys. Too, behind every good man is a Godly woman backing him up and often picking him up if he falls.) to be dedicated to God before we try and push them for more output, and give to God the glory before we take pride in the produce. In Judges 9 Jotham proclaims a parable expressing all different types of men. Each one bears a different fruit. In the end all the other trees nominate the bramble (atad- a thorn-tree (especially the buckthorn) to rule over them. This is picture of what will happen when the anti Christ is venerated and many people will receive the mark of the beast, forsaking their true King. Remember what Yeshua stated about good and bad trees, ( let us strive to bear good fruit and recognize goodly leaders by what they produce, encouraging our children to emulate the Messiah Yeshua for they are the ones who will have to weed out, and trudge through the chaos breaking through even now.

eikev 14

Judges 9; 7 Now when they told Jotham, he went and stood on the top of Mount Gerizim, and lifted his voice and called out. Thus he said to them, “Listen to me, O men of Shechem, that God may listen to you. Once the trees went forth to anoint a king over them, and they said to the olive tree, ‘Reign over us!’ But the olive tree said to them, ‘Shall I leave my fatness with which God and men are honored, and go to wave over the trees?’ 10 Then the trees said to the fig tree, ‘You come, reign over us!’ 11 But the fig tree said to them, ‘Shall I leave my sweetness and my good fruit, and go to wave over the trees?’ 12 Then the trees said to the vine, ‘You come, reign over us!’ 13 But the vine said to them, ‘Shall I leave my new wine, which cheers God and men, and go to wave over the trees?’ 14 Finally all the trees said to the bramble, ‘You come, reign over us!’ 15 The bramble said to the trees, ‘If in [i]truth you are anointing me as king over you, come and take refuge in my shade; but if not, may fire come out from the bramble and consume the cedars of Lebanon.’

Deuteronomy 20;19 “When you besiege a city a long time, to make war against it in order to capture it, you shall not destroy its trees by swinging an axe against them; for you may eat from them, and you shall not cut them down. For is the tree of the field a man, that it should be besieged by you? 20 Only the trees which you know are not fruit trees you shall destroy and cut down, that you may construct siege works against the city that is making war with you until it falls.

kids-planting-fruit-tree

Luke 6;43 For there is no good tree which produces bad fruit, nor, on the other hand, a bad tree which produces good fruit. 44 For each tree is known by its own fruit. For men do not gather figs from thorns, nor do they pick grapes from a briar bush. 45 The good man out of the good treasure of his heart brings forth what is good; and the evil out of the evil brings forth what is evil; for his mouth speaks from that which fills his heart.

Psalm 104; 24 Lord, how many are Your works! In wisdom You have made them all; The earth is full of Your possessions. 25 There is the sea, great and broad, In which are swarms without number,animals both small and great. 26 There the ships move along, Leviathan, which You have formed to sport in it.27 They all wait for You to give them their food in due season. 28 You give to them, they gather it up; You open Your hand, they are satisfied with good. 29 You hide Your face, they are dismayed; You take away their spirit, they expire and return to their dust. 30 You send forth Your Spirit, they are created; and You renew the face of the ground.31 Let the glory of the Lord endure forever; Let the Lord be glad in His works; 32 He looks at the earth, and it trembles; He touches the mountains, and they smoke. 33 I will sing to the Lord as long as I live; I will sing praise to my God while I have my being. 34 Let my meditation be pleasing to Him; as for me, I shall be glad in the Lord.

Stalk of Wheat CLose up

Wheat and barley, spiritual and physical. Wheat is often mentioned in scripture as being likened to man as well. Barley was known as the poor man’s wheat, wheat was an essential staple for nourishment. While wheat represents our spiritual side, the part of us that longs for devotion and piety before our King. Barley represents our physical self, survival and instinctual fulfillment of essential needs.

Psalm 81; 13 “Oh that My people would listen to Me, that Israel would walk in My ways! 14 “I would quickly subdue their enemies and turn My hand against their adversaries. 15 “Those who hate the Lord would pretend obedience to Him, and their time would be forever.16 “But I would feed you with the finest of the wheat, and with honey from the rock I would satisfy you.”

red-wine-with-heart

Wine is our Joy, wine unleashes the hidden. In the words of the Talmud, “When wine enters, the concealed emerges.” Everything we do is more pronounced. Love, hate, desire. Without joy life is shallow. Wine is used in many blessings and traditions representing the frequent requirement of wine to be offered along with grain gifts to HaShem. A purely spiritual dedication in life will leave us neglecting the essential physical needs we have. And along with our offerings of Spirit, if they are brought without the libation, the wine, without joy…there is a depth we are missing. A depth God desires.

