Temple Triennial Cycle - Commentaries
Sabbath One (March 16, 2002)
(I have hardened),
commonly called Exodus 10 (*Divided
for seven Torah readers)
1 Amen* 1 Then Yahweh said to Moses, "Go to Pharaoh, for I have hardened his heart and the heart of his servants, that I may perform these signs of Mine among them, 2 and that you may tell in the hearing of your son, and of your grandson, how I made a mockery of the Egyptians, and how I performed My signs among them; that you may know that I am Yahweh." 3 And Moses and Aaron went to Pharaoh and said to him, "Thus says Yahweh, the God of the Hebrews, 'How long will you refuse to humble yourself before Me? Let My people go, that they may serve Me.
2 Amen* 4 'For if you refuse to let My people go, behold, tomorrow I will bring locusts into your territory. 5 'And they shall cover the surface of the land, so that no one shall be able to see the land. They shall also eat the rest of what has escaped-- what is left to you from the hail-- and they shall eat every tree which sprouts for you out of the field. 6 'Then your houses shall be filled, and the houses of all your servants and the houses of all the Egyptians, something which neither your fathers nor your grandfathers have seen, from the day that they came upon the earth until this day.'" And he turned and went out from Pharaoh.
3 Amen* 7 And Pharaoh's servants said to him, "How long will this man be a snare to us? Let the men go, that they may serve Yahweh their God. Do you not realize that Egypt is destroyed?" 8 So Moses and Aaron were brought back to Pharaoh, and he said to them, "Go, serve Yahweh your God! Who are the ones that are going?" 9 And Moses said, "We shall go with our young and our old; with our sons and our daughters, with our flocks and our herds we will go, for we must hold a feast to Yahweh." 10 Then he said to them, "Thus may Yahweh be with you, if ever I let you and your little ones go! Take heed, for evil is in your mind. 11 "Not so! Go now, the men among you, and serve Yahweh, for that is what you desire." So they were driven out from Pharaoh's presence.
4 Amen* 12 Then Yahweh said to Moses, "Stretch out your hand over the land of Egypt for the locusts, that they may come up on the land of Egypt, and eat every plant of the land, even all that the hail has left." 13 So Moses stretched out his staff over the land of Egypt, and Yahweh directed an east wind on the land all that day and all that night; and when it was morning, the east wind brought the locusts. 14 And the locusts came up over all the land of Egypt and settled in all the territory of Egypt; they were very numerous. There had never been so many locusts, nor would there be so many again. 15 For they covered the surface of the whole land, so that the land was darkened; and they ate every plant of the land and all the fruit of the trees that the hail had left. Thus nothing green was left on tree or plant of the field through all the land of Egypt.
5 Amen* 16 Then Pharaoh hurriedly called for Moses and Aaron, and he said, "I have sinned against Yahweh your God and against you. 17 "Now therefore, please forgive my sin only this once, and make supplication to Yahweh your God, that He would only remove this death from me." 18 And he went out from Pharaoh and made supplication to Yahweh. 19 So Yahweh shifted the wind to a very strong west wind which took up the locusts and drove them into the Red Sea; not one locust was left in all the territory of Egypt. 20 But Yahweh hardened Pharaoh's heart, and he did not let the sons of Israel go.
6 Amen* 21 Then Yahweh said to Moses, "Stretch out your hand toward the sky, that there may be darkness over the land of Egypt, even a darkness which may be felt." 22 So Moses stretched out his hand toward the sky, and there was thick darkness in all the land of Egypt for three days. 23 They did not see one another, nor did anyone rise from his place for three days, but all the sons of Israel had light in their dwellings.
7 Amen* 24 Then Pharaoh called to Moses, and said, "Go, serve Yahweh; only let your flocks and your herds be detained. Even your little ones may go with you." 25 But Moses said, "You must also let us have sacrifices and burnt offerings, that we may sacrifice them to Yahweh our God. 26 "Therefore, our livestock, too, will go with us; not a hoof will be left behind, for we shall take some of them to serve Yahweh our God. And until we arrive there, we ourselves do not know with what we shall serve Yahweh." 27 But Yahweh hardened Pharaoh's heart, and he was not willing to let them go. 28 Then Pharaoh said to him, "Get away from me! Beware, do not see my face again, for in the day you see my face you shall die!" 29 And Moses said, "You are right; I shall never see your face again!"
Isaiah 19, Jeremiah 4:6, 1 Samuel 6:6
1 The oracle concerning Egypt. Behold, Yahweh is riding on a swift cloud, and is about to come to Egypt; the idols of Egypt will tremble at His presence, and the heart of the Egyptians will melt within them. 2 "So I will incite Egyptians against Egyptians; and they will each fight against his brother, and each against his neighbor, city against city, and kingdom against kingdom. 3 "Then the spirit of the Egyptians will be demoralized within them; and I will confound their strategy, so that they will resort to idols and ghosts of the dead, and to mediums and spiritists. 4 "Moreover, I will deliver the Egyptians into the hand of a cruel master, and a mighty king will rule over them," declares Yahweh God of hosts. 5 And the waters from the sea will dry up, and the river will be parched and dry. 6 And the canals will emit a stench, the streams of Egypt will thin out and dry up; the reeds and rushes will rot away. 7 The bulrushes by the Nile, by the edge of the Nile and all the sown fields by the Nile Will become dry, be driven away, and be no more. 8 And the fishermen will lament, and all those who cast a line into the Nile will mourn, and those who spread nets on the waters will pine away. 9 Moreover, the manufacturers of linen made from combed flax and the weavers of white cloth will be utterly dejected. 10 And the pillars of Egypt will be crushed; all the hired laborers will be grieved in soul. 11 The princes of Zoan are mere fools; the advice of Pharaoh's wisest advisers has become stupid. How can you men say to Pharaoh, "I am a son of the wise, a son of ancient kings "? 12 Well then, where are your wise men? Please let them tell you, and let them understand what Yahweh of hosts Has purposed against Egypt. 13 The princes of Zoan have acted foolishly, the princes of Memphis are deluded; those who are the cornerstone of her tribes Have led Egypt astray. 14 Yahweh has mixed within her a spirit of distortion; they have led Egypt astray in all that it does, as a drunken man staggers in his vomit. 15 And there will be no work for Egypt which its head or tail, its palm branch or bulrush, may do. 16 In that day the Egyptians will become like women, and they will tremble and be in dread because of the waving of the hand of Yahweh of hosts, which He is going to wave over them. 17 And the land of Judah will become a terror to Egypt; everyone to whom it is mentioned will be in dread of it, because of the purpose of Yahweh of hosts which He is purposing against them. 18 In that day five cities in the land of Egypt will be speaking the language of Canaan and swearing allegiance to Yahweh of hosts; one will be called the City of Destruction. 19 In that day there will be an altar to Yahweh in the midst of the land of Egypt, and a pillar to Yahweh near its border. 20 And it will become a sign and a witness to Yahweh of hosts in the land of Egypt; for they will cry to Yahweh because of oppressors, and He will send them a Savior and a Champion, and He will deliver them. 21 Thus Yahweh will make Himself known to Egypt, and the Egyptians will know Yahweh in that day. They will even worship with sacrifice and offering, and will make a vow to Yahweh and perform it. 22 And Yahweh will strike Egypt, striking but healing; so they will return to Yahweh, and He will respond to them and will heal them. 23 In that day there will be a highway from Egypt to Assyria, and the Assyrians will come into Egypt and the Egyptians into Assyria, and the Egyptians will worship with the Assyrians. 24 In that day Israel will be the third party with Egypt and Assyria, a blessing in the midst of the earth, 25 whom Yahweh of hosts has blessed, saying, "Blessed is Egypt My people, and Assyria the work of My hands, and Israel My inheritance."
