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Commentary - Year 1 Sabbath 49

Exodus 7:8 - 8:19   -   Joel 3:1-7   -   Psalm 45   -   Revelation 16:1-17

Exodus 7:8 - 8:15 in Hebrew Bibles                                                                                
 

 

    Adar 18,5762 / Mar 2, 2002 

I  Adar 24, 5765 / Mar 5, 2005

I  Adar 24, 5768 / Mar 1, 2008

I  Adar 22, 5771 / Feb 26, 2011

II Adar 20, 5774/ Mar 22, 2014

   Adar 20, 5777/ Mar 18, 2017

 

Ki Y'daber / When He Speaks   SCRIPTURES should be read first

 

Note on Ex 7:7

Gen 15:13 notes 400 years. Isaac lived 180 years, AM 2048-2228. Kohath (born in Canaan and went to Egypt) lived 133 years (Ex 6:18), AM 2235-2368. His son Amram lived 137 years (Ex 6:20), 2255-2392. Moses lived from 2368 to the exodus at 2448, when he was 80 years old (Ex 7:7). Thus the computation that the 400 years began with the birth of Isaac: from the birth of Isaac in AM 2048 to the exodus in 2448 was 400 years. (per Seder Olam)

 

Exodus 7:

Going back to the beginning of this chapter, we read, “Then Yahweh said to Moses, ‘See, I make you as God to Pharaoh, and your brother Aaron shall be your prophet. You shall speak all that I command you, and your brother Aaron shall speak to Pharaoh that he let the sons of Israel go out of his land. But I will harden Pharaoh's heart that I may multiply My signs and My wonders in the land of Egypt’.” Before we ever hear of Pharaoh hardening his heart, even before the Pharaoh ever hears of an uprising, Yahweh says that He will harden the Pharaoh’s heart in order to accomplish His purpose: namely, that (concerning the Hebrews) “you shall know that I am Yahweh your God” (v.6:7), and “The Egyptians shall know that I am Yahweh, when I stretch out My hand on Egypt and bring out the sons of Israel from their midst” (v.7:5). We have spent two Sabbaths (Y1-46 and Y1-48) learning of the Name that God proclaimed for Himself for all generations, and now we are to understand that He would have both righteous and wicked know Him as the Eternal I Am – with no doubt to be left.

 

We all should be in awe of the Eternal Gracious One. He is not like us: He is so far above us that we are as worms or grasshoppers. We cannot put Him under our rules, or control what He does. He holds all of the rights, including life and death and destiny. But everything that befalls believers is planned in love for their ultimate good.

 

(V.12) But Aaron's staff swallowed up their staffs.” This prefigured the Red Sea swallowing up Egypt’s armies.

 

(Ex 7:14 – 12:36) The Ten Plagues

 

The first three plagues showed the existence of Yahweh (v.7:17). The next three plagues showed that Yahweh ruled over all things (v.8:18). The last three plagues showed Yahweh’s omnipotence – more powerful than any other (v.9:14). The tenth was the promised (Ex 4:21-23) death of the firstborn. In each group of three plagues, the first two were preceded by warnings to the Pharaoh, but after two “witnesses”, the third came without warning as a judgment. The first warning of each group came at the Nile River, and the second warning of each group came at the Pharaoh’s palace: he claimed mastery over the River, and the palace was his seat of authority; God used these two places to warn him of his arrogance. (from R. Bachya)

 

 

Warning given at Nile

(place of claimed mastery)

Warning given at palace

(seat of authority)

Judgment without

further warning

 

Existence of Yahweh

 

1 Water becomes blood

 

 

 

2 Frogs cover land

 

 

 

3 Gnats from dust

 

Rulership of Yahweh

 

4 Crocodiles from river

 

 

 

5 Pestilence on cattle

 

 

 

6 Boils from soot

 

Omnipotence of Yahweh

 

7 Hail (from evaporation)

 

 

 

8 Locusts consume crops

 

 

 

9 Darkness

Fulfillment of Word

10 Death of firstborn

 

 

(V.21-25) Only the Egyptians were plagued by their water turning to blood; when the Pharaoh had his magicians copy the plague, they had to get water from the Hebrews’ area (or possibly from new wells). After seven days, the blood turned back to water.

 

[Traditionally, it is taught that each plague lasted seven days, except when the Pharaoh asked Moses for relief; and each plague occurred in a succeeding month.]

 

The Pharaoh apparently only asked for relief from those plagues that were life threatening (frogs, wild beasts, hail, locusts, and death of the firstborn – of which the Pharaoh was one). (Or HaChaim)

 

(V.8:8-11) The Pharaoh may have suspected that Moses was but a superior magician, who could determine when a plague would naturally end: so he asked Moses to pray immediately that the plague of frogs would cease at a specific time – the next day. He was willing to endure the frogs longer to test this God of Moses.

