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Commentary - Year 2 Sabbath 48

Numbers 2:1-34   -   (No Prophet)   -   Psalm 92  -   Luke 15:1-7
 

 

I Adar    6, 5763 / Feb   8, 2003

Shevat 27, 5766 / Feb 25, 2006

Shevat 27, 5769 / Feb 21, 2009

Shevat 25, 5772 / Feb 18, 2012

 

Ish Al Diglo / Each Man by His Own Banner    SCRIPTURES (should be read first)

 

Numbers 2 is God’s picture-plan for the encampment of the tribes of Israel around the Tabernacle in the Wilderness.

 

While it is common to see pictures showing tents of the twelve tribes all around the Tabernacle, it may be noted here that they were required to camp at a distance from the Tabernacle (v.2). The camps stretched about eight miles (Talmud), holding something like three million people.

 

The Levites camped around the south, west, and north of the Tabernacle, and Moses and Aaron camped in front of the entrance, to the east.

 

If one goes four directions from the Tabernacle, with three camps in each direction, a cross is formed. The Torah says that Ephraim was to camp “over” (al) the banner of the bull, Manasseh was to camp “over” Ephraim, and Benjamin was to camp “over” Manasseh. Though our translation read “under” the banner and “beside” the other tribe, the preposition (al) “over” would seem to mean beyond.

 

Approaching the cross from the top (west), one comes to “Causing to Forget” (Manasseh), and “Doubly Fruitful” (Ephraim), then “The Son of My Right Hand” (Benjamin). The former two seem to picture Yeshua as our two atonements – taking away sin and imputing to us righteousness, and the latter obviously representing the Son of God.

 

From the east, the world (Revelation 17:15, Matthew 13:47) comes to the “Haven of the Sea” (Zebulun); then “The Hired One” (Issachar) – “Make me as a hired servant” (Luke 15:19); and then reaches the entrance to the place of worship through “Praisers of Yahweh”, Judah.

 

If we consider Yeshua facing us on the cross, at His right hand is “Good Fortune” (Gad), from whence we come to “Hear” (Simeon or Shimon, which is related to Sh’ma) and “Behold a Son” (Reuben). At His left is “Judgment” (Dan), after “My Wrestling” (Naphtali) and “Happiness” (Asher) – perhaps alluding to the happiness of this world. This brings to mind the two who were crucified, one on each side of Yeshua (Luke 23:39-43), one going to Paradise and the other to judgment.

 

When we get to the place of worship, we have an “Escort” (Levi) – the Torah teachers, to lead us to the door (Yeshua): “The Torah is our schoolmaster, to lead us to Messiah” (Galatians 3:24). Moses, a type of Messiah, is at the door.

 

There are four standards, or banners, behind which each group of tribes must camp. To the east, the banner of Judah is a lion. To the west, the banner of Ephraim is a bull. To the south, the banner of Reuben is an eagle. To the north, the banner of Dan is a serpent.

_____________

 

Luke 15 has a parable. In Numbers 2, we see that God had very specific numbers of people in His army, and they were a minority group. In Yeshua’s parable, we see that every one of God’s people – His sheep – is going to be brought in to the fold. He will seek out every last one. Whereas in Leviticus, His people are referred to as Israel – in contrast to gentiles, in Luke they are referred to as His sheep – in contrast to goats (Matthew 25:32-33). Yeshua laid down His life for His sheep (John 10:11; see also Matthew 15:24, 18:12).

_____________

 

Psalm 92 is the third of the eleven Psalms by Moses. As Psalm 90 was dedicated* to Reuben, and Psalm 91 to Levi, this one was to Judah. It is, specifically, a song for the Sabbath. If we were going to the Tabernacle for Sabbath service, we would go through the camp of Judah, the praisers of Yahweh. So, the Psalm begins, “It is good to give thanks to Yahweh, and to sing praises to Thy name, O Most High”.

* [Psalm 93 was to Benjamin, 94 to Gad, 95 to Issachar, 96 to Zebulun, 97 to Joseph, 98 to Naphtali, 99 to Dan, and 100 to Asher. Simeon was excluded.]
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

BENJAMIN
35,400

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

MANASSEH
32,200

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

EPHRAIM
40,500

 

 

 

 

 

BULL

GAD
45,650

SIMEON
59,300

 

 

 

REUBEN
46,500

E

A

G

L

E

LEVI

 

LEVI             LEVI
 H

 

Moses & Aaron

S

E

R

P

E

N

T

DAN
62,700

ASHER
41,500

NAPHTALI
53,400

 

 

 

 

LION

 

 

 

 

JUDAH
74,600

 

 

 

 

ISSACHAR
54,400

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

ZEBULUN
57,400

 

 

 

 

 

 

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. 1 Now Yahweh spoke to Moses and to Aaron, saying, 2 "The sons of Israel shall camp, each by his own standard, with the banners of their fathers' households; they shall camp around the tent of meeting at a distance. 3 "Now those who camp on the east side toward the sunrise shall be of the standard of the camp of Judah, by their armies, and the leader of the sons of Judah: Nahshon the son of Amminadab, 4 and his army, even their numbered men, 74,600.

