Torah Commentary – P’kudei (Accounts) – Now What? – SCRIPTURES FOR March 9, 2019

Torah Commentary
P’kudei (Accounts)
Exodus 38:21-40:38
1Kings 7:13-26
2Corinthians 9:1-15
Hebrews 9:1-14
Revelation 11:1-13
Now What?
The last chapters of Exodus speak of putting the instructions of the Tabernacle and garments into reality. As I read the details, I can sense a growing excitement in the camp of the Hebrews. With each item completed and each curtain sown, the excitement builds. At one point the people become so enthralled with the experience that their giving has to be halted by Moshe. The people are giving too much! Consider that one.
The days would turn to weeks and the weeks to months, then in an instant, it was done. We just can not imagine the emotions behind Ex 39:43 as Moshe and the people looked at the completed work of the Tabernacle in front of them. Not only was it finished, but it was finished exactly as Moshe had told them to do, exactly as he had been shown on the mountain. Consider that one. Not a single man’s opinion had entered into the equation.
The final pieces are put into place, but now what are they to do? Moshe had been told to build it and the people all come together and did it. Yah had told them He would then inhabit this tent, but what was that going to look like? They had not been given those instructions and in the excitement of coming together as one for the purpose of building the Tabernacle, no one had thought to ask.
I can just imagine these people, Moshe included, standing there at the base of Mt. Sinai and looking at this structure. Now there is one thing I have learned through my years of serving HaShem is that He acts like He has all the time in the world. What are the chances the glory did not come into the Tabernacle five seconds after it was finished? What are the chances that He waited just a little longer than most of the Hebrews thought He should wait to do something. What are the chances the people were getting a bit antsy and uncomfortable with their, “Now what?” looks.
I, for one, sure hope someone got a video of what happened in Ex 40:34, because I doubt anyone could possibly put the event into words. The glory enters the tent at a level that Moshe could not even walk in? It must have been a “WOW!” moment for all.
So what have we learned from these 16 chapters on the Tabernacle?
  1. We must have a model to go by: We can not think we can come up with our own model, ie, different days and diets, and expect Him to show up.
  2. We must have a pattern, and the pattern in Scripture is clear. It takes time, effort and giving of ourselves to be a Tabernacle worthy of His presence.
  3. We must have authority:  Not only must we submit to His authority, but also to those on earth He has chosen to lead us.
  4. We must leave our opinions at the door: His way of doing things is not open for our interpretation.
  5. We must expect the unexpected: The day we have it all figured out of how everything is going to happen will be the day nothing happens. Well, it will still happen, but we will miss it because we may be looking the wrong direction.
  6. We need to keep our poles in the Ark and our tent pegs shallow: Remember those poles which were to be left in the Ark? Remember that the tent pegs were only to be half in the ground and half out of the ground? The purpose was to be a reminder that this Tabernacle is not to stay in one place and become a museum. It was to be a guide to take the people home. And guess what, He still is! (Click to Source)
Shalom and Be Strong,
Mike Clayton
Joined To HaShem
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Weekly Torah Portion – the One New Man Bible – P’kudei – March 17, 2018

P’kudei

Exodus 38:21 – 40:38

38:21. These are the accounts of the Tabernacle, of the Tabernacle of Testimony (Rev. 15:5) as they were made, according to the commandment of Moses, for the service of the Levites, by the hand of Itamar, son of Aaron the priest. 22. And Bezalel the son of Uri, the son of Hur of the tribe of Judah, made all that the LORD* commanded Moses.

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23. And with him was Aholiab, son of Ahisamach of the tribe of Dan, an engraver, a skillful workman, and an embroiderer of fine linen in blue, in purple, and in scarlet.

38:24. All the gold that was used for the work in all the work of the Holy Place, even the gold of the offering, was twenty-nine talents and seven hundred thirty shekels, after the shekel of the Sanctuary. 25. And the silver in them that were numbered of the congregation was a hundred talents and a thousand seven hundred seventy-five shekels, after the shekel of the Sanctuary. 26. A beka, a half shekel, for every man after the shekel of the Sanctuary, for everyone that went to be numbered, from twenty years old and upward, for six hundred three thousand five hundred fifty men. 27. And of the hundred talents of silver were cast the sockets of the Sanctuary and the sockets for the veil, a hundred sockets of the hundred talents, a talent for a socket. 28. And of the thousand seven hundred seventy-five shekels he made hooks for the pillars and covered their capitals and banded them.

38:29. And the bronze of the offering was seventy talents and two thousand four hundred shekels. 30. And with it he made the sockets for the door of the Tent of Meeting, the bronze altar, the bronze grate for it, all the vessels of the altar, 31. the sockets of the court all around, and the sockets of the court gate, all the pegs of the Tabernacle and all the pegs of the court all around.

Cloths of Service and High Priest’s Garments

39.1. And they made cloths of service of the blue, purple, and scarlet, to do service in the Holy Place, and made the holy garments for Aaron, as the LORD* commanded Moses.