II Corinthians 9;6 Now this I say, he who sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and he who sows bountifully will also reap bountifully. Each one just as he has purposed in his heart, not grudgingly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that always having all sufficiency in everything, you may have an abundance for every good deed; as it is written, He scattered abroad, he gave to the poorHis righteousness endures forever.” 10 Now He who supplies seed to the sower and bread for food will supply and multiply your seed for sowing and increase the harvest of your righteousness; 11 you will be enriched in everything for all liberality, which through us is producing thanksgiving to God. 12 For the ministry of this service is not only fully supplying the needs of the saints, but is also overflowing through many thanksgivings to God.

Fig- intimate involvement in what we are doing. When we stay in the boundaries God has set.

Pomegranate- a whole that contains many particulars; compartmentalized, separated from the other. We can do many good deeds and have little effect if we aren’t reaching out into the lives of others.

olive oil

The metaphoric lessons taken from the olive tree are profound. All the olives on a tree are of use, the olives at the top of the tree, closest to the light source ripen faster. Basking in the light of the word of God will allow us to progress and age at a continual pace. It “all” won’t happen “all” at once. One cannot expect to mature in faith immediately, that is contrary to the very definition of the word, maturation (a process). Growth in faith is however something we should be desiring of. How can we grow in faith? Olives can represent many things, one of which are our struggles in life. I believe the Lord presses us for many reasons. To test us to see if we really truly love Him or not, to allow us to determine through trial and in trusting the Lord…are we doing the “right thing” in order to avoid wrath and judgment, or because we are in love, enamored, completed in the undertaking of walking with God and performing His will as our service, from deep adoration. Just as the oil was to be prepared and pure, it was the fuel by which the Temple had light. No other service in the Temple could be done until this oil was illuminated. The olive only yields its oil when pressed. So too we may not be able to truly try our faith, we may not be strong enough to pass through the hardships and hazards which are to come if we have not first been able to experience them in part. In other words, because we are surely experiencing tribulation and these “birth pains” are only going to increase, our body gradually has to get used to what is coming because that ultimate “push” at the end of the labor is the most excruciating of all. Yet the yield? Pure, fresh, new, precious…life! God is our coach and our hand to hold in times of trouble. He may allow us to be pressed, but it is only for our eventual benefit. Interestingly in  ancient oil presses it was the stone, the rock which did the pressing. So may it be, though our Rock may crush us…we shall not loose hope in Him! (and may we be in continual prayer that He enable us to keep that promise).

oil press

Job 13; 13 “Be silent before me so that I may speak; then let come on me what may. 14 “Why should I take my flesh in my teeth and put my life in my hands? 15 “Though He slay me, I will hope in Him. Nevertheless I will argue my ways before Him. 16 “This also will be my salvation, for a godless man may not come before His presence. 17 “Listen carefully to my speech, and let my declaration fill your ears. 18 “Behold now, I have prepared my case; I know that I will be vindicated. 19 “Who will contend with me? For then I would be silent and die. 20 “Only two things do not do to me, Then I will not hide from Your face:21 Remove Your hand from me, and let not the dread of You terrify me. 22 “Then call, and I will answer; or let me speak, then reply to me. 23 “How many are my iniquities and sins? Make known to me my rebellion and my sin.

Psalm 118; 13 You pushed me violently so that I was falling, but the Lord helped me. 14 The Lord is my strength and song, and He has become my salvation. 15 The sound of joyful shouting and salvation is in the tents of the righteous; The right hand of the Lord does valiantly.16 The right hand of the Lord is exalted; the right hand of the Lord does valiantly. 17 I will not die, but live and tell of the works of the Lord18 The Lord has disciplined me severely, but He has not given me over to death.

