Iyyar 28, 5762 / May 11, 2002
Friday May 17 is Sivan 6 - Hag Shavuot /
This year Pentecost is on the same day of the week as at the Giving of the Torah
and at the giving of the Gospel by the Apostles to all nations at Jerusalem.
Sivan 4, 5765 / June
Sivan 4, 5768 / June
Sivan 2, 5771 / June
Sivan 2, 5774 / May
Sivan 2, 5777 / May
27, 2017 Wednesday May 31 is Sivan 6
- Hag Shavuot /
You Shall Speak
SCRIPTURES (should be read first)
God makes some momentous action toward His people – such as the giving of
the Torah or sending Messiah – He verifies it with miraculous signs that are
indisputable to all. Today we see how that all of the people – millions –
heard God speaking from a dark cloud, so that there would be no doubt about
the veracity of the message forever.
This is in
great contrast to many situations today. We hear third-hand testimonies
about some miracle being performed on some unknown person somewhere distant,
for the sole purpose of verifying the spirituality of some respected
teacher. We see “healing meetings” where healings are based only upon
doubtful testimonies, and the obviously sick are not reached. We see people
trying to look spiritual by “speaking in tongues” of jibberish and they are
often followed by others trying to look spiritual by making
“interpretations” that are linguistic nonsense.
God can perform miracles anywhere and anytime He pleases. That idea does not
justify nonsense to make someone look spiritual or prove some pet doctrine.
While I do
not accept the Jewish idea of Israel being more worthy than other nations,
the following is an interesting characterization: “Esau’s offspring (Amelekites)
would not tolerate a law that prohibited murder; Ishmael’s could not live
with a law that banned thievery; and Lot’s (Moabites) would not
accept a ban on adultery. Now it was Israel’s turn.” Today’s
falsely-so-called Palestinians are Esau’s offspring – known for murder.
should note that the Israel of the Exodus included people from many nations
– traditionally from each of the seventy nations. Natural descendents of
Abraham might even have been a minority. The Torah was heard direct from God
by millions of people from many nations. We need to see the error of the
idea that the Torah is “just for Jews” – even if that is intended to mean
Sivan 1 (a
Sunday at the Sinai and Jerusalem events) – (v.19:1-6) 1
In the third month after the sons of Israel had gone out of the land of
Egypt, on that very day they came into the wilderness of Sinai. 2
When they set out from Rephidim, they came to the wilderness of Sinai and
camped in the wilderness; and there Israel camped in front of the mountain.
3 Moses went up to God, and Yahweh called to him from the
mountain, saying, "Thus you shall say to the house of Jacob and tell the
sons of Israel: 4 'You yourselves have seen what I did to the
Egyptians, and how I bore you on eagles' wings, and brought you to Myself.
5 'Now then, if you will indeed obey My voice and keep My
covenant, then you shall be My own possession among all the peoples, for all
the earth is Mine; 6 and you shall be to Me a kingdom of priests
and a holy nation.'
will look at some technical considerations, while on Shavuot we will look at
the spiritual aspects. Let us consider the days of the week as they were at
the time that the Israelites were at Mt. Sinai, and at the time of Pentecost
following the Crucifixion (these both being the same as in many of our years
such as AD 1999, 2000, 2002, 2003, and 2006).
Sivan 3 (a
Tuesday at the Sinai and Jerusalem events *) – (v.9) Yahweh said
to Moses, “Behold! I come to you in the thickness of the cloud, so that the
people will hear as I speak to you, and they will also believe in you
Sivan 4 (a
Wednesday at the Sinai and Jerusalem events *) – Moses related the
words of the people to Yahweh. The people had said, (v.8) “Everything
that Yahweh has spoken we shall do.”
Sivan 6 (a
Friday at the Sinai and Jerusalem events *) – (v.10) A three-day
period of purification preceded the giving of the commandments. The people
were to sanctify themselves and be baptized (enter the mikvah). This period
culminated on Sivan 6, the Day of the Firstfruits – the fiftieth day of
Counting the Omer (Pentecost).
Shavuot is seen as the betrothal date – when Israel was betrothed to Messiah
– with the Betrothal Contract (the Commandments) being presented the
Sivan 7 *
(a Sabbath at the Sinai and Jerusalem events) – (v.16) With lightning and
thunder, fire and smoke, and shofar blasts, God descended upon Mt. Sinai,
and millions of people heard from heaven, “Anuchiy Yahweh Eloheycha” – “I
am Yahweh your God.” Remember here, that we are all to consider
ourselves as having been redeemed from slavery in Egypt. They heard God say
from the cloud, “I am Yahweh your God, Who has taken you out of the land
of Egypt, from the house of slavery. You shall have no other gods before Me.