39:2. And he made the ephod of gold, blue, purple, and scarlet, of fine woven linen. 3. And they beat the gold into thin plates and cut it into wires to work it in the blue, in the purple, in the scarlet, and in the fine linen, skillful work. 4. They made shoulder pieces for it, to join it together: it was joined together by the two edges. 5. And the belt for tying it on, that was upon it, was of the same, according to the work of it; gold, blue, purple, and scarlet, of fine woven linen, as the LORD* commanded Moses. 6. And they fashioned onyx stones enclosed in settings of gold, engraved as signets are engraved with the names of the children of Israel. 7. And he put them on the shoulders of the ephod, to be stones for a memorial to the children of Israel, as the LORD* commanded Moses.

39:8. And he made the breastplate of skillful work, like the work of the ephod, gold, blue, purple, and scarlet, of fine woven linen. 9. It was square. They made the breastplate double: its length was a span and its breadth a span, being doubled. 10. And they set in it four rows of stones: the first row was a sardius, a topaz, and a carbuncle: This was the first row. 11. And the second row, an emerald, a sapphire, and a diamond. 12. And the third row, a ligure, an agate, and an amethyst. 13. And the fourth row, a beryl, an onyx, and a jasper: they were enclosed in gold settings. 14. And the stones were according to the names of the children of Israel, twelve, according to their names, the engravings of a signet, each one with his name according to the twelve tribes. 15. And they made upon the breastplate chains at the ends, of twisted work of pure gold. 16. And they made two gold settings and two gold rings and put the two rings in the two ends of the breastplate. 17. And they put the two twisted gold chains in the two rings on the ends of the breastplate. 18. And the two ends of the two twisted chains they fastened in the two settings and put them on the shoulder straps of the ephod, on the front. 19. And they made two rings of gold and put them on the two ends of the breastplate, on its border, which was on the side of the ephod inward. 20. And they made two other golden rings and put them on the two sides above the ephod, toward its front, over against the other connection, above the band of the ephod. 21. And they bound the breastplate by its rings to the rings of the ephod with a lace of blue, so it would be above the band of the ephod and that the breastplate would not fall from the ephod, as the LORD* commanded Moses.

39:22. And he made the robe of the ephod of woven work, all of blue. 23. And there was a hole in the middle of the robe, as the hole of a coat of mail, with a band around about the hole, so it would not tear. 24. And they made pomegranates of blue, purple, and scarlet, of woven linen upon the hems of the robe. 25. And they made bells of pure gold and put the bells between the pomegranates on the hem of the robe, all around between the pomegranates; 26. a bell and a pomegranate, a bell and a pomegranate, all around the hem of the robe to minister in, as the LORD* commanded Moses.

39:27. And they made tunics of fine linen of woven work for Aaron and for his sons, 28. and a turban of fine linen, hats of fine linen, linen breeches of fine woven linen, 29. a belt of fine woven linen, blue, purple, and scarlet needlework, as the LORD* commanded Moses.

39:30. And they made the plate of the holy crown of pure gold and wrote upon it a writing, the engravings of a signet, HOLINESS TO THE LORD*. 31. And they tied to it a lace of blue, to fasten it on high upon the turban, as the LORD* commanded Moses.

39:32. Then all the work of the Tabernacle of the Tent of Meeting was finished and the children of Israel did according to all that the LORD* commanded Moses, so they did.

39:33. And they brought the Tabernacle to Moses, the Tent and all its furniture, its hooks, its boards, its bars, its pillars, its sockets, 34. the covering of rams’ skins dyed red, the covering of badgers’ skins, and the veil of the covering, 35. the Ark of the Testimony and its poles, and the cover, 36. the table, all its vessels, and the showbread, 37. the pure menorah, with its lamps, even with the lamps to be set in order, and all its vessels, and the oil for light, 38. and the golden altar and the anointing oil, the sweet incense, and the hanging for the Tabernacle door, 39. the bronze altar and its bronze grate, its poles and all its vessels, the laver and its foot, 40. the hangings of the court, its pillars and its sockets, and the hanging for the court gate, its cords, and its pegs, and all the vessels of the service of the Tabernacle, for the Tent of Meeting, 41. the cloths of service to do service in the Holy Place, and the holy garments for Aaron the priest and his sons’ garments, to minister in the priest’s office.

39:42. According to all that the LORD* commanded Moses, so the children of Israel made all the work. 43. And Moses looked upon all the work and, behold, they had done it as the LORD* had commanded, even so had they done it, and Moses blessed them.