4:6 "Lift up a standard toward Zion! Seek refuge, do not stand still, for I am bringing evil from the north, And great destruction.
6:6 "Why then do you harden your hearts as the Egyptians and Pharaoh hardened their hearts? When He had severely dealt with them, did they not allow the people to go, and they departed?
Psalm 47 For the choir director. A Psalm of the sons of Korah.
1 O Clap your hands, all peoples; Shout to God with the voice of joy. 2 For Yahweh Most High is to be feared, a great King over all the earth. 3 He subdues peoples under us, and nations under our feet. 4 He chooses our inheritance for us, the glory of Jacob whom He loves. Selah. 5 God has ascended with a shout, Yahweh, with the sound of a trumpet. 6 Sing praises to God, sing praises; sing praises to our King, sing praises. 7 For God is the King of all the earth; sing praises with a skillful psalm. 8 God reigns over the nations, God sits on His holy throne. 9 The princes of the people have assembled themselves as the people of the God of Abraham; for the shields of the earth belong to God; He is highly exalted.
Matthew 24:29-44, 25:31 - 26:30
29 "But immediately after the tribulation of those days the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light, and the stars will fall from the sky, and the powers of the heavens will be shaken, 30 and then the sign of the Son of Man will appear in the sky, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of the sky with power and great glory. 31 "And He will send forth His angels with a great trumpet and they will gather together His elect from the four winds, from one end of the sky to the other. 32 "Now learn the parable from the fig tree: when its branch has already become tender, and puts forth its leaves, you know that summer is near; 33 even so you too, when you see all these things, recognize that He is near, right at the door. 34 "Truly I say to you, this generation will not pass away until all these things take place. 35 "Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words shall not pass away. 36 "But of that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, nor the Son, but the Father alone. 37 "For the coming of the Son of Man will be just like the days of Noah. 38 "For as in those days which were before the flood they were eating and drinking, they were marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noah entered the ark, 39 and they did not understand until the flood came and took them all away; so shall the coming of the Son of Man be. 40 "Then there shall be two men in the field; one will be taken, and one will be left. 41 "Two women will be grinding at the mill; one will be taken, and one will be left. 42 "Therefore be on the alert, for you do not know which day your Lord is coming. 43 "But be sure of this, that if the head of the house had known at what time of the night the thief was coming, he would have been on the alert and would not have allowed his house to be broken into. 44 "For this reason you be ready too; for the Son of Man is coming at an hour when you do not think He will.
31 "But when the Son of Man comes in His glory, and all the angels with Him, then He will sit on His glorious throne. 32 "And all the nations will be gathered before Him; and He will separate them from one another, as the shepherd separates the sheep from the goats; 33 and He will put the sheep on His right, and the goats on the left. 34 "Then the King will say to those on His right, 'Come, you who are blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. 35 'For I was hungry, and you gave Me something to eat; I was thirsty, and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger, and you invited Me in; 36 naked, and you clothed Me; I was sick, and you visited Me; I was in prison, and you came to Me.' 37 "Then the righteous will answer Him, saying, 'Lord, when did we see You hungry, and feed You, or thirsty, and give You drink? 38 'And when did we see You a stranger, and invite You in, or naked, and clothe You? 39 'And when did we see You sick, or in prison, and come to You?' 40 "And the King will answer and say to them, 'Truly I say to you, to the extent that you did it to one of these brothers of Mine, even the least of them, you did it to Me.' 41 "Then He will also say to those on His left, 'Depart from Me, accursed ones, into the eternal fire which has been prepared for the devil and his angels; 42 for I was hungry, and you gave Me nothing to eat; I was thirsty, and you gave Me nothing to drink; 43 I was a stranger, and you did not invite Me in; naked, and you did not clothe Me; sick, and in prison, and you did not visit Me.' 44 "Then they themselves also will answer, saying, 'Lord, when did we see You hungry, or thirsty, or a stranger, or naked, or sick, or in prison, and did not take care of You?' 45 "Then He will answer them, saying, 'Truly I say to you, to the extent that you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to Me.' 46 "And these will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life."
26:1 And it came about that when Jesus had finished all these words, He said to His disciples, 2 "You know that after two days the Passover is coming, and the Son of Man is to be delivered up for crucifixion." 3 Then the chief priests and the elders of the people were gathered together in the court of the high priest, named Caiaphas; 4 and they plotted together to seize Jesus by stealth, and kill Him. 5 But they were saying, "Not during the festival, lest a riot occur among the people." 6 Now when Jesus was in Bethany, at the home of Simon the leper, 7 a woman came to Him with an alabaster vial of very costly perfume, and she poured it upon His head as He reclined at the table. 8 But the disciples were indignant when they saw this, and said, "Why this waste? 9 "For this perfume might have been sold for a high price and the money given to the poor." 10 But Jesus, aware of this, said to them, "Why do you bother the woman? For she has done a good deed to Me. 11 "For the poor you have with you always; but you do not always have Me. 12 "For when she poured this perfume upon My body, she did it to prepare Me for burial. 13 "Truly I say to you, wherever this gospel is preached in the whole world, what this woman has done shall also be spoken of in memory of her." 14 Then one of the twelve, named Judas Iscariot, went to the chief priests, 15 and said, "What are you willing to give me to deliver Him up to you?" And they weighed out to him thirty pieces of silver. 16 And from then on he began looking for a good opportunity to betray Him. 17 Now on the first day of Unleavened Bread the disciples came to Jesus, saying, "Where do You want us to prepare for You to eat the Passover?" 18 And He said, "Go into the city to a certain man, and say to him, 'The Teacher says, "My time is at hand; I am to keep the Passover at your house with My disciples."'" 19 And the disciples did as Jesus had directed them; and they prepared the Passover. 20 Now when evening had come, He was reclining at the table with the twelve disciples. 21 And as they were eating, He said, "Truly I say to you that one of you will betray Me." 22 And being deeply grieved, they each one began to say to Him, "Surely not I, Lord?" 23 And He answered and said, "He who dipped his hand with Me in the bowl is the one who will betray Me. 24 "The Son of Man is to go, just as it is written of Him; but woe to that man by whom the Son of Man is betrayed! It would have been good for that man if he had not been born." 25 And Judas, who was betraying Him, answered and said, "Surely it is not I, Rabbi?" He said to him, "You have said it yourself." 26 And while they were eating, Jesus took some bread, and after a blessing, He broke it and gave it to the disciples, and said, "Take, eat; this is My body." 27 And when He had taken a cup and given thanks, He gave it to them, saying, "Drink from it, all of you; 28 for this is My blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for forgiveness of sins. 29 "But I say to you, I will not drink of this fruit of the vine from now on until that day when I drink it new with you in My Father's kingdom." 30 And after singing a hymn, they went out to the Mount of Olives.
