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teaching the people

Parasha Vayelech – וַיֵּלֶךְHebrew for “then he went out”. This is the shortest of the Torah portions, consisting of only 30 verses, from Devarim (Deuteronomy 31;1- 30). This along with next week, which continues with the Song of Moses, are two of the most packed portions of all of Deuteronomy, perhaps of the whole Torah. Here we witness the parting words of God to Moses, of Moses to the people, of God to the people, a transfer of leadership to Yehoshua (Joshua) and the commandment that all the people of God be read and taught from these words for all time. God leaves Moses with the prophecy of what will happen to his people when he is gone, what will happen in the future and how forever… these words will bear the testimony of the Children of Israel and their relationship with HaShem for all time. Moses spends these last days writing the Torah and placing it in the holiest place. This too is what we are doing as we shama, hear with heart and intention the last words of the man who spoke with Almighty God, face to face, as a man with his fellow.

James 4; 13 Come now, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go to such and such a city, and spend a year there and engage in business and make a profit.” 14 Yet you do not know what your life will be like tomorrow. You are a vapor that appears for a little while and then vanishes away.

–The man Moshe, a miracle from the start. Conceived in a time where fear ruled and God seemed to have abandoned His people. Slavery, hunger, crushing oppression, death…and the sorrow which invaded was the biggest threat of all. For the Hebrew people to continue, to live another day, the men and women of that generation had to conquer the terror which hindered the fulfillment of the command, “Be fruitful and multiply…” Amram and Yocheved overcame the separation which threatened their progenation. And then there was Moshe. A good, tov, child, raised in a Pagan palace, who never lost the Hebrew roots his mother implanted and fostered within him. He took an interest in his people and sacrificed his comfort for their freedom. He took an interest in the Lord and heard His voice clearly. He was chosen by God to be the leader who would not take no for an answer. Moshe would argue, from his face, for the sake of His people before the Lord time and time again. His intercessory work foreshadows the Messiah who is continually making the case for us, granting us access to the Father. Moshe spent every minute of his life serving his people, though they would threaten him time and time again. Even so, in the end…he was not permitted to enter the Land of Promise, nor to lead his people there. He would go with them, by the words of the Torah and its teachings…which would, have and will remain within the chosen people of God for all time.

Moses

Genesis 6;3 Then the Lord said, “My Spirit shall not strive with man forever, because he also is flesh nevertheless his days shall be one hundred and twenty years.”

(Written by Moshe) Psalm 90; 10 As for the days of our life, they contain seventy years, or if due to strength, eighty years, yet their pride is labor and sorrow; for soon it is gone and we fly away. 11 Who understands the power of Your anger and Your fury, according to the fear that is due You?12 So teach us to number our days, that we may present to You a heart of wisdom.

Deuteronomy 31;1  So Moses went and spoke these words to all Israel. And he said to them, “I am a hundred and twenty years old today; I am no longer able to come and go, and the Lord has said to me, ‘You shall not cross this Jordan.’

Deuteronomy 34; 7 Although Moses was one hundred and twenty years old when he died, his eye was not dim, nor his vigor abated.

joshua 1

–Pre Flood God looked at man and set his lifespan at 120 years. The Psalm of Moshe expresses that man’s days would contain seventy years or if these years held gbuwrah (gheb-oo-raw’) force, valor and victory..man would reach 80. He goes on to ask the Lord to teach us to count…manah (maw-naw’) to weigh out and allot our days with a heart of wisdom. Moshe comes to the end of his life and he has surpassed the days of 70 and 80. He has reached that exact number God set out before the corruption of man grieved God to His heart, wherefore He flooded the earth and cleansed it. Incredible! Furthermore if we read on find that Moshe was not some tired, decrepit, grumbling elder…shrinking in resolve or even with diminished capacity. A true miracle after all he had been through. So the question might be, well why does he say he can not come and go with them into the Jordan? Even if he could set foot in the Land, Moshe is indicating…I can not fight. I can not do battle, I can not be your general. This seems clear reading in context of the invasion of the Land. Moshe knows that for the people to take up their charge and destiny to inherit the Land of Promise… there is something that must happen first. His passing, and handing over the reigns to Joshua. Moshe blesses Joshua with a double investment of His spirit, placing two hands upon him and Joshua is given the lofty command:

