TORAHSCOPE YITRO – Jethro “Blind Faith” – 9 February, 2020

Yitro

Jethro

“Blind Faith”

Exodus 18:1-20:23[26]
Isaiah 6:1-7:6; 9:5-6[6-7] (A); 6:1-13 (S)


by Mark Huey

The trials and tribulations of Ancient Israel’s deliverance from Egypt continue in this week’s Torah reading, with particular emphasis on the Ten Commandments that are received while the people were encamped at Mount Sinai. After observing the many miracles performed by God to free them from the bondage of Egyptian slavery—including the ten plagues, the cloud and pillar of fire, the parting of the Red Sea, the destruction of the Egyptian army, making bitter water potable, provision of manna and quail, providing water from a rock, and defeating the Amalekites—the Israelites were definitely in awe of the power of their God. By experiencing and witnessing these visible, and in many respects, tangible acts of punishment, provision, and protection—Israel was prepared to do whatever the Lord declared, before even knowing what He was going to require. Accordingly, one might conclude that the people were finally at a point where they exhibited a “blind faith,” willing to follow the instruction of the Lord regardless of the outcome.

Jethro’s Counsel

Before the dramatic encounter with the Almighty, where the Ten Commandments would be issued, we are told about the wisdom imparted to Moses by his father-in-law Jethro. The importance of establishing a reasonable way to judge circumstances within the camp of Israel was proposed by Jethro. Jethro recognized that the people were relying solely on the judgment of Moses to resolve disputes. With thousands of people, and all of the problems that might ensue from human interaction, it was obvious to Jethro that Moses needed to delegate some responsibility to other leaders. These would be individuals who feared God, knew the truth, and hated dishonest gain:

“It came about the next day that Moses sat to judge the people, and the people stood about Moses from the morning until the evening. Now when Moses’ father-in-law saw all that he was doing for the people, he said, ‘What is this thing that you are doing for the people? Why do you alone sit as judge and all the people stand about you from morning until evening?’ Moses said to his father-in-law, ‘Because the people come to me to inquire of God. When they have a dispute, it comes to me, and I judge between a man and his neighbor and make known the statutes of God and His laws.’ Moses’ father-in-law said to him, ‘The thing that you are doing is not good. You will surely wear out, both yourself and these people who are with you, for the task is too heavy for you; you cannot do it alone. Now listen to me: I will give you counsel, and God be with you. You be the people’s representative before God, and you bring the disputes to God, then teach them the statutes and the laws, and make known to them the way in which they are to walk and the work they are to do. Furthermore, you shall select out of all the people able men who fear God, men of truth, those who hate dishonest gain; and you shall place these over them as leaders of thousands, of hundreds, of fifties and of tens. Let them judge the people at all times; and let it be that every major dispute they will bring to you, but every minor dispute they themselves will judge. So it will be easier for you, and they will bear the burden with you. If you do this thing and God so commands you, then you will be able to endure, and all these people also will go to their place in peace.’ So Moses listened to his father-in-law and did all that he had said. Moses chose able men out of all Israel and made them heads over the people, leaders of thousands, of hundreds, of fifties and of tens. They judged the people at all times; the difficult dispute they would bring to Moses, but every minor dispute they themselves would judge. Then Moses bade his father-in-law farewell, and he went his way into his own land” (Exodus 18:13-27).

From the insertion of this encounter with Jethro, juxtaposed between the first few months of the deliverance from Egypt and the reception of the Decalogue, it is reasonable to conclude that God was concerned about an orderly means for Ancient Israel to govern itself. God is not a God of confusion (1 Corinthians 14:33). What is seen here in Yitro would later be integrated into many different judicial systems throughout the world. Note that Jethro still advised Moses to remain Israel’s representative before God, with the admonition to teach the statutes and laws of God. Moses did not relinquish his role as a mediator before the Holy One, but he did not need to have to be burdened with every single issue that might have arisen among the people.

Preparing to Receive the Decalogue

After the departure of Jethro, our Torah portion turns to one of the most incredible events ever recorded in human history. The Creator God descended from Heaven and spoke the Ten Commandments to the people of Israel gathered at the base of Mount Sinai. But before this dramatic encounter occurred, the Lord had some extraordinary words for Moses to communicate to them:

“Moses went up to God, and the LORD called to him from the mountain, saying, ‘Thus you shall say to the house of Jacob and tell the sons of Israel: “You yourselves have seen what I did to the Egyptians, and how I bore you on eagles’ wings, and brought you to Myself. Now then, if you will indeed obey My voice and keep My covenant, then you shall be My own possession among all the peoples, for all the earth is Mine; and you shall be to Me a kingdom of priests and a holy nation.” These are the words that you shall speak to the sons of Israel’” (Exodus 19:3-6).

Here the Almighty summoned Moses to the mountain to hear this declaration, so that he would share it with Israel. In some opening remarks, God reminded Moses about what He had done to the Egyptians, and how He personally protected the Israelites during their deliverance from slavery and along the path they were traversing. Obviously, there was no need for the Ancient Israelites to take any credit for being at a place of relative safety from their enemies.

There are then some incredible words, which should bring both comfort and awe to each of us who read or hear these words today. In order to be regarded as God’s possession among all the peoples, and be considered a kingdom of priests and a holy nation—Israel was to obey Him. While on the surface, obeying God might sound somewhat doable, especially given anticipated blessings—but what we obviously discover from the remainder of too much of the Torah and Tanakh is that Israel inevitably failed over and over to obey. However, at this particular time in the history of Israel, given the preponderance of recent miracles and deliverance from enemies, and what could be considered a “blind faith,” the Israelites collectively responded to this proposition with a resounding affirmation:

“All the people answered together and said, ‘All that the LORD has spoken we will do!’ And Moses brought back the words of the people to the LORD. The LORD said to Moses, ‘Behold, I will come to you in a thick cloud, so that the people may hear when I speak with you and may also believe in you forever.’ Then Moses told the words of the people to the LORD. The LORD also said to Moses, ‘Go to the people and consecrate them today and tomorrow, and let them wash their garments; and let them be ready for the third day, for on the third day the LORD will come down on Mount Sinai in the sight of all the people. You shall set bounds for the people all around, saying, “Beware that you do not go up on the mountain or touch the border of it; whoever touches the mountain shall surely be put to death. No hand shall touch him, but he shall surely be stoned or shot through; whether beast or man, he shall not live.” When the ram’s horn [shofar, CJB] sounds a long blast, they shall come up to the mountain.’ So Moses went down from the mountain to the people and consecrated the people, and they washed their garments. He said to the people, ‘Be ready for the third day; do not go near a woman’” (Exodus 19:8-15).

Whether this positive response to do all that the Lord would speak, even before He had spoken it—from all the people of Israel—was a reflection of their awe for what the Lord had just done, or whether it was really just enthusiasm being caught up in the moment, the fact is there was a genuine desire of the Ancient Israelites to obey the Lord. Their response must have pleased Him. Yet, immediately following this the Lord began to relay to Moses some warnings about what was to be expected when He would descend upon Mount Sinai. The Lord wanted His people to hear His voice, but He knew that a certain amount of personal consecration was required in order to be prepared to hear Him speak.

Instruction came forth so that, for a three-day period, the people would consecrate themselves through washings and separation from sexual contact. A prohibition about even touching the mountain was included, to keep the people from defiling it before the Holy One descended. Eventually a blast from a ram’s horn would signal that they could approach the base of the mountain, but still not touch it. God was very concerned about protecting the people from their over zealousness to approach the mountain. When God did finally descend to Mount Sinai, it was accompanied with great thunder and lightning:

“So it came about on the third day, when it was morning, that there were thunder and lightning flashes and a thick cloud upon the mountain and a very loud trumpet sound, so that all the people who were in the camp trembled. And Moses brought the people out of the camp to meet God, and they stood at the foot of the mountain. Now Mount Sinai was all in smoke because the LORD descended upon it in fire; and its smoke ascended like the smoke of a furnace, and the whole mountain quaked violently. When the sound of the trumpet grew louder and louder, Moses spoke and God answered him with thunder. The LORD came down on Mount Sinai, to the top of the mountain; and the LORD called Moses to the top of the mountain, and Moses went up. Then the LORD spoke to Moses, ‘Go down, warn the people, so that they do not break through to the LORD to gaze, and many of them perish. Also let the priests who come near to the LORD consecrate themselves, or else the LORD will break out against them.’ Moses said to the LORD, ‘The people cannot come up to Mount Sinai, for You warned us, saying, “Set bounds about the mountain and consecrate it.”’ Then the LORD said to him, ‘Go down and come up again, you and Aaron with you; but do not let the priests and the people break through to come up to the LORD, or He will break forth upon them.’ So Moses went down to the people and told them” (Exodus 19:16-25).