In last week’s portion (v.9:13), we saw the beginning of the last set of three plagues. Moses was to station himself before the Pharaoh (as with the first plague of each set, at the Nile River, over which he claimed to be god) to give warning. Yahweh said that He allowed the Pharaoh to yet remain alive, so that His sovereignty and His Name would be declared throughout the world (v.9:16). The seventh plague was hail that severely damaged the trees and food crops.
(V.10:1) The Midrash teaches that the eighth plague was measure for measure: the Egyptians forced Israelite slaves to tend their crops, so the locusts devoured the crops. Moses was instructed to “come to Pharaoh” (as with the second plague of each set, at his palace, his seat of authority).
(V.6) The locusts struck in the opposite manner from what we would normally expect: they first struck the Pharaoh’s house, then his servants, then lastly the commoners’ of Egypt. Punishment came first to those most responsible.
(V.2) (Heb.) “hitallalti” (made a mockery of) contains the root word (Heb.) “all” (first cause), showing that Yahweh is the first cause of all things. The purpose of this plague was to show the Egyptians, and the Israelites (“your son and your son’s son”), that Yahweh controls all of “nature”.
The Pharaoh only relented to let the men go; not the women, children, and herds. But he asked of Moses, “remove from me this death” (v.17), before the locusts ate the very roots of the plants, for the Egyptians were in danger of starvation.
Here Yahweh showed that men, women, and children are equally required to worship Him (v.9). This case is seen specifically to relate to the observance of Shavuot / Pentecost / Firstfruits, and the receiving of the Torah: their betrothal to God.
(V.21) The ninth plague was darkness. As with third plague of each set, after the Pharaoh rejected the first two plague-witnesses, no warning was forthcoming. For three days in all of Egypt – except where the Israelites dwelt in Goshen – there was such a darkness that it could be felt, and no one even got up to move about.
The Pharaoh remained defiant, because Yahweh had foretold (v.7:3) His purpose, before Moses ever went to the Pharaoh, to harden the Pharaoh’s heart, so that all the world would know that He is Yahweh – the Eternal who actively rules over all the creation, over all nature, over all men. And Yahweh had stated beforehand that He would bring great judgments upon Egypt: these first three sets of three plagues were judgments against their various gods, and runners-up to the planned final judgment.
God’s judgments are in-kind, and they are certain. Because they are not immediate, sinners continue in their ways.
Ecclesiastes 8: 11 Because sentence against an evil work is not executed speedily, therefore the heart of the sons of men is fully set in them to do evil.
Ecclesiastes 9:13-14 The conclusion, when all has been heard, is: fear God and keep His commandments, because this applies to every person. For God will bring every act to judgment, everything which is hidden, whether it is good or evil.
The fulfillment of Isaiah 19 has begun in our lifetime.
The Nile River runs 800 miles through Egypt, from Goshen where the Israelites dwelt to Cairo, where its valley is six miles wide. God designed the River as a life-sustaining feature of the land. The annual flooding of the river was part of the reason for the fertility of the area.
About thirty-five hundred years ago, in the time of Moses and the Pharaohs, Egypt was a large, strong, but idolatrous nation. Great statutes of their Pharaoh-gods were carved into a mountainside near the Nile River, near a city now called Aswan.
In AD 1843, Mohammed Ali, the founder of modern Egypt, built a kind of dam on the Nile to provide irrigation for other areas, but it did not work well. In 1902, a better dam was built near Aswan.
In 1952, some Germans designed a great dam to better the existing one, but money was a problem. When Egypt applied to the World Bank for a loan, the US and Britain agreed to make the loan in order to keep Russia out of the picture. Upon discovering that Egypt had a weapons agreement with Russia, the US and Britain backed out, and Russia financed the project.
The new Aswan Dam was finished in 1972. It is more than two miles long and almost a mile thick of solid concrete. It created 500 mile long Lake Nassar, the world’s largest man-made lake. It raised the ground water table as far away as Algeria.
The lake flooded the town of Aswan. The stone statues were cut from the mountain, and pieced back together at a higher elevation, with an artificial mountain created for them. The site is known as Kalabsha Temple.
The Dam was so disastrous that there was talk of tearing it down! The previous fertile areas of the Nile dried up and became useless.
Now hear what God purposed thousands of years ago:
(Isaiah 19:5-15) The River will be parched and dry. And the canals will emit a stench, the streams of Egypt will thin out and dry up; the reeds and rushes will rot away. The bulrushes by the Nile, by the edge of the Nile and all the sown fields by the Nile Will become dry, be driven away, and be no more. And the fishermen will lament, and all those who cast a line into the Nile will mourn, and those who spread nets on the waters will pine away. Moreover, the manufacturers of linen made from combed flax and the weavers of white cloth will be utterly dejected. And the pillars of Egypt will be crushed; all the hired laborers will be grieved in soul. The princes of Zoan are mere fools; the advice of Pharaoh's wisest advisers has become stupid. How can you men say to Pharaoh, "I am a son of the wise, a son of ancient kings "? Well then, where are your wise men? Please let them tell you, and let them understand what Yahweh of hosts has purposed against Egypt. The princes of Zoan have acted foolishly, the princes of Memphis are deluded; those who are the cornerstone of her tribes Have led Egypt astray. Yahweh has mixed within her a spirit of distortion; they have led Egypt astray in all that it does, as a drunken man staggers in his vomit. And there will be no work for Egypt which its head or tail, its palm branch or bulrush, may do.
Now hear what’s coming:
(Isaiah 19:18-21) In that day five cities in the land of Egypt will be speaking the language of Canaan and swearing allegiance to Yahweh of hosts; one will be called the City of Destruction. In that day there will be an altar to Yahweh in the midst of the land of Egypt, and a pillar to Yahweh near its border. And it will become a sign and a witness to Yahweh of hosts in the land of Egypt; for they will cry to Yahweh because of oppressors, and He will send them a Savior and a Champion, and He will deliver them. Thus Yahweh will make Himself known to Egypt, and the Egyptians will know Yahweh in that day. They will even worship with sacrifice and offering, and will make a vow to Yahweh and perform it.
Then follows Yom
Teruah (Feast of Trumpets).
(Matthew 24:29) "But immediately after the tribulation of those days the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light, and the stars will fall from the sky, and the powers of the heavens will be shaken, 30 and then the sign of the Son of Man will appear in the sky, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of the sky with power and great glory. 31 "And He will send forth His angels with a great trumpet and they will gather together His elect from the four winds, from one end of the sky to the other.
Sabbath Two (March 23, 2002)
commonly called Exodus 11:1 – 12:28
for seven Torah readers)
1 Amen* 1 Now Yahweh said to Moses, "One more plague I will bring on Pharaoh and on Egypt; after that he will let you go from here. When he lets you go, he will surely drive you out from here completely. 2 "Speak now in the hearing of the people that each man ask from his neighbor and each woman from her neighbor for articles of silver and articles of gold." 3 And Yahweh gave the people favor in the sight of the Egyptians. Furthermore, the man Moses himself was greatly esteemed in the land of Egypt, both in the sight of Pharaoh's servants and in the sight of the people.