Jeremiah 29; 10 “For thus says the Lord, ‘When seventy years have been completed for Babylon, I will visit you and fulfill My good word to you, to bring you back to this place. 11 For I know the plans that I have for you,’ declares the Lord, ‘plans for welfare and not for calamity to give you a future and a hope. 12 Then you will call upon Me and come and pray to Me, and I will listen to you. 13 You will seek Me and find Me when you search for Me with all your heart. 14 I will be found by you,’ declares the Lord…

iron and copper

Iron and Copper. God knows our physical needs. Copper and Iron are used to make everyday utensils, and to bolster and make more secure buildings. They represents the realistic necessities we require. God says the people will enter the Land and these things will be accessible, available and they will lack nothing. Much to the opposition of what God said would come about after the people went after idols and forsook Him, in the Ezekiel text.

Ezekiel 4;16 Moreover, He said to me, “Son of man, behold, I am going to break the staff of bread in Jerusalem, and they will eat bread by weight and with anxiety, and drink water by measure and in horror, 17 because bread and water will be scarce; and they will be appalled with one another and waste away in their iniquity.

praying in church

-Traditions. What are their purpose? What is the point of ritual? I think it is a misconception among much of the Christian church that Judaism is full of man made ritual and the Church is free from it. Why do Christians lift up one hand when singing, open palm to the ceiling? Why do some take off their hats in the sanctuary? Why is communion taken? Why meet on Sunday? Why bow your head for prayer? Why perform non living water dunking baptisms? Even, the collection plate for offerings? I would like to submit that many of the traditions of Judaism are not only biblical but at the heart hold such a depth or rich meaning they can be a conduit for a better actualized grasp on what the Lord was communicating in His word. Read the Deuteronomy text below for one example:

Deuteronomy 8; 10 When you have eaten and are satisfied, you shall bless the Lord your God for the good land which He has given you. 11 “Beware that you do not forget the Lord your God by not keeping His commandments and His ordinances and His statutes which I am commanding you today; 12 otherwise,when you have eaten and are satisfied, and have built good houses and lived in them,13 and when your herds and your flocks multiply, and your silver and gold multiply, and all that you have multiplies, 14 then your heart will become proud and you will forget the Lord your God who brought you out from the land of Egypt, out of the house of slavery.

siddur

–The tradition, which in actuality is the performance of a mitvah (commandment), is to say a blessing AFTER one eats a meal. This blessing is a fourfold thanks to God and breaks down the progression of the blessing of “food” and partaking of a meal…allowing one to really take a hold of the meaning behind being satisfied.  The first part of the Birkat Hamazon or Grace after Meals blessing is remembering that we are in a sort of exile, until we are reunited with the Father we can not fully express the joy and enjoy the connection we long for with Him from the place of exile, i.e our flesh. While we are in the flesh we require physical nourishment and while we have partaken of food and drink after that filling we should remember the exile of God’s people because of their sin, and remember His promise to return them to the Land, keeping Israel and Jerusalem and all that has transpired throughout history forefront and on the tip of our tongues. ( Psalm 137; 1 By the rivers of Babylon, There we sat down and wept, When we remembered Zion. Upon the willows in the midst of it We hung our harps. For there our captors demanded of us songs, and our tormentors mirth, saying, “Sing us one of the songs of Zion.” How can we sing the Lord’s song in a foreign land? If I forget you, O Jerusalem may my right hand forget her skillMay my tongue cling to the roof of my mouth If I do not remember you, if I do not exalt Jerusalem above my chief joy. ) First, we thank God for the Nourishment: for the food we are blessed to be able to have enjoyed and for the nourishment of or spirits. His willingness to sustain all flesh and that He never causes us to lack. Second, for the Land: without the land no one survives, the animals are blessed to eat, we are blessed to partake of the fruit of the earth and tree and creatures He has fashioned. In this part of the blessing we thank God for His covenant, His promise of the Land and all its goodness and for giving us the true nourishment, the Torah, the Word which He made known to us for sustenance, for life. Thirdly, for Jerusalem: Thanking God for His faithfulness to Israel, to the Jewish people and that by their existence and provision we have before our very eyes the evidence of His promises being kept. We ask that He provide us our needs that we not be drawn into the desire for the needs of human hands, just as we pray Israel will come to rely upon the Lord their God and Him alone for support. Fourthly, for God’s goodness: We praise God and call upon Him as the Compassionate One! Truly beautiful when one understands that it is in His great mercy and compassion He fills our needs for food and water knowing how finite our mortality is.  I don’t deign to ever edit or choose which part of the word is usable or valid for whom where or when. But, if one were to say, is this a “keeper” or not, I would proclaim that THIS is a keeper. We often say a blessing or a prayer before we eat, it is a great thing to thank God for what one is about to enjoy. Once one is filled, sated, comfortable, and gratified…is it natural to in turn give that gratitude back over to the One Who Nourishes and Sustains All? This is the purpose of fulfilling this command, to remember God when we have been filled and acknowledge that it is He who brings about all replenishment! A beautiful glimpse into the heart of an eternal command found in our Torah portion, here is the complete text of the “traditional” blessing after meals”: http://www.lookstein.org/lessonplans/bh/bh_text.pdf

