Serat-Serot-Leprosy
CATEGORIES: 5851 | From The Heart

Joseph F. Dumond

Joe Started Sightedmoon in 2005 to assist him in spreading his understanding of the Sabbatical and Jubilee Years according to Torah.
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Published: May 7, 2015 - (5856)
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News Letter 5851-009
19th day of the 2nd month 5851 years after the creation of Adam
The 2nd Month in the Sixth year of the Third Sabbatical Cycle
The Third Sabbatical Cycle of the 119th Jubilee Cycle
The Sabbatical Cycle of Earthquakes, Famines and Pestilence
The Year of the Tithe for the Widows, Orphans & Levites
The 35th day of Counting the Omer

May 9, 2015

 

Shabbat Shalom Brethren

 

“Our Two Radio Shows”

I would like to once again let you all know we are now doing two separate and different Radio shows each week. Again, both revolve around the Sabbatical and Jubilee concepts.
We are on Lamb Radio Tuesday evenings at 10 PM Eastern. When I say we, I mean Mitch and Krista Houston and Greg Cronkite and myself.

We are also on Hebrew Nation Radio which is also an AM station in Oregon. This show also is live and takes place at 10 Eastern on Wednesday evenings.

If you have questions, you can write them or email them to myself or OutCry Radio and we will read them on the air and answer them. Or you can call in as some are now doing with their questions and we will answer them on the spot.

We are going all out as much as we possibly can in this 6th year just before the Sabbatical year. I want to thank you for your prayers and support. I also want to thank those of you who send in your love letters. They come at the best possible time each time I get them. So thank you all for them. They counter those who are attacking and accusing.

All of our Radio Broadcasts are stored at this link at sightedmoon.com and Outcry Radio. We also have all of our videos stored here as podcasts for you to download and take with you wherever you’re going, to listen to them while you drive or as you study.

Take advantage of these things while you can and tell others and keep telling others until either your voice gives out or you run out of people to tell. And thank you for your help.

 


“The Power of a Widows Prayer”

Each week this year of 5851, I have told you about the Third Tithe that you should be giving out to the widows and orphans. I have also sent you the short video teaching we have done on this subject. It is less than ten minutes in length. At the end of the teaching we have Ella giving a testimonial about the things she has learned at that meeting we did at that time. Ella also is a widow whose husband died at Passover the year before we recorded this.

She has written me this week. I am going to share her letter with you.

Hello Bro Joe. I know you have encouraged others to remember the widows and orphans and you have been gracious to me and I certainly appreciate it. I am not asking for help from you again, but was wondering if any of your contacts had expressed an interest in giving their tithe to a widow that they might not know of. My plight: my 98 yr old mother who has lived with me for about 20 years and has been very functional, bright and alert – a very God fearing, praying woman – has had a stroke. It was slight with speech, memory and balance and she is on the way to recovery-complete I am believing. She has regained her speech but it has left her very weak and unbalanced. My sister lives in GA and came to KY for a few days to help when I brought her home from the hospital, but had to return to her work today. I am having to take off work since I have no one to help me at night so I can rest to work or in the day while I work. So, it may have to be permanent unless she totally recovers. I work because I have to financially so can’t afford to be off past my vacation days. I appreciate any help you may know of and any suggestions you may have.
Thank you very much. I appreciate all you do to make believers aware of what they can and should do. I also appreciate the Father for what He has put in your heart and your willingness to be obedient. Bless you my friend – a thousand times over.

Blessings, Ella

Brethren I want you to read that last line once again. She has blessed me a thousand times over. Did you notice that? How awesome for me.

What if she had written or prayed to Yehovah and told Him about the evil I had done her, or how I had neglected her or how I had not helped her at all when it was clearly in my power? What if she had done that?

Read what Yehovah warns you of should any of you do this to the widows.

Exo 22:22  You shall not afflict any widow or fatherless child. 23  If you afflict them in any way, and they cry at all to Me, I will surely hear their cry. 24  And My wrath shall become hot, and I will kill you with the sword, and your wives shall be widows, and your sons fatherless.

Here is what the word afflict means in this verse.

?a?na?h

aw-naw’

A primitive root (possibly rather identical with H6030 through the idea of looking down or browbeating); to depress literally or figuratively, transitively or intransitively (in various applications). (sing is by mistake for H6030.): – abase self, afflict (-ion, self), answer [by mistake for H6030], chasten self, deal hardly with, defile, exercise, force, gentleness, humble (self), hurt, ravish, sing [by mistake for H6030], speak [by mistake for H6030], submit self, weaken, X in any wise.

Brethren, we have a widow, a sister in the faith who has humbled herself and asked me to ask if any of you can help her as she looks after her mother, who is also a widow. Will any of you help her?

Please send me your email and I will pass it on to her and she can contact you. Take this 6th year responsibility seriously. Yehovah does.

Psa 68:4  Sing to God, sing praises to His name; praise Him who rides on the heavens by His name JEHOVAH, and rejoice before Him. 5  In His holy dwelling God is the father of the fatherless, and the judge of the widows.

Deu_10:18  He executes justice for the fatherless and widow, and loves the stranger in giving him food and clothing.

Yehovah will judge you and how you treat the widows this 6th year of this Sabbatical cycle. If you neglect them and they tell Him, then Yehovah says He will make your wife a widow so your family will know what it is like to ignore those in need.

Do not prepare for the Sabbatical year and ignore those in the faith who need your help. I have other widows on my list that I have not yet been able to help, but I am working on it each week.

There is a blessing to recite at the end of this 6th year. You claim to be His, you claim to be a part of His Kingdom and that you’re going to keep His Commandments. Then heed this one about the widows.

Deu 26:12  When you have made an end of tithing all the tithes of your increase the third year, the year of tithing, and have given it to the Levite, the stranger, the fatherless, and the widow (that they may eat inside your gates and be filled), 13  then you shall say before Jehovah your God, I have brought away the holy things out of my house, and also have given them to the Levite, and to the stranger, to the fatherless, and to the widow, according to all Your commandments which You have commanded me. I have not broken Your commandments, neither have I forgotten. 14  I have not eaten of it in my mourning, neither have I put any of it away for unclean use, nor have I given of it for the dead. I have listened to the voice of Jehovah my God, and have done according to all that You have commanded me. 15  Look down from Your holy dwelling, from Heaven, and bless Your people Israel and the land which You have given us, as You swore to our fathers, a land that flows with milk and honey. 16  Today Jehovah your God has commanded you to do these statutes and judgments. You therefore shall keep and do them with all your heart and with all your soul. 17  You have today said that Jehovah is your God, and that you would walk in His ways, and keep His statutes and His commandments and His judgments, and listen to His voice. 18  And Jehovah has taken you today to be His peculiar people, as He has promised you, and to keep all His commandments, 19  and to make you high above all nations which He has made, in praise and in name and in honor, and that you may be a holy people to Jehovah your God, even as He has spoken.

Keep in mind what is the 4th curse of Lev 26. It is the sword. Should you neglect the widows at this time, at this 6th year, which is the second 3rd year in this cycle to take care of the widows, that sword is going to be let loose during the next Sabbatical cycle. Even if you keep the Sabbath and Holy Days and Sabbatical years, if you neglect the widows….well, do you really want to play Russian roulette with this coming sword and take the chance that your wife and kids will be left on their own during the most terrifying time in all of history?

I pray you will step up to the plate and be numbered amongst those who obeyed Yehovah and then said that prayer about how you took care of the widow and were restored to the Land of Israel for your obedience.

15  Look down from Your holy dwelling, from Heaven, and

bless Your people Israel and the land which You have given us,

as You swore to our fathers, a land that flows with milk and honey. 16  Today Jehovah your God has commanded you to do these statutes and judgments. You therefore shall keep and do them with all your heart and with all your soul.

 


“The Leprosy in you”

 

We read in the letter to the Ephesian where Paul tells them not to be angry or to steal or to slander each other.

Eph 4:22  For you ought to put off the old man (according to your way of living before) who is corrupt according to the deceitful lusts, 23  and be renewed in the spirit of your mind. 24  And you should put on the new man, who according to God was created in righteousness and true holiness. 25  Therefore putting away lying, let each man speak truth with his neighbor, for we are members of one another. 26  Be angry, and do not sin. Do not let the sun go down upon your wrath, 27  neither give place to the Devil. 28  Let him who stole steal no more, but rather let him labor, working with his hands the thing which is good, so that he may have something to give to him who needs. 29  Let not any filthy word go out of your mouth, but if any is good to building up in respect of need, that it may give grace to the ones hearing. 30  And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you are sealed until the day of redemption.

Why does he focus on these three only in his letter? And how do these three trouble the Holy Spirit?

We also read of a similar teaching from Isaiah.

Isa 63:7  I will mention the loving-kindnesses of Jehovah, the praises of Jehovah, according to all that Jehovah has benefited for us, and the great good to the house of Israel by which He benefited them according to His mercies, and according to the multitude of His loving-kindnesses. 8  For He said, Surely they are My people, sons that will not lie; so He was their Savior. 9  In all their affliction He was afflicted, and the Angel of His Presence saved them; in His love and in His pity He redeemed them; and He bore them, and carried them all the days of old. 10  But they rebelled, and troubled His Holy Spirit; therefore He was turned to be their enemy, and He fought against them.

The pedaling of information that has nothing in it is a form of Lashon Harah.

One who accepts Lashon Hara violates the prohibition “Lo tisa shema shav (Ex. 23:1) – Do not raise a false report.” [While the verse is generally understood against the speaker] the Sages explain (Mechilta) that is also an exhortation to the one who [might] accept the Lashon Hara. Additionally there are other positive and negative commandments [transgressed by accepting Lashon Hara] discussed previously in the introduction.