. .” They heard these first two Commandments directly from God, and the
remainder through Moses.
* It may
be noted that there are two viewpoints of the timing of events: this Sabbath
was either Sivan 6 or Sivan 7, the day of or the day after Pentecost,
according to the ancients; but the Commandments were given on the Sabbath.
The difference is in how one interprets the three days of verses ten through
sixteen. Neither viewpoint fits the modern Roman idea that Pentecost was a
Sunday. The accepted viewpoint, as indicated above, fits with Passover
Preparation on Wednesday, and fifty days of counting from Friday Nisan 16 to
Friday Sivan 6.
See table of Commandments below.
note that the first five Commandments, which were written on the first
tablet, each contain the Name Yahweh, but the last five do not. The first
five teach us how we are to love God. The last five show us how we are to
love our neighbor.
the First Commandment is stated as a fact rather than an instruction, it is
a positive commandment to recognize Yahweh as our God, though others may
have different gods. (Yahweh is a proper name that only applies to our God;
Elohim is a title that is not uniquely applied to Yahweh.) Our God, Yahweh,
is the creator of all, Who holds all power and authority for eternity. He
has redeemed us from slavery to sin.
Second Commandment is a negative commandment prohibiting idolatry. It
forbids even making images for worshipping false gods, such as to bow before
or bring offerings to.
Commandment forbids vain oaths. It is forbidden to show contempt for our God
by using His Name for no valid purpose. That is the basis for the teaching
that, when a blessing is said for something, which is pronouncing God’s Name
over it, then we should use that thing before doing anything else – so as
not to be using the Name without validating our purpose. Obviously, we
should not make any reference to God’s Holy Name for dishonest or
disgraceful purposes, even if the Name per se is not spoken. Yeshua taught
us such in Matthew 23: “Whoever swears by the Temple, swears by both the
Temple and Him Who dwells in it” (v.21).
Fourth Commandment concerns our remembrance and worship of our Creator by
honoring the Sabbath. Many believers do not seem to know that there is a
commandment to take part in a public worship service on the Sabbath
(Leviticus 23:3), even though the apostle Paul reminds us (Hebrews 10:25).
We also are not to perform work that would reduce the sanctity of the day.
Commandment, to honor our parents, means that we are to respect the
authority which emanates from our God. This is a direct way of honoring our
God. It implies honoring all authority that is from God. Thus this last
commandment of the first tablet, and the last one of the ten including
Yahweh’s Name, is seen as teaching us how we are to love Yahweh our God.
Commandment prohibits murder. This first commandment of the second tablet –
which contains instructions on how to love our neighbor – parallels the
first commandment of the first tablet: one who believes that God is the
creator and sustainer of life will not commit murder. While murder was seen
as evil long before this commandment, this elevates it to a higher position.
Many things in Torah are seen as tantamount to murder, such as causing
significant embarrassment, failing to provide food for the needy, allowing
dangerous conditions, and causing the loss of livelihood.
Seventh Commandment, prohibiting adultery, is seen as parallel to the Second
Commandment, which forbids idolatry. One who betrays the marital
relationship can be expected to betray God. This commandment covers lust,
this being an ancient understanding that Yeshua also promoted in Matthew
5:28. It is also an umbrella over commandments against homosexuality and
Eighth Commandment prohibits kidnapping – forcing someone into servitude, or
selling someone into slavery. (The commandment against ordinary theft is
found in Leviticus 19:11.)
Commandment forbids bearing false witness. This literally refers to
testimony in a court, and it includes the prohibition of bearing witness to
something believed but not actually seen. It also prohibits gossip and
slander. This commandment is seen as parallel to the Fourth Commandment,
which is a testimony that God created the earth in six days.
Commandment prohibits covetousness. What is the point in forbidding
something like jealousy or desiring possessions of others? This commandment
raises the bar. God demands that people purify their thoughts and attitudes.
While a pauper might easily covet his neighbor’s property, he would not be
as likely to covet the king’s property that would be so inaccessible. If one
has proper faith in God, he will realize that, by this commandment, his
neighbor’s property is as inaccessible as the Great King’s property. This
commandment is seen as parallel to the Fifth Commandment: a covetous person
will have children who dishonor him, because a covetous person puts his
selfish desires above decent conduct.
related levels of holiness to be seen at Mt. Sinai and at the Holy Temple.
The Temple is the ultimate “Sinai” experience.
The bottom of Mt. Sinai,
where the people stood, relates to the gate of the Temple courtyard.
The mountain relates to
the interior of the courtyard.
The cloud, where Moses
stood, relates to the interior of the Temple.
The “thickness of the
cloud” relates to the Holy of Holies, the seat of God’s presence.
of Hebrews seems to have this in mind, saying that we have not come to Mt.