blessing good

 Psalm 92; 9 For, behold, Your enemies, O Lord, for, behold, Your enemies will perish; all who do iniquity will be scattered. 10 But You have exalted my horn like that of the wild ox; I have been anointed with fresh oil.11 And my eye has looked upon my foes, my ears hear of the evildoers who rise up against me. 12 The righteous man will flourish like the palm tree, He will grow like a cedar in Lebanon. 13 Planted in the house of the Lord, they will flourish in the courts of our God. 14 They will still yield fruit in old age; they shall be full of sap and very green,15 To declare that the Lord is upright; my rock, and there is no unrighteousness in Him.

–The overwhelming theme of Sefer Devarim, the book of Deuteronomy, is remember. Remember what has happened in the past, remember it as if you personally took part in it, remember and testify as a firsthand witness, do not forget the pits…remember where they are found so that you will not fall into them, remember the misdeeds and transgressions of your forefathers so that you will not be doomed to repeat similar offenses with similar consequences for their cost. Do not forget God, He is Your God, He is a good God, giving, loving, gracious, patient, providing for your every need and carrying you in His bosom as His precious infant. At this point in the test Moshe drives home a very crucial point for the people of HaShem to understand. It is not because of anything they did or any natural goodness they possessed. Not for our righteousness but because of the sovereign choice of the Master of Creation. God chose Israel because He loves them. He can see what we can not and even when we look at all the mis-steps and out right outrages the people committed along the way, the Father has not and will not ever forsake them. How blessed an honor to be called the servant of the King of Kings, how often do we loose the sense of this awe? The awesome task of being called His sons and daughters is humbling and one should take some time out every day to simply meditate and marvel at His creation, the vastness of the extent of His wonder. Then we will remember how small we are, how helpless…and this realization shouldn’t depress us, it should enliven us to the degree where we will enthusiastically pursue the tasks ahead of us knowing that He has put in each one of our lives the opportunities to effect the vast world around us and the people in it. For better, if He is with us. For worse if we ignore His sovereignty in all things and the consequences of sin. I find is fascinating that at the beginning of this portion Moshe is reminding the people of the way the Lord provided for their every physical need. He points out the times when they were given the bread from heaven and then behaved as if in wanton need. Meanwhile he goes up and down the mountain depriving his flesh of food and water for periods of forty days and nights, he drank no water, he ate no food…yet he was in prayer and intercession on their behalf. Imagine if Moshe had failed the under that pressure.

moses 1

Deuteronomy 9; 4 “Do not say in your heart when the Lord your God has driven them out before you, ‘Because of my righteousness the Lord has brought me in to possess this land,’ but because of the wickedness of these nations the Lord is dispossessing them before you. It is not for your righteousness or for the uprightness of your heart that you are going to possess their land, but because of the wickedness of these nations the Lord your God is driving them out before you, in order to confirm the oath which the Lord swore to your fathers, to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. “Know, then, not because of your righteousness the Lord your God is giving you this good land to possess, for you are a stubborn people. Remember (ZAKAR), do not forget (SHAKACH) how you provoked the Lord your God to wrath in the wilderness; from the day that you left the land of Egypt until you arrived at this place, you have been rebellious against the Lord. Even at Horeb you provoked the Lord to wrath, and the Lord was so angry with you that He would have destroyed you. When I went up to the mountain to receive the tablets of stone, the tablets of the covenant which the Lord had made with you, then I remained on the mountain forty days and nights; I neither ate bread nor drank water.