Tabernacle Erected

40.1. And the LORD* spoke to Moses saying, 2. “On the first day of the first month you will set up the Tabernacle of the Tent of Meeting. 3. And you will put the Ark of the Testimony in it and cover the Ark with the veil. 4. And you will bring in the table and set in order the things that are to be set in order upon it, and you will bring in the menorah and light its lamps. 5. And you will set the altar of gold for the incense before the Ark of the Testimony and put the hanging of the door to the Tabernacle. 6. And you will set the altar of the burnt offering before the door of the Tabernacle of the Tent of Meeting. 7. And you will set the laver between the Tent of Meeting and the altar, and will put water in it. 8. And you will set up the court around it and hang up the hanging at the court gate. 9. And you will take the anointing oil and anoint the Tabernacle and all that is in it and will sanctify it and all its vessels, and it will be holy. 10. And you will anoint the altar of the burnt offering and all its vessels, and sanctify the altar, and it will be a most holy altar. 11. And you will anoint the laver and its base and sanctify it.

40:12. “And you will bring Aaron and his sons to the door of the Tent of Meeting and immerse them in water. 13. And you will put the holy garments on Aaron and anoint him and sanctify him, so he can minister to Me in the priest’s office. 14. And you will bring his sons and clothe them with tunics. 15. And you will anoint them as you anointed their father, so they can minister to Me in the priest’s office, for their anointing will surely be an everlasting priesthood throughout their generations.”

40:16. And Moses did according to all that the LORD* commanded him, so he did.

40:17. And it was in the first month in the second year, on the first day of the month that the Tabernacle was erected. 18. And Moses put up the Tabernacle and fastened its sockets and set up its boards and put in its bars and put up its pillars. 19. And he spread abroad the Tent over the Tabernacle and put the covering of the Tent over it, as the LORD* commanded Moses.

40:20. And he took and put the Testimony in the Ark and set the poles on the Ark and put the cover over the Ark 21. and he brought the Ark into the Tabernacle, and set up the veil of the covering, and covered the Ark of the Testimony, as the LORD* commanded Moses.

40:22. And he put the table in the Tent of Meeting, on the north side of the Tabernacle, outside the veil. 23. And he set the bread in order upon it before the LORD*, as the LORD* had commanded Moses.

40:24. And he put the menorah in the Tent of Meeting, over against the table on the south side of the Tabernacle. 25. And he lit the lamps before the LORD*, as the LORD* commanded Moses.

40:26. And he put the golden altar in the Tent of Meeting in front of the veil 27. and he burned sweet incense on it, as the LORD* commanded Moses.

40:28. And he set up the hanging at the door of the Tabernacle. 29. And he put the altar of burnt offering by the door of the Tabernacle of the Tent of Meeting and offered the burnt offering and the grain offering on it, as the LORD* commanded Moses.

40:30. And he set the laver between the Tent of Meeting and the altar and put water there for immersing. 31. And Moses and Aaron and his sons washed their hands and their feet there 32. when they went into the Tent of Meeting and when they came near to the altar, they immersed as the LORD* commanded Moses.

40:33. And he raised the court around the Tabernacle and the altar and set up the hanging of the court gate. So Moses finished the work.

Glory of the LORD* Filled the Tabernacle

40:34. Then a cloud covered the Tent of Meeting and the glory of the LORD* filled the Tabernacle. (Rev. 15:5,8) 35. And Moses was not able to enter the Tent of Meeting, because the cloud stayed on it and the glory of the LORD* filled the Tabernacle. 36. And when the cloud was taken up from over the Tabernacle, the children of Israel went on in all their journeys. 37. But if the cloud was not taken up, then they did not journey until the day that it was taken up. 38. For the cloud of the LORD* was over the Tabernacle by day and fire was on it by night, in the sight of the entire House of Israel throughout all their journeys.

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Torah Commentary – V’yakheil – He assembled, – Pequdei – Accounts – “The Glory of Faith and Works” – 4 March, 2018

V’yakheil – He assembled, – Pequdei – Accounts

“The Glory of Faith and Works”

jesus-jew-2

V’yakheil

He assembled

Exodus 35:1-38:20
1 Kings 7:40-50 (A); 7:13-26 (S)

Pequdei

Accounts

Exodus 38:21-40:38
1 Kings 7:51-8:21 (A); 7:40-50 (S)

“The Glory of Faith and Works”


by Mark Huey

This week’s Torah reading completes the Book of Exodus, with the final two readings being studied. For a substantial part of the selection, the instructions given to Moses for the construction of the Tabernacle, furnishings, and its components, are essentially a reiteration of the details which have been previously considered (Exodus 35:10-40-33). Apparently, the command to build a formal dwelling place for the Holy One of Israel was of such significance for the chosen people of God, that Moses repeated the specifications for it. After the failings of the golden calf resulted in the execution of some three thousand faithless rebels, Moses and the artisans returned to the work at hand. After an additional forty days and forty nights in the presence of the Lord, the radiating facial appearance of Moses helped further convince the remaining Israelites, that the instructions he was conveying were directly from the Holy One, as noted in the closing verses of the previous parashah:

“Then Moses called to them, and Aaron and all the rulers in the congregation returned to him; and Moses spoke to them. Afterward all the sons of Israel came near, and he commanded them to do everything that the LORD had spoken to him on Mount Sinai. When Moses had finished speaking with them, he put a veil over his face. But whenever Moses went in before the LORD to speak with Him, he would take off the veil until he came out; and whenever he came out and spoke to the sons of Israel what he had been commanded, the sons of Israel would see the face of Moses, that the skin of Moses’ face shone. So Moses would replace the veil over his face until he went in to speak with Him” (Exodus 34:31-35).