This must have been an awesome sight to behold. After three days of being consecrated for the event, Israelites were gathered by Moses at the base of the mountain, as it turned ominously dark. A cloud descended, accompanied by thunder, lightning, and a trembling quake of the whole mountain. Then as the trumpet sounded, the Lord actually responded to the warning signal by thundering back, and calling Moses to join Him at the top of the mountain. It is difficult to imagine what this must have been like—despite a few attempts by motion pictures like The Ten Commandments or Prince of Egypt to try to portray it.

If you have ever been in a hurricane, coupled with an earthquake, while a tornado is raging by, with lightning lighting up the sky, as you gazed upon a fire blasting volcanic like smoke in the distance—perhaps you could envision this scene, sort of. If nothing else, the fear of the Lord would be an overwhelming emotion, because there would be so much out of your control, that you can only stand there in utter terror. And yet, as these types of natural phenomena are described in Yitro, Moses ascended the mountain to receive the Ten Words. The final warning regarding the priests kept them from touching the mountain, but there was one exception made for Aaron. So, the scene was set for Israel to receive the Word of the Lord from Mount Sinai.

The Decalogue is Spoken

The Holy One spoke forth the Ten Commandments, or the Ten Words, heard by all. These instructions are regarded as perhaps the most important and influential of Divine ordinances, with a resonating effect on all of humankind—most especially those of both Judaism and Christianity:

“Then God spoke all these words, saying, ‘I am the LORD your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of slavery. You shall have no other gods before Me. You shall not make for yourself an idol, or any likeness of what is in heaven above or on the earth beneath or in the water under the earth. You shall not worship them or serve them; for I, the LORD your God, am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children, on the third and the fourth generations of those who hate Me,  but showing lovingkindness to thousands, to those who love Me and keep My commandments. You shall not take the name of the LORD your God in vain, for the LORD will not leave him unpunished who takes His name in vain. Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is a sabbath of the LORD your God; in it you shall not do any work, you or your son or your daughter, your male or your female servant or your cattle or your sojourner who stays with you. For in six days the LORD made the heavens and the earth, the sea and all that is in them, and rested on the seventh day; therefore the LORD blessed the sabbath day and made it holy. Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be prolonged in the land which the LORD your God gives you. You shall not murder. You shall not commit adultery. You shall not steal. You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor. You shall not covet your neighbor’s house; you shall not covet your neighbor’s wife or his male servant or his female servant or his ox or his donkey or anything that belongs to your neighbor” (Exodus 20:1-17).

Here, with an entire generation of Israelites to witness and hear, the Lord God proclaimed these Ten Words, which have become foundational building blocks and parameters for living life in a manner that loves Him and neighbor. In the first four commandments, the focus seen is on human relationships with God, and how He wants to be worshipped and followed. The last six commandments deal primarily with human interactions with others, and how God wants us to treat our fellow human beings. Without going into great detail about the specifics of each of these words, when men or women faithfully apply these words to their daily walk with the Lord, they will inevitably be adhering to what Yeshua defined as the greatest commandments in the Torah:

“One of them, a lawyer, asked Him a question, testing Him, ‘Teacher, which is the great commandment in the Law?’ And He said to him, ‘“YOU SHALL LOVE THE LORD YOUR GOD WITH ALL YOUR HEART, AND WITH ALL YOUR SOUL, AND WITH ALL YOUR MIND” [Deuteronomy 6:5]. ‘This is the great and foremost commandment. The second is like it, “YOU SHALL LOVE YOUR NEIGHBOR AS YOURSELF” [Leviticus 18:5]. On these two commandments depend the whole Law and the Prophets’” (Matthew 22:35-40).

A Change of Mind

The Israelites had pledged, rather blindly we may say, to do all that the Lord had spoken—without even knowing what He was going to say (Exodus 19:8). They probably liked the idea of having this awesome God, who had delivered them from the Egyptians through a series of miracles, and helped defeat the dreaded Amalekites, speak to them. He was the God who was going to make them great, after all. But Israel’s initial response, to obey all that the Lord spoke, was perhaps being reevaluated by some, as they heard His commandments reverberating from the mountaintop.

After the Ten Words had been declared, we find a terrified people, who had just witnessed an incredible event as the voice of the Lord literally permeated their beings. Despite complying with the request to maintain a distance from the base of the mountain, the visible, audible, and tangible realities of the Creator God speaking directly to them must have been overwhelming—because they declared that if they heard God speak to them, they would die. We quickly discover that after hearing the Ten Words, the Israelites impulsively requested Moses to maintain his intermediary position, as their point of contact with the Holy One:

“All the people perceived the thunder and the lightning flashes and the sound of the trumpet and the mountain smoking; and when the people saw it, they trembled and stood at a distance. Then they said to Moses, ‘Speak to us yourself and we will listen; but let not God speak to us, or we will die.’ Moses said to the people, ‘Do not be afraid; for God has come in order to test you, and in order that the fear of Him may remain with you, so that you may not sin.’ So the people stood at a distance, while Moses approached the thick cloud where God was. Then the LORD said to Moses, ‘Thus you shall say to the sons of Israel, “You yourselves have seen that I have spoken to you from heaven. You shall not make other gods besides Me; gods of silver or gods of gold, you shall not make for yourselves. You shall make an altar of earth for Me, and you shall sacrifice on it your burnt offerings and your peace offerings, your sheep and your oxen; in every place where I cause My name to be remembered, I will come to you and bless you. If you make an altar of stone for Me, you shall not build it of cut stones, for if you wield your tool on it, you will profane it. And you shall not go up by steps to My altar, so that your nakedness will not be exposed on it”’” (Exodus 20:18-26).

Moses listened to the requests of the Israelites, and responded with an explanation for why the Lord had allowed them to hear His audible voice. Apparently, this unique encounter by the Holy One, with His chosen people, was to test them. The Lord wanted the people to fear Him with a reverence that would help them avoid sin, and be genuine in following His instructions. By hearing His commands in this dramatic fashion, the Israelites were so awestruck, that they immediately asked Moses to be their mediator before God.

Without hesitation, Moses approached God in the thick of the cloud, while the Israelites stood at a distance. Some final instructions were given to Moses that deal specifically with avoiding making idols of precious metals and constructing a proper altar with uncut stones for various sacrifices. Moses did not exhibit any of the trepidation of the Lord, because by this point in time Moses had endured so much intimacy with the Lord, that he realized his position as a mediator for the people was secure.

What about the blind faith declarations of the Israelites a few days earlier? Had this close encounter with the Holy One changed their minds, as they had decided it would be better to let an intermediary act as a go-between with the Holy One?

Blind Faith

It is difficult with certainty to determine what made the Ancient Israelites want a mediator, rather than have direct communication from the Almighty. Perhaps it was simply a fear of physical life, because of the dangers posed by wandering too close to the mountain or the difficulty of being in the presence of holiness. On the other hand, is it possible that the pure vocal declaration of the Ten Commandments from the Holy One of Israel, reverberated with such a strong chord in their hearts, that there was literally a physical manifestation experiencing heart palpitations and other threatening actions?

The significance of the giving of the Ten Commandments has allowed me to realize that this formal delivery to Ancient Israel—may just well be a codification of a wide number of instructions that have already been impressed onto the human conscience/mind/heart, as all people are made in God’s image. In his letter to the Romans, Paul mentioned how the nations can do things of God’s Torah, even if they do not formally have God’s Torah:

“For when Gentiles who do not have the Law do instinctively the things of the Law, these, not having the Law, are a law to themselves, in that they show the work of the Law written in their hearts, their conscience bearing witness and their thoughts alternately accusing or else defending them, on the day when, according to my gospel, God will judge the secrets of men through Messiah Yeshua” (Romans 2:14-16).

Every person, in some form or fashion, is going to be held accountable for keeping or violating God’s Law.

When you consider the giving of the Ten Commandments, are you at all complying with them? When you think about breaking an ordinance etched in stone with God’s finger, do you at all think about the scene of fire and smoke in which it was given to Ancient Israel? Even if you do not think about disregarding or disobeying any of Ten Commandments, are you ever caught minimally obeying them?

While you are considering this week’s Torah portion, try placing yourself at the base of Mount Sinai, and imagine the Ten Words of God coming forth from a fire-belching, smoking, and trembling mountain top. Pray through each of the commands, reading them out loud so that you hear them (cf. Romans 10:17), and ascertain just where you presently may be in your heart of hearts when it comes to following them.

Will you discover that there is another god in your life, or that an idol is taking up your time? Will you find that you have been profaning the name of the Lord in some of your thoughts or statements? Could you be approaching the Sabbath in ways that need improvement? Have you ever dishonored your parents or your ancestors? Have you been harboring some thoughts about murder, adultery, stealing, bearing false witness, or coveting something—which needs to be confessed and terminated?