moses

– Moshe didn’t cave under the weight of the stone, he came out of it all a shining example for the people…with two stone tablets engraved with the finger of God, permanent…everlasting. The Isaiah 49 text below is encouragement for those of us for feel a deep connection to Israel, the Jewish people and who identify ourselves in light of the covenant God made with Abraham’s seed and as grafted into these unbreachable promises. God will not forget His people, His Land, their Children…He will bring them all (us all) home to the Promised Land and where we have been bereaved we will once again be bestowed life, progeny, future and hope and it will come from the four corners of the earth with great joy. 

H2142 zakar zaw-kar’ – properly, to mark (so as to be recognized), i.e. to remember; by implication, to mention.

H7911 shakach shaw-kakh’- or shakeach {shaw-kay’-akh)- to mislay, i.e. to be oblivious of, from want of memory or attention.

H2710 chaqaq khaw-kak’- a primitive root;- properly, to hack, i.e. engrave (Judges 5:14, to be a scribe simply); by implication, to enact (laws being cut in stone or metal tablets in primitive times) or (gen.) prescribe.

Isaiah 49; 14 But Zion said, “The Lord has forsaken me, and the Lord has forgotten (shakach) me.” 15 “Can a woman forget (shakach) her nursing child and have no compassion on the son of her womb? Even these may forget (shakach), but I will not forget (shakach) you.16 “Behold, I have inscribed you on the palms of My handsYour walls are continually before Me. 17 “Your builders hurry; Your destroyers and devastators will depart from you. 18 “Lift up your eyes and look around; all of them gather together, they come to you. As I live,” declares the Lord“You will surely put on all of them as jewels and bind them on as a bride. 19 “For your waste and desolate places and your destroyed land—Surely now you will be too cramped for the inhabitants, and those who swallowed you will be far away. 20 “The children of whom you were bereaved will yet say in your ears, ‘The place is too cramped for me; make room for me that I may live.’ 21 “Then you will say in your heart, ‘Who has begotten these for me, Since I have been bereaved of my children and am barren, an exile and a wanderer? And who has reared these? Behold, I was left alone; from where did these come?’” 22 Thus says the Lord God, “Behold, I will lift up My hand to the nations and set up My standard to the peoples; and they will bring your sons in their bosom, and your daughters will be carried on their shoulders. 23 “Kings will be your guardians, and their princesses your nurses. They will bow down to you with their faces to the earth and lick the dust of your feet; and will know that I am the Lord; Those who hopefully wait for Me will not be put to shame. 24 “Can the prey be taken from the mighty man, Or the captives of a tyrant be rescued?” 25 Surely, thus says the Lord,“Even the captives of the mighty man will be taken away, and the prey of the tyrant will be rescued; for I will contend with the one who contends with you, and I will save your sons.

my king and His kids

 Deuteronomy 10; 12 “Now, Israel, what does the Lord your God require (SHA’AL) from you, but to fear the Lord your God, to walk in all His ways and love Him, and to serve the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul, 13 to keep the Lord’s commandments and His statutes which I am commanding you today for your good? 14 Behold, to the Lord your God belong heaven and the highest heavens, the earth and all that is in it. 15 Yet on your fathers did the Lord set His affection to love them, and He chose their descendants after them,you above all peoples, as this day. 16 So circumcise (MUWL) your heart, and stiffen your neck no longer. 17 For the Lord your God is the God of gods and the Lord of lords, the great, the mighty, and the awesome God who does not show partiality nor take a bribe.

Micah 6; 8 He has told you, O man, what is good; And what does the Lord require of you
But to do justice, to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?

H7592 sha’al shaw-al’ or shael {shaw-ale’}-  to inquire; by implication, to request; by extension, to demand.