The Sages teach us, “Anyone who accepts Lashon Hara should be thrown to the dogs, for it is written (Ex. 23:1), ‘Do not raise a false report’ immediately following ‘throw it to the dogs (22:30).’” The Sages also teach us that one who accepts Lashon Hara is worse than the speaker.

Exo 23:1  Thou shalt not utter a false report; put not thy hand with the wicked to be an unrighteous witness. 2Thou shalt not follow a multitude to do evil; neither shalt thou bear witness in a cause to turn aside after a multitude to pervert justice;

I continue to read many things from many of you on how you have mixed in with your bible verses things about various conspiracy teachings. When you quote Infowars and other blogs such as this, you are spreading false reports and flat out lies.

Have you not read Isaiah?

Isa 8:11  For so Jehovah spoke to me with a strong hand, and warned me against walking in the way of this people, saying,12  Do not say, A conspiracy! to everything of which this people says, A conspiracy! And do not fear their fear, nor be afraid.13  Sanctify Jehovah of Hosts Himself, and let Him be your fear, and let Him be your dread.14  And He shall be a sanctuary for you, but for a stone of stumbling, and for a rock of falling to both the houses of Israel, for a trap and for a snare to the people of Jerusalem. 15  And many among them shall stumble and fall and be broken, and be snared, and be taken.

Stop mixing FEMA camps and chemtrails and whether or not George Bush, Bill Clinton or Barack Obama are the antichrist with your Torah Studies. You are mixing the truth with fiction and are, in fact, eating from the tree of good and evil. Just stop reading it and stop sharing it and stop dabbling in it. Otherwise you will not be a part of the Kingdom.

Paul says to put away lying. So do that. Stop the spreading of lies. Stop being part of Lashon Harah.

Pro 21:23  Whoever keeps his mouth and his tongue keeps his soul from troubles.24  Proud, haughty scorner is his name, he who deals in proud wrath.

Consider also what you are told in Psalms. This is the fear of Yehovah. By keeping yourself from spreading gossip or lies, lashon Harah, you are developing righteousness. But those of you spreading it are setting yourselves up to be cut off and all memory of you erased from the earth.

Psa 34:11  Come, listen to me, my sons; I will teach you the fear of Jehovah. 12  Who is the man that desires life, and loves days, that he may see good? 13  Keep your tongue from evil and your lips from speaking guile. 14  Depart from evil and do good; seek peace and pursue it. 15  The eyes of Jehovah are on the righteous, and His ears are open to their cry. 16  The face of Jehovah is against those who do evil, to cut off the memory of them from the earth.

The Apostle Paul was a brilliant teacher. He was so advanced that many had trouble understanding him, as Peter tells us.

2Pe 3:15  And think of the long-suffering of our Lord as salvation (as our beloved brother Paul also has written to you according to the wisdom given to him 16  as also in all his letters, speaking in them of these things; in which are some things hard to be understood, which the unlearned and unstable pervert, as also they do the rest of the Scriptures, to their own destruction).

Again back to Ephesians; why has Paul lumped Slander in with Anger and Stealing? We read of Anger and Stealing in the sermon on the Mount.

Mat 5:21  You have heard that it was said to the ancients, “You shall not kill” –and, “Whoever shall kill shall be liable to the judgment.” 22  But I say to you that whoever is angry with his brother without a cause shall be liable to the judgment. And whoever shall say to his brother, Raca, shall be liable to the sanhedrin; but whoever shall say, Fool! shall be liable to be thrown into the fire of hell.

Yehshua then goes on right after this to talk about adultery.

Mat 5:27  You have heard that it was said to the ancients, “You shall not commit adultery.” 28  But I say to you that whoever looks on a woman to lust after her has already committed adultery with her in his heart.

Then Yehshua, after these two explanations, goes on to talk about Lashon Harah, the same three things Paul is writing to the Ephesians about.

Mat 5:33  Again, you have heard that it has been said to the ancients, “You shall not swear falsely, but you shall perform your oaths to the Lord.” 34  But I say to you, Do not swear at all! Not by Heaven, because it is God’s throne; 35  not by the earth, for it is the footstool of His feet; not by Jerusalem, because it is the city of the great King; 36  nor shall you swear by your head, because you cannot make one hair white or black. 37  But let your word be, Yes, yes; No, no. For whatever is more than these comes from evil.

Yehshua prefaced these three teachings by saying the following:

Mat 5:17  Do not think that I have come to destroy the Law or the Prophets. I have not come to destroy but to fulfill. 18  For truly I say to you, Till the heaven and the earth pass away, not one jot or one tittle shall in any way pass from the Law until all is fulfilled. 19  Therefore whoever shall relax one of these commandments, the least, and shall teach men so, he shall be called the least in the kingdom of Heaven. But whoever shall do and teach them, the same shall be called great in the kingdom of Heaven. 20  For I say to you that unless your righteousness shall exceed that of the scribes and Pharisees, you shall in no case enter into the kingdom of Heaven.

What Laws are both Yehshua and Paul speaking about? They were spoken to Israel dircetly from the mouth of Yehovah at Mount Sinai on Shavuot. It was part of the Marriage contract that our ancestors all said “I do” to. They agreed to obey these laws and so did we by being in their loins, as it were.

Here are those very same three laws on anger, stealing and slander. When you commit adultery you are in fact stealing from your Brother or your Sister, their spouse.

Exo 20:13  You shall not kill.

Exo 20:14  You shall not commit adultery.

Exo 20:15  You shall not steal.

Exo 20:16  You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.

I want to point something out to you.

King David was not charged with adultery when he went into Bathsheba.

2Sa 12:1  And Jehovah sent Nathan to David. And he came to him and said to him, There were two men in one city, one rich and one poor. 2  The rich one had exceeding many flocks and herds, 3  but the poor one had nothing except one little ewe lamb which he had bought and nourished up. And it grew up together with him and with his sons. It ate of his own food and drank from his own cup, and lay in his bosom, and was to him like a daughter. 4  And there came a traveler to the rich man, and he spared to take of his own flock and of his own herd to dress for the traveler that had come to him. But he took the poor man’s lamb and dressed it for the man who had come to him. 5  And David’s anger was greatly kindled against the man. And he said to Nathan, As the Lord lives, the man who has done this shall surely die. 6  And he shall restore the lamb fourfold, because he did this thing, and because he had no pity. 7  And Nathan said to David, You are the man! So says Jehovah, the God of Israel, I anointed you king over Israel, and I delivered you out of the hand of Saul. 8  And I gave you your master’s house and your master’s wives into your bosom, and gave you the house of Israel and of Judah. And if that was too little, I would have given to you such and such things besides. 9  Why have you despised the Word of Jehovah, to do evil in His sight? You have stricken Uriah the Hittite with the sword, and have taken his wife to be your wife, and have killed him with the sword of the sons of Ammon. 10  And therefore, the sword shall never depart from your house, because you have despised Me and have taken the wife of Uriah the Hittite to be your wife. 11  So says Jehovah, Behold, I will raise up evil against you out of your own house, and I will take your wives before your eyes and give them to your neighbor. And he shall lie with your wives in the sight of this sun. 12  For you did it secretly, but I will do this thing before all Israel and before the sun. 13  And David said to Nathan, I have sinned against Jehovah. And Nathan said to David, Jehovah also has put away your sin; you shall not die. 14  Only, because by this deed you have given great occasion to the enemies of Jehovah to blaspheme, this child born to you shall surely die. 15  And Nathan left to go to his house. And Jehovah struck the child that Uriah’s wife bore to David, and it was very sick.

David said the man who did this thing was to repay four fold. Why did he say this? The answer is in the law.

Exo 22:1  If a man shall steal an ox, or a sheep, and kill it or sell it, he shall restore five oxen for an ox, and four sheep for a sheep.

David was guilty of stealing.
It is a Jewish law that when a man goes to war, the wife is not married. She is given a “get” a divorce.

A peculiar problem arises, however, if a man disappears or deserts his wife or is presumed dead but there is insufficient proof of death. Under Jewish law, divorce can only be initiated by the man; thus, if the husband cannot be found, he cannot be compelled to divorce the wife and she cannot marry another man. A woman in this situation is referred to as agunah (literally, anchored). The rabbis agonized over this problem, balancing the need to allow the woman to remarry with the risk of an adulterous marriage (a grave transgression that would affect the status of offspring of the marriage) if the husband reappeared. No definitive solution to this problem exists.

To prevent this problem to some extent, it is customary in many places for a man to give his wife a conditional get (Sefer K’ritut) whenever he goes off to war, so that if he never comes home and his body is not found, his wife does not become agunah (Lit. anchored. A woman whose husband disappeared without divorcing her.).

David had a loophole and used it to go into Bathsheba. David was guilty of stealing and of lusting, in the same way that Saul was guilty of Jealousy towards David.

1Sa 18:6  And it happened as they came in, as David returned from striking the Philistine, the women came out of all cities of Israel, singing and dancing, to meet King Saul with tabrets, with joy, and with instruments of music.

1Sa 18:7  And the women answered as they played, and said, Saul has slain his thousands, and David his ten thousands. 8  And Saul was very angry, and this thing was evil in his eyes. And he said, They have given David ten thousands, and to me they have given only thousands. And what more can he have but the kingdom? 9  And Saul eyed David from that day and forward.

To eye some one is to watch them with Jealousy.

In Hebrew the word Leprosy is hurx and is pronounced tsara’ath. This is Strongs #6883. The root of the word is rx  tsar and is strongs #6862. The same spelling is used for tribulation  and adversary and is pronounced tsar. 

In Judaism, they consider the Messiah in two forms. One is Messiah ben David and the other is Messiah ben Joseph. Ben Joseph suffers for the sins of Israel and ends up getting killed.