With the trauma of violent death having permeated the encampment, the visible reminder that Moses was intimately communicating with the Almighty, prompted the Israelites to respond with willing hearts, as they were stirred to contribute the materials needed for the Tabernacle. Those people, endowed with supernatural skills, were given the opportunity to finally exercise their faith in the Holy One, by completing the work as prescribed:

“Then Moses assembled all the congregation of the sons of Israel, and said to them, ‘These are the things that the LORD has commanded you to do: For six days work may be done, but on the seventh day you shall have a holy day, a sabbath of complete rest to the LORD; whoever does any work on it shall be put to death. You shall not kindle a fire in any of your dwellings on the sabbath day.’ Moses spoke to all the congregation of the sons of Israel, saying, ‘This is the thing which the LORD has commanded, saying, ‘Take from among you a contribution to the LORD; whoever is of a willing heart, let him bring it as the LORD’s contribution: gold, silver, and bronze, and blue, purple and scarlet material, fine linen, goats’ hair, and rams’ skins dyed red, and porpoise skins, and acacia wood, and oil for lighting, and spices for the anointing oil, and for the fragrant incense, and onyx stones and setting stones for the ephod and for the breastpiece. Let every skillful man among you come, and make all that the Lord has commanded” (Exodus 35:1-10).

However, before Moses rested these instructions, there was a key reminder that remembering the Sabbath during the construction of the Tabernacle was not to be abandoned. As important as it would be for the Tabernacle to be assembled, so that God could dwell in the presence of His people—He still desired His people to rest (cf. Exodus 31:13-17).

While reconsidering the different elements of the Tabernacle and the priestly garments, in light of the prohibition to work on the Sabbath, from this week’s Torah reading—it is significant to note the unique intersection of faithful obedience to a command, and the completion of human works resulting in the presence of the glory of the Lord. For assuredly, when the Book of Exodus comes to a close describing the “finished” work of the Tabernacle, there was the incredible blessing of the “glory of the Lord” residing in the midst of the Israelites throughout their desert journeys:

“From it Moses and Aaron and his sons washed their hands and their feet. When they entered the tent of meeting, and when they approached the altar, they washed, just as the LORD had commanded Moses. He erected the court all around the tabernacle and the altar, and hung up the veil for the gateway of the court. Thus Moses finished the work. Then the cloud covered the tent of meeting, and the glory of the LORD filled the tabernacle. Moses was not able to enter the tent of meeting because the cloud had settled on it, and the glory of the LORD filled the tabernacle. Throughout all their journeys whenever the cloud was taken up from over the tabernacle, the sons of Israel would set out; but if the cloud was not taken up, then they did not set out until the day when it was taken up. For throughout all their journeys, the cloud of the LORD was on the tabernacle by day, and there was fire in it by night, in the sight of all the house of Israel” (Exodus 40:31-38).

Glory or Glorify?

In many regards, the description of the blessing of the “glory of the Lord” filling the Tabernacle could be taken as an example of faith and works combining—in what was then among the Ancient Israelites, a tangible manifestation of God. However, over the course of time, the visible evidence of the “glory of the Lord” has no longer centered on a transportable Tabernacle. Instead, since the resurrection of Yeshua the Messiah, the Holy Spirit of God has taken up universal residence in the hearts of God’s people, which “glorify the Lord” in their actions:

“Do you not know that you are a temple of God and that the Spirit of God dwells in you? (1 Corinthians 3:16).

Modern-day Messiah followers can vaguely imagine the majesty of the “glory of the Lord,” filling the desert Tabernacle. The days of the Ancient Israelites, fearfully observing the presence of the Lord, has largely shifted to faithful Believers willingly allowing the Holy One to accomplish His will through their works. There is now a definite, personal responsibility to “glorify the Lord” through faithful acts of obedience, the good works that Yeshua requires of each of us, as they emulate His fulfillment of the Torah:

“Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven” Do not think that I came to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I did not come to abolish but to fulfill. For truly I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not the smallest letter or stroke shall pass from the Law until all is accomplished. Whoever then annuls one of the least of these commandments, and teaches others to do the same, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven; but whoever keeps and teaches them, he shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven” (Matthew 5:16-19).