H4135 muwl mool -to cut short, i.e. curtail (specifically the prepuce, i.e. to circumcise); by implication, to blunt; figuratively, to destroy.

cur·tail– reduce in extent or quantity; impose a restriction on. (reduce, cut, cut down, decrease, lessen, pare down, trim, retrench, restrict, limit, curb, reign in.)
–We should all be familiar with the term “circumcise your hearts” from scripture. Often we find Paul quoted in light of this matter, let us realize it was Paul quoting the Torah and Moshe, divinely instructed by God. (https://safeguardingtheeternal.wordpress.com/2014/04/22/was-paul-a-torah-teacher/)
What does it mean, circumcise your heart? Circumcision is symbolic, cut away the part of man which has in his own power the ability to bring forth life, cut off the flesh making known that the power is with God. Cut away our control and make it known that God is the life giver. Relying upon the Lord not upon the flesh. As the Torah was ‘given’ at mount Sinai (though we know there is much scriptural evidence to support the notion that there were Laws and standards given from the time of Adam and Chavah) on tablets of stone, the New Covenant is expressed as the Torah written upon our hearts, tablets of flesh. The text of our Torah portion is so beautiful, a gentle plea from God through Moshe. What does God ask of you? Revere God, Actively Pursue becoming like His Son by doing as He does, Love Him, keep (shamar- to hedge about as with thorns, i.e. guard; generally, to protect, attend to) His commandments. As Jeremiah expresses, the New Covenant sign as the sign of Circumcision (by your seed the entire earth will be blessed) is the cutting away of flesh, the heart of stone which is hardened against doing the will of God and walking in His ways, i.e. living His Torah, the sign of the New Covenant is the Torah written upon the heart by the Holy Spirit enabling the chosen to desire to walk in it and feel it a privilege versus a burden.
 circumcise your heart
Romans 2; 28 For he is not a Jew who is one outwardly, nor is circumcision that which is outward in the flesh. 29 But he is a Jew who is one inwardly; and circumcision is that which is of the heart, by the Spirit, not by the letter; and his praise is not from men, but from God.
Jeremiah 31; 33 “But this is the covenant which I will make with the house of Israel after those days,” declares the Lord, “I will put My Torah within them and on their heart I will write it; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people. 34 They will not teach again, each man his neighbor and each man his brother, saying, ‘Know the Lord,’ for they will all know Me, from the least of them to the greatest of them,” declares the Lord, “for I will forgive their iniquity, and their sin I will remember no more.”
Ecclesiastes 12; 13 The conclusion, when all has been heard, is: fear God and keep His commandments, because this applies to every person.
Teffilin
Deuteronomy 11; 18 “You shall therefore impress these words of mine on your heart and on your soul; and you shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontals on your forehead. 19 You shall teach them to your sons, talking of them when you sit in your house and when you walk along the road and when you lie down and when you rise up.20 You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates, 21 so that your days and the days of your sons may be multiplied on the land which the Lord swore to your fathers to give them, as long as the heavens remain above the earth.
–Here we are given two mitzvot (commandments) regarding Tefillin and the Mezuzah. These aren’t simply Jewish things, nor are they merely man made traditions. As you can see they are Torah commands. Let’s talk about what they are and what they represent. The word “tefillin,” is related to the word “tefilah” (prayer) and the root Pe-Lamed-Lamed (judgment). The text says bind them upon your arm, the Tefillin are small boxes which contain Torah text written on little scrolls which are then tied to the arm and around the head before prayer.  Tied to the hand, the right arm (our strength), when brought close to the torso the box containing God’s word is held close to our hearts. Yeshua still bears the scar of the hole in his hand from the nail which held up his torso on the cross. The box tied around the head, the very place the crown of thorns rested on Yeshua’s head.  Tefillin are worn accompanied by the prayer shawl which hangs just near the place where Yeshua’s side was pierced. These physical forms of walking in His commandments are meant to remind us to keep the Commandments of HaShem close to our hearts and minds. The idea of applying our intellect and physical strength into the performance of God’s word. Think of it this way, this is a biblical based ceremony which will at the very least prompt our children to ask questions and induce explanation and glorification of the King. ( Not to mention sanctifying prayer time.)
tefilin
 Another commonly misconceived “Jewish Thing”, which is biblical and beautiful is the commandment of the Mezuzah. These aren’t superstitions or charms, they are commandments with meaning not made up, but given by God. When He said to hear my word and do…this is part of the doing when done with intention, purpose and heart.