Remember that the Ancient Israelites, who seemingly through a “blind faith,” initially had great intentions to do all that the Holy One spoke. But when the Lord did speak the Ten Commandments, the people rapidly turned to Moses because of their mortal fear, rather than press into the voice of God for their own benefit. Thankfully today, with the benefit of the arrival of Yeshua the Messiah onto the scene of history, all people can know that the penalty for breaking the instructions given to Moses and Ancient Israel has been remitted by His sacrifice! We simply have to acknowledge His sacrifice by faith, and receive permanent atonement and forgiveness for our violation of the Father’s commandments. Additionally, rather than being mortally afraid of the bellowing voice of the Holy One, those who are in Yeshua have the privilege of listening to the quiet still voice of the Spirit, as they seek Him in prayer, supplication, and worship.

I consider it a great blessing to be a part of the redeemed in Messiah, having the opportunity to learn more and more about my Creator and His ways, by studying the Torah. The Holy One still desires a people for His own possession, a kingdom of priests, and a holy nation (1 Peter 2:9). May we each be found faithful to be a part of this company of Believers! (Click to Source)

 

New King James Bible

 

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Weekly Torah Readings: B’shalah – From One New Man Bible translated by William Morford – Feb 7, 2020

B’shalah

13:17. And it was, when Pharaoh had sent the people out, that God did not lead them through the way of the land of the Philistines, although that was near, for God said, “Perhaps the people will change their minds when they see war, and return to Egypt.” 18. But God led the people about, through the way of the wilderness of the Reed Sea, and the children of Israel went up armed out of the land of Egypt. 19. And Moses took Joseph’s bones with him, for he had strictly sworn the children of Israel saying, “God will surely visit you and you will carry up my bones away from here with you.” 20. And they took their journey from Sukkot and camped in Itam, at the edge of the wilderness. 21. And the LORD* went before them by day in a pillar of cloud to lead them the way, and by night in a pillar of fire, to give them light, to go by day and night. 22. He did not take away the pillar of cloud by day, or the pillar of fire by night, from before the people.

Crossing the Reed Sea

14.1. And the LORD* spoke to Moses saying, 2. “Speak to the children of Israel, to turn and camp before Pi Hakhirot, between Migdol and the sea, over against Baal-Zephon: camp by the sea before it. 3. For Pharaoh will say of the children of Israel, ‘They are entangled in the land, the wilderness has shut them in.’ 4. And I shall harden Pharaoh’s heart so he will follow after them, and I shall be honored by Pharaoh and by his entire army, so the Egyptians will know that I am the LORD*.” And they did so.

14:5. And it was told the king of Egypt that the people fled, and the heart of Pharaoh and of his servants was turned against the people and they said, “Why have we done this, that we have let Israel go from serving us?” 6. And he made his chariot ready and took his people with him. 7. And he took six hundred chosen chariots and all the chariots of Egypt, and captains over every one of them. 8. And the LORD* strengthened the heart of Pharaoh king of Egypt and he pursued after the children of Israel, and the children of Israel went out with a high hand. 9. But the Egyptians pursued after them, all the horses and chariots of Pharaoh, his horsemen and his army, and overtook them camping by the sea, beside Pi Hakhirot, before Baal Zephon.

14:10. And when Pharaoh drew near, the children of Israel lifted up their eyes and, behold, the Egyptians marched after them, and they were greatly afraid, and the children of Israel cried out to the LORD*. 11. And they said to Moses, “Have you taken us away to die in the wilderness because there were no graves in Egypt? Why have you dealt like this with us, to carry us forth out of Egypt? 12. Is this not the word that we spoke to you in Egypt saying, Let us alone, so we can serve the Egyptians? For it is better for us to serve the Egyptians, than that we should die in the wilderness.” 13. And Moses said to the people, “Do not be in awe! Stand still! See the salvation of the LORD*, (2 Chr.20:17) which He will show you today, for the Egyptians whom you have seen today, you will see them again no more forever.

14. The LORD* will fight for you, and you will hold your peace.” (Deut. 1:30, 3:22)

14:15. And the LORD* said to Moses, “Why are you crying to Me? Tell the children of Israel to go forward, 16. and lift up your staff and stretch out your hand over the sea and divide it, and the children of Israel will go through the midst of the sea on dry ground. 17. And I AM, behold, I shall strengthen the hearts of the Egyptians and they will follow them and I shall get honor for Myself from Pharaoh, and from his whole army, his chariots, and his horsemen. 18. And the Egyptians will know that I AM the LORD*, when I have gotten honor for Myself from Pharaoh on his chariots and his horsemen.”

14:19. And the angel of God, who went before the camp of Israel, removed and went behind them, and the pillar of the cloud went from before their face and stood behind them. 20. And it came between the camp of the Egyptians and the camp of Israel and it was a cloud and darkness to them, but it gave light by night to these so that the one did not come near the other all night. 21. And Moses stretched out his hand over the sea, and the LORD* caused the sea to go back by a strong east wind all that night, and made the sea dry land, and the waters were divided. 22. And the children of Israel went into the midst of the sea on the dry ground, and the waters were a wall to them on their right hand and on their left. 23. And the Egyptians pursued and went in after them to the midst of the sea, all Pharaoh’s horses, his chariots, and his horsemen. 24. And it was, that in the morning watch the LORD* looked at the army of the Egyptians through the pillar of fire and of cloud, and caused confusion with the army of the Egyptians, 25. and took off their chariot wheels, so they drove them heavily so that the Egyptians said, “Let us flee from the face of Israel, for the LORD* is fighting for them against the Egyptians.”

14:26. And the LORD* said to Moses, “Stretch out your hand over the sea, so the waters will come again upon the Egyptians, their chariots, and their horsemen.”

27. And Moses stretched forth his hand over the sea, and the sea returned to its strength when the morning appeared. And the Egyptians fled against it and the LORD* overthrew the Egyptians in the midst of the sea. 28. And the waters returned and covered the chariots, the horsemen, and the entire army of Pharaoh that came into the sea after them. There remained not so much as one of them. 29. But the children of Israel walked on dry land in the midst of the sea and the waters were a wall to them on their right hand and on their left. 30. Thus the LORD* saved Israel that day out of the hand of the Egyptians and Israel saw the Egyptians dead upon the seashore. 31. And Israel saw that great work which the LORD* did upon the Egyptians and the people revered the LORD* and believed the LORD* and his servant Moses.

Victory Song

15.1. Then Moses and the children of Israel sang this song to the LORD* (Rev. 15:3) and spoke, saying: “I shall sing to the LORD*, for He has triumphed gloriously, He has thrown the horse and his rider into the sea. 2. A strong song and melody for the LORD* has become my salvation. This is my God and I shall praise Him; the God of my father and I will exalt Him! 3. The LORD* is a Man of War! The LORD* is His name. 4. He has cast Pharaoh’s chariots and his army into the sea, his chosen captains also are drowned in the Reed Sea. 5. The depths have covered them, they sank to the bottom like a stone. 6. Your right hand, LORD*, has become glorious in power. Your right hand, LORD*, has dashed the enemy in pieces. 7. And in the greatness of Your excellency You have overthrown those who rose up against You. You sent forth Your wrath, which consumed them as stubble. 8. And with the blast of Your nostrils the waters were gathered together, the floods stood upright as a heap, the depths were solidified in the heart of the sea. 9. The enemy said, ‘I shall pursue, I shall overtake, I shall divide the plunder. My lust will be satisfied upon them. I shall draw my sword, my hand will destroy them.’ 10. You did blow with your wind, the sea covered them: they sank like lead in the mighty waters. 11. Who is like You, LORD*, among the gods?! Who is like You, glorious in holiness, fearful in praises, doing wonders?! (Ps. 71:19) 12. You stretched out Your right hand, the earth swallowed them. 13. You in Your loving kindness have led out the people that You have redeemed. You have guided them in Your strength to Your Holy Habitation. 14. The people will hear and be in awe. Sorrow will take hold of the inhabitants of Philistia. 15. Then the chiefs of Edom will be amazed. Trembling will take hold of the mighty men of Moab. All the inhabitants of Canaan will melt away. 16. Fear and terror will fall on them. By the greatness of Your arm they will be as still as a stone, until Your people cross over, LORD*, until the people You have purchased cross over. 17. You will bring them in and plant them in the mountain of Your inheritance, the place, LORD*, You have made for Yourself to dwell in, the Sanctuary, O Lord, Your hands have established. 18. The LORD* will reign forever and ever. (Rev. 11:15) 19. For the horse of Pharaoh went into the sea with his chariots and with his horsemen, and again the LORD* brought the waters of the sea upon them, but the children of Israel went on dry land in the midst of the sea.”

Miriam’s Song

15:20. And Miriam the prophetess, the sister of Aaron, took a tambourine in her hand and all the women went out after her with tambourines and with dances. 21. And Miriam sang to them, “Sing to the LORD*, for He has triumphed gloriously. He has thrown the horse and his rider into the sea.”

15:22. So Moses brought Israel from the Reed Sea and they went out into the wilderness of Shur and they went three days in the wilderness and found no water.