2 Amen* 4 And Moses said (to Pharaoh), “Thus says Yahweh, ‘About midnight I am going out into the midst of Egypt, 5 and all the first-born in the land of Egypt shall die, from the first-born of the Pharaoh who sits on his throne, even to the first-born of the slave girl who is behind the millstones; all the first-born of the cattle as well. 6 Moreover, there shall be a great cry in all the land of Egypt, such as there has not been before and such as shall never be again. 7 But against any of the sons of Israel a dog shall not even bark, whether against man or beast, that you may understand how Yahweh makes a distinction between Egypt and Israel.’ 8 And all these your servants will come down to me and bow themselves before me, saying, ‘Go out, you and all the people who follow you,’ and after that I will go out.” And he went out from Pharaoh in hot anger. 9 Then Yahweh said to Moses, “Pharaoh will not listen to you, so that My wonders will be multiplied in the land of Egypt.” 10 And Moses and Aaron performed all these wonders before Pharaoh; yet Yahweh hardened Pharaoh's heart, and he did not let the sons of Israel go out of his land.
3 Amen* 12:1 Now Yahweh said to Moses and Aaron in the land of Egypt, 2 "This month shall be the beginning of months for you; it is to be the first month of the year to you. 3 "Speak to all the congregation of Israel, saying, 'On the tenth of this month they are each one to take a lamb for themselves, according to their fathers' households, a lamb for each household. 4 'Now if the household is too small for a lamb, then he and his neighbor nearest to his house are to take one according to the number of persons in them; according to what each man should eat, you are to divide the lamb. 5 'Your lamb shall be an unblemished male a year old; you may take it from the sheep or from the goats.
4 Amen* 6 'And you shall keep it until the fourteenth day of the same month, then the whole assembly of the congregation of Israel is to kill it between the evenings. 7 'Moreover, they shall take some of the blood and put it on the two doorposts and on the lintel of the houses in which they eat it. 8 'And they shall eat the flesh that same night, roasted with fire, and they shall eat it with unleavened bread and bitter herbs. 9 'Do not eat any of it raw or boiled at all with water, but rather roasted with fire, both its head and its legs along with its entrails. 10 'And you shall not leave any of it over until morning, but whatever is left of it until morning, you shall burn with fire.
5 Amen* 11 'Now you shall eat it in this manner: with your loins girded, your sandals on your feet, and your staff in your hand; and you shall eat it in haste-- it is Yahweh's Passover. 12 'For I will go through the land of Egypt on that night, and will strike down all the first-born in the land of Egypt, both man and beast; and against all the gods of Egypt I will execute judgments-- I am Yahweh. 13 'And the blood shall be a sign for you on the houses where you live; and when I see the blood I will pass over you, and no plague will befall you to destroy you when I strike the land of Egypt.
6 Amen* 14 'Now this day will be a memorial to you, and you shall celebrate it as a feast to Yahweh; throughout your generations you are to celebrate it as a permanent ordinance. 15 'Seven days you shall eat unleavened bread, but on the first day you shall remove leaven from your houses; for whoever eats anything leavened from the first day until the seventh day, that person shall be cut off from Israel. 16 'And on the first day you shall have a holy assembly, and another holy assembly on the seventh day; no work at all shall be done on them, except what must be eaten by every person, that alone may be prepared by you. 17 'You shall also observe the Feast of Unleavened Bread, for on this very day I brought your hosts out of the land of Egypt; therefore you shall observe this day throughout your generations as a permanent ordinance. 18 'In the first month, on the fourteenth day of the month at evening, you shall eat unleavened bread, until the twenty-first day of the month at evening. 19 'Seven days there shall be no leaven found in your houses; for whoever eats what is leavened, that person shall be cut off from the congregation of Israel, whether he is an alien or a native of the land. 20 'You shall not eat anything leavened; in all your dwellings you shall eat unleavened bread.'"
7 Amen* 21 Then Moses called for all the elders of Israel, and said to them, "Go and take for yourselves lambs according to your families, and slay the Passover lamb. 22 "And you shall take a bunch of hyssop and dip it in the blood which is in the basin, and apply some of the blood that is in the basin to the lintel and the two doorposts; and none of you shall go outside the door of his house until morning. 23 "For Yahweh will pass through to smite the Egyptians; and when He sees the blood on the lintel and on the two doorposts, Yahweh will pass over the door and will not allow the destroyer to come in to your houses to smite you. 24 "And you shall observe this event as an ordinance for you and your children forever. 25 "And it will come about when you enter the land which Yahweh will give you, as He has promised, that you shall observe this rite. 26 "And it will come about when your children will say to you, 'What does this rite mean to you?' 27 that you shall say, 'It is a Passover sacrifice to Yahweh who passed over the houses of the sons of Israel in Egypt when He smote the Egyptians, but spared our homes.'" And the people bowed low and worshiped. 28 Then the sons of Israel went and did so; just as Yahweh had commanded Moses and Aaron, so they did.
13 This is the message which Yahweh spoke to Jeremiah the prophet about the coming of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon to smite the land of Egypt: 14 "Declare in Egypt and proclaim in Migdol, proclaim also in Memphis and Tahpanhes; say, 'Take your stand and get yourself ready, for the sword has devoured those around you.' 15 "Why have your mighty ones become prostrate? They do not stand because Yahweh has thrust them down. 16 "They have repeatedly stumbled; indeed, they have fallen one against another. Then they said, 'Get up! And let us go back to our own people and our native land away from the sword of the oppressor.' 17 "They cried there, 'Pharaoh King of Egypt is but a big noise; He has let the appointed time pass by!' 18 "As I live," declares the King Whose name is Yahweh of hosts, "Surely one shall come who looms up like Tabor among the mountains, or like Carmel by the sea. 19 "Make your baggage ready for exile, O daughter dwelling in Egypt, for Memphis will become a desolation; it will even be burned down and bereft of inhabitants. 20 "Egypt is a pretty heifer, but a horsefly is coming from the north-- it is coming! 21 "Also her mercenaries in her midst are like fattened calves, for even they too have turned back and have fled away together; they did not stand their ground. For the day of their calamity has come upon them, the time of their punishment. 22 "Its sound moves along like a serpent; for they move on like an army and come to her as woodcutters with axes. 23 "They have cut down her forest," declares Yahweh; "Surely it will no more be found, even though they are now more numerous than locusts and are without number. 24 "The daughter of Egypt has been put to shame, given over to the power of the people of the north." 25 Yahweh of hosts, the God of Israel, says, "Behold, I am going to punish Amon of Thebes, and Pharaoh, and Egypt along with her gods and her kings, even Pharaoh and those who trust in him. 26 "And I shall give them over to the power of those who are seeking their lives, even into the hand of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon and into the hand of his officers. Afterwards, however, it will be inhabited as in the days of old," declares Yahweh. 27 "But as for you, O Jacob My servant, do not fear, nor be dismayed, O Israel! For, see, I am going to save you from afar, and your descendants from the land of their captivity; and Jacob shall return and be undisturbed and secure, with no one making him tremble. 28 "O Jacob My servant, do not fear," declares Yahweh, "For I am with you. For I shall make a full end of all the nations where I have driven you, yet I shall not make a full end of you; but I shall correct you properly and by no means leave you unpunished."