If someone has truly been born from above, indwelt by the Spirit of God, and given a measure of faith (Romans 12:3)—there should be a heartfelt willingness to want to obey the Torah (which has not been abolished or nullified). Such a trusting obedience to the commandments of God should evidence itself in faith, combined with good works, which together ultimately brings glory to the Lord. In his epistle, James the Just specified how it was faith combined with his works, that reckoned Abraham righteous. Faith alone was not enough, because only by demonstrating the right actions could Abraham be truly said to have faith:

“What use is it, my brethren, if someone says he has faith but he has no works? Can that faith save him? If a brother or sister is without clothing and in need of daily food, and one of you says to them, ‘Go in peace, be warmed and be filled,’ and yet you do not give them what is necessary for their body, what use is that? Even so faith, if it has no works, is dead, being by itself.But someone may well say, ‘You have faith and I have works; show me your faith without the works, and I will show you my faith by my works.’ You believe that God is one. You do well; the demons also believe, and shudder. But are you willing to recognize, you foolish fellow, that faith without works is useless? Was not Abraham our father justified by works when he offered up Isaac his son on the altar? You see that faith was working with his works, and as a result of the works, faith was perfected; and the Scripture was fulfilled which says, ‘AND ABRAHAM BELIEVED GOD, AND IT WAS RECKONED TO HIM AS RIGHTEOUSNESS’ [Genesis 15:6], and he was called the friend of God. You see that a man is justified by works and not by faith alone. In the same way, was not Rahab the harlot also justified by works when she received the messengers and sent them out by another way? For just as the body without the spirit is dead, so also faith without works is dead” (James 2:14-26).

While this passage from James is commonly quoted to emphasize the relation that faith and works have together, Paul’s teaching is not at all devoid of an emphasis on faith and works. In his letter to Believers in Asia Minor, Paul stated that eternal salvation only comes from grace and not from works—but that we have been created to walk in good works, surely something resultant of salvation:

“For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not as a result of works, so that no one may boast. For we are His workmanship, created in Messiah Yeshua for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them” (Ephesians 2:8-10).

Notice that in God’s sovereign will for humanity, He has actually chosen certain faithful people to glorify Him, by performing good works that were prepared beforehand that they should walk in them. This can refer to artisans like Bezalel and Oholiab (Exodus 31), who had the privilege and God-given skill to help assemble the Tabernacle. It can also surely refer to the Prophets, the Apostles, or for that matter, a multitude of people down through the ages who have been used for critical tasks to glorify the Lord—especially by bringing others to Himself.

Self-Examination

As we come to the end of the Book of Exodus, in considering this week’s reading and trying to imagine the majesty of the glory of the Lord residing in and around the Tabernacle—it would be beneficial to make a personal assessment of just how we are individually seeking to glorify the Lord. After all, since through the ages, the Lord has chosen to use mere mortals to bring glory to Him through their faithful works—we each should take some time to introspectively challenge ourselves, to see that we are fulfilling our God-ordained destinies.

  • Are we truly walking by faith?
  • Are we living and walking by sight?
  • Are we obeying the commandments of God? Or are we trying to pick and choose which to obey?
  • Are we willfully available to let the Lord use us for His glory? Or are we seeking personal glory?
  • Are we doing the good works prepared for us to do? Or are we avoiding works due to selfishness?
  • Are we glorifying the Lord in our marriages, family, and relationships?
  • Are we glorifying the Lord in our neighborhoods and the marketplace?

This sampling of questions only scratches the surface of personal self-examination. More can be added to the above list, but what is most critical is taking the time as admonished by Paul in his instruction to the Corinthians, to test and examine ourselves so we might bring glory to the Lord:

“Test yourselves to see if you are in the faith; examine yourselves! Or do you not recognize this about yourselves that Yeshua the Messiah is in you—unless indeed you fail the test?”(2 Corinthians 13:5).

May we each be strengthened in our resolve to glorify the Lord, by our faithful works to persevere to the end! (Click to Source)

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TorahScope – Pequdei (Accounts) – “Weight of Glory” – FEBRUARY 28, 2014

Pequdei (Accounts) – “Weight of Glory”

The eleventh and final parashah of the Book of Exodus comes to an exciting conclusion with the appearance of the glory of God in the completed Tabernacle. Exodus 40:34 tells us, “the cloud covered the Tent of Meeting, and the Presence of the Lord [kavod Adonai, hwhy dAbk] filled the Tabernacle” (NJPS).

For the past ten weeks, since the introduction of Moses in Shemot, the Israelites have been set on a soul-searching journey into the wilderness. It began with the deliverance and Exodus from Egypt, and it now culminates with God’s glory residing in their midst. If you did not know any better, you might think that a considerable amount of time has passed because the people have been through an intense period of getting to know their Creator. But instead, it has just been over one year since Moses first appeared and demanded that the Egyptian Pharaoh let them go. The Tabernacle was assembled on the first day of the first month of the second year following the Exodus (Exodus 40:17). With the Tabernacle now constructed and ready to go, the assembly of Israel would pack it up and move at the Holy One’s explicit direction:

“Then the cloud covered the tent of meeting, and the glory of the Lord filled the tabernacle. And Moses was not able to enter the tent of meeting because the cloud had settled on it, and the glory of the Lord filled the tabernacle. And throughout all their journeys whenever the cloud was taken up from over the tabernacle, the sons of Israel would set out; but if the cloud was not taken up, then they did not set out until the day when it was taken up. For throughout all their journeys, the cloud of the Lord was on the tabernacle by day, and there was fire in it by night, in the sight of all the house of Israel” (Exodus 40:34-38).