In the Talmud it is written, “When will the Messiah come? And “By what sign may I recognize Him?” Elijah tells the Rabbi to go to the gate of the city where he will find the Messiah sitting among the poor lepers (Sanhedrin 98a). “The Messiah—what is his name?—The ages say, the Leper Scholar, as it is said, ‘surely he has borne our griefs and carried our sorrows: yet we esteem him a leper, smitten of God and afflicted’” (Sanhedrin 98b).

Mat 8:1 And when he came down from the mount, great multitudes did follow him, 2 and lo, a leper having come, was bowing to him, saying, `Sir, if thou art willing, thou art able to cleanse me;’ 3 and having stretched forth the hand, Jesus touched him, saying, `I will, be thou cleansed,’ and immediately his leprosy was cleansed. 4 And Jesus saith to him, `See, thou mayest tell no one, but go, thyself shew to the priest, and bring the gift that Moses commanded for a testimony to them.’

Anger, stealing and Slander are all a result of breaking the 10th commandment.

Exo 20:17  You shall not covet your neighbor’s house. You shall not covet your neighbor’s wife, nor his manservant, nor his maidservant, nor his ox, nor his ass, nor anything that is your neighbor’s.

When you covet your neighbour’s things you are in fact guilty of being angry for not having those things, you will slander those who have them and you will steal them the more you covet them.

All of this is tsar and is a plague and leprosy, to be put out of our lives and out of our camps like we did for unleavened bread. We do this in order to be ready for the 8th day of the Feast of Unleavened Bread which is Shavuot, when we are to be redeemed.

The 7 Days of Unleavened Bread represent the first 7 Millennium. When Israel went through the Red Sea on the 7th day of Unleavened Bread it is symbolic of the 7th Millennium when the Holy Spirit is going to be poured out on all flesh during the reign of King David.

And like the the 8th day of Sukkot, the 8th Sabbath in the count to Shavuot are related in that this is when mankind is redeemed by our great redeemer Yehovah as we showed you in last week’s teaching. We are to wash ourselves at the end of the 7th day of our uncleanliness and then we are to present ourselves to Yehovah for redemption.

We who are lepers now, we who are slandering each other, with jealousy of one another and hatred towards each other and stealing the respect and dignity each one has as King or Priest in the Kingdom, need to be cleansed as we are told to do when we are cursed with leprosy.

Lev 14:1  And Jehovah spoke to Moses, saying, 2  This shall be the law of the leper in the day of his cleansing. He shall be brought to the priest. 3  And the priest shall go forth out of the camp. And the priest shall look, and behold, if the plague of leprosy is healed in the leper, 4  then the priest shall command to take two clean live birds for him that is to be cleansed, and cedar wood, and scarlet, and hyssop. 5  And the priest shall command that one of the birds be killed in an earthen vessel over running water. 6  He shall take the living bird, and the cedar wood and the scarlet and the hyssop, and shall dip them and the living bird in the blood of the slain bird, over the running water. 7  And he shall sprinkle on him that is to be cleansed from the leprosy seven times, and shall pronounce him clean, and shall let the living bird loose into the open field. 8  And he that is to be cleansed shall wash his clothes, and shave off all his hair, and wash himself in water so that he may be clean. And after that he shall come into the camp, and shall stay outside his tent seven days. 9  But on the seventh day he shall shave all his hair off his head and his beard and his eye-brows; even all his hair shall he shave off. And he shall wash his clothes. He also shall wash his flesh in water, and he shall be clean. 10  And on the eighth day he shall take two male lambs without blemish, and one ewe lamb of the first year without blemish, and three-tenth parts of fine flour for a food offering, mixed with oil, and one log of oil. 11  And the priest who is cleansing, and the man who is to be cleansed, shall stand with them before Jehovah at the door of the tabernacle of the congregation. 12  And the priest shall take one male lamb and offer him for a trespass offering, and the log of oil, and wave them for a wave offering before Jehovah. 13  And he shall kill the lamb in the place where he shall kill the sin offering and the burnt offering, in the holy place. For as the sin offering is the priest’s, so is the trespass offering. It is most holy. 14  And the priest shall take of the blood of the trespass offering, and the priest shall put it on the tip of the right ear of him that is to be cleansed, and on the thumb of his right hand, and on the big toe of his right foot. 15  And the priest shall take from the log of oil and pour into the palm of his own left hand. 16  And the priest shall dip his right finger in the oil in his left hand and shall sprinkle of the oil with his finger seven times before Jehovah. 17  And of the rest of the oil in his hand, the priest shall put on the tip of the right ear of him that is to be cleansed, and on the thumb of his right hand, and on the big toe of his right foot, on the blood of the trespass offering. 18  And the rest of the oil in the priest’s palm he shall pour on the head of him that is to be cleansed. And the priest shall make an atonement for him before Jehovah. 19  And the priest shall offer the sin offering and make an atonement for him that is to be cleansed from his uncleanness. And afterward he shall kill the burnt offering. 20  And the priest shall offer the burnt offering and the food offering on the altar. And the priest shall make an atonement for him, and he shall be clean. 21  And if he is poor and his hand cannot reach so much, then he shall take one lamb for a trespass offering to be waved, to make an atonement for him, and one-tenth part of fine flour mixed with oil for a food offering, and a log of oil, 22  and two turtle-doves or two young pigeons, such as his hand can reach. And the one shall be a sin offering, and the other a burnt offering. 23  And he shall bring them on the eighth day for his cleansing to the priest, to the door of the tabernacle of the congregation before Jehovah. 24  And the priest shall take the lamb of the trespass offering, and the log of oil, and the priest shall wave them for a wave offering before Jehovah. 25  And he shall kill the lamb of the trespass offering. And the priest shall take from the blood of the trespass offering, and put it on the tip of the right ear of him that is to be cleansed, and on the thumb of his right hand, and on the big toe of his right foot. 26  And the priest shall pour of the oil into the palm of his own left hand. 27  And the priest shall sprinkle with his right finger of the oil that is in his left hand seven times before Jehovah. 28  And the priest shall put of the oil in his hand on the tip of the right ear of him that is to be cleansed, and on the thumb of his right hand, and on the big toe of his right foot, on the place of the blood of the trespass offering. 29  And the rest of the oil in the priest’s hand he shall put on the head of him that is to be cleansed, to make an atonement for him before Jehovah. 30  And he shall offer the one of the turtle-doves, or of the young pigeons, such as he is able to get, 31  even such as he is able to reach, the one for a sin offering and the other for a burnt offering, with the food offering. And the priest shall make an atonement for him that is to be cleansed before Jehovah. 32  This is the law of him in whom is the plague of leprosy, whose hand is not able to reach in his cleansing.

 


“Counting the Omer”

WEEK SIX

Day Thirty-Six | Yehovah, the Judge | Psalm 94:12-23

Today is the first day of the sixth week of seven weeks. Today is the thirty-sixth day of the counting of fifty days from the day of the waving of the Omer on the morrow after the Sabbath.

1 Elohim does favor us and bless us. Cause His face to shine upon us. Selah. (Psalm 67:1)
2 For Your way to be known on earth, Your deliverance among all nations. (Psalm 67:2)
3 Let the peoples praise You, O Elohim, let all the peoples praise You. (Psalm 67:3)
4 Let the nations be glad and sing for joy! For You judge the peoples uprightly, and lead the nations on earth. Selah. (Psalm 67:4)
5 Let the peoples praise You, O Elohim; let all the peoples praise You. (Psalm 67:5) 6 The earth shall give her increase; Elohim, our own Elohim, blesses us! (Psalm 67:6) 7 Elohim blesses us! And all the ends of the earth fear Him! (Psalm 67:7)

12 Blessed is the man You discipline, O Yah, and instruct out of Your Torah. (Psalm 94:12)
13 To give him rest from the days of evil, until the pit is dug for the wrong. (Psalm 94:13)
14 For Elohim does not leave His people, nor does He forsake His inheritance. (Psalm 94:14)
15 For right-ruling returns man to righteousness, and all the upright in heart follow it. (Psalm )94:15
16 Who would rise up for me against evil-doers? Who would stand up for me against workers of wickedness? (Psalm 94:16)
17 If Elohim had not been my help, my being would soon have settled in silence. (Psalm 94:17)
18 When I said, “My foot has slipped,” Your kindness, O Elohim, supported me. (Psalm 94:18)
19 When anxiety was great within me, Your comforts delighted my being. (Psalm 94:19)
20 Would a throne of destruction, which devises trouble by decree, be joined with You? (Psalm 94:20)
21 They band together against the life of the righteous, and declare innocent blood wrong. (Psalm 94:21)
22 But YHWH is my defense, and my Elohim the rock of my refuge. (Psalm 94:22)
23 And brings back on them their own wickedness, and cuts them off in their own wrongdoing; our Elohim does cut them off. (Psalm 94:23)

Day Thirty-Seven | A Song of Praise | Psalm 95:1-7

Today is the second day of the sixth week of seven weeks. Today is the thirty-seventh day of the counting of fifty days from the day of the waving of the Omer on the morrow after the Sabbath.