Deuteronomy 20;16 Only in the cities of these peoples that the Lord your God is giving you as an inheritance, you shall not leave alive anything that breathes. 17 But you shall utterly destroy them, the Hittite and the Amorite, the Canaanite and the Perizzite, the Hivite and the Jebusite, as the Lord your God has commanded you, 18 so that they may not teach you to do according to all their detestable things which they have done for their gods, so that you would sin against the Lord your God.

joshua

-Where we will see in future times, kings ignore this Torah command…Joshua does fulfill it as instructed. Everything that breathes is to be demolished. Not lands outside the instructed and assigned (by God) borders of what will be Eretz Yisrael…the Land of Israel, because for warfare with those there are different, less severe standards. Only the cities of inheritance are to be dealt with as such. How can we with our modern thinking and codes of conduct, our protocols and rules of engagement…wrap our heads and hearts around such a notion? I believe the answer is trust. Trust? Trust that the Lord is not only Omnipotent for the past and for our present…but He can see into the future far beyond our comprehension. He alone has that Vision. He alone can foresee our outcome and end and constructs it, giving us the options and choices with the intention for us to choose the good, the life. If He could see a day wherein His people would be tormented and massacred…humiliated and His Name profaned…surely He would charge that such a thing be avoided at even a high cost. One need only look at what the enemies of God’s people are even now performing…while those who will not make a stand against evil sit still and silent in a cushion of political correctness…Israel and the Jewish people along with all Christians and Americans are threatened with the convert or die of Islam. While in middle eastern lands much blood has already been spilled and Israel’s enemies tunnel underground and amass at their borders waiting for the opportune time to “push them into the sea”…America may think our amber waves of grain are not threatened, it is only a matter of time before the evil intent that God sought to stamp out, reaches these purple mountains and fruited plains as consuming, biting and devouring locust. Leaving none behind but those who will be willing to submit reject and deny their King the Rock who Bore them.

jericho-captured-city

Joshua 10; 40 Thus Joshua struck all the land, the hill country and the Negev and the lowland and the slopes and all their kings. He left no survivor, but he utterly destroyed all who breathed, just as the Lord, the God of Israel, had commanded. 41 Joshua struck them from Kadesh-barnea even as far as Gaza, and all the country of Goshen even as far as Gibeon. 42 Joshua captured all these kings and their lands at one time, because the Lord, the God of Israel, fought for Israel.

Deuteronomy 31; 3 It is the Lord your God who will cross ahead of you; He will destroy these nations before you, and you shall dispossess them.Joshua is the one who will cross ahead of you, just as the Lord has spoken. The Lord will do to them just as He did to Sihon and Og, the kings of the Amorites, and to their land, when He destroyed them. The Lord will deliver them up before you, and you shall do to them according to all the commandments which I have commanded you.Be strong and courageous, do not be afraid or tremble at them, for the Lord your God is the one who goes with you. He will not fail you or forsake you.” Then Moses called to Joshua and said to him in the sight of all Israel, “Be strong and courageous, for you shall go with this people into the land which the Lord has sworn to their fathers to give them, and you shall give it to them as an inheritance. The Lord is the one who goes ahead of you; He will be with you. He will not fail you or forsake you. Do not fear or be dismayed (CHATHATH). 

2865 חָתַת chathath {khaw-thath’} to prostrate; hence to break down,either(literally) by violence, or (figuratively) by confusion and fear: —abolish, affright, be (make) afraid, amaze, beat down, discourage,
(cause to) dismay, go down, scare, terrify.