 

(V.16-19) When the magicians could not copy the plague of lice, they said, “This is the finger of Elohim.” They acknowledged a God of creation, but not Yahweh, the One Eternal.

 

Revelation 16:

When God’s people are finally delivered from this world of sin, which Egypt represents, then there will again be plagues similar to those of the past. Upon the ‘Egyptians’ – those who worship the ‘beast’ – there will be malignant sores, reminiscent of the boils. Then the sea, and next the rivers, will be turned to blood. Fourthly, there will be a plague of fire and heat – more devastating than ice hail. The fifth plague will be darkness, just like in Egypt. Then there will appear three unclean spirits – like frogs; they will perform signs to deceive the world’s people.

 

When the seventh angel pours out his bowl of judgment, a voice from the Temple will be heard saying, “It is done”. Hundred-pound hail stones will be falling, and Babylon will be destroyed. The kingdoms of this world must become the Kingdom of Messiah!

 

Psalm 45: “Shoshannim” lillies, are symbolic of a bride, figurative of a lover’s lips. According to Metzudas Zion, these shoshannim (usually translated lilies) are musical instruments shaped like a roses, used in accompaniment with this Psalm.

 

Sages say that this love song was dedicated specifically to Messiah, as well as David. “The Midrash and commentaries relate this Psalm to several individuals described in Scripture. At first Abraham was universally ostracized for his teachings, but he was later acclaimed as the leading citizen of the world. At first David was vilified and pursued, but he was finally accepted as ruler and king. At first Messiah will be challenged, but He will ultimately become the universal sovereign.” (Artscroll Tanach - Tehillim)

 

This Psalm is “A Song of Love” – concerning the Messiah and His Bride, as she is being delivered from Egyptian bondage. Thus it is related to today’s Torah portion.

 

(V.2) In his preface, the Psalmist says that his heart is stirred (overflowing) with a tov / good theme, and then his tongue is the pen of a skillful scribe. This is seen as opposite to the usual poet, who fits thoughts into previously selected words and phrases. The Psalmist’s heart is moved by God’s Spirit to sing prophetic understandings with skillful words of beauty.

 

Though Yeshua was not naturally of desired beauty among men (Isaiah 53:2), here He is seen as beautiful beyond other men, His words are charming, and He is blessed for eternity! Other Scriptures also portray Him prophetically as beautiful: “Your eyes will see the King in His beauty” – Isaiah 33:17.

 

(V.4) His truth and meekness and righteousness will lead His right hand (His great power) to do wondrous things.

 

(V.6) His kingship is forever, and the rod of His power is righteousness. Under the Renewed Covenant, we will serve wholeheartedly in love under righteous leading.

 

(V.7) Nations will fall beneath Him. When He comes to reign, all of the seventy nations of this world will fall, and become the one Kingdom of Messiah. This is what we portray in the Feast of Tabernacles: during the seven days, seventy bulls are offered representing the seventy nations; then, on the Eighth Day, one bull is offered representing the Kingdom of Messiah.

 

(V.10-11) “Listen, O daughter, give attention and incline your ear: forget your people and your father's house; then the King will desire your beauty. Because He is your Lord, bow down to Him.”

 

Readings:

"Blessed are You, Yahweh our God, King of the Universe,

Who chose us from among all peoples by giving us Your Torah.

Blessed are You, Yahweh, giver of the Torah."

 

(Ki v’daber alechem Pharaoh lemor t’nou lachem mophet / When speaks to-you Pharaoh, regarding working a miracle)

 

Reader 1*  Amen. 8 Now Yahweh spoke to Moses and Aaron, saying, 9 "When Pharaoh speaks to you, saying, 'Work a miracle,' then you shall say to Aaron, 'Take your staff and throw it down before Pharaoh, that it may become a serpent.'" 10 So Moses and Aaron came to Pharaoh, and thus they did just as Yahweh had commanded; and Aaron threw his staff down before Pharaoh and his servants, and it became a serpent. 11 Then Pharaoh also called for the wise men and the sorcerers, and they also, the magicians of Egypt, did the same with their secret arts. 12 For each one threw down his staff and they turned into serpents. But Aaron's staff swallowed up their staffs.

Reader 2*  Amen. 13 Yet Pharaoh's heart was hardened, and he did not listen to them, as Yahweh had said. 14 Then Yahweh said to Moses, "Pharaoh's heart is stubborn; he refuses to let the people go. 15 "Go to Pharaoh in the morning as he is going out to the water, and station yourself to meet him on the bank of the Nile; and you shall take in your hand the staff that was turned into a serpent. 16 "You shall say to him, 'Yahweh, the God of the Hebrews, sent me to you, saying, "Let My people go, that they may serve Me in the wilderness. But behold, you have not listened until now."