1 Elohim does favor us and bless us. Cause His face to shine upon us. Selah. (Psalm 67:1)
2 For Your way to be known on earth, Your deliverance among all nations. (Psalm 67:2)
3 Let the peoples praise You, O Elohim, let all the peoples praise You. (Psalm 67:3)
4 Let the nations be glad and sing for joy! For You judge the peoples uprightly, and lead the nations on earth. Selah. (Psalm 67:4)
5 Let the peoples praise You, O Elohim; let all the peoples praise You. (Psalm 67:5) 6 The earth shall give her increase; Elohim, our own Elohim, blesses us! (Psalm 67:6) 7 Elohim blesses us! And all the ends of the earth fear Him! (Psalm 67:7)

1 Come, let us sing to Elohim! Let us raise a shout to the Rock of our deliverance. (Psalm 95:1)
2 Let us come before His face with thanksgiving. Let us raise a shout to Him in song. (Psalm 95:2)
3 For YHWH is a great El, and a great Sovereign above all mighty ones. (Psalm 95:3)
4 In whose hand are the depths of the earth. The mountain peaks are His also. (Psalm 95:4)
5 His is the sea, for He made it; and His hands formed the dry land. (Psalm 95:5)
6 Come, let us bow down and bend low. Let us kneel before YHWH our Maker. (Psalm 95:6)
7 For He is our Elohim, and we are the people of His pasture, and the sheep of His hand. (Psalm 95:7)

Day Thirty-Eight | Yehovah, the Supreme King | Psalm 96:1-13 (14)

Today is the third day of the sixth week of seven weeks. Today is the thirty-eighth day of the counting of fifty days from the day of the waving of the Omer on the morrow after the Sabbath.

1 Elohim does favor us and bless us. Cause His face to shine upon us. Selah. (Psalm 67:1)
2 For Your way to be known on earth, Your deliverance among all nations. (Psalm 67:2)
3 Let the peoples praise You, O Elohim, let all the peoples praise You. (Psalm 67:3)
4 Let the nations be glad and sing for joy! For You judge the peoples uprightly, and lead the nations on earth. Selah. (Psalm 67:4)
5 Let the peoples praise You, O Elohim; let all the peoples praise You. (Psalm 67:5) 6 The earth shall give her increase; Elohim, our own Elohim, blesses us! (Psalm 67:6) 7 Elohim blesses us! And all the ends of the earth fear Him! (Psalm 67:7)

1 Sing to YHWH a new song. Sing to YHWH, all the earth! (Psalm 96:1)
2 Sing to YHWH, bless His Name. Proclaim His deliverance from day to day. (Psalm 96:2)
3 Declare His esteem among the nations; His wonders among all peoples. (Psalm 96:3)
4 For great is Elohim and greatly to be praised. He is to be feared above all mighty ones. (Psalm 96:4)
5 For all the mighty ones of the peoples are matters of naught, but Elohim made the heavens. (Psalm 96:5)
6 Excellency and splendor are before Him. Strength and comeliness are in His set-apart place. (Psalm 96:6)
7 Ascribe to YHWH, O clans of the peoples. Ascribe to YHWH esteem and strength. (Psalm 96:7)
8 Ascribe to YHWH the esteem of His Name. Bring an offering, and come into His courts. (Psalm 96:8)
9 Bow yourselves to YHWH, in the splendor of set-apartness! Tremble before Him, all the earth. (Psalm 96:9)
10 Say among nations, “YHWH shall reign. The world also is established, immovable. He judges the peoples in straightness.” (Psalm 96:10)
11 Let the heavens rejoice, and let the earth be glad. Let the sea roar, and all that fills it. (Psalm 96:11)
12 Let the field exult, and all that is in it. Let all the trees of the forest then shout for joy. (Psalm 96:12)
13 At the presence of Elohim. For He shall come, for He shall come to judge the earth. He judges the world in righteousness1, and the peoples with His truth. (Psalm 96:13) | Footnote: 1See also 98:9; Acts 17:31; Revelation 19:11)

Day Thirty-Nine | Yehovah, the Ruler of the World | Psalm 98:1-9

Today is the fourth day of the sixth week of seven weeks. Today is the thirty-ninth day of the counting of fifty days from the day of the waving of the Omer on the morrow after the Sabbath.

1 Elohim does favor us and bless us. Cause His face to shine upon us. Selah. (Psalm 67:1)
2 For Your way to be known on earth, Your deliverance among all nations. (Psalm 67:2)
3 Let the peoples praise You, O Elohim, let all the peoples praise You. (Psalm 67:3)
4 Let the nations be glad and sing for joy! For You judge the peoples uprightly, and lead the nations on earth. Selah. (Psalm 67:4)
5 Let the peoples praise You, O Elohim; let all the peoples praise You. (Psalm 67:5) 6 The earth shall give her increase; Elohim, our own Elohim, blesses us! (Psalm 67:6) 7 Elohim blesses us! And all the ends of the earth fear Him! (Psalm 67:7)

1 Sing to YHWH a new song!, for He has done wonders. His right hand and His set-apart arm have brought Him deliverance. (Psalm 98:1)
has made known His deliverance. His righteousness He has openly shown before the eyes Elohim 2 of the nations. (Psalm 98:2)

3 He has remembered His kindness and His trustworthiness to the house of Yisra’el. All the ends of the earth have seen the deliverance of our Elohim. (Psalm 98:3)
4 Raise a shout to YHWH, all the earth. Break forth in song, rejoice, and sing praises. (Psalm 98:4)
5 Sing to YHWH with the lyre, with the lyre and the voice of a song. (Psalm 98:5)
6 With trumpets and the sound of a horn, raise a shout before YHWH, the Sovereign. (Psalm 98:6)
7 Let the sea roar, and all that fills it, the world and those who dwell in it. (Psalm 98:7)
8 Let the rivers clap their hands, let the mountains sing together for joy before YHWH. (Psalm 98:8) 9 For He shall come to judge the earth. He judges the world in righteousness, and the people in straightness. (Psalm 98:9)

Day Forty | Yehovah, the Supreme King | Psalm 99:1-9

Today is the fifth day of the sixth week of seven weeks. Today is the fortieth day of the counting of fifty days from the day of the waving of the Omer on the morrow after the Sabbath.

1 Elohim does favor us and bless us. Cause His face to shine upon us. Selah. (Psalm 67:1)
2 For Your way to be known on earth, Your deliverance among all nations. (Psalm 67:2)
3 Let the peoples praise You, O Elohim, let all the peoples praise You. (Psalm 67:3)
4 Let the nations be glad and sing for joy! For You judge the peoples uprightly, and lead the nations on earth. Selah. (Psalm 67:4)
5 Let the peoples praise You, O Elohim; let all the peoples praise You. (Psalm 67:5) 6 The earth shall give her increase; Elohim, our own Elohim, blesses us! (Psalm 67:6) 7 Elohim blesses us! And all the ends of the earth fear Him! (Psalm 67:7)

1 Elohim shall reign; peoples tremble! He is enthroned on the kerubim (cherubim); the earth shakes (Psalm 99:1)
2 Elohim is great in Tsiyon (Zion), and He is high above all the peoples. (Psalm 99:2)
3 They praise Your Name, great and awesome, it is set-apart. (Psalm 99:3)
4 And the strength of the Sovereign shall love right-ruling. You Yourself shall establish straightness; You shall execute right-ruling and righteousness in Ya’aqob (Jacob). (Psalm 99:4)
5 Exalt YHWH our Elohim, and bow yourselves at His footstool. He is set-apart. (Psalm 99:5)
6 Mosheh (Moses) and Aharon (Aaron) were among His priests, and Shemu’el (Samuel) was among those calling upon His Name. They called upon YHWH, and He answered them. (Psalm 99:6)
7 He spoke to them in the column of cloud. They guarded His witnesses and the Law He gave them. (Psalm 99:7)
8 You answered them, O YHWH our Elohim. You were a forgiving El to them, though You took vengeance on their deeds. (Psalm 99:8)
9 Exalt YHWH our Elohim, and bow down toward His set-apart mountain; for YHWH our Elohim is set- apart. (Psalm 99:9)

Day Forty-One | The Love of Yehovah | Psalm 103:1-22

Today is the sixth day of the sixth week of seven weeks. Today is the forty-first day of the counting of fifty days from the day of the waving of the Omer on the morrow after the Sabbath.

1 Elohim does favor us and bless us. Cause His face to shine upon us. Selah. (Psalm 67:1)
2 For Your way to be known on earth, Your deliverance among all nations. (Psalm 67:2)
3 Let the peoples praise You, O Elohim, let all the peoples praise You. (Psalm 67:3)
4 Let the nations be glad and sing for joy! For You judge the peoples uprightly, and lead the nations on earth. Selah. (Psalm 67:4)
5 Let the peoples praise You, O Elohim; let all the peoples praise You. (Psalm 67:5) 6 The earth shall give her increase; Elohim, our own Elohim, blesses us! (Psalm 67:6) 7 Elohim blesses us! And all the ends of the earth fear Him! (Psalm 67:7)

1 Bless YHWH, O my being, and all that is within me. Bless His set-apart Name! (Psalm 103:1)
2 Bless YHWH, O my being, and do not forget all His dealings. (Psalm 103:2)
3 Who forgives all your crookednesses, Who heals all your diseases. (Psalm 103:3)
4 Who redeems your life from destruction, Who crowns you with kindness and compassion. (Psalm 103:4)
5 Who satisfies your desire with the good. Your youth is renewed like the eagle’s. (Psalm 103:5)
6 Who is doing righteousness and right-ruling for all the oppressed. (Psalm 103:6)
7 He made known His ways to Mosheh (Moses), His acts to the children of Yisra’el. (Psalm 103:7)
8 Elohim is compassionate and showing favor, patient, and great in kindness. (Psalm 103:8)
9 He does not always strive, nor maintain it forever. (Psalm 103:9)
10 He has not done to us according to our sins, nor rewarded us according to our crookednesses. (Psalm 103:10)
11 For as the heavens are high above the earth, so great is His kindness toward those who fear Him. (Psalm 103:11)
12 As far as east is from west, so far has He removed our transgressions from us. (Psalm 103:12) 13 As a father has compassion for his children, so Elohim has compassion for those who fear Him. (Psalm 103:13)
14 For He knows how we are made; He remembers that we are dust. (Psalm 103:14)
15 As a flower of the field, so he flourishes. (Psalm 103:15)
16 For the wind blows over it, and it is no more, and its place no longer remembers it. (Psalm )103:16
17 But the kindness of YHWH is from everlasting to everlasting upon those who fear Him, and His righteousness to children’s children. (Psalm 103:17)
18 To those who guard His covenant, and to those who remember His orders to do them. (Psalm 103:18)
has established His throne in the heavens, and His reign shall rule over all. (Psalm 103:19) Bless YHWH, you His messengers, mighty in power, who do His Word, listening to the voice of His Word. (Psalm 103:20)
21 Bless YHWH, all you His hosts, You His servants, who do His pleasure. (Psalm 103:21)
22 Bless YHWH, all His works, in all places of His rule. Bless YHWH, O my being! (Psalm 103:22)

Day Forty-Two | Yehovah & His People (Part VI) | Psalm 105:1-11

Today is the seventh day of the sixth week of seven weeks. Today is the forty-second day of the counting of fifty days from the day of the waving of the Omer on the morrow after the Sabbath. Today is Sabbath, the sixth Sabbath of seven Sabbaths. Today completes the sixth week of seven weeks.