In just over a year, this camp of Hebrew men, women, children, and integrated sojourners, constituted the emerging nation of Israel. This former rabble of slaves was now a body of free men and women chosen by God to be “a kingdom of priests and a holy nation” (Exodus 19:6), being raised up as a light to the world to convey His goodness to all (cf. Isaiah 42:6).

Through Moses, the Lord has revealed just enough about Himself and what He requires for His glory to reside among humans with various sinful inclinations. For the first time since the Garden of Eden, God’s glory can dwell with people in a somewhat tangible and observable manner. The instructions for the Tabernacle, its implements, and the courtyard surrounding it have been followed explicitly. Then at the appointed time, Moses anointed and consecrated the Tabernacle and everything in it. He then washed Aaron and his sons and anointed them in their holy garments: “Thus did Moses: according to all that the Lord commanded him, so did he” (Exodus 40:16).

One can only imagine the excitement that was running through the hearts of the Ancient Israelites as the construction project came to completion. Remember that over the course of the previous year the Lord had revealed a tremendous amount about who He is and what He requires of His people. Israel had witnessed the judgment upon Egypt. They saw the ten plagues and the devastation they caused, and they benefited from the Passover offering by avoiding the death of the firstborn. The miracles at the Red Sea crossing were still etched in their memories. The trauma of hearing the voice of God from the trembling mountain and the unanimous decision to let Moses be their mediator could never be forgotten. Receiving the Ten Commandments and other instructions started to outline rules and regulations for human interactions and how Israel would be formed as a nation.

Of course, the incident of the golden calf had horrific consequences. Not only did judgment fall upon the people by the sword-wielding Levites, but a plague sent by the Lord judged all whose hearts were not right (Exodus 32:35). If you will recall, the material needs for the Tabernacle were mentioned in the text before the rebellion of idol worship occurred. God used the remorse, and perhaps even guilt, of these incidents, to generate an overwhelming response when the material was finally gathered. As we reviewed last week in V’yakheil(Exodus 35:1-38:20), hearts were stirred and the outpouring was so great that the people were ordered to stop.

God’s Glory

As I meditated upon this week’s Torah portion, a summary of the Book of Exodus kept coming into my mind. It was incredible to comprehend what happened to Ancient Israel in just a little over a year of real time. From the bonds and burden of human slavery to encampment around the Tabernacle, this was quite a journey. The weight of God’s glory (kavod, dwbK) was now in their midst—rather than the yoke of servitude. Once the glory of God fell, Moses was unable to enter the Tent of Meeting:

Moses could not enter the Tent of Meeting, for the cloud rested upon it, and the glory of Hashem filled the Tabernacle” (Exodus 40:35, ATS).

Apparently, the presence of the Holy One of Israel was so intense that human interaction with Him was difficult to achieve. Even the beloved Moses was hindered from entering the Tent of Meeting. As I thought about this, I wondered about other recorded times that the glory of God fell upon Israel.

The completion of Solomon’s Temple was a time when the glory of God fell upon the Israelites gathered. Similar to what occurred in the wilderness, the priests were unable to enter because of the intense presence of God:

“It happened that when the priests came from the holy place, the cloud filled the house of the Lord, so that the priests could not stand to minister because of the cloud, for the glory of the Lord filled the house of the Lord” (1 Kings 8:10-11).

“[I]n unison when the trumpeters and the singers were to make themselves heard with one voice to praise and to glorify the Lord, and when they lifted up their voice accompanied by trumpets and cymbals and instruments of music, and when they praised the Lord saying,He indeed is good for His lovingkindness is everlasting,’ then the house, the house of theLord, was filled with a cloud, so that the priests could not stand to minister because of the cloud, for the glory of the Lord filled the house of God” (2 Chronicles 5:13-14).

According to the statements about the completion of the Tabernacle, and the testimonies from when the Temple of Solomon was dedicated, the manifestations of the glory of Godwere so intense that those gathered were either prevented from moving, or perhaps even forced to bow down. While considering these passages, I wondered about the times when I have felt the literal weight of God’s glory in my own spiritual experiences over the years.

Psalm 22:3 immediately comes to my mind: “Yet You are holy, O You who are enthroned upon the praises of Israel.” There have been times during praise and worship when I have felt the weight of God’s glory in the room where I have been worshipping. These have been very special times when the Lord has ministered to me.

As I pondered this thought, I was reminded of a vision from the Prophet Isaiah, which in some way conveys how one might respond if he or she were standing before the Throne of God:

“In the year of King Uzziah’s death I saw the Lord sitting on a throne, lofty and exalted, with the train of His robe filling the temple. Seraphim stood above Him, each having six wings: with two he covered his face, and with two he covered his feet, and with two he flew. And one called out to another and said, ‘Holy, Holy, Holy, is the Lord of hosts, the whole earth is full of His glory.’ And the foundations of the thresholds trembled at the voice of him who called out, while the temple was filling with smoke. Then I said, ‘Woe is me, for I am ruined! Because I am a man of unclean lips, and I live among a people of unclean lips; for my eyes have seen the King, the Lord of hosts’” (Isaiah 6:1-5).