"As in the days when you came out from the land of Egypt, I will show you miracles."
Psalm 48 A Song; a Psalm of the sons of Korah.
1 Great is Yahweh, and greatly to be praised, in the city of our God, His holy mountain. 2 Beautiful in elevation, the joy of the whole earth, is Mount Zion in the far north, the city of the great King. 3 God, in her palaces, has made Himself known as a stronghold. 4 For, lo, the kings assembled themselves, they passed by together. 5 They saw it, then they were amazed; they were terrified, they fled in alarm. 6 Panic seized them there, anguish, as of a woman in childbirth. 7 With the east wind Thou dost break the ships of Tarshish. 8 As we have heard, so have we seen in the city of Yahweh of hosts, in the city of our God; God will establish her forever. Selah. 9 We have thought on Thy lovingkindness, O God, In the midst of Thy temple. 10 As is Thy name, O God, So is Thy praise to the ends of the earth; Thy right hand is full of righteousness. 11 Let Mount Zion be glad, let the daughters of Judah rejoice, because of Thy judgments. 12 Walk about Zion, and go around her; count her towers; 13 consider her ramparts; go through her palaces; that you may tell it to the next generation. 14 For such is God, our God forever and ever; He will guide us until death.
13 "And no one has ascended into heaven, but He who descended from heaven, even the Son of Man. 14 "And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of Man be lifted up; 15 that whoever believes may in Him have eternal life. 16 "For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish, but have eternal life. 17 "For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world should be saved through Him. 18 "He who believes in Him is not judged; he who does not believe has been judged already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. 19 "And this is the judgment, that the light is come into the world, and men loved the darkness rather than the light; for their deeds were evil. 20 "For everyone who does evil hates the light, and does not come to the light, lest his deeds should be exposed. 21 "But he who practices the truth comes to the light, that his deeds may be manifested as having been wrought in God." 22 After these things Jesus and His disciples came into the land of Judea, and there He was spending time with them and baptizing. 23 And John also was baptizing in Aenon near Salim, because there was much water there; and they were coming and were being baptized. 24 For John had not yet been thrown into prison. 25 There arose therefore a discussion on the part of John's disciples with a Jew about purification.
There is no outward difference between the first six days of the week and the Sabbath; but God makes a distinction, and tells us to keep the Sabbath holy. There was no outward difference between the Egyptians and the Hebrews, as far as being worthy, but God made a distinction, and tells us to keep His people holy.
(V.11:1, 6-7) “One more plague I will bring on Pharaoh and on Egypt”
“Moreover, there shall be a great cry in all the land of Egypt, such as there has not been before and such as shall never be again. But against any of the sons of Israel a dog shall not even bark, whether against man or beast, that you may understand how Yahweh makes a distinction between Egypt and Israel.”
There is one more plague to come: Revelation 7:14-17 – “These are the ones who come out of the great tribulation, and they have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb. For this reason, they are before the throne of God; and they serve Him day and night in His temple; and He who sits on the throne shall spread His tabernacle over them. They shall hunger no more, neither thirst anymore; neither shall the sun beat down on them, nor any heat; for the Lamb in the center of the throne shall be their shepherd, and shall guide them to springs of the water of life; and God shall wipe every tear from their eyes.”
(V.4-5) “Thus says Yahweh, ‘About midnight I am going out into the midst of Egypt, and all the first-born in the land of Egypt shall die, from the first-born of the Pharaoh who sits on his throne, even to the first-born of the slave girl who is behind the millstones;”
Matthew 24:37-41 – “For the coming of the Son of Man will be just like the days of Noah. For as in those days which were before the flood they were eating and drinking, they were marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noah entered the ark, and they did not understand until the flood came and took them all away (in death); so shall the coming of the Son of Man be. Then there shall be two men in the field; one will be taken, and one will be left. Two women will be grinding at the mill; one will be taken (in death), and one will be left.”
(V.12:2) Nisan 10: This is the day for choosing a lamb. Who is the Lamb, through whose blood you will be passed over, when judgment comes?
Rosh Hodesh (New Moon) observance was the first commandment given to Israel as a nation. A thousand years later, in the Greek-Syrian persecution, three observances were prohibited: Rosh Hodesh, Sabbath, and circumcision. Without Rosh Hodesh, no Festivals can be observed, which eliminates observance of a multitude of other commandments.
The fourteenth is called the Preparation day (see John 19:14). (V.6) “And you shall keep it (the Passover Lamb) until the fourteenth day of the same month, then the whole assembly of the congregation of Israel is to kill it between the evenings.” That is, between noon (the start of the going down of the sun) and sunset (the final setting of the sun). A full explanation of this Hebrew Scripture is given in the Talmud. (Many, without knowledge of Hebrew or Talmud, promote various interpretations from English translations.)
(V.14-15) “Now this day will be a memorial to you, and you shall celebrate it as a Feast of Yahweh (later translated Lord’s Supper); throughout your generations you are to celebrate it as a permanent ordinance. Seven days you shall eat unleavened bread”. Yeshua said, “Do this in remembrance of Me”.
Note that we are not only to avoid all leaven, but there is a positive commandment to eat matzah (unleavened bread). We are not only to avoid all sin, we are to perform positive mitzvot. We are to perform both the symbol and the antitype deed.
Now, concerning God’s judgments, which are “in kind”:
John 3:17-19 – “For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world should be saved through Him. He who believes in Him is not judged; he who does not believe has been judged already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. And this is the judgment, that the light is come into the world, and men loved the darkness rather than the light; for their deeds were evil.”
We may think of those who are openly sinful, who do not want to hear of God’s ways. But I think of so many, who say to me, “I feel this is a good way”, and don’t want to know what God says is His way. I hear such statements concerning obedience and learning vs. doing what one “feels” is right. Also claims of being “spirit-filled” by people who are Biblically illiterate, and think their feelings are God’s messages, so have no need to learn His Word. Then we see those who simply use religious position as a way of “making money”: they certainly don’t want to be exposed to “the light”; that was the case with those who sold animals at the Temple, and it is the case with much of “ministry” today. These have already been judged by Torah.
But Yeshua came to take our (believers’) judgment upon Himself. Consider how it may have felt to be in Goshen in Moses’ time: every Egyptian family is bewailing a dead firstborn, but not so much as a dog barked against the Hebrews. They were not, of themselves, better or more worthy than the Egyptians. Have you heard how that many people who live through great catastrophes, like the World Trade Center terrorism, feel guilty at being spared?
Yet, even as believers, we are not free to sin, just because of Yeshua taking our judgment: such “freedom” would make a farce of our faith (Romans 6:1, James 2:17). And if we perform mitzvot (acts in the service of God), but do them with wrong motives, we lose all future reward (Matthew 6:2).
Baptism represents starting clean, starting a new life of serving God. It represents purification from sin, not ignoring and continuing sin.
The Haftarah relationship:
(V.11:8) Moses said to the Pharaoh, “And all these your servants will come down to me and bow themselves before me, saying, ‘Go out, you and all the people who follow you,’ and after that I will go out.” Jeremiah 46:15,17 – “Why have your mighty ones become prostrate? They do not stand because Yahweh has thrust them down. . . . They cried there, ‘Pharaoh King of Egypt is but a big noise; He has let the appointed time pass by!’” Psalm 48:4-5 – For, lo, the kings assembled themselves, they passed by together. They saw it, then they were amazed; they were terrified, they fled in alarm. Psalm 48:11 – Let Mount Zion be glad, let the daughters of Judah rejoice, because of Thy judgments.