Reader 3*  Amen. 17 'Thus says Yahweh, "By this you shall know that I am Yahweh: behold, I will strike the water that is in the Nile with the staff that is in my hand, and it will be turned to blood. 18 "The fish that are in the Nile will die, and the Nile will become foul, and the Egyptians will find difficulty in drinking water from the Nile."'" 19 Then Yahweh said to Moses, "Say to Aaron, 'Take your staff and stretch out your hand over the waters of Egypt, over their rivers, over their streams, and over their pools, and over all their reservoirs of water, that they may become blood; and there will be blood throughout all the land of Egypt, both in vessels of wood and in vessels of stone.'" 20 So Moses and Aaron did even as Yahweh had commanded. And he lifted up the staff and struck the water that was in the Nile, in the sight of Pharaoh and in the sight of his servants, and all the water that was in the Nile was turned to blood. 21 The fish that were in the Nile died, and the Nile became foul, so that the Egyptians could not drink water from the Nile. And the blood was through all the land of Egypt.

Reader 4*  Amen. 22 But the magicians of Egypt did the same with their secret arts; and Pharaoh's heart was hardened, and he did not listen to them, as Yahweh had said. 23 Then Pharaoh turned and went into his house with no concern even for this. 24 So all the Egyptians dug around the Nile for water to drink, for they could not drink of the water of the Nile. 25 Seven days passed after Yahweh had struck the Nile.

Reader 5*  Amen. 8:1 Then Yahweh said to Moses, "Go to Pharaoh and say to him, 'Thus says Yahweh, "Let My people go, that they may serve Me. 2 "But if you refuse to let them go, behold, I will smite your whole territory with frogs. 3 "The Nile will swarm with frogs, which will come up and go into your house and into your bedroom and on your bed, and into the houses of your servants and on your people, and into your ovens and into your kneading bowls. 4 "So the frogs will come up on you and your people and all your servants."'" 5 Then Yahweh said to Moses, "Say to Aaron, 'Stretch out your hand with your staff over the rivers, over the streams and over the pools, and make frogs come up on the land of Egypt.'" 6 So Aaron stretched out his hand over the waters of Egypt, and the frogs came up and covered the land of Egypt.

Reader 6*  Amen. 7 The magicians did the same with their secret arts, making frogs come up on the land of Egypt. 8 Then Pharaoh called for Moses and Aaron and said, "Entreat Yahweh that He remove the frogs from me and from my people; and I will let the people go, that they may sacrifice to Yahweh." 9 Moses said to Pharaoh, "The honor is yours to tell me: when shall I entreat for you and your servants and your people, that the frogs be destroyed from you and your houses, that they may be left only in the Nile?" 10 Then he said, "Tomorrow." So he said, "May it be according to your word, that you may know that there is no one like Yahweh our God. 11 "The frogs will depart from you and your houses and your servants and your people; they will be left only in the Nile."

Reader 7*  Amen. 12 Then Moses and Aaron went out from Pharaoh, and Moses cried to Yahweh concerning the frogs which He had inflicted upon Pharaoh. 13 Yahweh did according to the word of Moses, and the frogs died out of the houses, the courts, and the fields. 14 So they piled them in heaps, and the land became foul. 15 But when Pharaoh saw that there was relief, he hardened his heart and did not listen to them, as Yahweh had said. 16 Then Yahweh said to Moses, "Say to Aaron, 'Stretch out your staff and strike the dust of the earth, that it may become gnats through all the land of Egypt.'" 17 They did so; and Aaron stretched out his hand with his staff, and struck the dust of the earth, and there were gnats on man and beast. All the dust of the earth became gnats through all the land of Egypt. 18 The magicians tried with their secret arts to bring forth gnats, but they could not; so there were gnats on man and beast. 19 Then the magicians said to Pharaoh, "This is the finger of God." But Pharaoh's heart was hardened, and he did not listen to them, as Yahweh had said.

 

"Blessed are You, Yahweh our God, King of the Universe,

Who in giving us Yeshua, the Living Torah, has planted everlasting life in our midst.

Blessed are You, Yahweh, giver of the Torah."

______________________

 

"Blessed are You, Yahweh our God, King of the Universe,

Who selected good prophets, delighting in their words which were spoken truthfully.

Blessed are You, Yahweh, Who chose the Torah, Your servant Moses, Your people Israel,

and the prophets of truth and righteousness."

Joel 3:1-7

Reader 8*  Amen. 1 "For behold, in those days and at that time, When I restore the fortunes of Judah and Jerusalem, 2 I will gather all the nations and bring them down to the valley of Jehoshaphat. Then I will enter into judgment with them there on behalf of My people and My inheritance, Israel, whom they have scattered among the nations; and they have divided up My land. 3 "They have also cast lots for My people, traded a boy for a harlot and sold a girl for wine that they may drink. 4 "Moreover, what are you to Me, O Tyre, Sidon and all the regions of Philistia? Are you rendering Me a recompense? But if you do recompense Me, swiftly and speedily I will return your recompense on your head. 5 "Since you have taken My silver and My gold, brought My precious treasures to your temples, 6 and sold the sons of Judah and Jerusalem to the Greeks in order to remove them far from their territory, 7 behold, I am going to arouse them from the place where you have sold them, and return your recompense on your head.