23. And when they came to Marah, they could not drink of the waters of Marah, for they were bitter: therefore the name of it was called Marah. 24. And the people murmured against Moses saying, “What will we drink?” 25. And he cried to the LORD*, and the LORD* showed him a tree and he cast it into the waters, and the waters were made sweet. He made a statute and an ordinance there for them and there he proved to them 26. and said, “If you will diligently hearken to the voice of the LORD* your God and will do that which is right in His sight and will give ear to His commandments and keep all His statutes, I shall put none of these diseases upon you, which I have brought upon the Egyptians, for I AM the LORD* Who heals you.”

15:27. And they came to Elim, where there were twelve wells of water and seventy palm trees, and they camped there by the waters. 16.1. And they took their journey from Elim, and the entire congregation of the children of Israel came to the wilderness of Sin, which is between Elim and Sinai, on the fifteenth day of the second month after their departing from the land of Egypt.

After Victory, Complaining

16:2. And the whole congregation of the children of Israel murmured against Moses and Aaron in the wilderness. 3. And the children of Israel said to them, “Would that we had died by the hand of the LORD* in the land of Egypt, when we sat by the pots of meat, when we ate bread to the full. For you have brought us out into this wilderness, to kill this whole assembly with hunger.”

16:4. Then the LORD* said to Moses, “Look, I shall rain bread from heaven for you, and the people will go out and gather a day’s portion each day, so I can test them, whether or not they will walk in My Torah (Teaching). 5. And it will be that on the sixth day they will prepare what they bring in, and it will be twice as much as they gather daily.” 6. And Moses and Aaron said to all the children of Israel, “At evening, then you will know that the LORD* has brought you out from the land of Egypt. 7. And in the morning, then you will see the glory of the LORD*, for He heard your murmurings against the LORD*, and what are we that you murmur against us?” 8. Then Moses said, “This will be, when the LORD* gives you flesh to eat in the evening and bread to the full in the morning, for the LORD* heard your murmurings which you murmur against Him and what are we? Your murmurings are not against us, but against the LORD*.”

16:9. And Moses spoke to Aaron, “Say to the entire congregation of the children of Israel, Come near before the LORD*, for He has heard your murmurings!” 10. And it happened as Aaron spoke to the whole congregation of the children of Israel that they looked toward the wilderness and, behold, the glory of the LORD* appeared in the cloud.

The LORD* Provides

16:11. And the LORD* spoke to Moses saying, 12. “I have heard the murmurings of the children of Israel. Speak to them saying, ‘At evening you will eat flesh and in the morning you will be filled with bread, and you will know that I AM the LORD* your God.’” 13. And it was that at evening the quails came up and covered the camp, and in the morning the dew lay all around the camp. 14. And when the dew that lay evaporated, behold, upon the face of the wilderness something fine and scaly, as fine as the hoar frost on the ground. 15. And when the children of Israel saw it, they said to one another, “Man-hu?” They did not know what it was. And Moses said to them, “This is the bread which the LORD* has given you to eat. (John 6:31) 16. This is that which the LORD* has commanded, Each man gather it according to his eating, an omer for each person, according to the number of your persons: take for each person in his tent.”

16:17. The children of Israel did so and gathered; somemore, some less. 18. And when they measured it with an omer, the one who gathered much had nothing left over and the one who gathered little had no lack. (2 Cor. 8:15) Each person gathered according to his eating.

16:19. And Moses said, “Let no man leave any till morning.” 20. Nevertheless they did not listen to Moses, but some of them left of it until the morning and it bred worms and stank, and Moses was very angry with them. 21. And they gathered it every morning, each man according to his eating, and it melted when the sun grew hot. 22. And it was, on the sixth day they gathered a double portion, two omers for one person, and all the leaders of the congregation came and told Moses. 23. And he said to them, “This is what the LORD* has said, Tomorrow is the rest of the holy Sabbath to the LORD*: bake that which you will bake today, and boil what you will boil, and that which remains over lay up for you to be kept until the morning.” 24. And they laid it up till the morning, as Moses said. And it did not stink, neither was there any worm in it 25. and Moses said, “Eat that today, for today is a Sabbath to the LORD*, today you will not find it in the field. 26. Six days you will gather it, but on the seventh day, the Sabbath, in it there will be none.”

16:27. And it happened that some of the people went out on the seventh day to gather and they found none. 28. And the LORD* said to Moses, “How long do you refuse to keep My commandments and My Torah (Teaching)? 29. See, for the LORD* has given you the Sabbath, therefore He gives you the bread for two days on the sixth day. Each person stay in his place, let no man go out of his place on the seventh day.” 30. And the people rested on the seventh day. 31. And the House of Israel called the name of it Man. And it was like coriander seed, white, and the taste of it was like wafers made with honey.

16:32. And Moses said, “This is the thing that the LORD* commands. Fill an omer of it to be kept for your generations, so they can see the bread with which I have fed you in the wilderness, when I brought you out from the land of Egypt.” 33. And Moses said to Aaron, “Take a pot and put an omer full of man(na) in it, and lay it up before the LORD*, to be kept for your generations.” 34. So Aaron laid it up as the LORD* commanded Moses, to be kept before the Testimony. 35. And the children of Israel ate man(na) for forty years, until they came to an inhabited land. They ate man(na) until they came to the borders of the land of Canaan. 36. Now an omer is the tenth part of an ephah.

Strike the Rock for Water

17.1. And the whole congregation of the children of Israel journeyed from the wilderness of Sin, by their travels, according to the commandment of the LORD* and pitched in Refidim, but there was no water for the people to drink. 2. Therefore the people contended with Moses and said, “Give us water so we can drink.” And Moses said to them, “Why argue with me? Why do you tempt the LORD*?” 3. And the people were thirsty for water there, and the people murmured against Moses and said, “Why did you bring us up out of Egypt to kill us and our children and our cattle with thirst?”

17:4. And Moses cried to the LORD* saying, “What will I do with this people? They are almost ready to stone me.” 5. And the LORD* said to Moses, “Go on before the people and take the elders of Israel with you, and your staff with which you struck the river. Take it in your hand and go. 6. Behold, I shall stand in front of you there on the rock in Horeb and you will strike the rock, and there water will come out of it, so the people can drink.” And Moses did so in the sight of the elders of Israel. 7. And he called the name of the place Massah (Test) and Meribah (Contention), because of the chiding of the children of Israel and because they tempted the LORD* by saying, “Is the LORD* among us or not?”

Aaron and Hur Hold up Moses’ Hands

17:8. Then Amalek came and fought with Israel in Refidim. 9. And Moses said to Joshua (Y’hoshea), “Choose men from among us and go out, fight with Amalek. Tomorrow I shall stand on the top of the hill with the staff of God in my hand.” 10. So Joshua did as Moses told him and fought with Amalek, and Moses, Aaron, and Hur went up to the top of the hill. 11. And it happened, when Moses held up his hand, that Israel prevailed: and when he let down his hand, Amalek prevailed. 12. But Moses’ hands were heavy so they took a stone and put it under him and he sat on it, and Aaron and Hur held up his hands, one on one side and the other on the other side, and his hands were steady until the going down of the sun. 13. And Joshua weakened Amalek and his people with the edge of the sword.

17:14. And the LORD* said to Moses, “Write this in a book for  a memorial and repeat it in the ears of Joshua, for I shall utterly blot out the remembrance of Amalek from under heaven.” 15. And Moses built an altar and called the name of it Adonai-Nissi, The LORD* is My Miracle. 16. For he said, “Because the LORD* has sworn that the LORD* will have war with Amalek from generation to generation.” (Click to Source)

 

New King James Bible

 

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Happy Passover! – Torah Portion – the One New Man Bible – Passover First Day – April 20, 2019

(Exodus 12:21-51)

12:21. Then Moses called for all the elders of Israel and said to them, “Choose and take for yourselves a lamb according to your families, and kill the Passover lamb. 22. And you will take a bunch of hyssop and dip it in the blood that is in the basin and strike the lintel and the two side posts with the blood that is in the basin, and none of you will go out of the door of his house until the morning. 23. For the LORD* will pass through to strike the Egyptians, and when He sees the blood upon the lintel and on the two side posts, the LORD* will pass over the door and will not allow the destroyer to come in to your houses to strike you. 24. And you will observe this thing for an ordinance for you and your sons forever. 25. And it will be, when you come to the land which the LORD* will give you, according as He has promised, that you will keep this service. 26. And it will be, when your children say to you, ‘What do you mean by this service?’ 27. That you will say, ‘It is the sacrifice of the LORD’s* Passover, Who passed over the houses of the children of Israel in Egypt, when He struck the Egyptians and delivered our houses.’” And the people bowed their heads and worshipped. 28. And the children of Israel went away and did so, as the LORD* had commanded Moses and Aaron, so they did.