For some reason, whenever I think of this passage, I envision Isaiah prostrated on the ground, barely looking up at the Throne of God, crying out for our mercy before the Holy One in light of the exposure of his human sins and limitations. Here, Isaiah confesses his state of total sinfulness. Isaiah says that he is a person of unclean lips, and lives with those who likewise have unclean lips.

Contemplating this passage, I was reminded of the title of this week’s text, Pequdei or “Accounts.” As it begins, we see the amount of actual weight in the precious metals and jewels used in the Tabernacle project (cf. Exodus 39). For some reason, the Lord reminds us that He is very mindful of particulars. Then without hesitation, I recalled a passage in the Gospels from the lips of Yeshua:

“But I tell you that every careless word that people speak, they shall give an accounting for it in the day of judgment. For by your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned” (Matthew 12:36-37).

I thought about all of the careless words that come from human beings’ unclean lips. Note how Yeshua made this statement when He was being accused of being demon possessed:

“But if I cast out demons by the Spirit of God, then the kingdom of God has come upon you. Or how can anyone enter the strong man’s house and carry off his property, unless he first binds the strong man? And then he will plunder his house. He who is not with Me is against Me; and he who does not gather with Me scatters. Therefore I say to you, any sin and blasphemy shall be forgiven people, but blasphemy against the Spirit shall not be forgiven.Whoever speaks a word against the Son of Man, it shall be forgiven him; but whoever speaks against the Holy Spirit, it shall not be forgiven him, either in this age or in the age to come. Either make the tree good and its fruit good, or make the tree bad and its fruit bad; for the tree is known by its fruit. You brood of vipers, how can you, being evil, speak what is good? For the mouth speaks out of that which fills the heart. The good man brings out of his good treasure what is good; and the evil man brings out of hisevil treasure what is evil” (Matthew 12:28-35).

This week (in 2003) I was made aware of a person who believed that a gospel presentation which was recently given was actually from Satan. This was rather interesting, because it was made from viewing a videotape. If this individual had looked a bit more closely at the video, then he would have observed a number of people prostrated on the floor and on their knees. Saying that something comes from the Devil is a major accusation. Was the presence of God present at the event recorded? In my opinion, there certainly were many evidences of His presence from the testimonies that came forth. I dare say it would have been best for this person to reserve his judgment, pending future evaluation.

While reflecting on these things, I caught myself and began praying for the person who believed the work of the Holy Spirit was demonic. I began praying for his soul, knowing that he may be unable to discern or differentiate between the acts of the Devil and the acts of the Most High. I prayed that he was simply immature in his spiritual walk, and that the Lord convict him of any wrongdoing. I also found myself confessing any unloving thoughts I had when I initially heard these accusations. To be fair, I know that I can also misunderstand the ways of the Lord and make incorrect conclusions.

Weight of Glory

As you can see from Pequdei, we have come a long way from meditating on the history of Israel’s deliverance from Egypt to the introduction of God’s glory in the Tabernacle. In many respects, this is how the study of God’s Word is to cleanse us of unrighteousness—by reminding us of our shortcomings and our need for a Savior. Without Yeshua’s precious blood covering us, and the unconditional love He has shown for us—those of us with unclean lips, living among those with unclean lips, would never be able to come into God’s presence. My prayer is that each of us would seek the place where the weight of His glory would be upon us continually as our lips offer Him praise!

“Through Him then, let us continually offer up a sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of lips that give thanks to His name” (Hebrews 13:15).

Click to http://outreachisrael.net/torahscope/2013-2014/02_exodus/11_pequkei.html

TeshuvahRoad

Torah Commentary – THEY DID, SO HE DID – Day 28, Month 12 (Adar), February 28, 2014

Torah Commentary

Exodus 38:21-40:38, 1 Kings 7:40-50, 1 Cor 6-10

THEY DID, SO HE DID

*My apologies as I got ahead last week. Maybe a message we needed twice?*

Have you ever thought that serving God was hard work sometimes? I am sure the Hebrews had this thought going through their minds once in a while. I mean Hashem has brought them out of Egypt where they were doing quite a but of building and here they are again, building. This time it is not for a Pharaoh, it is for God! This makes a big difference in attitude, but you still go to bed at night tired and wake with a couple of aching muscles!

Truth is, life is hard work sometimes, no matter what you do. Being part of God’s family does not give us a free ride through life. In fact, at times it adds more to our lives. Just think, before you knew Him you did not take time to pray, well maybe in times of trouble. You did not take time to study His Word or find ways to live out that Word. You sure did not give of your resources and time for Him. Life in ways may have been easier, but it sure was not as rewarding.