1 Elohim does favor us and bless us. Cause His face to shine upon us. Selah. (Psalm 67:1)
2 For Your way to be known on earth, Your deliverance among all nations. (Psalm 67:2)
3 Let the peoples praise You, O Elohim, let all the peoples praise You. (Psalm 67:3)
4 Let the nations be glad and sing for joy! For You judge the peoples uprightly, and lead the nations on earth. Selah. (Psalm 67:4)

5 Let the peoples praise You, O Elohim; let all the peoples praise You. (Psalm 67:5) 6 The earth shall give her increase; Elohim, our own Elohim, blesses us! (Psalm 67:6) 7 Elohim blesses us! And all the ends of the earth fear Him! (Psalm 67:7)

1 Give thanks to YHWH Call upon His Name. Make known His deeds among the peoples. (Psalm 105:1)
2 Sing to Him, sing praise to Him. Speak of all His wonders. (Psalm 105:2)
3 Make your boast in His set-apart Name. Let the hearts rejoice of those seeking Elohim. (Psalm 105:3)

4 Seek YHWH and His strength. Seek His face always. (Psalm 105:4)
5 Remember His wonders which He has done, His miracles, and the right-rulings of His mouth. (Psalm 105:5)
6 O seed of Avraham (Ab?raham) His servant, children of Ya’aqob (Jacob), His chosen ones! (Psalm 105:6)
7 He is YHWH our Elohim; His right-rulings are in all the earth. (Psalm 105:7)
8 He has remembered His covenant forever, the Word He commanded, for a thousand generations. (Psalm 105:8)
9 The covenant He made with Avraham (Abraham), and His oath to Yitshaq (Isaac). (Psalm 105:9)
10 And established it to Ya’aqob (Jacob) for a Law, to Yisra’el—an everlasting covenant. (Psalm 105:10)
11 Saying, “To you I give the land of Kena’an (Canaan), the portion of your inheritance.” (Psalm 105:11)

 


“ERIKTOLOGY – ALEPH/BEYT”

Eric again this week is taxing my brain. I laugh because many of you say I do that to you. This week we are looking at the letter mem-water-chaos  m .

Here is the link to the first video and the second video is here.

Those of you who have stepped up to help Eric and Karen Bissel, I thank you on their behalf. They continue to need your prayers and aid. Eric called me this week to thank you all. He also said he is halfway through The 2300 Days of Hell, and loves it. I hope you all are reading it as well.

 


“Triennial Torah Reading”

We continue this weekend with our regular Triennial Torah reading which can be found at https://sightedmoon.com/files/TriennialCycleBeginningAviv.pdf

 

09/05/2015   Lev 1-2   Jeremiah 19-21  Prov 14  Acts 11

 

Introduction to Leviticus (Leviticus 1)

Moses evidently wrote much of Leviticus sometime in the first month [Abib or Nisan on the Hebrew calendar, corresponding to March-April] of the second year of the wandering of Israel (compare Exodus 40:17; Numbers 1:1; 10:11)—perhaps putting it in its final form shortly before his death nearly 40 years later. The book’s Hebrew name, Wayyiqva, meaning “And He Called,” is taken from the first words of the book. The Greek title, from the Septuagint, is Leuitikon—Latinized in the Vulgate as Leviticus—which means “pertaining to Levites.” However, this title is somewhat misleading as the book does not deal with the Levites as a whole but more with the priests, the family of Aaron, a segment of the Levites. (The Levites as a whole are not sanctified until the book of Numbers.) Perhaps more appropriate titles for the book would be those found for it in the Jewish Talmud—”The Law of the Priests” and “The Law of the Offerings.”

The Aaronic priesthood was divinely ordained by God as a mediator between Him and the nation of Israel. As this book directed, the priests were to officiate over an elaborate system of sacrifices and rituals. The book of Hebrews tells us that “all this is symbolic, pointing to the present time [of Messiah’s redemption]. The offerings and sacrifices there prescribed cannot give the worshipper inward perfection. It is only a matter of food and drink and various rites of cleansing—outward ordinances in force until the time of reformation” (9:9-10, New English Bible)—that is, the time of Messiah’s death and resurrection followed by the giving of the Holy Spirit to the New Testament Assembly. Nevertheless, the sacrificial system was from God—and served a valuable purpose in that it was part of what was ultimately intended to lead people to Messiah (see Galatians 3:24-25). Indeed, there will again be sacrifices after Messiah returns (see Ezekiel 46:1-15).

Yeshua has, of course, become the true sacrifice for all mankind. Thus, there is no need for the sacrifice of animals at this time: “For it is not possible that the blood of bulls and goats could take away sins. Therefore, when He [Yeshua] came into the world, He said: ‘Sacrifice and offering You did not desire, but a body You have prepared for Me. In burnt offerings and sacrifices for sin You had no pleasure. Then I said, “Behold, I have come—in the volume of the book it is written of Me—to do Your will, O God.”‘ Previously saying, ‘Sacrifice and offering, burnt offerings, and offerings for sin You did not desire, nor had pleasure in them’ (which are offered according to the law), then He said, ‘Behold, I have come to do Your will, O God.’ He takes away the first that He may establish the second. By that will we have been sanctified through the offering of the body of Yeshua Messiah once for all. And every priest stands ministering daily and offering repeatedly the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins. But this Man, after He had offered one sacrifice for sins forever, sat down at the right hand of God” (Hebrews 10:4-12).

It should also be noted that the Melchizedek priesthood of Yeshua Messiah has now taken over from the Aaronic priesthood. Yeshua is now the Mediator between God and man (see Hebrews 7-10). And, in fact, Messiahians are now priests serving under Him (1 Peter 2:5, 9). Indeed, the ultimate sacrifice of Yeshua Messiah was not the only thing typified in the various sacrifices of the Old Testament. They also represented our following Messiah’s example today, presenting ourselves as offerings: “I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service” (Romans 12:1). Realizing this amazing fact, as The Nelson Study Bible‘s introductory notes on this book explains, “modern Messiahians can learn much from Leviticus. The holiness of God, the necessity of holy living, the great cost of atonement and forgiveness, the privilege and responsibility of presenting only our best to God, the generosity of God that enables His people to be generous—these are only some of the lessons. Leviticus reveals the holiness of God and His love for His people in ways found nowhere else in the Bible. Ultimately, Leviticus calls God’s people of all ages to the great adventure of patterning life after God’s holy purposes.”

Before looking at each of the five main offerings detailed in the first seven chapters of Leviticus, it is recommended that those wishing to study them in much greater depth read a 19th-century book by author Andrew Jukes titled The Law of the Offerings. It is available to order through the Internet or you can probably find it at your local library or Messiahian bookstore, as it is considered the standard work on this topic. While we would not agree with Jukes’ book in a number of particulars, it is biblically sound in many important respects and offers some incredible insights into the subject. Be warned, however, that because of its older and somewhat elevated style, it does not always make for easy reading.

Burnt Offerings (Leviticus 1)

We often think of Old Testament sacrifices as simply typical of Messiah’s death. But there is far more to it than that. As Andrew Jukes explains, offerings were “divided into two great and distinctive classes—first, the sweet savour offerings, which were all… oblations for acceptance; and secondly, those offerings which were not of a sweet savour, and which were required as an expiation for sin. The first class, comprising the Burnt-offering, the [Grain]-offering, and the Peace-offering—were offered on the [bronze] altar which stood in the Court of the Tabernacle. The second class—the Sin and Trespass-offerings—were not consumed on the altar: some of them were burnt on the earth without the camp; others the priest ate, having first sprinkled the blood for atonement. In the first class, sin is not seen or thought of: it is the faithful Israelite giving a sweet offering to [the Eternal]. In the Sin-offerings it is just the reverse: it is an offering charged with the sin of the offerer. Thus, in the first class—that is, the Burnt-offering, the [Grain]-offering, and the Peace-offering—the offerer came for acceptance as a worshipper. In the second class, in the Sin and Trespass-offerings, he came as a sinner to pay the penalty of sin and trespass. In either case the offering was without blemish…. But in the [sweet aroma offering], the offerer appears as man in perfectness, and in his offering stands the trial of fire—that is, God’s searching holiness; and accepted as a fragrant savour, all ascends a sweet offering to [the Eternal]. In the other, the offerer appears as a sinner, and in his offering bears the penalty due to his offences” (pp. 55-56).