Firstborn, Last of the Plagues

12:29. (10thAnd it was at midnight that the LORD* struck all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, from the firstborn of Pharaoh who sat on his throne to the firstborn of the captive in the dungeon, and all the firstborn of animals. 30. And Pharaoh got up in the night, he, all his servants, and all the Egyptians. And there was a great cry in Egypt, for there was not a house where there was not one dead. 31. And he called for Moses and Aaron by night and said, “Get up! Get out from among my people! Both you and the children of Israel, go! Serve the LORD*, as you have said. 32. Also take your flocks and your herds, as you have said, and be gone. And bless me also.” 33. And the Egyptians were urgent upon the people, so they would send them out of the land in haste, for they said, “We will all be dead men.” 34. And the people took their dough before it was leavened, their kneading-troughs being bound up in their clothes upon their shoulders. 35. And the children of Israel did according to the word of Moses, and they asked from the Egyptians jewels of silver, jewels of gold, and clothes. 36. And the LORD* gave the people favor in the sight of the Egyptians, so that they granted their requests, such things as they required. And they emptied Egypt.

12:37. And the children of Israel journeyed from Rameses to Succoth, about six hundred thousand men on foot, besides children. 38. And a mixed multitude also went up with them, and flocks and herds, very many cattle. 39. And they baked unleavened cakes of the dough which they brought out of Egypt, for it was not leavened because they were thrust out of Egypt and could not tarry, nor had they prepared any food for themselves.

12:40. Now the stay of the children of Israel who dwelled in Egypt was four hundred thirty years. 41. And it was at the end of the four hundred thirty years, even the selfsame day, it was that all the hosts of the LORD* went out from the land of Egypt. 42It is a night to be guarded, never forgotten, to the LORD* for bringing them out from the land of Egypt. This is that night of the LORD* to be observed by all the children of Israel in their generations.

Ordinance of the Passover

12:43. And the LORD* said to Moses and Aaron, “This is the ordinance of the Passover: No stranger will eat of it. 44. But every man’s servant that is bought for money, when you have circumcised him, then he will eat of it. 45. A foreigner and a hired servant will not eat of it. 46. It will be eaten in one house, you will not carry out any of the flesh abroad out of the house, nor will you break a bone of it. (John 19:33) 47. All the congregation of Israel will keep it. 48. And when a stranger sojourns with you and keeps the Passover to the LORD*, let all his males be circumcised and then let him come near and keep it, and he will be as one that is born in the land, for no uncircumcised person will eat of it. 49. One Torah (Teaching) will be for the one that is home born and for the stranger who lives among you.” 50. So all the children of Israel did this, as the LORD* commanded Moses and Aaron, so they did. 51. And it happened the selfsame day, the LORD* did bring the children of Israel out of the land of Egypt by their hosts. (Click to Source)

 

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When the Lamb of Passover Opens the Scroll

by: Gary Stearman on April 5, 2019

The first Passover is detailed in the twelfth chapter of Exodus. Its history goes back nearly 3,500 years, and its rituals are freighted with spiritual and prophetic meaning. It came on the fourteenth day of the first month – Nisan – and has been observed ever since. It features two primary aspects: First, it is referred to as “feasting for freedom.” It marks Israel’s liberation from Egypt, a type of the world system. Second, it is a prophecy, reenacted annually to preserve the hope that Israel will one day witness the establishment of the Kingdom in Israel, coming on a wave of fulfilled Bible prophecy. Each year, it concludes with a victory cry: “Next year in Jerusalem!”

But its centerpiece is perhaps the greatest archetype in Scripture: the lamb. The lamb, sacrificed and roasted in the fire during the night, foreshadows Jesus’ own arrest and illegal midnight trial, culminating in His sacrifice the next day. His function was the same as that first Passover lamb in Egypt, to bring liberation and redemption, first to Israel, then to the whole world. It represents “… the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world” (Rev. 13:8).

It is introduced in the dramatic narrative of Exodus:
“5 Your lamb shall be without blemish, a male of the first year: ye shall take it out from the sheep, or from the goats: 6 And ye shall keep it up until the fourteenth day of the same month: and the whole assembly of the congregation of Israel shall kill it in the evening. 7 And they shall take of the blood, and strike it on the two side posts and on the upper door post of the houses, wherein they shall eat it. 8 And they shall eat the flesh in that night, roast with fire, and unleavened bread; and with bitter herbs they shall eat it. 9 Eat not of it raw, nor sodden at all with water, but roast with fire; his head with his legs, and with the purtenance thereof. 10 And ye shall let nothing of it remain until the morning; and that which remaineth of it until the morning ye shall burn with fire. 11 And thus shall ye eat it; with your loins girded, your shoes on your feet, and your staff in your hand; and ye shall eat it in haste: it is the LORD’S passover. (Ex. 12:5-11).

That momentous night, when the blood of the lamb was applied to the doorposts of Israel, another tradition was established. The lamb’s blood was commemorated in the fruit of the vine, and the four cups of Passover. Taken in order, they symbolize: 1. Sanctification 2. Liberation 3. Redemption 4. Completion.

The commemoration of Passover is structured around the consumption of these four cups of the fruit of the vine, which is itself a symbol of our Lord: John 15:5 I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing.

Passover … feasting for freedom … liberation from Egypt … establishing the Kingdom … all of these are witnessed in “The Four Cups.”

“But I say unto you, I will not drink henceforth of this fruit of the vine, until that day when I drink it new with you in my Father’s kingdom” (Matt. 26:29). This will be the final Cup: Completion.

The Lamb Steps Forward

One day, all the created beings in the heavens will watch as the Lamb of God steps forward to open a seven-sealed scroll. When He does, He will be acting as the Divine Judge, who takes in His hands a sealed indictment – that sealed scroll. What is written upon it no man knows. But it must certainly include a list of charges accrued across the ages by a depraved humanity. In the opening of its seals, the Lamb will right the wrongs of six millennia and establish peace and justice.

But why does Jesus appear in heaven as a lamb? In his work as Judge of the world, He would seem to be more accurately acting the part of the lion. And indeed, at His appearance, He is recognized by that title:
“And one of the elders saith unto me, Weep not: behold, the Lion of the tribe of Juda, the Root of David, hath prevailed to open the book, and to loose the seven seals thereof” (Rev. 5:5).

But when He actually receives the scroll, He appears as a Lamb, not a lion: “And I beheld, and, lo, in the midst of the throne and of the four beasts, and in the midst of the elders, stood a Lamb as it had been slain, having seven horns and seven eyes, which are the seven Spirits of God sent forth into all the earth” (Rev. 5:6). The Lion of the tribe of Judah is one of the most ancient of all biblical figures, going all the way back to Jacob’s prophetic blessing of his sons. He said, “Judah is a lion’s whelp …” (Gen. 49:9). Why did the Lion become the Lamb? The Bible provides an answer to this question, in the process, giving us an inside look, not only at the true meaning of sacrifice but at God’s very nature.

The Lamb is not a mere figurehead… a stiff and lifeless symbol. He loves, feels pain, longs for a relationship and expresses Himself in emotional language. What must He be thinking as He comes forward to take that fateful scroll? Surprisingly, His motives and goals are not concealed. He has, in fact, gone out of His way to make sure that humanity knows the thoughts of His very heart in detail. A bit later, we shall examine some of them. First, however, let’s look at the historical figure of the Lamb.

The symbol of the sacrificial lamb goes back to the very beginning of humanity, in the recounting of the acceptable sacrifice. Apparently, after Adam’s fall, the Lord had instructed him about what constituted an acceptable sacrifice for sin. We know this because his son Abel brought the proper sacrifice, prepared in a specific way, as described in the following Scripture:

“1 And Adam knew Eve his wife; and she conceived, and bare Cain, and said, I have gotten a man from the LORD. 2 And she again bare his brother Abel. And Abel was a keeper of sheep, but Cain was a tiller of the ground. 3 And in process of time it came to pass, that Cain brought of the fruit of the ground an offering unto the LORD. 4 And Abel, he also brought of the firstlings of his flock and of the fat thereof. And the LORD had respect unto Abel and to his offering” 5 But unto Cain and to his offering he had not respect. And Cain was very wroth, and his countenance fell” (Gen. 4:1-5).

The rest of the story is well known, as Cain’s jealousy grew to violent anger that led to the murder of Abel. This event might well be described as the first war in history, with Abel being recorded as the first casualty. From that time to the present, mankind has been engaged in an unending war for supremacy, or for acceptance in the sphere of power. War is man’s primary institution.

Almost forgotten in the conflict between Cain and Abel is the lamb. Its role as the atoning sacrifice is central to humanity’s survival … a prophetic archetype that runs through the entire Bible, from Genesis to Revelation. Scripture progressively reveals the submissive lamb as the way to victory over sin and evil. In fact, the lamb represents the absolute opposite of taking power and possessions by force. It is the very emblem of selfless sacrifice.