–Moses first encourages the people to keep faith and be strong to have courage and know that the Lord goes and fights for them. It is not on a whim the people seek to enter the Land and take it,it is not for their glory or that they had the ambition to subjugate peoples underneath them. This is the realization of the Promise God made to Avraham after he  showed the trust and faith to give ALL that he had so that Gods glorious plan, of giving us a savior who would willingly die as an offering, might be seen and remembered. Avraham knew that the foreshadow of Isaac being slain would demonstrate the day of Yeshua and His sacrifice which Avraham saw…I believe this is why God made the promise to Avraham and why now the children of Israel are poised to realize its eventuation. Their strength of faith will enable God to do what He has said He will do. Just as they stand on the edge of the battle, so too do we. The thing we are not to do now in the last hour is to break down. We must be courageous and allow the Lord to work as He has promised us.

2901 κραταιόω krataioo {krat-ah-yo’-o} From G2900; to empower, that is, (passively) increase in vigor:—be strengthened, be (wax) strong.

I Corinthians 16;13 Be on the alert, stand firm in the faith, act like men, be strong (krataioo). 14 Let all that you do be done in love.

#5278 ὑπομένω hupomeno {hoop-om-en’-o} From G5259 and G3306; to stay under (behind), that is, remain; figuratively to undergo, that is, bear (trials),have fortitude, persevere:—abide, endure, (take) patient (-ly), suffer, tarry behind.

James 1; 12 Blessed is a man who perseveres (HUPOMENO) under trial; for once he has been approved, he will receive the crown of life which the Lord has promised to those who love Him.

I John 5; 3 For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments; and His commandments are not burdensome. 4 For whatever is born of God overcomes the world; and this is the victory that has overcome the world—our faith. 5 Who is the one who overcomes the world, but he who believes that Jesus (Yeshua) is the Son of God?

hope

–So we come to it. Moshe, the man of God is taking his last few days and hours and using them with intention. What would you do if you knew the day you would die? How would you use your time? Moshe is teaching, relaying, composing songs, compiling the words God gave him and it is said that he writes out the Torah and gives it to the Kohanim (Priests). Going back to Deuteronomy 17 we read the instructions for the King, he is write down the Torah, one copy (or witness) to be on his person wherever he goes, one to remain in his kingdom, house, throne room…as a second witness, verifying the “program” of the Kingdom and its standard.

Deuteronomy 31; 9 So Moses wrote this law and gave it to the priests, the sons of Levi who carried the ark of the covenant of the Lord, and to all the elders of Israel.

Deuteronomy 17; 18 “Now it shall come about when he sits on the throne of his kingdom, he shall write for himself a copy of this law on a scroll in the presence of the Levitical priests. 19 It shall be with him and he shall read it all the days of his life, that he may learn to fear the Lord his God, by carefully observing all the words of this law and these statutes,20 that his heart may not be lifted up above his countrymen and that he may not turn aside from the commandment, to the right or the left, so that he and his sons may continue long in his kingdom in the midst of Israel.

in the beginning

–Moses nears the end of his life, the man who spoke with God face to face, the man whom God Himself called trustworthy in all His house, called him Friend…Moshe basked in the divine presence on a regular basis and was endowed with the spirit and deeply close connection to the Holy One, Blessed is He, no other prophet who came hence would ‘perceive his vision’ like Moshe and therefore I believe when we read these closing texts of the Torah we should evaluate with understanding which goes beyond the surface…what these words mean, at the very least realize what we hold in our hands and weigh it out with its due measure, value what we are blessed to be endowed with here. If we are called to be a nation of priests and kings, a people set apart and holy unto the Lord…does it not follow that we should follow those who came before us? I don’t know about you, but to have even a shred of the relationship with God Moshe had is a thought which brings me to my knees. So what did Moshe do? He performed, and followed…he led by example and did what God told Him to do. He did the Torah’s instructions, and as the leader, the ‘king’ of the people he wrote it down and gave it to the Priests whose job it was to teach it to the people.