Sinai, but Mt. Zion – Jerusalem. And the spiritual implication is stated as
the heavenly Jerusalem, which is to come to earth.
12:28-29 – Therefore, since we receive a kingdom which cannot be shaken,
let us show gratitude, by which we may offer to God an acceptable service
with reverence and awe; for our God is a consuming fire.
Israel dwelt in the Promised Land, the three Feasts had required ordinances
at the Temple. Therefore, fifty-one days after Yeshua’s crucifixion, it was
necessary that the Feast of Weeks (Pentecost) would have its ordinances
displayed at Jerusalem.
Yeshua said: “On
these two commandments hang all the law and the
prophets” – Matt 22:40.
"Yahweh your God is one, and you shall . . .
your God with all your heart, with all your soul,
and with all your might."
"Love your neighbor
How to love
How to love your neighbor:
as only God.
Do no murder.
+1 Believe in God
+184 Remove dangers
+5 Worship God
+20 Build sanctuary for God
Have no other gods, for I,
Do no adultery.
Yahweh, am jealous;
-350 No homosexual acts
make no graven images.
-355 No sex without marriage
-31 No divination
-38 No necromancy
Take not the name of
8 Do no stealing (kidnapping).
your God in vain.
+200 Pay wages timely
+9 Sanctify God’s Name
- 230 Charge no usery
-61 No violation of oaths
- 246 No altering land lines
Remember the Sabbath Day,
Bear no false witness.
made it separate.
+177 Treat litigants equally
+154 Assemble to worship
- 274 Accept no bribes
- 320 Do no servile work
- 299 No misleading advice
Honor your father and mother,
10 Do no coveting.
to prolong your days
- 47 Do not follow
land Yahweh is
-318 No cursing parents
-319 No striking parents
"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
Reader 1* Amen. 6b
' These are the words that you shall speak to the sons of Israel."
7 So Moses came and called the elders of the people, and set
before them all these words which Yahweh had commanded him. 8 All
the people answered together and said, "All that
Yahweh has spoken we will do!" And Moses brought back the words of
the people to Yahweh. 9 Yahweh said to Moses, "Behold, I will
come to you in a thick cloud, so that the people may hear when I speak with
you and may also believe in you forever." Then Moses told the words of the
people to Yahweh. 10 Yahweh also said to Moses, "Go to the people
and consecrate them today and tomorrow, and let them wash their garments;
11 and let them be ready for the third day, for on the third day
Yahweh will come down on Mount Sinai in the sight of all the people.
Reader 2* Amen.12
"You shall set bounds for the people all around, saying, 'Beware that you do
not go up on the mountain or touch the border of it; whoever touches the
mountain shall surely be put to death. 13 'No hand shall touch
him, but he shall surely be stoned or shot through; whether beast or man, he
shall not live.' When the ram's horn sounds a long blast, they shall come up
to the mountain." 14 So Moses went down from the mountain to the
people and consecrated the people, and they washed their garments. 15
He said to the people, "Be ready for the third day; do not go near a woman."
Reader 3* Amen.16
So it came about on the third day, when it was morning, that there were
thunder and lightning flashes and a thick cloud upon the mountain and a very
loud trumpet sound, so that all the people who were in the camp trembled.
17 And Moses brought the people out of the camp to meet God, and
they stood at the foot of the mountain. 18 Now Mount Sinai was
all in smoke because Yahweh descended upon it in fire; and its smoke
ascended like the smoke of a furnace, and the whole mountain quaked
violently. 19 When the sound of the trumpet grew louder and
louder, Moses spoke and God answered him with thunder. 20 Yahweh
came down on Mount Sinai, to the top of the mountain; and Yahweh called
Moses to the top of the mountain, and Moses went up.
Reader 4* Amen.21
Then Yahweh spoke to Moses, "Go down, warn the people, so that they do not
break through to Yahweh to gaze, and many of them perish. 22
"Also let the priests who come near to Yahweh consecrate themselves, or else
Yahweh will break out against them." 23 Moses said to Yahweh,
"The people cannot come up to Mount Sinai, for You warned us, saying, 'Set
bounds about the mountain and consecrate it.'" 24 Then Yahweh
said to him, "Go down and come up again, you and Aaron with you; but do not
let the priests and the people break through to come up to Yahweh, or He
will break forth upon them." 25 So Moses went down to the people
and told them.
Reader 5* Amen.20:1
Then God spoke all these words, saying, 2 "I am Yahweh your God,
who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of slavery.
3 "You shall have no other gods before Me. 4 "You shall not
make for yourself an idol, or any likeness of what is in heaven above or on
the earth beneath or in the water under the earth. 5 "You shall
not worship them or serve them; for I, Yahweh your God, am a jealous God,
visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children, on the third and the
fourth generations of those who hate Me, 6 but showing
lovingkindness to thousands, to those who love Me and keep My commandments.