At key points in biblical history, the lamb emerges again and again as the key to the Lord’s plan of redemption. The “sacrificial lamb” has become a universal cliché. But biblically, the lamb appears at historically significant moments, to certify the relationship between God and man.

It is next seen, for example, in the covenantal transaction between the Lord and Abraham on Mount Moriah:

“7 And Isaac spake unto Abraham his father, and said, My father: and he said, Here am I, my son. And he said, Behold there and the wood: but where is the lamb for a burnt offering? 8 And Abraham said, My son, God will provide himself a lamb for a burnt offering: so they went both of them together” (Gen. 22:7,8).

In the heart of Abraham, the sacrifice had already been accomplished. Never did Abraham tell Isaac that he was to be the sacrifice. Rather, he told his beloved son that God would provide “a lamb.”

All this happened on the mountain known as “Moriah,” which means, “appearing of Jehovah.” Thus, the Bible recognizes this as the mountain where Jehovah appeared to Abraham, and would appear again in the days of David and Solomon. This is where the Temple would be built.

The sacrifice provided by the Lord was not merely a lamb, it was a ram, trapped by its horns in thick underbrush. Abraham took it and laid it upon the altar. To him, it must have seemed a greater and fuller sacrifice than a mere lamb. In fact, it was only a foreshadowing of the greater sacrifice to come.

From this scene on Mount Moriah, we leap forward half a millennium to about 1450 B.C., and the period of the Exodus. This wonderful event centers about the blood of the lamb, which is painted upon every Israelite doorpost. This crucial identification spared Israel from the visiting angel of death. He passed over their houses, instead, inflicting death upon Egyptian homes.

But on this night – the first Passover – the lamb is more than mere sacrifice. It becomes the symbol of relationship, the common experience of the Israelites, and remains so to this day. Let’s revisit the scene in which the flesh of the lamb was roasted and quickly eaten on the night of the fourteenth day of the first month:

“5 Your lamb shall be without blemish, a male of the first year: ye shall take it out from the sheep, or from the goats: 6. And ye shall keep it up until the fourteenth day of the same month: and the whole assembly of the congregation of Israel shall kill it in the evening. 7 And they shall take of the blood, and strike it on the two side posts and on the upper door post of the houses, wherein they shall eat it. 8 And they shall eat the flesh in that night, roast with fire, and unleavened bread; and with bitter herbs they shall eat it” (Ex. 12:5-8).

From the first, Passover was a family institution, intended to bring Israel together around the promise of freedom in the Messianic Kingdom. To this day, its customs are annually repeated, but only the shank bone of the lamb is present on the Seder table. After the Romans razed the Temple, the sacrifice of the lamb abruptly came to a halt.

John Sees the Lamb

And of course, the reason for this is well known. The Lamb had offered Himself on that last Passover, taken with His disciples on the night of His arrest and trial. This act instituted the Lord’s Supper, in which the Lamb became the actual leader of the ancient tradition. But it must also be remembered that Jesus appeared at the beginning of His public ministry as the Lamb without blemish, just as He ended it as the Lamb sacrificed for sin.

His role is publicly announced by John the Baptist:

“26 John answered them, saying, I baptize with water: but there standeth one among you, whom ye know not; 27 He it is, who coming after me is preferred before me, whose shoe’s latchet I am not worthy to unloose. 28 These things were done in Bethabara beyond Jordan, where John was baptizing. 29 The next day John seeth Jesus coming unto him, and saith, Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world” (Jn. 1:26-29).

Acting in the spirit of Elijah, John announced the appearance of the long-awaited Messiah. His public statement might have invoked many promises and historical references. But he didn’t. He simply introduced the Lamb. Priests and Levites had crossed the Jordan to question John. He denied being the great prophet promised by Moses. He also denied being either the Messiah or Elijah.

But truly, John was a prophet, who now prophesied the coming of the Messiah. He didn’t announce Jesus as King or prophet. Nor did he mention Jesus’ link to the royal tribe of Judah, dating back to the House of David. Instead, he simply called Him “the Lamb of God.”

Israel’s leaders had no way of mentally linking the Passover lamb to the Messiah. Even though the Old Testament symbol of the Lamb foreshadows Jesus’ finished work, the prophets had never referred to the coming Messiah as a lamb. The blood of the Lamb as a Messianic idea is clearly developed only in the New Testament.

Certainly, Isaiah referred to Him in this way, but never actually connected Him with the Passover or atonement:

“He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth: he is brought as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so he openeth not his mouth” (Is. 53:7).

So, John’s announcement of the Lamb brings a new dimension to the mission of the Messiah. He comes as the personification of the atoning sacrifice, as the remedy for the sin which has crippled the world. From the very beginning, the Bible recognizes Him in this role. Now, John announces it publicly. But of course, no one understands what he is saying.

John’s prophecy at the Jordan River continues, adding a further note about the identity of the Messiah. John was born six months before Jesus, a fact probably known to Jerusalem authorities, and certainly to a number of faithful Jews. Yet he declares that Jesus came before him, adding that the Lamb is confirmed by the Holy Spirit of God, and is the very Son of God:

“30 This is he of whom I said, After me cometh a man which is preferred before me: for he was before me. 31 And I knew him not: but that he should be made manifest to Israel, therefore am I come baptizing with water. 32 And John bare record, saying, I saw the Spirit descending from heaven like a dove, and it abode upon him. 33 And I knew him not: but he that sent me to baptize with water, the same said unto me, Upon whom thou shalt see the Spirit descending, and remaining on him, the same is he which baptizeth with the Holy Ghost. 34 And I saw, and bare record that this is the Son of God” (John 1:30-34). This is the clearest possible statement of His divinity.

Jesus’ first disciples were drawn by John’s repeated statement that this was the Lamb of God. They were spiritually drawn to a great new idea, which they had no way of understanding: “35 Again the next day after John stood, and two of his disciples; And looking upon Jesus as he walked, he saith, Behold the Lamb of God! 36 And the two disciples heard him speak, and they followed Jesus. 37 Then Jesus turned, and saw them following, and saith unto them, What seek ye? They said unto him, Rabbi, (which is to say, being interpreted, Master,) where dwellest thou? 38 He saith unto them, Come and see. 39 They came and saw where he dwelt, and abode with him that day: for it was about the tenth hour. 40 One of the two which heard John speak, and followed him, was Andrew, Simon Peter’s brother” (John 1:35-40).

What must these two have thought as they heard John’s ecstatic words? Was this really the Messiah? But John didn’t call Him that. He didn’t say, “Behold your Messiah!” In fact, he withheld the full truth. Instead of the office of the Messiah, he emphasized the role of the Messiah in redemption. John prophesied the mission that Jesus would perform, and the way that He would perform it, as the Passover sacrifice.

The two disciples mentioned here are identified in the context of John’s declaration. It is most interesting to see that they had no difficulty in connecting the concept of the Lamb with that of the Messiah:

“40 One of the two which heard John speak, and followed him, was Andrew, Simon Peter’s brother. 41 He first findeth his own brother Simon, and saith unto him, We have found the Messias, which is, being interpreted, the Christ” (John 1:40,41).

Doubtless, they didn’t fully understand the connection. In fact, Scripture tells us that when Jesus later told them that He must die and depart from them, they refused to accept the idea. He openly told them that He must “… be killed, and be raised again the third day” (Matt. 16:21). He sternly rebuked Peter, who resisted the simple truth that the Lamb must die to complete the sacrifice for sin.

But it must be remembered that for those alive at the time, Jesus’ mission was fraught with riddles.

Something Remarkable

In reviewing the biblical history of the Lamb, we find a surprising fact. The Old Testament often refers to the lamb of sacrifice. But in the New Testament, the sacrificial lamb is mentioned by name only four times outside the book of Revelation.

This title appears twice in the Gospel of John (both of which are quoted above). In these two cases, the word “Lamb” is capitalized. It is seen twice more after that, once in Acts 8:32, where Philip quotes from Isaiah 53:

“The place of the scripture which he read was this, He was led as a sheep to the slaughter; and like a lamb dumb before his shearer, so opened he not his mouth.”

Again, we encounter it in 1 Peter 1:19, where Peter quotes from Exodus 12:5, naming the requirement for purity in the Passover lamb:

“Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers;

“But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot” (I Pet. 1:18,19).

In both of these cases, salvation is explained in the sacrifice of the Passover Lamb. Based upon the importance of this symbol, one would expect to see references to Jesus as the sacrificial Lamb mentioned over and over again. But they are completely absent from the epistles of Paul, James, John and Jude!

Furthermore, the letter to the Hebrews, devoted to explaining the superiority of Christ’s redemptive sacrifice to Jews still observing Temple worship, does not mention the Lamb at all! When speaking of Jesus, Hebrews typically refer to His sacrifice in statements like the following: “… but by his own blood he entered in once into the holy place …” (Heb. 9:12). The Jews would have made an immediate connection with the idea of the Passover lamb, but His sacrifice is never detailed in this way.