In the case of the burnt offering, we are not “to consider Messiah as the Sin-bearer, but as man in perfectness meeting God in holiness. The thought here is not, ‘God hath made Him to be sin for us’ [2 Corinthians 5:21], but rather, ‘He loved us, and gave Himself for us an offering and a sacrifice to God of a sweet-smelling savour’ [Ephesians 5:2]. Yeshua… both in the Burnt-offering and Sin-offering, stood as our representative…. We have here what we may in vain search for elsewhere—man giving to God what truly satisfies Him” (pp. 56-57). But it is not only the way that Messiah lived His life on earth 2,000 years ago that is pictured here. Rather, Messiah lives in us today as the same burnt offering. Thus, we are enabled to present ourselves as “living sacrifices” (Romans 12:1)—offering a “sweet smelling aroma, an acceptable sacrifice, well pleasing to God” (Philippians 4:18) by giving ourselves wholly to Him (compare 2 Corinthians 8:5). Indeed, the burnt offering was wholly consumed, symbolizing “that the worshiper must hold nothing in reserve when coming to God; everything is consumed in the relationship between God and the sincere worshiper” (Nelson Study Bible, note on Leviticus 1:3).

Yeshua, of course, set the perfect example in this. Jukes explains: “Man’s duty to God is not the giving up of one faculty, but the entire surrender of all…. I cannot doubt that the type refers to this in speaking so particularly of the parts of the Burnt-offering; for ‘the head,’ ‘the fat,’ ‘the legs,’ ‘the inwards,’ are all distinctly enumerated. ‘The head’ is the well-known emblem of the thoughts; ‘the legs’ the emblem of the walk; and ‘the inwards’ the constant and familiar symbol of the feelings and affections of the heart. The meaning of ‘the fat’ may not be quite so obvious, though here also Scripture helps us to the solution [Psalm 17:10; 92:14; 119:70; Deuteronomy 32:15]. It represents the energy not of one limb or faculty, but the general health and vigour of the whole. In Yeshua these were all surrendered, and all without spot or blemish. Had there been but one affection in the heart of Yeshua which was not yielded to His Father’s will… then He could not have offered Himself or been accepted as ‘a whole burnt-offering to [the Eternal].’ But Yeshua gave up all: He reserved nothing. All was burnt, all consumed upon the altar” (pp. 63-64). This is the same end to which we strive—through Messiah living His life in us today.

 

Grain Offerings (Leviticus 2)

The King James Version of the Bible labels these as “meat” offerings. However, this Elizabethan English word simply means “food.” Sometimes also called “meal” offerings, they consisted of grain. This all makes sense when we consider that man’s most consistent source of sustenance, the “staff of life,” has been bread. In this symbolism, we may perhaps observe that the grain offering symbolized worship of God through providing for fellow man. Messiah has done this perfectly as the “bread of life” that came down from heaven, which we are to eat of as our food (see John 6; Matthew 4:4). Indeed, this offering provided a major portion of the food for God’s priests. It was not wholly burned upon the altar as the burnt offering was. For rather than symbolizing total devotion to God, it, again, included the service of fellow man as part of that devotion. And yet, though it was not wholly burnt, it was totally consumed—by the fire of God as well as by the priests—with nothing left for the offerer. The offerer, as in the burnt offering, was to give of himself completely.

Let us examine, then, some of the ingredients of the grain offering. First is flour. “Bread flour must be ground” (Isaiah 28:28)—or “bruised,” as the King James has it. “Messiah our staff of life is here represented as the bruised One. The emblem, [grain] ground to powder, is one of the deepest suffering…. The thought is one of bruising and grinding; of pressing, wearing trial. Yeshua was not only tried by ‘fire’; God’s holiness was not the only thing that consumed Him. In meeting the wants of man, His blessed soul was grieved, and pressed and bruised continually. And the bruising here was from those to whom He was ministering, for whom He daily gave Himself” (Jukes, p. 80). And, of course, there was His actual physical bruising as a service to mankind. “And what a lesson is there here for the believer who wishes to give himself in service to his brethren! [—to be a food offering!] This scripture, as in fact all Scripture, testifies that service is self-surrender, self-sacrifice. Messiah, to satisfy others, was broken: and bread [grain] must still be bruised: and the nearer our ministry approaches the measure of His ministry—immeasurably far as we shall ever be behind Him—the more we shall resemble Him, the bruised, the oppressed, the broken One” (p. 83). Jukes also brings out the fact that fine flour, as it was supposed to be, has no unevenness—just as with Messiah, who was consistent in being fully godly in all areas.

He goes on to explain the oil in the grain offering as symbolic of God’s Holy Spirit, which, in the burnt offering, was represented as water (Leviticus 1:9). “The third ingredient of the [Grain]-offering is frankincense—’he shall put frankincense thereon’; in connexion with which, and yet in contrast, it is commanded—’ye shall burn no honey unto the Lord.’ These emblems, like all the others, are at once simple yet most significant. Frankincense is the most precious of perfumes, of enduring and delightful fragrance: fit emblem of the sweetness and fragrance of the offering of our blessed Lord. Honey, on the other hand, though sweet, is corruptible; soon fermented, and easily turned sour. In frankincense the full fragrance is not brought out until the perfume is submitted to the action of fire. In honey it is just the reverse; the heat ferments and spoils it. The bearing of this on the offering of Yeshua is too obvious to comment. The fire of God’s holiness tried Him, but all was precious fragrance. The holiness of God only brought out graces which would have escaped our notice had He never suffered. Yea, much of the precious odour of His offering was the very result of His fiery trial” (p. 88).

The fourth and last ingredient of the grain offering was salt—in contrast to leaven, which was forbidden to be offered on the altar. “The import of these emblems is obvious: the one positively, the other negatively…. ‘Salt,’ the well-known preservative against corruption, is the emblem of perpetuity and incorruptness; while ‘leaven,’ on the other hand, composed of sour and corrupting dough, is the as well-known emblem of corruption” (pp. 89-90). A case in which leaven could be offered was that of the “offering of the firstfruits” (2:12)—that is, in the leavened loaves offered at Pentecost (23:15-21). But it could not be burned on the altar for a sweet aroma (2:12). These leavened loaves represented the Assembly, still beset with sin (compare 1 John 1:8-10) yet finding acceptance through Messiah’s sacrifice and His living within its members. Just as Messiah did, we are to offer ourselves as food for the world around us—serving our fellow man as an offering to God (compare Matthew 25:31-46).

Also, the sacrifice mentioned in Leviticus 7:13, which is called, “the sacrifice of thanksgiving of his peace offering” was made with leaven. Here again, this sacrifice was not burned on the altar.

 

The Broken Flask; Jeremiah Put in the Stocks (Jeremiah 19-20)

Chapter 19 contains the sign of the smashed clay flask. “Like the previous oracle this is an acted parable. The place is significant, the valley of Ben-hinnom at the entry of the Potsherd Gate, i.e. the rubbish tip [garbage dump] for broken crockery” (New Bible Commentary, note on verses 1-2). Indeed, Jeremiah escorts a number of elders and priests out to the trash dump to witness what is to become of Jerusalem. Some of the prophecy here regarding Tophet and the Valley of Hinnom, it should be noted, is repeated from Jeremiah 7:31-33. Tophet was the place in the Valley of Hinnom where children were sacrificed in pagan ritual, one of the most abhorrent customs the Israelites adopted from the Canaanites. Josiah had destroyed this place and it was now just a big trash pile in the valley.

Many innocents had died here, but now many guilty would die or be cast here—the corpses of the people of Jerusalem thrown out onto this heap. The dead would thus be given over to wild animals, causing the desecration of their remains (19:7). Compounding the horror, the people of Judah would sink to cannibalism out of desperate hunger during the coming Babylonian siege (verse 9), as God had pronounced at the time of Moses in the curses for disobedience to His laws (see Deuteronomy 28:52-57).

Jeremiah then smashed the clay flask as he was instructed, rendering it no longer useful (Jeremiah 19:10-11). It is interesting that this imagery followed the previous chapter, wherein God as the potter declared that He could refashion the people if they were willing. But they had refused—and therefore they will be smashed and, like this clay flask, cast into the refuse of Hinnom. God explained that just as Tophet, a place of pagan sacrifice, had been destroyed and turned into a garbage dump, so Jerusalem—the whole of which was a place of pagan sacrifice—would be destroyed in like manner (verses 12-13).

Some people today in their arrogance criticize God for being unfair. They fail to realize how great God is and how insignificant all mankind is by comparison. The potter analogy is a reminder of stark reality. As our Creator, God may shape us as a potter shapes clay. Like the potter, He can keep and use a vessel (a person) able to be shaped into a form of His choosing. Or, like the potter, He can simply discard the vessel that cracks or becomes misshapen in the process of His working with it. Of course, this is merely an analogy, which serves to illustrate a limited point. It does not convey the loving family relationship God seeks with mankind or the full spiritual potential He plans for it. Nonetheless, it remains a sober reminder of how insignificant a human being is compared to God, as well as of the fact that God will destroy the rebellious in gehenna (the Valley of Hinnom), a trash dump.

Jeremiah then proclaims the message of doom right in the temple court (verses 14-15)—with the elders and priests who returned with him probably explaining to others what they had just seen him do.

Pashhur, the “chief governor” of the temple—a priest who was head of security, being over the temple guards—takes action against Jeremiah for his pronouncements (20:1-2). Pashhur had evidently proclaimed, perhaps even in God’s name, that Jerusalem would not be destroyed (see verse 6). He is incensed at Jeremiah’s preaching, perhaps viewing him as an insurrectionist. As it stood, things were going quite well under Babylonian vassalship.

Whatever his motive, Pashhur “struck” Jeremiah (verse 2)—meaning either that he personally hit him or had another guard do so, perhaps to arrest him, or that he had the prophet beaten. This is the first recorded instance of actual physical violence against Jeremiah. Pashhur then had God’s prophet put into the stocks. “The Heb[rew] word (mahpeket) means ‘causing distortion,’ and the stocks forced arms, neck, and legs into an extremely painful position” (Bible Reader’s Companion, note on verses 1-6). While Jeremiah had escaped punishment a few years earlier by a council ruling, Jehoiakim may have overturned that ruling by his killing of Urijah (see Jeremiah 26). Or perhaps Pashhur had authorization to hold anyone temporarily at his own discretion until a higher order was issued.