Sabbath Three (March 30, 2002)
(It was at
commonly called Exodus 12:29-51 (*Divided
for seven Torah readers)
Today is Resurrection Shabbat! Click on Hag haMatzot and scroll down to Nisan 17
1 Amen* 29 Now it came about at midnight that Yahweh struck all the first-born in the land of Egypt, from the first-born of Pharaoh who sat on his throne to the first-born of the captive who was in the dungeon, and all the first-born of cattle. 30 And Pharaoh arose in the night, he and all his servants and all the Egyptians; and there was a great cry in Egypt, for there was no home where there was not someone dead.
2 Amen* 31 Then he called for Moses and Aaron at night and said, "Rise up, get out from among my people, both you and the sons of Israel; and go, worship Yahweh, as you have said. 32 "Take both your flocks and your herds, as you have said, and go, and bless me also." 33 And the Egyptians urged the people, to send them out of the land in haste, for they said, "We shall all be dead."
3 Amen* 34 So the people took their dough before it was leavened, with their kneading bowls bound up in the clothes on their shoulders. 35 Now the sons of Israel had done according to the word of Moses, for they had requested from the Egyptians articles of silver and articles of gold, and clothing; 36 and Yahweh had given the people favor in the sight of the Egyptians, so that they let them have their request. Thus they plundered the Egyptians.
4 Amen* 37 Now the sons of Israel journeyed from Rameses to Succoth, about six hundred thousand men on foot, aside from children. 38 And a mixed multitude also went up with them, along with flocks and herds, a very large number of livestock. 39 And they baked the dough which they had brought out of Egypt into cakes of unleavened bread. For it had not become leavened, since they were driven out of Egypt and could not delay, nor had they prepared any provisions for themselves.
5 Amen* 40 Now the time that the sons of Israel lived in Egypt was four hundred and thirty years. 41 And it came about at the end of four hundred and thirty years, to the very day, that all the hosts of Yahweh went out from the land of Egypt. 42 It is a night to be observed for Yahweh for having brought them out from the land of Egypt; this night is for Yahweh, to be observed by all the sons of Israel throughout their generations.
6 Amen* 43 And Yahweh said to Moses and Aaron, "This is the ordinance of the Passover: no foreigner is to eat of it; 44 but every man's slave purchased with money, after you have circumcised him, then he may eat of it. 45 "A sojourner or a hired servant shall not eat of it. 46 "It is to be eaten in a single house; you are not to bring forth any of the flesh outside of the house, nor are you to break any bone of it. 47 "All the congregation of Israel are to celebrate this. 48 "But if a stranger sojourns with you, and celebrates the Passover to Yahweh, let all his males be circumcised, and then let him come near to celebrate it; and he shall be like a native of the land. But no uncircumcised person may eat of it.
7 Amen* 49 "The same law shall apply to the native as to the stranger who sojourns among you." 50 Then all the sons of Israel did so; they did just as Yahweh had commanded Moses and Aaron. 51 And it came about on that same day that Yahweh brought the sons of Israel out of the land of Egypt by their hosts.
The oracle concerning Edom. One keeps calling to me from Seir, "Watchman, how far gone is the night? Watchman, how far gone is the night?"
Psalm 49 For the choir director. A Psalm of the sons of Korah.
1 Hear this, all peoples; give ear, all inhabitants of the world, 2 both low and high, Rich and poor together. 3 My mouth will speak wisdom; and the meditation of my heart will be understanding. 4 I will incline my ear to a proverb; I will express my riddle on the harp. 5 Why should I fear in days of adversity, when the iniquity of my foes surrounds me, 6 even those who trust in their wealth, and boast in the abundance of their riches? 7 No man can by any means redeem his brother, or give to God a ransom for him-- 8 for the redemption of his soul is costly, and he should cease trying forever-- 9 that he should live on eternally; that he should not undergo decay. 10 For he sees that even wise men die; the stupid and the senseless alike perish, and leave their wealth to others. 11 Their inner thought is, that their houses are forever, and their dwelling places to all generations; they have called their lands after their own names. 12 But man in his pomp will not endure; he is like the beasts that perish. 13 This is the way of those who are foolish, and of those after them who approve their words. Selah. 14 As sheep they are appointed for Sheol; death shall be their shepherd; and the upright shall rule over them in the morning; and their form shall be for Sheol to consume, so that they have no habitation. 15 But God will redeem my soul from the power of Sheol; for He will receive me. Selah. 16 Do not be afraid when a man becomes rich, when the glory of his house is increased; 17 for when he dies he will carry nothing away; his glory will not descend after him. 18 Though while he lives he congratulates himself-- and though men praise you when you do well for yourself-- 19 he shall go to the generation of his fathers; they shall never see the light. 20 Man in his pomp, yet without understanding, is like the beasts that perish.
1 After these things I saw another angel coming down from heaven, having great authority, and the earth was illumined with his glory. 2 And he cried out with a mighty voice, saying, "Fallen, fallen is Babylon the great! And she has become a dwelling place of demons and a prison of every unclean spirit, and a prison of every unclean and hateful bird. 3 "For all the nations have drunk of the wine of the passion of her immorality, and the kings of the earth have committed acts of immorality with her, and the merchants of the earth have become rich by the wealth of her sensuality." 4 And I heard another voice from heaven, saying, "Come out of her, my people, that you may not participate in her sins and that you may not receive of her plagues; 5 for her sins have piled up as high as heaven, and God has remembered her iniquities. 6 "Pay her back even as she has paid, and give back to her double according to her deeds; in the cup which she has mixed, mix twice as much for her. 7 "To the degree that she glorified herself and lived sensuously, to the same degree give her torment and mourning; for she says in her heart, 'I sit as a queen and I am not a widow, and will never see mourning.' 8 "For this reason in one day her plagues will come, pestilence and mourning and famine, and she will be burned up with fire; for the Lord God who judges her is strong. 9 "And the kings of the earth, who committed acts of immorality and lived sensuously with her, will weep and lament over her when they see the smoke of her burning, 10 standing at a distance because of the fear of her torment, saying, 'Woe, woe, the great city, Babylon, the strong city! For in one hour your judgment has come.' 11 "And the merchants of the earth weep and mourn over her, because no one buys their cargoes any more; 12 cargoes of gold and silver and precious stones and pearls and fine linen and purple and silk and scarlet, and every kind of citron wood and every article of ivory and every article made from very costly wood and bronze and iron and marble, 13 and cinnamon and spice and incense and perfume and frankincense and wine and olive oil and fine flour and wheat and cattle and sheep, and cargoes of horses and chariots and slaves and human lives. 14 "And the fruit you long for has gone from you, and all things that were luxurious and splendid have passed away from you and men will no longer find them. 15 "The merchants of these things, who became rich from her, will stand at a distance because of the fear of her torment, weeping and mourning, 16 saying, 'Woe, woe, the great city, she who was clothed in fine linen and purple and scarlet, and adorned with gold and precious stones and pearls; 17 for in one hour such great wealth has been laid waste!' And every shipmaster and every passenger and sailor, and as many as make their living by the sea, stood at a distance, 18 and were crying out as they saw the smoke of her burning, saying, 'What city is like the great city?' 19 "And they threw dust on their heads and were crying out, weeping and mourning, saying, 'Woe, woe, the great city, in which all who had ships at sea became rich by her wealth, for in one hour she has been laid waste!' 20 "Rejoice over her, O heaven, and you saints and apostles and prophets, because God has pronounced judgment for you against her." 21 And a strong angel took up a stone like a great millstone and threw it into the sea, saying, "Thus will Babylon, the great city, be thrown down with violence, and will not be found any longer. 22 "And the sound of harpists and musicians and flute-players and trumpeters will not be heard in you any longer; and no craftsman of any craft will be found in you any longer; and the sound of a mill will not be heard in you any longer; 23 and the light of a lamp will not shine in you any longer; and the voice of the bridegroom and bride will not be heard in you any longer; for your merchants were the great men of the earth, because all the nations were deceived by your sorcery. 24 "And in her was found the blood of prophets and of saints and of all who have been slain on the earth."