I Peter 2; 8…for they stumble because they are disobedient to the word, and to this doom they were also appointed. But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for God’s own possession, so that you may proclaim the excellencies of Him who has called you out of darkness into His marvelous light; 10 for you once were not a people, but now you are the people of God; you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy.11 Beloved, I urge you as aliens and strangers to abstain from fleshly lusts which wage  war against the soul.

torah

–It is astounding and outstanding to me that during these Torah cycles you will find the readings not only align with personal experiences, current events, but often times will match up with the dates on the biblical calendar and Feasts of the Lord cycle. What does that mean? For example, this year as we read the portion of the golden calf it was near to the actual date that the sin of the golden calf took place. When the Lord gave me the inspiration to start this blog I didn’t have understanding at the outset what His purpose for it might be. I considered that if I did not keep up with an entry to put out for each weekly reading that I was in some way “behind” in this blessed and delightful responsibility. It has become clear as time has gone by and things have progressed that the Lord does have an intention for it and when I surrender to His timing and do the best I can with the means and time He bestows upon me…everything falls even more perfectly into place than I, in my finite perception, could ever have orchestrated. I began this entry weeks ago when we were reading Vayelech. Here I sit having experienced the Fall Feasts and just a few days ago I and my family were dwelling under the palm and myrtle branches of the Succah for the Feast of Tabernacles.

succoth

So too we are reading the last and pivotal words of Moshe. He writes the Torah and charges the Priests to safeguard it and elucidate it, ensuring the people should know what God has said. Now Moses proceeds to tell the people that at the time of the Shemitah, the seventh year in which there is a release of bondsmen…a rest for the land…a remission of debt…freedom…ALL the people are to appear to hear the Torah read. Men, women, children, the stranger in their midst are to assemble and HEAR with UNDERSTANDING…the learn and to revere the Lord. This is not a commandment to a certain group, a certain time, a certain era…this is for all those in covenant and relationship with the Lord and we are charged to carefully observe the Torah and hear it from the heart. This is where our understanding is derived.

the King returns

Reading from the Prophet Zechariah we read that there will be a future time, the time of reign of Messiah, when we will go up to Jerusalem and we will be there to bow before the King and worship and what will we be celebrating? Succot (the Feast of Tabernacles). As we have just read from our Torah portion what will be taking place? A huge, public Torah reading and who will be reading it? The King! Yeshua the messiah, and the Torah will go forth from Jerusalem.

Torah is light

Isaiah 2 and Micah 4;1 Now it will come about that in the last days the mountain of the house of the Lord will be established as the chief of the mountains, and will be raised above the hills;and all the nations will stream to it. And many peoples will come and say, “Come, let us go up to the mountain of the Lord, to the house of the God of Jacob; that He may teach us concerning His ways and that we may walk in His paths.” For the law (Torah- Towrah) will go forth from Zion and the word of the Lord from Jerusalem.

If the Feast of Succot is a mandate of the Lord for the future reign of the King of Kings and He desires all those who come to hear His word and to be blessed with life giving rain and health…then, why wouldn’t He desire us to attempt to learn about His Feasts, scriptures found in the Torah, and ‘practice’ them…now?

succoth 4

Zechariah 14;16 Then it will come about that any who are left of all the nations that went against Jerusalem will go up from year to year to worship the King, the Lord of hosts, and to celebrate the Feast of Booths. 17 And it will be that whichever of the families of the earth does not go up to Jerusalem to worship the King, the Lord of hosts, there will be no rain on them. 

Deuteronomy 31; 10 Then Moses commanded them, saying, “At the end of every seven years, at the time of the year of remission of debts, at the Feast of Booths, 11 when all Israel comes to appear before the Lord your God at the place which He will choose, you shall read this law in front of all Israel in their hearing. 12 Assemble the people, the men and the women and children and the alien who is in your town, so that they may hear and learn and fear the Lord your God, and be careful to observe all the words of this law.

Deuteronomy 16; 16 “Three times in a year all your males shall appear before the Lord your God in the place which He chooses, at the Feast of Unleavened Bread and at the Feast of Weeks and at the Feast of Booths, and they shall not appear before the Lord empty-handed.17 Every man shall give as he is able, according to the blessing of the Lord your God which He has given you.