Moreover, the first three Gospels never mention the Lamb by that name! Matthew, the Gospel that announces the King to Israel, is built around the theme of the presentation and rejection of the king.

Mark introduces Jesus as the servant. His style of factual immediacy presents the servant, who goes about His work with energy and total devotion. He is then rejected and suffers for those whom He has served.

And Luke documents Jesus’ role as Son of Man … human in every way, yet divinely incarnated. Luke emphasizes His compassion and His perfection as a human being. He is presented and rejected as the man who bore the sorrows of humanity. As one man to another, he entered the home of diminutive but wealthy Zacchaeus. Addressing this sinful tax collector at his own level, Jesus changed the way this man lived his life:

“8 And Zacchaeus stood, and said unto the Lord; Behold, Lord, the half of my goods I give to the poor; and if I have taken anything from any man by false accusation, I restore him fourfold. 9 And Jesus said unto him, This day is salvation come to this house, forsomuch as he also is a son of Abraham. 10 For the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost” (Luke 19:8-10).

As King, Servant and Son of Man, Jesus acts at the earthly level. While important, these roles do not address the spiritual and metaphysical truths that we see in John’s Gospel, which reveals Jesus as Deity.

It makes perfect sense, then, that since The Lamb is a spiritual sacrifice, transcending the boundaries of earth, and reaching all the way into heaven, John would introduce Him as the Lamb, “… which taketh away the sin of the world.”

The Lamb and the “Kosmos”

This phrase, from John 1:29, emphasizes the fact that the Lamb’s sacrifice reaches all the way into the heavens. The word “world” is from the Greek kosmos, which means, “the order and arrangement of the world system.” To the Greeks, this word included all that could be observed or inferred from observation. The same concept in the mind of the modern man would most probably be “universe.”

But to the student of the Bible, the New Testament concept of the kosmos includes even those things not seen. As the Apostle Paul put it in Ephesians 6:11,12:

“11 Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. 12 For we wrestle not against esh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places” (Eph. 6:11,12).

The above four levels of authority arrayed against Christians, all operate beyond the range of human vision. Yet they radically affect the daily lives of humankind. Therefore, they must be included in the definition of kosmos. The dimensions of this universe are much greater than most will admit, yet biblically, the invisible aspects of the world system are as important – if not more so – than the visible ones.

The “principalities” mentioned by Paul are called archons in the Greek language. They would be the superhuman beings generally called angels, whether faithful or fallen. But in Paul’s epistle, the reference is to the first level of evil power, including Satan, and his delegated powers. They are trans-dimensional, operating outside the natural realm of human beings, yet deeply influential in the circles of world nance, politics and religion.

The “powers” that Paul mentions are called exousia in New Testament Greek. These are delegated authorities operating beneath the first level of power just described. Yet they are still able to act on their own, even though subject to their superiors. Elsewhere, Paul describes them as powers at the angelic level. Like the first group, they are able to affect both the unseen world and our own physical world.

The third level of power – “… rulers of the darkness of this world …” – are called kosmokrators, in the original language of the New Testament. In the literature of the ancient Greeks, these are high-level rulers, on the order of an emperor, a world-lord. Yet they, too, operate outside the influence of human perception. In the well-known passage from the book of Daniel, the heavenly visitor who came to him was delayed in conflict with just such a ruler:

“12 Then said he unto me, Fear not, Daniel: for from the first day that thou didst set thine heart to understand, and to chasten thyself before thy God, thy words were heard, and I am come for thy words. 13 But the prince of the kingdom of Persia withstood me one and twenty days: but, lo, Michael, one of the chief princes, came to help me; and I remained there with the kings of Persia” (Dan. 10:12,13).

If, as we believe, it was the Lord, Himself who came to Daniel, he was forced to take a circuitous route in recognition of an existing world boundary of some sort. Apparently, the Lord allows many such zones of rule in the cosmos.

But we must also note that the phrase, “darkness of this world,” uses a different word for “world.” Here it is a translation of the Greek aion, denoting an age or period of time, probably corresponding to the period of Gentile rule that began with Nebuchadnezzar, and comes to an end under the reign of the antichrist.

Finally, Paul describes the lowest and most widespread of the trans-dimensional powers. He refers to them in general as “spiritual wickedness in high places.” A literal reading of the Greek text tells us that these are spiritual powers of evil in the heavens. They come and go on errands of mischief and malevolence, following the dictates of the evil powers above them. Their chief work is to corrupt the progress of the Gospel, and to destroy the unity and saving grace of the body of Christ.

The submission of the Lamb to the cause of redemption (His willingness to sacrifice Himself) was the mechanism that signaled the end of their system. From the moment of His sacrifice, their days were numbered.

To us, operating on the time scale of planet earth, the time from then until now seems very long, indeed. From the Lamb’s perspective, there is no doubt that the scale of perception is quite different. Cause and effect can only truly be viewed from His throne.

We can gain some idea of this viewpoint by recalling Jesus’ moment of temptation. Just prior to His public ministry, and following John’s baptism of the Lamb, Satan took Him to a place where the power and glory of the kosmos could be viewed in a single, sweeping view:

“8 Again, the devil taketh him up into an exceeding high mountain, and sheweth him all the kingdoms of the world, and the glory of them; 9 And saith unto him, All these things will I give thee, if thou wilt fall down and worship me” (Matt. 4:8,9).

Here, the Lamb is offered the kosmos, in all its glory. For Jesus to have witnessed every single kingdom and the glory of each one, it must have been necessary for Him to see past, present and future in a single glance. Furthermore, there is no location within this Earthly dimension that affords a view of the world like the one described above. Christ’s atonement was intended to reach all the way into this evil realm.

If Satan and his subjects held this kind of power, it is easy to see that no ordinary challenge could defeat them. It was necessary for the Lord to prepare a stunning offensive, with a single stroke of power that cut through the entire universe (or universes).

In effect, the Lamb’s blood sacrifice turned Satan’s own devices against him. Once dominant among heavenly creatures, He boasted of wisdom and beauty as the primary fruit of existence. But he rejected holiness, as well as the worship of God, Creator and King. It was holiness … dedication to God’s will … personified in the blood of the Lamb that overthrew him.

The world system is doomed to crash into ruins as the Lamb’s work is finally sanctified in the formality of a heavenly protocol that was devised for a signal moment in history.

The Lamb and the Book

As earlier noted, outside the Book of Revelation, the Lamb is mentioned only four times in the entire New Testament. But it is astonishing to see that in the pages of Revelation, itself, the capitalized proper noun, “Lamb,” is used twenty- six times!

This serves to emphasize a basic truth. Though consummated upon earth, the true extent of the Lamb’s sacrifice can only be perceived at the heavenly level. This brings us back to the question that we posed at the beginning of this study: Why does Jesus appear in heaven as a lamb? This question goes to the heart of the action we observe when, in Revelation, we hear a formal question voiced by an angel, who almost seems to be acting in the role of legal counsel:

“1 And I saw in the right hand of him that sat on the throne a book written within and on the backside, sealed with seven seals. 2 And I saw a strong angel proclaiming with a loud voice, Who is worthy to open the book, and to loose the seals thereof? 3 And no man in heaven, nor in earth, neither under the earth, was able to open the book, neither to look thereon. 4 And I wept much, because no man was found worthy to open and to read the book, neither to look thereon. 5 And one of the elders saith unto me, Weep not: behold, the Lion of the tribe of Juda, the Root of David, hath prevailed to open the book, and to loose the seven seals thereof. 6 And I beheld, and, lo, in the midst of the throne and of the four beasts, and in the midst of the elders, stood a Lamb as it had been slain, having seven horns and seven eyes, which are the seven Spirits of God sent forth into all the earth. 7 And he came and took the book out of the right hand of him that sat upon the throne” (Rev. 5:1-7).

The question posed here by the “strong angel” is an unmistakable challenge that rings through the vaults and arches of heaven like a mighty blast. It is a call to attention, commanding every being in Creation to come to full attention. A monumental legal question like this one demands an answer.

Satan and his fallen ones must also hear the angel’s words. Surely, they hope that no one answers the call, since they must know that if the book is unsealed, it means certain doom for them.

The book is a scroll. John carefully describes its appearance. He sees it as covered with writing on both sides. Apparently, if completely unrolled, it would be full to capacity with a list of written charges. In other words, the charges against the world system are all-inclusive, absolute and comprehensive. The scroll is a legal indictment, without loopholes or escape clauses. It seems obvious that the charges were compiled by God, Himself.

But there is a catch … a legal requirement of the first magnitude. The inscribed charges must be executed by someone who is properly qualified. Hence the question: Who is worthy?

As the angel’s loud query echoed toward silence, John observed that no created being in all the heavens seemed capable of answering the call. Note that the question is heard “in heaven,” “in earth” and “under the earth.” In every dimension of Creation, the question rings forth. Archangels stand silent and angels watch, daring not to utter a single word. The rebellious followers of the Old Serpent, angels and demons wait trembling, as their fate hangs in the balance.