In any event, Passhur’s treatment of God’s prophet led to a pronouncement of divine judgment, which Jeremiah delivered when he was brought out of the stocks the next day—showing that the prophet had suffered in them overnight. Jeremiah declares that Pashhur, whose name meant “Large” or “Free,” which implied safety and security such as he proclaimed for Jerusalem, would instead be called Magor-Missabib, meaning “Fear on Every Side” (20:3). Pashhur, his family and his friends would all be dragged away captive to die in Babylon (verse 6).

The rest of chapter 20 shows the personal anguish Jeremiah experienced. In verse 7, the word the King James Version renders “deceived” is better translated “enticed,” “persuaded” or, as in the New King James Version, “induced.” God had called Jeremiah with a strong appeal and, though Jeremiah gave some resistance, the urging of God was just too strong to deny. But in following His call and commission, the prophet was mocked every day. It got so bad that Jeremiah tried to cease prophesying (verses 8-9). But that was even harder to endure, so powerful was the urge to declare God’s message when it so very much needed to be said (verse 9)—particularly with all the taunting that just continued anyway (verse 10).

We find the scorners making fun of what Jeremiah had proclaimed regarding the new name of Pashhur, “Fear on Every Side” (same verse). However, Jeremiah is confident that God is with him and will judge these mockers (verse 11). He prays for God’s intervention (verse 12) and then rejoices in God’s deliverance (verse 13) in terms reminiscent of Psalm 109:30-31.

But then he sinks back into terrible depression (Jeremiah 20:14-18)—perhaps because God has not yet put an end to the mocking. It just goes on and on and on. Perhaps he had even been thrown back into the stocks for a time. Whatever the case, we again see the humanity of Jeremiah. Subject to constant ridicule, dire threats and now humiliating punishment, he felt so alone. The Expositor’s Bible Commentary states, “He had encountered more opposition from more enemies than any other O[ld] T[estament] prophet” (introductory notes on Jeremiah). Perhaps we can identify with the feelings he must have had to some extent. Other heroes of the Bible experienced similar moments. In wishing that he had never been born, he was echoing the cry of one of God’s great servants, Job (see Job 3). Of course, this is a passing phase that Jeremiah does overcome. In times of severe suffering, human beings think and say things that are not complete thoughts, but fragments of feelings and emotions that well up from deep inside. Indeed, all of us vent occasionally with outbursts due to frustrations, and what we say at such times isn’t necessarily what we truly mean or think.

God’s people do stumble at times, but they rise to go forward again and again (Proverbs 24:16), as Jeremiah certainly did. We should not be too hard on him here, but should rather learn a lesson about the need for endurance—a need Yeshua Messiah and His followers proclaimed (Mark 13:13; Matthew 10:22; 1 Corinthians 13:7; James 1:12; Hebrews 10:36).

 

Zedekiah Sends a Delegation to Jeremiah (Jeremiah 21; 34:1-7)

The prophet Jeremiah had warned incessantly of Babylonian invasion, calling on the nation of Judah and its leaders to repent. God, in fact, decreed through him that the nation should submit to Babylon. Zedekiah had not heeded. Instead, he rebelled against Nebuchadnezzar, prompting swift retaliation, as we’ve seen.

In chapter 21, with the siege of Jerusalem underway, we see Zedekiah sending a delegation to Jeremiah to ask that he inquire of God regarding the outcome of the siege (verses 1-2). This delegation consists of Zephaniah the priest (earlier shown to have been sympathetic to Jeremiah in 29:24-28) and a certain Pashhur son of Melchiah (or Malchiah). He is not the same as Pashhur son of Immer, mentioned in Jeremiah 20, who long before had placed Jeremiah in the stocks. As we continue the story in the next few readings, we will find the king making further inquiries—yet, as we will see, he just cannot bring himself to do what he should.

Instead of giving Zedekiah the answer he wants here, the message to the king is that God will fight against Jerusalem Himself (verses 4-6). God had shown immense mercy over many generations, always correcting His people and then blessing them again as they repented. But many in Judah, including the king, showed that they were hardened against God’s way. There was no room left for minor corrective measures. God would now have to deal a final, decisive blow to their rebellion.

“The metaphor of the outstretched hand and mighty arm had been used many times (Deut 4:34 et al.) of God’s miraculous intervention on Israel’s behalf in Egypt. But now it is used to express God’s opposition to his people. Their doom was inevitable and the defeat total. Jerusalem would be crowded with refugees who, with their cattle, will have fled from the surrounding areas” (Expositor’s Bible Commentary, note on verse 5). God is incredibly patient with human weakness, but the Bible makes very plain that He will not tolerate prolonged rebellion against Him. The fact that there is indeed a “last straw” of human sin that exceeds the limits of God’s patience and willingness to extend mercy has ominous implications for today’s sin-riddled societies. (Of course, even in His punishment God is showing mercy since the real cruelty would be to let humanity continue to grow more and more corrupt.)

God gives His people an ultimatum—choose life or death—defect or remain in the city (verses 8-10). To remain was too painful to imagine—famine and disease and then, weakened, to wage war to the death.

The royal house is then addressed with an appeal, even at this late stage, that the justice system be reformed—that the oppressed among the populace be delivered (verses 11-12). Otherwise God’s judgment would fall (same verse). The clear implication is that a turn to righteous judgment, even now, would avert calamity. But a real turn doesn’t come.

God says He is against the “inhabitant of the valley” and “rock of the plain” (verse 13)—references to Jerusalem. “In reply to the claim that ‘rock of the plain’ (KJV, RSV) is not suitable for Jerusalem [which sits on a hill], it can be shown that the Hebrew may be rendered ‘level rock’ or ‘rock of the level place,’ since misor denotes ‘plateau’…(cf. Ps 27:11 {‘straight path’}; 143:10 {‘level ground’}). It would refer, then, to the level ‘rocky plateau’ (so NIV) on which Jerusalem stood. The valley could be the Tyropeon, between Mount Zion and Mount Moriah, an appropriate designation in that the royal residence was located on Mount Zion…[One] early archaeologist…understood the ‘rocky plateau’ to be Mount Zion, where there is a level tract of considerable extent. Finally, because the city was surrounded by high hills, it could appropriately be called a valley (Isa 22:1). Thus the words of the text are explicable” (Expositor’s, footnote on verse 13). It should also be considered that, figuratively speaking, the land of Judah was, in terms of its political power at this time, a valley between the two mountains, or great kingdoms, of Babylon and Egypt.

Sadly, even in the face of actual siege, the people of Jerusalem remain foolishly confident that God will not allow His holy city to be breached (verse 13). They are, of course, gravely mistaken (verse 14).

In chapter 34, God sends Jeremiah to deliver the message of Jerusalem’s fall to Zedekiah in person (verse 2). The king himself was not to die in the battle, but would be taken captive to later die in Babylon.

The Macmillan Bible Atlas says of this period: “The cities of Judah were destroyed one after the other. In various excavations, such as at Ramat Rahel, Beth-zur, Beth-shemesh, Lachish, Arad, and En-gedi, absolute destruction is apparent. The last of the fortified cities of Judah to fall were Lachish and Azekah (Jer. 34:7) The sentence: ‘We are watching for the signals of Lachish, according to all the indications which my lord hath given, for we cannot see Azekah,’ in one of the Lachish Letters (no. 4), was obviously written after the fall of Azekah [which was soon to come]” (Yohanan Aharoni and Michael Avi-Yonah, 1977, p. 105).

The “Lachish Letters” were military communications inscribed on potsherds—a common means of recording messages at the time—uncovered in 20th-century excavations of the Jewish stronghold of Lachish. They provide dramatic archaeological corroboration of the biblical account of this tumultuous time. Regarding what they document about this period, Expositor’s adds: “Evidence for the Fall of Azekah (Letter IV), written soon after Jer 34:7, is particularly revealing. As well the report of Judah’s sending of a high army official to Egypt (Letter III) and of the unrest in Jerusalem (Letter VI) are illuminating, as is the mention of ‘the prophet’ (= Jeremiah? Letter VI)” (footnote on 2 Kings 25:2).

Egypt will respond to Judah’s call for help, as revealed in our next reading.

 

First Part of Major Solomonic Collection Cont’d (Proverbs 14)

  1. Self-Protective and Self-Destructive Behavior (14:1-3)

“TYPE: INCLUSIO” (The New American Commentary). “Verses 1 and 3 go together as signaled by the repetition of ‘wise’ and ‘fool/foolish’; the difference between the two [types of people] is explained in verse 2” (The NIV Application Commentary, note on verses 1-7). Verses 1 and 3 show that the wise will ultimately benefit from their right choices but the foolish ultimately hurt themselves and those close to them. Verse 2 shows that what makes the difference is one’s attitude toward God. It also makes clear that how one lives shows whether one properly reveres God or not.

Verse 1 is paraphrased in the New Century Version (NCV) as: “A wise woman strengthens her family, but a foolish woman destroys hers by what she does.”

In the NIV, verse 3 opens with the words, “A fool’s talk brings a rod to his back….” The NCV has “Fools will be punished for their proud words….” However, the Jewish Soncino Commentary points out: “The word [translated ‘rod’] is found again only in Isa. [11:]1, where it signifies a new branch growing from the trunk of a tree. If rod was intended, as a symbol of punishment, another Hebrew word, shebet, would have been more appropriate. It is better, therefore, to translate: ‘a branch (producing) pride.’ From the fool’s mouth issues haughty speech which has the effect of getting him into trouble” (note on verse 3). In either case, the implication is that the emergence of pride is ultimately self-destructive—especially given the contrast in the verse in which the wise are preserved by their own carefully chosen words.