nehemiah

The words found in the book of Nehemiah are, I believe, a foreshadow of what will again happen in the future, as I see it. The people of God (that is the believing natural branch and all who attach themselves to the Covenant via. Yeshua the messiah) will endure a time of tribulation and exile. There will be hardship and woe and a drought for hearing the word of God. (Matthew 24; 21 For then there will be a great tribulation, such as has not occurred since the beginning of the world until now, nor ever will. 22 Unless those days had been cut short, no life would have been saved; but for the sake of the elect those days will be cut short.  Amos 8;11 “Behold, days are coming,” declares the Lord God“When I will send a famine on the land, not a famine for bread or a thirst for water, but rather for hearing the words of the Lord.) After the time of trial and trouble, after the spiritual darkness…there will be a return. This return will be physical to the Land and spiritually a return to the word, to the Torah of the Lord…a return to the Living Word, Yeshua. We see in the Nehemiah text this same picture of the leaders reading and elucidating the Torah to ALL the people; men, women, children and the stranger among them. There is sorrow because they realize, perhaps after an extended period of total disillusionment with faith and dissociation with their King, why they had gone into exile in the first place, they understand (because via the Torah God expressed what would happen) what went wrong…that they had been warned and why they had been punished so severely. They begin to despair and lament. The light of the Torah of HaShem shines and identifies their sin to them but at the same time…becomes a great cause for hope.

I John 3;4 Everyone who practices sin also practices lawlessness; and sin is lawlessness.

Romans 7;What shall we say then? Is the Law sin? May it never be! On the contrary, I would not have come to know sin except through the Law; for I would not have known about coveting if the Law had not said, “You shall not covet.”

Proverbs 6; 22 When you walk about, they will guide you; when you sleep, they will watch over you; and when you awake, they will talk to you. 23 For the commandment is a lamp and the teaching is light; and reproofs for discipline are the way of life 24 To keep you from the evil woman, from the smooth tongue of the adulteress.

Nehemiah teaches

Nehemiah reminds the people the time in which they find themselves is Succot, the only place in the word where one is given an actua command to be happy and rejoice. Why? God is gracious and merciful, the call to repentance seen from the giving of the Torah at Sinai on is a type of Rosh Hashanah- Feast of Trumpets, which is signified by the blasting of the shofar, awakening the people to the very real consequences of living in the flesh and ignoring God and His appeals to their hearts to return to him.  We see the exile itself is a type of picture of Yom Kippur…standing before the King for Judgment based upon the deeds of each individual and repentance, also the just enactment of the punishment for ones actions…the outcome pursued? True, life changing, HEART changing repentance. Finally, this season of grace…jubilation, delight and revival…re-connection and restoration with the King at Succot we are commanded to move on from what came before, leaving behind the former self and worshiping wholeheartedly WITH the King. The Torah is the Lamp which lights up the sin but also reveals God’s route for reconciliation. The people hear the words of the Torah and they are pained by their sin but reminded how great God’s design is! There is more joy than there had been since they set foot into the Land of Promise, and so too it will be for us when we return there and go there to rejoice on Succos before the King of Kings.  

succoth 3

Nehemiah 8;1 And all the people gathered as one man at the square which was in front of the Water Gate, and they asked Ezra the scribe to bring the book of the law of Moses which the Lord had given to Israel. Then Ezra the priest brought the law before the assembly of men, women and all who could listen with understanding, on the first day of the seventh month. He read from it before the square which was in front of the Water Gate from early morning until midday, in the presence of men and women, those who could understand; and all the people were attentive to the book of the law.Ezra the scribe stood at a wooden podium which they had made for the purpose. And beside him stood Mattithiah, Shema, Anaiah, Uriah, Hilkiah, and Maaseiah on his right hand; and Pedaiah, Mishael, Malchijah, Hashum, Hashbaddanah, Zechariah andMeshullam on his left hand. Ezra opened the book in the sight of all the people for he was standing above all the people; and when he opened it, all the people stood up.Then Ezra blessed the Lord the great God. And all the people answered, “Amen, Amen!” while lifting up their hands; then they bowed low and worshiped the Lord with faces to the ground. Also Jeshua, Bani, Sherebiah, Jamin, Akkub, Shabbethai, Hodiah, Maaseiah, Kelita, Azariah, Jozabad, Hanan, Pelaiah, the Levites, explained the law to the people while the people remained in their place. They read from the book, from the law of God, translating to give the sense so that they understood the reading.Then Nehemiah, who was the governor, and Ezra the priest and scribe, and the Levites who taught the people said to all the people, “This day is holy to the Lord your God; do not mourn or weep.For all the people were weeping when they heard the words of the law. 10 Then he said to them, “Go, eat of the fat, drink of the sweet, and send portions to him who has nothing prepared; for this day is holy to our Lord. Do not be grieved, for the joy of the Lord is your strength. 11 So the Levites calmed all the people, saying, “Be still, for the day is holy; do not be grieved.”