Yahweh struck the firstborn in every Egyptian family with death. This was His stated purpose before Moses first went to the Pharaoh. Now the Hebrews were paid for their forced labor, in silver and gold and clothing – spoiling the Egyptians – and thrust out of Egypt with all of their families and herds and belongings.
Having lived in Egypt, they were partakers of Egyptian idolatry. Soon after leaving, they would use their gold to make a calf idol. But later, they would learn to serve God with their wages, and give generously toward building the Tabernacle.
(V.37) Now the sons of Israel journeyed from Rameses to Succoth, from the “Treasure City” to the “Temporary Dwellingplace”. The total population, including women, children, and elderly, was about three million. They were a mixed multitude of all nations.
Some would insist that the Biblical Festivals and Sabbaths are only for the “Jews” (a more accurate term would be the “Hebrews”). The issue seems to be: who qualifies under God’s Covenant? Gentile believers are partakers of the Abrahamic Covenant (Ephesians 3:6). The Apostolic Writings (NT) clearly teach that the Festivals and Sabbaths are for all believers.
When (during creation week) was man
created? (See Genesis 1:26-31.)
When was the Sabbath created? (See Genesis 2:1-3.)
Was man created for the Sabbath, or was Sabbath created for man? (See Mark 2:27.)
If (1) man was the last creation on the sixth day, and (2) the Sabbath was created immediately afterward, and (3) the Sabbath was created for man, then for what man was the Sabbath created? Only for the “Jew” who did not exist until 3000 years later? And for whom did God bless and sanctify (set apart) the Sabbath (Genesis 2:3) – for Adam (man) or only Abraham’s distant future descendants?
“Let no man (neither Jew nor or Roman) condemn you (Colossian gentile believers) . . . for practicing . . . (Biblical) Festivals or Sabbath days, which are prophetic shadows of what is to come – Messiah Himself, the body casting the shadow” (Colossians 2:16-17).
(Revelation 18:4) “And I heard another voice from heaven, saying,‘Come out of her, my people, that you may not participate in her sins and that you may not receive of her plagues’”. “Babylon” obviously represents a center for idolatrous religion and a great commercial center. It has been often equated with Rome, because that city rules over nations in religious matters, and is famous as a city of seven hills. It has also been equated with a renewed literal Babylon in Iraq, as well as several other places.
What seems clear here, is that we should stay clear of idolatrous religious systems, and not be too tied to this world’s commercial/financial structure. The Psalmist says (Psalm 49:5-6): “Why should I fear in days of adversity, when the iniquity of my foes surrounds me, even those who trust in their wealth, and boast in the abundance of their riches?” While our (US) money says, “In God we trust”, we are a nation that trusts in money – for sustenance, for health, for pleasure, for security, for pride, etc. Our schools (from grade schools to the biggest universities) were instituted primarily for Bible instruction, ethics, and skills; they are now based on money-making instruction and pleasure instruction, with ethics left out and the Bible teaching being forbidden.
Those who are too poor tend to dishonesty, and those who are too rich tend to forget God and trust in riches. “Give me neither poverty nor riches; feed me with the food that is my portion, lest I be full and deny Thee and say, ‘Who is Yahweh?’ Or lest I be in want and steal, and profane the name of my God” (Proverbs 30:8-9). I have seen some who come from poor families, then become prosperous, become possessed with staying prosperous. And I have seen some from richer families, who look down on those who aren’t interested in their style of living. It is no crime to be rich, but it is sin to seek to be rich – for riches to be one’s motivation, that which consumes one’s efforts. “Those who want to get rich fall into temptation and a snare and many foolish and harmful desires which plunge men into ruin and destruction” (1 Timothy 6:9).
Paul said that he had known both poverty and plenty, and knew how to handle both. “Godliness with contentment is great gain” (1 Timothy 6:6).
We were not redeemed by the Passover Lamb to stay a slave to Egypt. We still have time to seek God’s way, and to make His service our motivation for life. We can still repent from using our wages of gold to make idols, and use our talents for the furtherance of the Kingdom.
As God said for His people in Moses' time to come out of Egypt, He is now saying of Babylon, "Come out of her My people!" We must leave this world's "Treasure City" for the "Temporary Dwellingplace" where God leads us to our eternal home.
(Isaiah 21:11) "Watchman, how far gone is the night? Watchman, how far gone is the night?"
Sabbath Four (April 6, 2002)
Shemot (Names): Kadesh (Sanctify), commonly called Exodus 13:1-20 (*Divided for seven Torah readers)
1 Amen* 1 Then Yahweh spoke to Moses, saying, 2 "Sanctify to Me every first-born, the first offspring of every womb among the sons of Israel, both of man and beast; it belongs to Me."
2 Amen* 3 And Moses said to the people, "Remember this day in which you went out from Egypt, from the house of slavery; for by a powerful hand Yahweh brought you out from this place. And nothing leavened shall be eaten. 4 "On this day in the month of Abib, you are about to go forth. 5 "And it shall be when Yahweh brings you to the land of the Canaanite, the Hittite, the Amorite, the Hivite and the Jebusite, which He swore to your fathers to give you, a land flowing with milk and honey, that you shall observe this rite in this month.
3 Amen* 6 "For seven days you shall eat unleavened bread, and on the seventh day there shall be a feast to Yahweh. 7 "Unleavened bread shall be eaten throughout the seven days; and nothing leavened shall be seen among you, nor shall any leaven be seen among you in all your borders. 8 "And you shall tell your son on that day, saying, 'It is because of what Yahweh did for me when I came out of Egypt.'
4 Amen* 9 "And it shall serve as a sign to you on your hand, and as a reminder on your forehead, that the law of Yahweh may be in your mouth; for with a powerful hand Yahweh brought you out of Egypt. 10 "Therefore, you shall keep this ordinance at its appointed time from year to year.