 

Psalm 45    (To be sung.)

For the choir director; according to the Shoshannim. A Maskil of the sons of Korah. A Song of Love.

1 My heart overflows with a good theme; I address my verses to the King; my tongue is the pen of a ready writer. 2 You are fairer than the sons of men; grace is poured upon Your lips; therefore God has blessed You forever. 3 Gird Your sword on Your thigh, O Mighty One, in Your splendor and Your majesty! 4 And in Your majesty ride on victoriously, for the cause of truth and meekness and righteousness; let Your right hand teach You awesome things. 5 Your arrows are sharp; the peoples fall under You; Your arrows are in the heart of the King's enemies. 6 Your throne, O God, is forever and ever; a scepter of uprightness is the scepter of Your kingdom. 7 You have loved righteousness and hated wickedness; therefore God, Your God, has anointed You with the oil of joy above Your fellows. 8 All Your garments are fragrant with myrrh and aloes and cassia; out of ivory palaces stringed instruments have made You glad. 9 Kings' daughters are among Your noble ladies; at Your right hand stands the queen in gold from Ophir. 10 Listen, O daughter, give attention and incline your ear: forget your people and your father's house; 11 then the King will desire your beauty. Because He is your Lord, bow down to Him. 12 The daughter of Tyre will come with a gift; the rich among the people will seek your favor. 13 The King's daughter is all glorious within; her clothing is interwoven with gold. 14 She will be led to the King in embroidered work; the virgins, her companions who follow her, will be brought to You. 15 They will be led forth with gladness and rejoicing; they will enter into the King's palace. 16 In place of your fathers will be your sons; You shall make them princes in all the earth. 17 I will cause Your name to be remembered in all generations; therefore the peoples will give You thanks forever and ever.

 

Revelation 16:1-17

Reader 9*  Amen. 1 Then I heard a loud voice from the temple, saying to the seven angels, "Go and pour out on the earth the seven bowls of the wrath of God." 2 So the first angel went and poured out his bowl on the earth; and it became a loathsome and malignant sore on the people who had the mark of the beast and who worshiped his image. 3 The second angel poured out his bowl into the sea, and it became blood like that of a dead man; and every living thing in the sea died. 4 Then the third angel poured out his bowl into the rivers and the springs of waters; and they became blood. 5 And I heard the angel of the waters saying, "Righteous are You, who are and who were, O Holy One, because You judged these things; 6 for they poured out the blood of saints and prophets, and You have given them blood to drink. They deserve it." 7 And I heard the altar saying, "Yes, O Lord God, the Almighty, true and righteous are Your judgments."

Reader 10*  Amen. 8 The fourth angel poured out his bowl upon the sun, and it was given to it to scorch men with fire. 9 Men were scorched with fierce heat; and they blasphemed the name of God who has the power over these plagues, and they did not repent so as to give Him glory. 10 Then the fifth angel poured out his bowl on the throne of the beast, and his kingdom became darkened; and they gnawed their tongues because of pain, 11 and they blasphemed the God of heaven because of their pains and their sores; and they did not repent of their deeds.

Reader 11*  Amen. 12 The sixth angel poured out his bowl on the great river, the Euphrates; and its water was dried up, so that the way would be prepared for the kings from the east. 13 And I saw coming out of the mouth of the dragon and out of the mouth of the beast and out of the mouth of the false prophet, three unclean spirits like frogs; 14 for they are spirits of demons, performing signs, which go out to the kings of the whole world, to gather them together for the war of the great day of God, the Almighty. 15 ("Behold, I am coming like a thief. Blessed is the one who stays awake and keeps his clothes, so that he will not walk about naked and men will not see his shame.") 16 And they gathered them together to the place which in Hebrew is called Har-Magedon. 17 Then the seventh angel poured out his bowl upon the air, and a loud voice came out of the temple from the throne, saying, "It is done."

 

"Blessed are You, Yahweh our God, King of the Universe,

Rock of Ages, righteous throughout all generations.

You are the faithful God, promising and then performing, speaking and then fulfilling,

for all Your words are true and righteous.

Faithful are You, Yahweh our God, and faithful are Your words,

for no word of Yours shall remain unfulfilled;

You are a faithful and merciful God and King.

Blessed are You, Yahweh our God, Who are faithful in fulfilling all Your words."


© 2004  Beikvot HaMashiach
(Followers of the Messiah)