 

vayelech

Nehemiah 8; 12 All the people went away to eat, to drink, to send portions and to celebrate a great festival,because they understood the words which had been made known to them.13 Then on the second day the heads of fathers’ of all the people, the priests and the Levites were gathered to Ezra the scribe that they might gain insight into the words of the law. 14 They found written in the law how the Lord had commanded through Moses that the sons of Israel should live in booths during the feast of the seventh month. 15 So they proclaimed and circulated a proclamation in all their cities and in Jerusalem, saying, “Go out to the hills, and bring olive branches and wild olive branches, myrtle branches, palm branches and branches of leafy trees, to make booths, as it is written.” 16 So the people went out and brought and made booths for themselves, each on his roof, and in their courts and in the courts of the house of God, and in the square at the Water Gate and in the square at the Gate of Ephraim. 17 The entire assembly of those who had returned from the captivity made booths and lived in them. The sons of Israel had indeed not done so from the days of Joshua the son of Nun to that day. And there was great rejoicing.18 He read from the book of the law of God daily, from the first day to the last day. And they celebrated the feast seven days, and on the eighth day there was a solemn assembly according to the ordinance.

Yeshua Feast of Trumpets

Ezekiel 16; 35 Therefore, O harlot, hear the word of the Lord. 36 Thus says the Lord God, “Because your lewdness was poured out and your nakedness uncovered through your harlotries with your lovers and with all your detestable idols, and because of the blood of your sons which you gave to idols, 37 therefore, behold, I will gather all your lovers with whom you took pleasure, even all those whom you loved all those whom you hated. So I will gather them against you from every direction and expose your nakedness to them that they may see all your nakedness. 38 Thus I will judge you like women who commit adultery or shed blood are judged; and I will bring on you the blood of wrath and jealousy….Then I will stop you from playing the harlot, and you will also no longer pay your lovers. 42 So I will calm My fury against you and My jealousy will depart from you, and I will be pacified and angry no more. 43 Because you have not remembered the days of your youth but have enraged Me by all these things, behold, I in turn will bring your conduct down on your own head,” declares the Lord God, “so that you will not commit this lewdness on top of all your  abominations.

Temple tallit

– Reading the text above from Ezekiel one can swiftly feel the intensity of God’s “pain”. He repeatedly uses the words Harlotry and Nakedness. The people are exposed completely and they have no sense of decency much less fidelity to God. In the preceding chapters of Ezekiel one can read God refer to the people as the House of Israel, and to Himself as the God of Israel…not here. Here He directly calls ‘her’ (Israel) “O Harlot”. Ouch. This is serious. Yet, in His abundant mercy The Almighty is still explaining His purpose for this is to STOP His people from acting the way they have. Similarly in our Torah portion God warns Moshe and Joshua at the end…what will happen once the people do enter the Land. Their beginning will follow the idolatry and pride…connection to paganism which they had yet to shed, and which we all have yet still to shed before the implications of our exile and the responsibility we have for these consequences to come…can be fully understood.

Deuteronomy 31; 16 The Lord said to Moses, “Behold, you are about to lie down with your fathers; and this people will arise and play the harlot with the strange gods of the land, into the midst of which they are going, and will forsake Me and break My covenant which I have made with them. 17 Then My anger will be kindled against them in that day, and I will forsake them and hide My face from them, and they will be consumed, and many evils and troubles will come upon them; so that they will say in that day, ‘Is it not because our God is not among us that these evils have come upon us?’ 18 But I will surely hide My face in that day because of all the evil which they will do, for they will turn to other gods.