5 Amen* 11 "Now it shall come about when Yahweh brings you to the land of the Canaanite, as He swore to you and to your fathers, and gives it to you, 12 that you shall devote to Yahweh the first offspring of every womb, and the first offspring of every beast that you own; the males belong to Yahweh. 13 "But every first offspring of a donkey you shall redeem with a lamb, but if you do not redeem it, then you shall break its neck; and every first-born of man among your sons you shall redeem.
6 Amen* 14 "And it shall be when your son asks you in time to come, saying, 'What is this?' then you shall say to him, 'With a powerful hand Yahweh brought us out of Egypt, from the house of slavery. 15 'And it came about, when Pharaoh was stubborn about letting us go, that Yahweh killed every first-born in the land of Egypt, both the first-born of man and the first-born of beast. Therefore, I sacrifice to Yahweh the males, the first offspring of every womb, but every first-born of my sons I redeem.' 16 "So it shall serve as a sign on your hand, and as phylacteries on your forehead, for with a powerful hand Yahweh brought us out of Egypt."
7 Amen* 17 Now it came about when Pharaoh had let the people go, that God did not lead them by the way of the land of the Philistines, even though it was near; for God said, "Lest the people change their minds when they see war, and they return to Egypt." 18 Hence God led the people around by the way of the wilderness to the Red Sea; and the sons of Israel went up in martial array from the land of Egypt. 19 And Moses took the bones of Joseph with him, for he had made the sons of Israel solemnly swear, saying, "God shall surely take care of you; and you shall carry my bones from here with you." 20 Then they set out from Succoth and camped in Etham on the edge of the wilderness. 21 And Yahweh was going before them in a pillar of cloud by day to lead them on the way, and in a pillar of fire by night to give them light, that they might travel by day and by night. 22 He did not take away the pillar of cloud by day, nor the pillar of fire by night, from before the people.
3 "(Sh’ma) Listen to Me, O house of Jacob, and all the remnant of the house of Israel, you who have been borne by Me from birth, and have been carried from the womb; 4 even to your old age, I shall be the same, and even to your graying years I shall bear you! I have done it, and I shall carry you; and I shall bear you, and I shall deliver you.
Psalm 50 A Psalm of Asaph.
1 (El Elohim Yahweh) The Mighty One, God, Yahweh, has spoken, and summoned the earth from the rising of the sun to its setting. 2 Out of Zion, the perfection of beauty, God has shone forth. 3 May our God come and not keep silence; fire devours before Him, and it is very tempestuous around Him. 4 He summons the heavens above, and the earth, to judge His people: 5 "Gather My godly ones to Me, those who have made a covenant with Me by sacrifice." 6 And the heavens declare His righteousness, for God Himself is judge. Selah. 7 "Hear, O My people, and I will speak; O Israel, I will testify against you; I am God, your God. 8 "I do not reprove you for your sacrifices, and your burnt offerings are continually before Me. 9 "I shall take no young bull out of your house, nor male goats out of your folds. 10 "For every beast of the forest is Mine, the cattle on a thousand hills. 11 "I know every bird of the mountains, and everything that moves in the field is Mine. 12 "If I were hungry, I would not tell you; for the world is Mine, and all it contains. 13 "Shall I eat the flesh of bulls, or drink the blood of male goats? 14 "Offer to God a sacrifice of thanksgiving, and pay your vows to the Most High; 15 and call upon Me in the day of trouble; I shall rescue you, and you will honor Me." 16 But to the wicked God says, "What right have you to tell of My statutes, and to take My covenant in your mouth? 17 "For you hate discipline, and you cast My words behind you. 18 "When you see a thief, you are pleased with him, and you associate with adulterers. 19 "You let your mouth loose in evil, and your tongue frames deceit. 20 "You sit and speak against your brother; you slander your own mother's son. 21 "These things you have done, and I kept silence; you thought that I was just like you; I will reprove you, and state the case in order before your eyes. 22 "Now consider this, you who forget God, lest I tear you in pieces, and there be none to deliver. 23 "He who offers a sacrifice of thanksgiving honors Me; and to him who orders his way aright I shall show the salvation of God."
Hebrews 8:6 – 9:1; 9:13-15
6 But now He has obtained a more excellent ministry, by as much as He is also the mediator of a better covenant, which has been enacted on better promises. 7 For if that first covenant had been faultless, there would have been no occasion sought for a second. 8 For finding fault with them, He says, (Jeremiah 31:31-34)
“Behold, days are coming”, says Yahweh, “when I will effect a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah; 9 not like the covenant which I made with their fathers on the day when I took them by the hand to lead them out of the land of Egypt; for they did not continue in My covenant, and I did not care for them”, says the Lord. 10 “For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days”, says Yahweh: “I will put My laws into their minds, and I will write them upon their hearts. And I will be their God, and they shall be My people. 11 And they shall not teach everyone his fellow citizen, and everyone his brother, saying, ‘Know Yahweh,’ for all shall know Me, from the least to the greatest of them. 12 For I will be merciful to their iniquities, and I will remember their sins no more.”
13 When He said, "A new covenant," He has made the first obsolete. But whatever is becoming obsolete and growing old is ready to disappear. 9:1 Now even the first covenant had regulations of divine worship and the earthly sanctuary.
9:13 For if the blood of goats and bulls and the ashes of a heifer sprinkling those who have been defiled, sanctify for the cleansing of the flesh, 14 how much more will the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered Himself without blemish to God, cleanse your conscience from dead works to serve the living God? 15 And for this reason He is the mediator of a new covenant, in order that since a death has taken place for the redemption of the transgressions that were committed under the first covenant, those who have been called may receive the promise of the eternal inheritance.
(V.1-2) “Sanctify to Me every first-born”.
Firstborn, Exodus, and Tefillin
The firstborn, from creation, were the priests – “sanctified” to God; they received the blessings and responsibilities of spiritual service. The salvation of the Hebrew firstborn at the Passover was related to the position of priesthood – carrying on the worship of the true God, while the Egyptian firstborn died and could not lead in their idolatry. The tefillin on the (1) “left” (weak – based on Heb. of v.16) arm and (2) forehead represent dedication to God in (1) deed and in (2) intellect.
(Numbers 3:12-13) “Now, behold, I have taken the Levites from
among the sons of
Israel instead of every first-born, the first issue of the womb
among the sons of Israel. So the Levites shall be Mine. For all the first-born
are Mine; on the day that I struck down all the first-born in the land of Egypt,
I sanctified to Myself all the first-born in Israel, from man to beast. They
shall be Mine; I am Yahweh.”
Here we see when the priesthood was temporarily changed from the firstborn (the Malchisedek priesthood) to the Levites. Yeshua came, not through Levi, but a priest after the order of Malchisedek – the firstborn.
(V.3) “Remember this day” . . .
(V.10) “you shall keep this ordinance at its appointed time from year to year.”
The Feast of Unleavened Bread was established as an eternal memorial – “Do this in remembrance of Me”.
(V.8) “And you shall tell your son” is the basis for the Passover parable of the four children (that we sing to the tune of Clementine).
God did not lead them by the way of the land of the
(V.21) Yahweh went before them . . .
. . . in a pillar of fire by night
(Psalm 50:3-5) “May our God come and not keep silence; fire devours before Him, and it is very tempestuous around Him. He summons the heavens above, and the earth, to judge His people: Gather My godly ones to Me, those who have made a covenant with Me by sacrifice.”
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