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Commentary - Year 2 Sabbath 7

Exodus 16:25 - 17:16   -   Isaiah 58:13-14   -   Psalm 53  -   John 6:1-71
 

 

Iyyar 15, 5762 / April 27, 2002           

Iyyar 19, 5765 / May 28, 2005

Iyyar 19, 5768 / May 24, 2008

Iyyar 17, 5771 / May 21, 2011

Iyyar 10, 5774 / May 10, 2014

Iyyar 17, 5777 / May 13, 2017             Today we say:

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

Who has sanctified us by His Word, and instructed us to count the Omer:

Today is 32 days of the Omer; it is 4 weeks and 4 days of the Omer.”

 

Hayom ki-Shabbat / Today is Sabbath    SCRIPTURES (should be read first)

 

On Nisan fourteen the Passover Lambs were slain and the blood put on the doorposts, prefiguring Yeshua’s crucifixion on that date. This week, on Iyyar 15, is the second Passover seder, for those who were unable to eat the Passover a month ago. Both the Passover Lamb and the Bread from Heaven represent Yeshua.

 

These Scriptures are about ten tests of our faith.

 

The first test, from last week, was about bitter water – neglecting God’s Word.

 

(V. 15:22) Then Moses led Israel from the Red Sea”: once we come to the place of faith, we have the Torah to lead us on. Israel went from the Sea (the place of faith) to the Wilderness of Shur / Vision, the name implying that there the people could be close to God.

 

After three days travel, they found no water. Then they came to a place of bitter water, so it was called Marah / Bitterness. (This is the root of the name Miriam / Mary.) The people therefore complained to Moses.

 

Even after witnessing such miracles as God had just performed for them, they had trouble believing that God would provide for their mundane needs, such as water. Like our society that trusts in money instead of God.

 

As water represents the Word of God, this is seen to mean that after neglecting Torah for three days, the people lost their vision and complained about having left the world’s Treasure City. For this reason the prophets established the Second and Fifth Days of the Sabbath (Monday and Thursday), in addition to the weekly Sabbath, as days for Bible reading – so that three days would never elapse without Bible reading.

 

When we neglect Bible reading, it can become as a bitter chore. But God can make it a delight for us. Upon purifying the water for them, God said that He was their healer.

 

The second test, also from last week, was about food – trusting God for provisions.

 

(V. 16:1) One month after their departure from the world’s Treasure City, on Iyyar 15 (which falls in this week), they came to the Wilderness of Sin (pronounced “seen”). Here the people all complained about the lack of bread. God said that He would give them “bread from heaven”, to teach them to trust Him for their needs day-by-day, and to trust Him for provision for Sabbath without working on that day.

 

Will we walk with God, or according to our anxious concern for food, water, and safety? These three things ultimately represent faith in Yeshua as our savior, faith in God’s Word as our constant need for direction, and faith in our promised destiny.

 

John 6:

 (V.2-6) On a day approaching Passover, when people would be letting their bread run out, Yeshua went up on a mountain with His disciples, and a great multitude followed Him. As God tested Moses, so Yeshua tested Philip, saying, “Where are we to buy bread, that these may eat?”

 

(V.14) When therefore the people saw the sign which He had performed, they said, "This is of a truth the Prophet who is to come into the world."

“The Prophet” refers to Deuteronomy 18:15, “Yahweh your God will raise up for you a Prophet like me (Moses) from among you, from your countrymen, you shall listen to him” (See Acts 7:37).

 

(V.32-37) Yeshua therefore said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, it is not Moses who has given you the bread out of heaven, but it is My Father who gives you the true bread out of heaven. For the bread of God is that which comes down out of heaven, and gives life to the world.” They said therefore to Him, “Lord, evermore give us this bread.” Yeshua said to them, “I am the bread of life; he who comes to Me shall not hunger, and he who believes in Me shall never thirst. But I said to you, that you have seen Me, and yet do not believe. All that the Father gives Me shall come to Me, and the one who comes to Me I will certainly not cast out.”

 

(V.65-68) And He was saying, “For this reason I have said to you, that no one can come to Me, unless it has been granted him from the Father.” As a result of this many of His disciples withdrew, and were not walking with Him anymore. Yeshua said therefore to the twelve, “You do not want to go away also, do you?” Simon Peter answered Him, “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have words of eternal life.”