7 "You shall not take the name of Yahweh your God in vain, for
Yahweh will not leave him unpunished who takes His name in vain.
Reader 6* Amen.8
"Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy. 9 "Six days you shall
labor and do all your work, 10 but the seventh day is a sabbath
of Yahweh your God; in it you shall not do any work, you or your son or your
daughter, your male or your female servant or your cattle or your sojourner
who stays with you. 11 "For in six days Yahweh made the heavens
and the earth, the sea and all that is in them, and rested on the seventh
day; therefore Yahweh blessed the sabbath day and made it holy. 12
"Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be prolonged in the
land which Yahweh your God gives you.
Reader 7* Amen.13
"You shall not murder. 14 "You shall not commit adultery. 15
"You shall not steal. 16 "You shall not bear false witness
against your neighbor. 17 "You shall not covet your neighbor's
house; you shall not covet your neighbor's wife or his male servant or his
female servant or his ox or his donkey or anything that belongs to your
neighbor." 18 All the people perceived the thunder and the
lightning flashes and the sound of the trumpet and the mountain smoking; and
when the people saw it, they trembled and stood at a distance. 19
Then they said to Moses, "Speak to us yourself and we will listen; but let
not God speak to us, or we will die." 20 Moses said to the
people, "Do not be afraid; for God has come in order to test you, and in
order that the fear of Him may remain with you, so that you may not sin."
"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
"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
Reader 8* Amen. 1
The Spirit of Lord Yahweh is upon me, because Yahweh has anointed me to bring
good news to the afflicted; He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to
proclaim liberty to captives and freedom to prisoners; 2 to proclaim
the favorable year of Yahweh and the day of vengeance of our God; to comfort all
who mourn, 3 to grant those who mourn in Zion, giving them a garland
instead of ashes, the oil of gladness instead of mourning, the mantle of praise
instead of a spirit of fainting. So they will be called oaks of righteousness,
the planting of Yahweh, that He may be glorified. 4 Then they will
rebuild the ancient ruins, they will raise up the former devastations; and they
will repair the ruined cities, the desolations of many generations. 5
Strangers will stand and pasture your flocks, and foreigners will be your
farmers and your vinedressers. 6 But you will
be called the priests of Yahweh; you will be spoken of as ministers of our God.
You will eat the wealth of nations, and in their riches you will boast.
Reader 9* Amen. 7
Instead of your shame you will have a double portion, and instead of humiliation
they will shout for joy over their portion. Therefore they will possess a double
portion in their land, everlasting joy will be theirs. 8 For I,
Yahweh, love justice, I hate robbery in the burnt offering; And I will
faithfully give them their recompense And make an everlasting covenant with
them. 9 Then their offspring will be known among the nations, and
their descendants in the midst of the peoples. All who see them will recognize
them because they are the offspring whom Yahweh has blessed. 10 I
will rejoice greatly in Yahweh, my soul will exult in my God; for He has clothed
me with garments of salvation, He has wrapped me with a robe of righteousness,
as a bridegroom decks himself with a garland, and as a bride adorns herself with
Reader 10* Amen. 18
For you have not come to a mountain that can be touched and to a blazing fire,
and to darkness and gloom and whirlwind, 19 and to the blast of a
trumpet and the sound of words which sound was such that those who heard begged
that no further word be spoken to them. 20 For they could not bear
the command, "If even a beast touches the mountain, it will be stoned." 21
And so terrible was the sight, that Moses said, "I am full of fear and
trembling." 22 But you have come to Mount Zion and to the city of the
living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to myriads of angels, 23 to
the general assembly and church of the firstborn who are enrolled in heaven, and
to God, the Judge of all, and to the spirits of the righteous made perfect,
24 and to Yeshua, the mediator of a new covenant, and to the sprinkled
blood, which speaks better than the blood of Abel.
Reader 11* Amen. 25
See to it that you do not refuse Him who is speaking. For if those did not
escape when they refused him who warned them on earth, much less will we escape
who turn away from Him who warns from heaven. 26 And His voice shook
the earth then, but now He has promised, saying, "Yet once more I will shake not
only the earth, but also the heaven." 27 This expression, "Yet once
more," denotes the removing of those things which can be shaken, as of created
things, so that those things which cannot be shaken may remain. 28
Therefore, since we receive a kingdom which cannot be shaken, let us show
gratitude, by which we may offer to God an acceptable service with reverence and
awe; 29 for our God is a consuming fire.
"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
Faithful are You, Yahweh
our God, and faithful are Your words,
for no word of Yours shall
You are a faithful and
merciful God and King.
Blessed are You, Yahweh our
God, Who are faithful in fulfilling all Your words."