  1. A Worthwhile Investment (14:4)

“TYPE: SINGLE BICOLON PROVERB” (NAC). Where the KJV has “crib,” the NIV has “manger” and the NKJV has “trough”—the object here being the feed-trough for oxen. Soncino comments: “This animal was employed for ploughing and threshing the corn [i.e., grain] (Deut. [22:]20, [25:]4). The point of the verse is neither the importance of agricultural work…nor the value of work as opposed to slothfulness…. As sometimes happens with a proverb, the abstract thought is presented by means of a concrete example. So here, the ox is used as an illustration. Having no ox is, from one point of view, an advantage because a man is then freed from attending to its care; but as against that there is the great advantage of having an ox for the provision of essential food. Consequently, the disadvantage of having to look after the animal is far outweighed by the benefits which accrue from its employment in the field” (note on verse 4).

The New American Commentary takes it a step further: “The point is that one must make an investment (obtain and feed the oxen) to get a large return” (note on verse 4).

  1. Look Who’s Talking (14:5-7)

“TYPE: THEMATIC….One should evaluate what a person says on the basis of his or her overall credibility (v. 5). Similarly, one should not expect to get sound advice from a person who shows no respect for the precepts of wisdom (vv. 6-7). In short, the character of the speaker serves as a warning about whether his words are true or wise” (NAC).

Verse 5 is similar to verse 25.

The counsel in verse 7 does not mean we must immediately leave a room if a foolish person is in it. The point is that we should not associate with foolish people as much as is reasonable—and certainly not look to them for guidance. “Once again, the proverbs recognize that the company one keeps will have its influence. Taken together [with related proverbs], one can learn better alone than with the help of a fool” (NIV Application Commentary, note on verse 7; compare 13:20).

  1. Appearance and Reality (14:8-15)

“TYPE: CHIASMUS….Life is often deceptive, and the text here implicitly exhorts readers not to be taken in by appearances [or how things might seem]…This series of proverbs is a carefully balanced chiasmus [or concentric arrangement]:

“The meaning of ‘the folly of fools is deception’ (v. 8 [NIV]) is not immediately evident, but the parallel in v. 15 implies that the naiveté of fools is in view” (NAC). Verse 15 shows that the simple are gullible while the wise proceed cautiously—to borrow from a modern proverb, they look before they leap. On the word in verse 8 translated “deceit” or “deception” (NIV), Soncino notes: “The verb from which this noun is derived, means ‘to mislead'” (note on verse 8). The NRSV renders the verse this way: “It is the wisdom of the clever to understand where they go, but the folly of fools misleads.” The wise know that things are not always as they seem.

“Verses 10, 13 likewise observe that no one knows the inner life of another’s heart and that the appearance of happiness can be deceptive” (NAC).

Verse 9 is somewhat difficult to translate and the King James and New King James are probably incorrect here. The NIV has a likelier rendering: “Fools mock at making amends for sin, but goodwill is found among the upright.” Thus, “verse 9 states that the wicked believe they can avoid making restitution, but v. 14 [in concentric parallel] gives assurance of divine retribution. In other words, the appearance of getting away with a crime is belied by a justice that is not obvious or quick but is certain.

“In vv. 11-12, at the heart of the chiasmus, the apparent success of the wicked is short-lived…. The message of the whole is to avoid a superficial analysis of the lessons of life” (NAC).

Verse 12, repeated in 16:25, is crucial to always keep in mind. People the world over often act according to what they personally think is right—but not according to the way of life God reveals in His Word. Thus they all march headlong down the broad road to destruction (compare Matthew 7:13)—in dire need of true education and God’s salvation. We must be sure to always look at things through the godly lens of Scripture and not mere human reason, living by faith and not by sight (compare Proverbs 3:5-6; 2 Corinthians 5:7).

  1. A Patient Spirit (14:16-17)

“TYPE:…THEMATIC” (NAC). As pointed out in verse 15, a wise man thinks before he acts. Contributing to his reasoned patience is, as verse 16 notes, a healthy fear of the consequences of evil. This contrasts with the foolish self-confidence behind rashness and impulsive anger.

  1. A Crown of Wisdom, An Inheritance of Folly (14:18-24)

TYPE: INCLUSIO, CHIASMUS, PARALLEL PROVERBS. “This text promises that the righteous will be crowned with wisdom and see fools bow before them. The passage also gives a few specific guidelines for right behavior, including compassion and personal diligence” (NAC).

Verses 18 and 24 are tied together through the wise receiving a crown or reward and the foolish inheriting only folly. The NIV captures the sense of verse 24: “The wealth of the wise is their crown, but the folly of fools yields folly.” This is not a promise of wealth for the godly in this age. It merely expresses the principle that wealth is gained and sustained through wisdom and prudence, while the foolishness of fools leads to an outcome of more foolishness. Of course, the godly will be richly rewarded in the ages to come.

“Verses 20-23 fall between these verses and are themselves bound together in a complex manner. Verses 20 and 23 both deal with wealth and poverty, and vv. 21-22 both contrast those who are kind with those who plot evil. Viewed in this manner, vv. 20-23 are in a chiastic pattern. On the other hand, vv. 20-21 both concern the different ways a ‘neighbor’ is treated, and vv. 22-23 both concern the respective gain or loss that comes to the good/diligent as opposed to the evil/lazy. Viewed in this manner, vv. 20-23 are two sets of parallel proverbs. Both the chiasmus and the parallel pattern may be viewed as follows:

“The full text deals with the recompense that accompanies wisdom or folly. Ethical issues here [that impact the outcome] include concern for the poor, diligence in work, and integrity in dealing with others” (NAC, note on verses 18-24).

Treatment of the poor (verses 20-21) is revisited in verse 31. In verse 20 the many friends of the rich are not true friends that can be counted on. Thus the New Living Translation rendering: “…the rich have many ‘friends.'” These are mostly parasitical, seeking handouts, personal advancement or notoriety through association.

  1. An Honest Witness (14:25)

“TYPE: SINGLE BICOLON PROVERB” (NAC). As earlier noted, this verse is similar to verse 5.

  1. The Fear of the Lord (14:26-27)

“TYPE: THEMATIC” (NAC). These proverbs focus on the fear of the Lord—the proper reverence and awe of God in His holiness and power through which the whole book of Proverbs is to be viewed and comprehended (compare 1:7). This perspective will protect us and our loved ones we influence, preserving us through various trials and keeping us from falling away to ultimate destruction. We will note more about this when we come to Proverbs 19:23.

  1. National Security (14:28-35)

“TYPE: INCLUSIO [POSSIBLE CHIASM]….The health and well-being of a nation depends upon both the ruler and the governed. A ruler must be fair and above all must respect the rights of his people. The people, on the other hand, must have virtue in their lives or they will bring society into chaos. No government can succeed without the people, and no people can thrive if corruption and evil abound. The inclusio here is formed by v. 28, which describes a king’s need for a sizable populace, and v. 35, which obliquely asserts a king’s need for capable servants” (NAC).

In its note on verses 28-35, The NIV Application Commentary sees a possible chiasm here, based on the terms used:

Verse 29, which contrasts impulsiveness with patience, is followed by verse 30, which contrasts a sound heart or “a heart at peace” (NIV) with envy. Both verses show reasoned calm to be superior to uncontrolled emotion. In the latter verse, this calm is healthful while negative emotion is actually destructive to the body—facts borne out in modern medical science.

Verse 31, similar to verse 21, warns the powerful, such as national rulers, from oppressing the poor. To oppress the poor is to reproach God, since He has commanded that the poor be treated well. Those who honor God will obey Him in proper treatment of those in need. There may even be a hint here of Yeshua’ later teaching that as we treat people, so we treat Him (compare Matthew 25:31-46)—a principle more evident in Proverbs 19:17. See also 17:5.

Proverbs 14:32 says that the righteous has a refuge in death. Note again the refuge in the fear of the Lord in verse 26. While the wicked are swept away when calamity comes, the righteous ever have the refuge of God—even in death, showing hope beyond the grave (compare Isaiah 57:1-2). This is true in both an individual and collective sense.

The first colon of Proverbs 14:34 is inscribed above the entrance to a prominent American building—Los Angeles City Hall. That great city, and the nation at large—indeed all the world—would do well to heed this saying on the importance of the citizenry living according to God’s standard of righteousness and not descending into sin. Verses 34 and 35 are both linked by the theme of shame among those governed. “A people may wish for good character qualities in their leaders, but they ought to hold themselves to the same high standards. This may be a jab at the common assumption that honest and forthright character is always a good idea for someone else” (NIV Application Commentary, note on verse 35). Indeed, every person’s character contributes to the character of the whole community, so we should each take this as a personal responsibility.

 

Acts 11

Peter is given opportunity here in Acts chapter 11 to explain himself his dream of the descending sheet of unclean animals so there should be no doubt concerning the dream within our assemblies today. The dream was concerning the people of the nations – God has made them clean through His Set Apart Spirit. Therefore, they are clean and we may all worship and learn of Him together as One Man.

The preaching of the Good News went out successfully throughout Cyprus, Antioch, and Cyrene and many were joined unto Messiah and believed the missionary’s report. Barnabas is also sent out to Antioch and he also goes to Tarsus and retrieves Sha’ul from them to come to Antioch with him and they remain there teaching for a year. This is the first place that the believers and assemblies were called: Messianics.

A prophet Chagab prophesied a great scarcity of food over all the world and so the assemblies began preparing. As they gathered provisions, they also sent help to the assemblies in Jerusalem and Judea.

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