 

Matthew 6: 31 "Do not worry then, saying, 'What will we eat?' or 'What will we drink?' or 'What will we wear for clothing?' 32 "For the Gentiles eagerly seek all these things; for your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. 33 "But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. 34 "So do not worry about tomorrow; for tomorrow will care for itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.

 

Work is required. But not anxious thought.

 

The third test, in today’s portion, is about keeping the Sabbath holy – respecting our Creator.

(V. 16:25) Moses said, "Eat it today, for today is a Sabbath to Yahweh; today you will not find it in the field. 26 "Six days you shall gather it, but on the seventh day, the Sabbath, there will be none."  

(V. 16:29) “See, Yahweh has given you the Sabbath; therefore He gives you bread for two days on the sixth day.”

The Sabbath is a gift to us!

 

Isaiah 58:13-14 – 13 "If because of the sabbath, you turn your foot from doing your own pleasure on My holy day, and call the Sabbath a delight, the holy day of Yahweh honorable, and honor it, desisting from your own ways, from seeking your own pleasure and speaking your own word, 14 then you will take delight in Yahweh, and I will make you ride on the heights of the earth; and I will feed you with the heritage of Jacob your father, for the mouth of Yahweh has spoken."

 

The fourth test is about falling back – questioning God.

 

 (V.17:1) They journeyed by stages from the wilderness of Sin, according to the command of Yahweh, and camped at Rephidim (a contraction of a Hebrew phrase “rafu y’dayhem min hatorah” –  “they loosened their grip on the Torah” (Mechilta) because they had become “lax” in their faith), and there was no water (no light of Torah) for the people to drink.

 

(V.5-6) “Take in your hand your staff with which you struck the Nile (to bring forth plagues!), and go. Behold, I will stand before you there on the rock at Horeb; and you shall strike the rock, and water will come out of it, that the people may drink.” The rock (Yeshua) had not moved: the people had backslidden. The Word is always available, but we tend to put our eyes on the world instead.

 

1Peter 2: 2 Like newborn babies, long for the pure milk of the word, so that by it you may grow in respect to salvation.

Revelation 3: 8 'I know your deeds. Behold, I have put before you an open door which no one can shut, because you have a little power, and have kept My word, and have not denied My name.  

Regular times of reading God’s Word are necessary.

 

The fifth test is about safety in this world.

 

(V.8) Then Amalek (descendants of Esau, also called Edom) came and fought against Israel at Rephidim. When we are lax in Torah study, the world comes in to capture us.

 

Amalek, as Esau’s grandson, knew Israel’s boundaries, and that Israel posed no threat; yet they attacked Israel in defiance of God. This is what we are seeing today in faith-less Israel with the falsely-so-called Palestinians! Israel and Esau/Amalek/Edom/Rome are representatives of good and evil, godliness and idolatry. Yeshua will ultimately defeat and annihilate Amalek (See Obadiah 1:21 and Revelation 18:1-4).

See Psalm 53:6 – “When God restores His captive people, let Jacob rejoice, let Israel be glad.

 

Faith . . . is a gift of God (Ephesians 2:8-9). It is the goodness of God that leads us to repentance (Romans 2:4) – to turn around towards God. Only God can restore those captivated by the world’s Treasure City.

 

Psalm 4: 8 In peace I will both lie down and sleep, for You alone, Yahweh, make me to dwell in safety. Not that we should live dangerously – that would be tempting God. But in what do we trust for safety?

 

(V.28-29) Then Yahweh said to Moses, “How long do you refuse to keep My commandments (Mitzvot) and My instructions (Torah)?”

 

To recap the previous weeks:

 

On the first day of Unleavened Bread, Israel traveled from the world’s Treasure City (Rameses) to a Temporary Dwellingplace (Sukkot) where they could begin to mature in God’s way. Then they traveled to “Away from Them” (Etham). Next they came to the Mouth of Freedom (Pi-hachirot), on the date that Yeshua would be freed from the grave. After three days, the Pharaoh’s armies caught up with them. On the seventh and last day of Unleavened Bread, they were baptized in the split Red Sea. Israel went from the Sea to the Wilderness of Shur / Vision, the name implying that there the people could be close to God. After three days travel without Torah study (water), they came to a place of bitter water, so it was called Marah / Bitterness. The people therefore complained to Moses. Even after witnessing such miracles as God had just performed for them, they had trouble believing that God would provide for their mundane needs, such as water and food. Like our society that trusts in money instead of God. Because the lack of Torah study had caused a disaster, God gave the people commandments – “added because of transgression”.