The Mezuzah is fixed at the right of the entryways of the home. It is a reminder of the presence of God and brings to mind His commandments, the Shema is written inside, the text Yeshua said is the greatest of the Commands: “Hear O Israel, the Lord is our God the Lord is One, you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul and resources.” Some people put them on every doorway of their house even inside because the home should be sacred space, holy ground. God graciously gave us our homes, within these walls we will remember the experiences of life herein, you will teach your children  here, love here, mourn here…and in every experience we should acknowledge HaShem and His presence with us.
mezuzah 1
The disconnect one feels from God is an illusion, He is always there. When leaving the home and touching the Mezuzah you can remember to take Him with you. When entering in you can touch it and make a concerted effort to treat each moment and occasion of home life as precious and filled with God’s grace. One can scarcely escape the notion of blood upon the doorpost, the blood of the Lamb (Exodus 12) . Or the reminder of the awl pierced through the ear of the eternal slave at the door post of the Master’s house (Exodus 21 Deut. 15). There are more connections including the ideas of Threshold Covenant, see this teaching for an overview : http://vimeo.com/21026940
Mezuzah-RS
I can not help but think about the Jewish homes and businesses that were perhaps identified by these Mezuzot. They were marked in WWII with paint, the star of David once a badge of strength and kingly honor was meant to become a badge of shame and persecution. We see a similar occurrence today as middle eastern Christian homes are marked with paint, a letter N in Arabic signifying Nazarene (Yeshua)… meant to be badge of shame and persecution it is in fact a badge of the honor it is to be called a servant of the King.
nazarene
–There are tribulations we have been experienceing, trials and tests. They will increase. The only capability we will have to endure it come from the inner strength which the Lord WILL give us. We need to ask Him for it, regularly, continually. We need to believe He will provide us with all our needs and praise Him realizing “What need is there?” We have it all!
If we can trust and have faith that He cared for the people, rained down bread from heaven, gave them the Torah on the Mountain, blessed the world with the Light in Yeshua. If we believe that there is a resurrection for us, life from the dead….surely we can trust Him to provide for us food when the stores and farms shut down. Protection from the sword when war and violence comes to America. Health when the diseases of which we hear about come to our shores. Perhaps most importantly, the strength to stand and testify to the truth we have in the Word, the truth of the One God of Avraham, Yitzach and Yaacov (Abraham, Isaac and Jacob) and the exact representation of His magnificence and splendor. Let us remember not to forget, by whatever means the Lord impresses upon our hearts by His spirit. Be it Mezuzah, or Tefillin, kneeling for prayer or bowing our heads. Be it grace after meals or an envelope in the collection plate. Let us read the word of God as it is, for US, for TODAY as if we experienced the signs in Egypt and deliverance from slavery, the blood of the unblemished innocent lamb, resurrection, the return of a nation from exile, the restoration of a people with their God …for we will see such things again, may it be soon in our days!
Hebrews 1; 3 And He is the radiance of His glory and the exact representation of His nature, and upholds all things by the word of His power. When He had made purification of sins, He sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high…
II Corinthians 1;20 For all the promises of God in Him Yes, and in Him Amen, to the glory of God through us. 21 Now He who establishes us with you in Messiah and has anointed us is God, 22 who also has sealed us and given us the Spirit in our hearts as a guarantee.
path
Baruch attah ADONAI Eloheinu Melech HaOlam
Blessed are You Lord our God King of the universe
You have blessed us with Your Torah of Truth
You have blessed us with the entire counsel of Your Living word.
You alone have planted among us life eternal,
Blessed are You Lord our God gracious Giver of the Torah.
B’Shem Yeshua HaMashiac, amein.
My Father and King, only You know what has transpired in the year since the last cycle came to Eikev. It is because of Your grace I have reached this year and finished this entry. It is impossible to scratch the surface of the beauty contained in Your living word. Thank You for allowing me the chance to give a gift of time…precious time. I wish I had more to give but I thank You. I ask that You teach us all to remember the awe of Your creation and tremble in the fear of the ordination You have given us all….to be witnesses and to bear the testimony of Your goodness. The richness of life even through the hardships. I praise You my King and I ask that You find favor in Your children and honor us with opportunities to glorify and praise You with our lives. Thank You my King.
amein.
Jew and Gentile
contact me: safeguardingtheeternal@aol.com
Advertisements

One thought on “Parashah Eikev: Because, We Have it All!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s