Reader 2Amen. 5 "Those who camp next to him shall be the tribe of Issachar, and the leader of the sons of Issachar: Nethanel the son of Zuar, 6 and his army, even their numbered men, 54,400. 7 "Then comes the tribe of Zebulun, and the leader of the sons of Zebulun: Eliab the son of Helon, 8 and his army, even his numbered men, 57,400. 9 "The total of the numbered men of the camp of Judah: 186,400, by their armies. They shall set out first.

Reader 3Amen. 10 "On the south side shall be the standard of the camp of Reuben by their armies, and the leader of the sons of Reuben: Elizur the son of Shedeur, 11 and his army, even their numbered men, 46,500. 12 "Those who camp next to him shall be the tribe of Simeon, and the leader of the sons of Simeon: Shelumiel the son of Zurishaddai, 13 and his army, even their numbered men, 59,300.

Reader 4Amen. 14 "Then comes the tribe of Gad, and the leader of the sons of Gad: Eliasaph the son of Deuel, 15 and his army, even their numbered men, 45,650. 16 "The total of the numbered men of the camp of Reuben: 151,450 by their armies. And they shall set out second. 17 "Then the tent of meeting shall set out with the camp of the Levites in the midst of the camps; just as they camp, so they shall set out, every man in his place by their standards.

Reader 5Amen. 18 "On the west side shall be the standard of the camp of Ephraim by their armies, and the leader of the sons of Ephraim shall be Elishama the son of Ammihud, 19 and his army, even their numbered men, 40,500. 20 "Next to him shall be the tribe of Manasseh, and the leader of the sons of Manasseh: Gamaliel the son of Pedahzur, 21 and his army, even their numbered men, 32,200. 22 "Then comes the tribe of Benjamin, and the leader of the sons of Benjamin: Abidan the son of Gideoni, 23 and his army, even their numbered men, 35,400. 24 "The total of the numbered men of the camp of Ephraim: 108,100, by their armies. And they shall set out third.

Reader 6Amen. 25 "On the north side shall be the standard of the camp of Dan by their armies, and the leader of the sons of Dan: Ahiezer the son of Ammishaddai, 26 and his army, even their numbered men, 62,700. 27 "Those who camp next to him shall be the tribe of Asher, and the leader of the sons of Asher: Pagiel the son of Ochran, 28 and his army, even their numbered men, 41,500. 29 "Then comes the tribe of Naphtali, and the leader of the sons of Naphtali: Ahira the son of Enan, 30 and his army, even their numbered men, 53,400.

Reader 7Amen. 31 "The total of the numbered men of the camp of Dan was 157,600. They shall set out last by their standards." 32 These are the numbered men of the sons of Israel by their fathers' households; the total of the numbered men of the camps by their armies, 603,550. 33 The Levites, however, were not numbered among the sons of Israel, just as Yahweh had commanded Moses. 34 Thus the sons of Israel did; according to all that Yahweh commanded Moses, so they camped by their standards, and so they set out, every one by his family according to his father's household.

 

"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."

 

(No prophet)

 

Psalm 92    (To be sung.)    A Psalm, a Song for the Sabbath day.

1 It is good to give thanks to Yahweh and to sing praises to Your name, O Most High; 2 to declare Your lovingkindness in the morning and Your faithfulness by night, 3 with the ten-stringed lute and with the harp, with resounding music upon the lyre. 4 For You, O Yahweh, have made me glad by what You have done, I will sing for joy at the works of Your hands. 5 How great are Your works, O Yahweh! Your thoughts are very deep. 6 A senseless man has no knowledge, nor does a stupid man understand this: 7 that when the wicked sprouted up like grass and all who did iniquity flourished, it was only that they might be destroyed forevermore. 8 But You, O Yahweh, are on high forever. 9 For, behold, Your enemies, O Yahweh, for, behold, Your enemies will perish; all who do iniquity will be scattered. 10 But You have exalted my horn like that of the wild ox; I have been anointed with fresh oil. 11 And my eye has looked exultantly upon my foes, my ears hear of the evildoers who rise up against me. 12 The righteous man will flourish like the palm tree, he will grow like a cedar in Lebanon. 13 Planted in the house of Yahweh, they will flourish in the courts of our God. 14 They will still yield fruit in old age; they shall be full of sap and very green, 15 to declare that Yahweh is upright; He is my rock, and there is no unrighteousness in Him.

Luke 15:1-7

Reader 8Amen. 1 Now all the tax collectors and the sinners were coming near Him to listen to Him. 2 Both the Pharisees and the scribes began to grumble, saying, “This man receives sinners and eats with them.” 3 So He told them this parable, saying, 4 “What man among you, if he has a hundred sheep and has lost one of them, does not leave the ninety-nine in the open pasture and go after the one which is lost until he finds it? 5 When he has found it, he lays it on his shoulders, rejoicing. 6 And when he comes home, he calls together his friends and his neighbors, saying to them, 'Rejoice with me, for I have found my sheep which was lost!' 7 I tell you that in the same way, there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who need no repentance.”

 

"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."

 


© 2006  Beikvot HaMashiach
(Followers of the Messiah)

 

 

 

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