 

(V.28-29) Then Yahweh said to Moses, “How long do you refuse to keep My commandments (Mitzvot) and My instructions (Torah)?”

 

Categories of Mitzvot of the Torah (Deeds to serve God according to His Instruction):

 

Mishpatim / Judgments – moral and ethical laws  (No murder, No stealing, Being truthful)

     Psalm 119:7  KJV, NAS - Judgments, NLT - Laws

 

 

Edut / Ordinances – rituals and festivals showing religious truths  (Baptism, Passover, Sabbath)

     Psalm 119:88   KJV, NAS - Testimonies, NLT - Decrees

                              

Hukim / Statutes – bonding man to God, reasons not obvious  (Kosher foods)

     Psalm 119:8  KJV, NAS - Statutes, NLT - Principles

 

“See, Yahweh has given you the Sabbath; therefore He gives you bread for two days on the sixth day.”

See Isaiah 58:13-14 – “The mouth of Yahweh has spoken.”

 

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."

 

Reader 1Amen. 25 Moses said, "Eat it today, for today is a Sabbath to Yahweh; today you will not find it in the field. 26 "Six days you shall gather it, but on the seventh day, the Sabbath, there will be none." 27 It came about on the seventh day that some of the people went out to gather, but they found none. 28 Then Yahweh said to Moses, "How long do you refuse to keep My commandments and My instructions? 29 "See, Yahweh has given you the Sabbath; therefore He gives you bread for two days on the sixth day. Remain every man in his place; let no man go out of his place on the seventh day." 30 So the people rested on the seventh day.

Reader 2Amen. 31 The house of Israel named it manna, and it was like coriander seed, white, and its taste was like wafers with honey. 32 Then Moses said, "This is what Yahweh has commanded, 'Let an omerful of it be kept throughout your generations, that they may see the bread that I fed you in the wilderness, when I brought you out of the land of Egypt.'" 33 Moses said to Aaron, "Take a jar and put an omerful of manna in it, and place it before Yahweh to be kept throughout your generations."

Reader 3Amen. 34 As Yahweh commanded Moses, so Aaron placed it before the Testimony, to be kept. 35 The sons of Israel ate the manna forty years, until they came to an inhabited land; they ate the manna until they came to the border of the land of Canaan. 36 (Now an omer is a tenth of an ephah.)

Reader 4Amen. 17:1 Then all the congregation of the sons of Israel journeyed by stages from the wilderness of Sin, according to the command of Yahweh, and camped at Rephidim, and there was no water for the people to drink. 2 Therefore the people quarreled with Moses and said, "Give us water that we may drink." And Moses said to them, "Why do you quarrel with me? Why do you test Yahweh?" 3 But the people thirsted there for water; and they grumbled against Moses and said, "Why, now, have you brought us up from Egypt, to kill us and our children and our livestock with thirst?"

Reader 5Amen. 4 So Moses cried out to Yahweh, saying, "What shall I do to this people? A little more and they will stone me." 5 Then Yahweh said to Moses, "Pass before the people and take with you some of the elders of Israel; and take in your hand your staff with which you struck the Nile, and go. 6 "Behold, I will stand before you there on the rock at Horeb; and you shall strike the rock, and water will come out of it, that the people may drink." And Moses did so in the sight of the elders of Israel. 7 He named the place Massah and Meribah because of the quarrel of the sons of Israel, and because they tested Yahweh, saying, "Is Yahweh among us, or not?"

Reader 6Amen. 8 Then Amalek came and fought against Israel at Rephidim. 9 So Moses said to Joshua, "Choose men for us and go out, fight against Amalek. Tomorrow I will station myself on the top of the hill with the staff of God in my hand." 10 Joshua did as Moses told him, and fought against Amalek; and Moses, Aaron, and Hur went up to the top of the hill. 11 So it came about when Moses held his hand up, that Israel prevailed, and when he let his hand down, Amalek prevailed.