This may have been the attitude of the Hebrews the day they brought all the finished materials for the Tabernacle to Moses. I love how David Stern translates chapter 39, verse 43. With the materials at his feet, it says, “Moses saw all the work, and – there is was! – they had done it! Exactly as Adonai had ordered, they had done it. And Moshe blessed them.” I would imagine that Moses did bless them! Here is this group that is best known for grumbling and complaining, and they had set their minds to a task for Hashem, and done it! It was sure a proud moment for Pastor Moses, but the best was to come.

The Hebrews get to work setting up the Tabernacle, everything in it’s place as Moses was instructing them. After all this was a pattern of what Moses had seen in the Heavens, so he knew just where it all went. Board upon board, basin, menorah,  curtains and the Ark. Everything in it’s place. Finally the screen for the outer courtyard and it’s curtain, then it happens.

The cloud that had been guiding them through the dessert started to move. It covered the tent of meeting and the glory of The Holy One filled the Tabernacle. The glory was so strong that Moses was unable to enter! I wonder how many people cared about the long hours of the previous days or the slight pain in their muscles! Not a one, I am sure!

Today we build a spiritual tabernacle, not with our hands, but with people’s lives. We await a time in which the third temple will be built in Jerusalem, Messiah will return and His Kingdom will be upon this earth. At that time we will see the spiritual and the natural come together on this earth before our eyes. What a day!

Until that day, we work. We work to build His kingdom through our lives. We build through holding firm in our faith. We build when we walk in obedience to His Torah. We become the revelation of Hashem on this earth for all to see!

Question, how is the glory in your life and mine? Is it enough to turn heads without a word being spoken? It should, but for most of us, including myself, we have to admit, we are not there. What is the answer? Keep looking at His pattern; keep asking that our lives would be conformed into His image, not our neighbors. Keep studying, praying and changing. Keep waiting for the cloud to come, hover over us, and fill our Tabernacles with His glory for all the world to see.

Click to http://www.joinedtohashem.org/torah/toraha.html

TeshuvahRoad

Torah Commentary – THEY DID, SO HE DID – Joined To HaShem – February 20, 2014

Torah Commentary

Exodus 38:21-40:38, 1 Kings 7:40-50, 1 Cor 6-10

THEY DID, SO HE DID

Have you ever thought that serving God was hard work sometimes? I am sure the Hebrews had this thought going through their minds once in a while. I mean Hashem has brought them out of Egypt where they were doing quite a but of building and here they are again, building. This time it is not for a Pharaoh, it is for God! This makes a big difference in attitude, but you still go to bed at night tired and wake with a couple of aching muscles!

Truth is, life is hard work sometimes, no matter what you do. Being part of God’s family does not give us a free ride through life. In fact, at times it adds more to our lives. Just think, before you knew Him you did not take time to pray, well maybe in times of trouble. You did not take time to study His Word or find ways to live out that Word. You sure did not give of your resources and time for Him. Life in ways may have been easier, but it sure was not as rewarding.

This may have been the attitude of the Hebrews the day they brought all the finished materials for the Tabernacle to Moses. I love how David Stern translates chapter 39, verse 43. With the materials at his feet, it says, “Moses saw all the work, and – there is was! – they had done it! Exactly as Adonai had ordered, they had done it. And Moshe blessed them.” I would imagine that Moses did bless them! Here is this group that is best known for grumbling and complaining, and they had set their minds to a task for Hashem, and done it! It was sure a proud moment for Pastor Moses, but the best was to come.

The Hebrews get to work setting up the Tabernacle, everything in it’s place as Moses was instructing them. After all this was a pattern of what Moses had seen in the Heavens, so he knew just where it all went. Board upon board, basin, menorah,  curtains and the Ark. Everything in it’s place. Finally the screen for the outer courtyard and it’s curtain, then it happens.

The cloud that had been guiding them through the dessert started to move. It covered the tent of meeting and the glory of The Holy One filled the Tabernacle. The glory was so strong that Moses was unable to enter! I wonder how many people cared about the long hours of the previous days or the slight pain in their muscles! Not a one, I am sure!

Today we build a spiritual tabernacle, not with our hands, but with people’s lives. We await a time in which the third temple will be built in Jerusalem, Messiah will return and His Kingdom will be upon this earth. At that time we will see the spiritual and the natural come together on this earth before our eyes. What a day!

Until that day, we work. We work to build His kingdom through our lives. We build through holding firm in our faith. We build when we walk in obedience to His Torah. We become the revelation of Hashem on this earth for all to see!

Question, how is the glory in your life and mine? Is it enough to turn heads without a word being spoken? It should, but for most of us, including myself, we have to admit, we are not there. What is the answer? Keep looking at His pattern; keep asking that our lives would be conformed into His image, not our neighbors. Keep studying, praying and changing. Keep waiting for the cloud to come, hover over us, and fill our Tabernacles with His glory for all the world to see.

Click to http://www.joinedtohashem.org/torah/toraha.html

TeshuvahRoad