Torah light

–I do not comprehend it. How can humanity look creation in the face every morning…feel His magnitude all around us, and continue…to continually sin. I do it, you do it…Israel did too. To some extent we are all looking into the land of promise with an idol in our satchel, ready to to take hold of a new beginning and still clinging to a bitter end. Why? I believe it is a life long process… and if we can reach the last chapter with our eyes remaining sharp, our vigor having not dwindled or declined…our faith having become elevated and intensified, we will be able to function in a fashion that is not only suitable for God to use…but that we will be serving the purpose for which He designed us. The Jewish people are returning to the Land and to the Torah, a new generation of Children will grow and God willing restore Israel to its intended station…a God fearing, revering nation who will not compromise their connection with their groom for any other nation, any other lover. So too gentiles, are returning to the Hebrew roots of their faith, to their Jewish Messiah and and understanding of the relevance of the Feast of the Lord and their implications for the future millennial Kingdom. Christianity is returning to their bible as a whole, they are no longer fed by the Sunday morning sermon, by a tithe in the collection plate and service with a smile…as a whole ears are being sharpened, eyes are being opened, and hearts are being softened. On the other side of this battle, because of this evident return…there is intensified persecution of the Jewish people, anti-antisemitism and replacement theology all over as well as severe oppression of Christians especially in the middle east. The enemy of God’s people is on the attack and because his reign grows short we will all be met with significantly exponential challenge. The destroyer will seek to obliterate our marriages, our households, the faith and values instilled in our children, and the remnant of morality in society as a whole. I believe the beginning of the key to conquering our challenges comes from the attributes displayed here at the end of the man nearest to God, the most humble man who lived…Moses, obedient to all ends to the commandment, the Torah of the King.

Let’s end this portion with the continuation of the Ezekiel text we were reviewing in connection with some of Moshe’s parting words (God’s words to Moshe and the people)…bearing in mind the long suffering of our King and how much He has and will yet endure of our waywardness…

succoth!

Ezekiel 16; 60 “Nevertheless, I will remember My covenant with you in the days of your youth, and I will establish an everlasting covenant with you. 61 Then you will remember your ways and be ashamed….Thus I will establish My covenant with you, and you shall know that I am the Lord, 63 so that you may remember and be ashamed and never open your mouth anymore because of your humiliation, when I have forgiven you for all that you have done,” the Lord God declares.

I’d like to leave off with the words of another humble sage, Moshe Ben Nachman, known as the Ramban…I love how he approaches commenting on the Torah. It teaches us how even the greatest of minds should approach study and interpretation and I think this will be a great encouragement as we come into the last two portions of the Torah…

In the name of God- the great, the mighty and the awesome-

I shall being to write original insights in interpreting the Torah.

With fear, with awe, with trepidation, with trembling, with reverence,

Praying and confessing [ my shortcomings] with crushed heart and broken spirit,

Asking forgiveness, seeking pardon and atonement,

With bowing, with kneeling, with prostration,

until the entire spine protrudes.

My soul knows well, with clear knowledge,

That an ants egg is not any smaller compared with the outermost heavenly sphere,

Than my wisdom is small as my knowledge is short,

Compared to the Torah’s secrets-

hidden in its house, secreted in its chamber.

For everything precious and every wonder, every deep mystery and all splendid wisdom

is hidden within it, sealed withing its storehouse-

and may God, Whom alone I fear,

Save me from the day of wrath,

Spare me from mistakes and from all manner of sin and misdeed,

and guide me along the straight path

and open the gates of light for us. * Ramban

study

Deuteronomy 31; 24 It came about, when Moses finished writing the words of this law in a book until they were complete, 25 that Moses commanded the Levites who carried the ark of the covenant of the Lord, saying, 26 “Take this book of the law and place it beside the ark of the covenant of the Lord your God, that it may remain there as a witness against you.

-Let us not forget the witness and testimony of the man Moshe, and of the Lord Who spoke these words to Him face to face and commanded Him to write them down for us, a Kingly pursuit he followed through, now what will we do?

Blessed are You Lord our God, Creator and 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!

rocks together

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