Reader 7Amen. 12 But Moses' hands were heavy. Then they took a stone and put it under him, and he sat on it; and Aaron and Hur supported his hands, one on one side and one on the other. Thus his hands were steady until the sun set. 13 So Joshua overwhelmed Amalek and his people with the edge of the sword. 14 Then Yahweh said to Moses, "Write this in a book as a memorial and recite it to Joshua, that I will utterly blot out the memory of Amalek from under heaven." 15 Moses built an altar and named it Yahweh is My Banner; 16 and he said, "The LORD has sworn; the LORD will have war against Amalek from generation to generation."

 

"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."

 

Isaiah 58:13-14

Reader 8Amen. 13 "If because of the Sabbath, you turn your foot from doing your own pleasure on My holy day, and call the Sabbath a delight, the holy day of Yahweh honorable, and honor it, desisting from your own ways, from seeking your own pleasure and speaking your own word, 14 then you will take delight in Yahweh, and I will make you ride on the heights of the earth; and I will feed you with the heritage of Jacob your father, for the mouth of Yahweh has spoken."

                              

Psalm 53    (To be sung.)    For the choir director; according to Mahalath. A Maskil of David.

1 The fool has said in his heart, "There is no God;" they are corrupt, and have committed abominable injustice; There is no one who does good. 2 God has looked down from heaven upon the sons of men to see if there is anyone who understands, who seeks after God. 3 Every one of them has turned aside; together they have become corrupt; there is no one who does good, not even one. 4 Have the workers of wickedness no knowledge, who eat up My people as though they ate bread and have not called upon God? 5 There they were in great fear where no fear had been; for God scattered the bones of him who encamped against you; You put them to shame, because God had rejected them. 6 Oh, that the salvation of Israel would come out of Zion! When God restores His captive people, let Jacob rejoice, let Israel be glad.

 

John 6:1-71

Reader 9Amen. 1 After these things Yeshua went away to the other side of the Sea of Galilee (or Tiberias). 2 A large crowd followed Him, because they saw the signs which He was performing on those who were sick. 3 Then Yeshua went up on the mountain, and there He sat down with His disciples. 4 Now the Passover, the feast of the Jews, was near. 5 Therefore Yeshua, lifting up His eyes and seeing that a large crowd was coming to Him, said to Philip, "Where are we to buy bread, so that these may eat?" 6 This He was saying to test him, for He Himself knew what He was intending to do. 7 Philip answered Him, "Two hundred denarii worth of bread is not sufficient for them, for everyone to receive a little." 8 One of His disciples, Andrew, Simon Peter's brother, said to Him, 9 "There is a lad here who has five barley loaves and two fish, but what are these for so many people?" 10 Yeshua said, "Have the people sit down." Now there was much grass in the place. So the men sat down, in number about five thousand. 11 Yeshua then took the loaves, and having given thanks, He distributed to those who were seated; likewise also of the fish as much as they wanted. 12 When they were filled, He said to His disciples, "Gather up the leftover fragments so that nothing will be lost." 13 So they gathered them up, and filled twelve baskets with fragments from the five barley loaves which were left over by those who had eaten. 14 Therefore when the people saw the sign which He had performed, they said, "This is truly the Prophet who is to come into the world." 15 So Yeshua, perceiving that they were intending to come and take Him by force to make Him king, withdrew again to the mountain by Himself alone.

Reader 10Amen. 16 Now when evening came, His disciples went down to the sea, 17 and after getting into a boat, they started to cross the sea to Capernaum. It had already become dark, and Yeshua had not yet come to them. 18 The sea began to be stirred up because a strong wind was blowing. 19 Then, when they had rowed about three or four miles, they saw Yeshua walking on the sea and drawing near to the boat; and they were frightened. 20 But He said to them, "It is I; do not be afraid." 21 So they were willing to receive Him into the boat, and immediately the boat was at the land to which they were going. 22 The next day the crowd that stood on the other side of the sea saw that there was no other small boat there, except one, and that Yeshua had not entered with His disciples into the boat, but that His disciples had gone away alone. 23 There came other small boats from Tiberias near to the place where they ate the bread after the Lord had given thanks. 24 So when the crowd saw that Yeshua was not there, nor His disciples, they themselves got into the small boats, and came to Capernaum seeking Yeshua. 25 When they found Him on the other side of the sea, they said to Him, "Rabbi, when did You get here?" 26 Yeshua answered them and said, "Truly, truly, I say to you, you seek Me, not because you saw signs, but because you ate of the loaves and were filled. 27 "Do not work for the food which perishes, but for the food which endures to eternal life, which the Son of Man will give to you, for on Him the Father, God, has set His seal."

Reader 11Amen. 28 Therefore they said to Him, "What shall we do, so that we may work the works of God?" 29 Yeshua answered and said to them, "This is the work of God, that you believe in Him whom He has sent." 30 So they said to Him, "What then do You do for a sign, so that we may see, and believe You? What work do You perform? 31 "Our fathers ate the manna in the wilderness; as it is written, 'He gave them bread ot of heaven to eat.'" 32 Yeshua then said to them, "Truly, truly, I say to you, it is not Moses who has given you the bread out of heaven, but it is My Father who gives you the true bread out of heaven. 33 "For the bread of God is that which comes down out of heaven, and gives life to the world." 34 Then they said to Him, "Lord, always give us this bread." 35 Yeshua said to them, "I am the bread of life; he who comes to Me will not hunger, and he who believes in Me will never thirst. 36 "But I said to you that you have seen Me, and yet do not believe.

Reader 12Amen. 37 "All that the Father gives Me will come to Me, and the one who comes to Me I will certainly not cast out. 38 "For I have come down from heaven, not to do My own will, but the will of Him who sent Me. 39 "This is the will of Him who sent Me, that of all that He has given Me I lose nothing, but raise it up on the last day. 40 "For this is the will of My Father, that everyone who beholds the Son and believes in Him will have eternal life, and I Myself will raise him up on the last day." 41 Therefore the Jews were grumbling about Him, because He said, "I am the bread that came down out of heaven." 42 They were saying, "Is not this Yeshua, the son of Joseph, whose father and mother we know? How does He now say, 'I have come down out of heaven '?" 43 Yeshua answered and said to them, "Do not grumble among yourselves. 44 "No one can come to Me unless the Father who sent Me draws him; and I will raise him up on the last day. 45 "It is written in the prophets, 'And they shall all be taught of God.' Everyone who has heard and learned from the Father, comes to Me.

Reader 13Amen. 46 "Not that anyone has seen the Father, except the One who is from God; He has seen the Father. 47 "Truly, truly, I say to you, he who believes has eternal life. 48 "I am the bread of life. 49 "Your fathers ate the manna in the wilderness, and they died. 50 "This is the bread which comes down out of heaven, so that one may eat of it and not die. 51 "I am the living bread that came down out of heaven; if anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever; and the bread also which I will give for the life of the world is My flesh." 52 Then the Jews began to argue with one another, saying, "How can this man give us His flesh to eat?" 53 So Yeshua said to them, "Truly, truly, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink His blood, you have no life in yourselves. 54 "He who eats My flesh and drinks My blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day. 55 "For My flesh is true food, and My blood is true drink. 56 "He who eats My flesh and drinks My blood abides in Me, and I in him. 57 "As the living Father sent Me, and I live because of the Father, so he who eats Me, he also will live because of Me. 58 "This is the bread which came down out of heaven; not as the fathers ate and died; he who eats this bread will live forever." 59

Reader 14Amen. These things He said in the synagogue as He taught in Capernaum. 60 Therefore many of His disciples, when they heard this said, "This is a difficult statement; who can listen to it?" 61 But Yeshua, conscious that His disciples grumbled at this, said to them, "Does this cause you to stumble? 62 "What then if you see the Son of Man ascending to where He was before? 63 "It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh profits nothing; the words that I have spoken to you are spirit and are life. 64 "But there are some of you who do not believe." For Yeshua knew from the beginning who they were who did not believe, and who it was that would betray Him. 65 And He was saying, "For this reason I have said to you, that no one can come to Me unless it has been granted him from the Father." 66 As a result of this many of His disciples withdrew and were not walking with Him anymore. 67 So Yeshua said to the twelve, "You do not want to go away also, do you?" 68 Simon Peter answered Him, "Lord, to whom shall we go? You have words of eternal life. 69 "We have believed and have come to know that You are the Holy One of God." 70 Yeshua answered them, "Did I Myself not choose you, the twelve, and yet one of you is a devil?" 71 Now He meant Judas the son of Simon Iscariot, for he, one of the twelve, was going to betray Him.

 

"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."

 


© 2005  Beikvot HaMashiach
(Followers of the Messiah)