At this time, the church has already been caught up, even though the Tribulation period has not yet been initiated. So, the Lord’s own people must also be watching this unfolding drama from a heavenly point of view. Imagine their great curiosity, as the final act of the drama commences.

Those of the body of Christ who studied Scripture while on earth must certainly know in advance that the Lamb will come forth to take the scroll, but they dare not speak a word. They watch in respectful silence, awaiting the coming of the great Day of the Lord, in which the Righteous Judge will finally put down all wickedness and establish His Kingdom.

They remember the words He spoke to the Jewish leaders during His ministry on earth. After healing the paralyzed man who lay helpless at the pool called Bethesda, he instructed the man to pick up his bed and walk, a violation of carrying a burden on the Sabbath.

Rather than receiving Him as Messiah, the Pharisees charged Him with sinfully and willfully breaking the Law of Moses. He answered by declaring Himself equal with God the Father in power and authority. His resounding answer to them is a statement of absolute authority: “For the Father judgeth no man, but hath committed all judgment unto the Son” (John 5:22).

A Legal Technicality

As the words of the strong angel fall to silence, John is struck down with the realization that no one has answered. He must be asking himself if the kingdoms of evil will win yet another battle. He begins to think that no one can answer the call. Imagine how you would feel if you thought that Satan and his followers would get o absolutely free on a legal technicality. You would be devastated. Surely, you would think to yourself, someone must be able to effectively lodge criminal charges against the followers of Satan … once and for all. Yet no one seems qualified.

Doubtless, John is waiting for someone to unseal the book and read the charges that will allow the execution of the final judgment. Apparently, some time elapses at this point. John believes that no one is qualified to do the work of judgment. He weeps bitterly at the realization that Satan’s crimes may go unpunished.

He suffers greatly until he is comforted by one of the elders who comes to inform him that the Lion of Judah has overcome the world system … the sin that has ravaged the kosmos. His action has qualified Him to receive and open the scroll.

And then, in what must be one of the greatest and most dramatic entrances of all time, the Lamb comes forth to receive the scroll from God the Father. It is true, just as Jesus told those Pharisees all those years ago, that the Father has given all power of judgment to the Son.

Thanks to John the Baptist, Christians who are alive today to read the words of Revelation will be aware of something that many of the citizens of heaven will not know at that time. We know in advance that the Lamb has done His work and will, at the proper time, step forward to open the sealed scroll. Why? Because He submitted Himself to death and purchased the freedom of those oppressed by Satan’s evil regime. He is the only One who could ever have qualified for this critical mission.

The Lamb and Our Home

As the Lamb opens the scroll, the events of the Tribulation unfold in a series of unprecedented cataclysms. Israel is sealed in the power of the Spirit, only to be persecuted by the forces of the antichrist. Israel is forced to flee into the wilderness, then is rescued. The evil powers of the world, headed by the antichrist, are overthrown. Israel rises to receive the Kingdom. The King assumes His throne.

After the Lamb is introduced in the Revelation narrative, the Lamb is mentioned by name twenty- five more times before we arrive at the end of the book. It is not the purpose of this article to detail all His activities through the Tribulation. But we should always remember that Jesus will eternally carry the title, “Lamb.”

As we have seen, He rises up in the end times as Judge. But in the future era of the New Jerusalem, the Lamb is fully identified within the Godhead. In this context, it is exciting to contemplate our eternal home, which the Lamb promised to prepare for those who would follow Him.

In Revelation, His final appearances as Lamb are absolutely enthralling:

“22 And I saw no temple therein: for the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are the temple of it. 23 And the city had no need of the sun, neither of the moon, to shine in it: for the glory of God did lighten it, and the Lamb is the light thereof” (Rev. 21:22,23).

Imagine the pure light that illuminates the New Jerusalem. His living radiance transcends anything that man has seen, or can ever imagine. God’s own city will become the source of all that is pure and all that is everlasting.

“1 And he shewed me a pure river of water of life, clear as crystal, proceeding out of the throne of God and of the Lamb. 2 In the midst of the street of it, and on either side of the river, was there the tree of life,which bare twelve manner of fruits, and yielded her fruit every month: and the leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations 3 And there shall be no more curse: but the throne of God and of the Lamb shall be in it; and his servants shall serve him” (Rev. 22:1-3).

The Lord entered this world in Bethlehem as a being of flesh and blood, without spot or blemish. The in nite became nite. Before His arrival here, He had been many things, but never the Lamb! At that moment in time, the Lamb began to exist. The Lord took upon Himself a new identity, which He retains to this day.

He is the perfect model of eternal life. The little baby born among the shepherds was the perfect Lamb. Fragile, delicate and seemingly ephemeral, he defied death, inviting us to follow in His steps and bask in his glory … forever!

He entered the world not to partake of the Passover, but to become the Passover. At the moment of sacrifice, the Lamb leaped from the finite to the infinite. And He takes us with Him! (Click to Source)

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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Weekly Torah Readings: T’tsaveh – One New Man Bible – Feb 23, 2018

T’tsaveh

Exodus 27:20- 30:10

light

27:20. “And you, yourself, will command the children of Israel to bring you pure olive oil beaten for the light, to cause the lamp to burn always. 21. In the Tent of Meeting outside the veil, which is before the Testimony, Aaron and his sons will order it from evening to morning before the LORD*. (Acts 7:44) It will be a statute forever to their generations on the behalf of the children of Israel.”

Priestly Garments

28.1. “And take for yourself Aaron your brother and his sons with him from among the children of Israel, so he can minister to Me in the priest’s office, Aaron, Nadab and Abihu, Elazar and Itamar, Aaron’s sons. 2. And you will make holy garments for Aaron your brother for glory and for beauty. 3. And you will speak to all who are wise hearted, whom I have filled with the spirit of wisdom, so they can make Aaron’s garments to consecrate him, so he can minister to Me in the priest’s office.

28:4. “And these are the garments which they will make; a breastplate, an ephod, a robe, a tunic woven with a pattern, a turban, and a belt, and they will make holy garments for Aaron your brother and his sons, so he can minister to Me in the priest’s office. 5. And they will take gold, blue, purple, and scarlet, fine linen.

28:6. “And they will make the ephod of gold, blue, purple, and scarlet, fine woven linen, with skillful work. 7. It will have its two shoulder-pieces joined at its two edges, and so it will be joined together. 8. And the belt of the ephod, which is on it, will be of the same skillful workmanship; gold, blue, purple, and scarlet, fine woven linen. 9. And you will take two onyx stones and engrave on them the names of the children of Israel: 10. six of their names on one stone and names of the rest on the other stone, according to their birth. 11. With the work of an engraver in stone, like the engravings of a signet, you will engrave the two stones with the names of the children of Israel: you will make them to be set in settings of gold. 12. And you will put the two stones upon the shoulders of the ephod for stones of memorial to the children of Israel and Aaron will bear their names before the LORD* upon his two shoulders for a memorial.

28:13. “And you will make settings of gold; 14. And two chains of pure gold at the ends, you will make them of twisted work and fasten the twisted chains to the settings.

28:15. “And you will make the breastplate of judgment with skillful work, after the work of the ephod you will make it of gold, of blue, of purple, and of scarlet, you will make it of fine woven linen. 16. It will be four-square, being doubled: a span will be its length and a span will be its width. 17. And you will set in it settings of stones, four rows of stones: the first row will be a sardius, a topaz, and an emerald; this will be the first row. 18. And the second row will be a ruby, a sapphire, and a diamond. 19. And the third row a ligure, an agate, and an amethyst. 20. And the fourth row a beryl, an onyx, and a jasper: they will be enclosed in settings of gold. 21. And the stones will be with the names of the children of Israel, twelve, according to their names, like the engravings of a signet, each one with his name will they be according to the twelve tribes. (Rev. 21:12)

28:22. “And upon the breastplate you will make chains at the ends of braided work of pure gold. 23. And you will make upon the breastplate two rings of gold and will put the two rings on the two ends of the breastplate. 4. And you will put the two braided chains of gold in the two rings on the ends of the breastplate. 25. And the other two ends of the two braided chains you will fasten in the two settings and put them on the shoulder pieces of the ephod before it. 26. And you will make two rings of gold and you will put them upon the two ends of the breastplate in its border, which is on the inside of the ephod. 27. And you will make two rings of gold and put them on the two sides of the ephod underneath, toward the forepart of it opposite its other coupling, above the belt of the ephod. 28. And they will bind the breastplate by its rings to the rings of the ephod with a lace of blue, so it will be above the belt of the ephod and so the breastplate would not be loosed from the ephod. 29. And Aaron will bear the names of the children of Israel in the breastplate of judgment upon his heart when he goes in to the Holy Place, for a memorial before the LORD* continually. 30. And you will put the Urim and the Thummim in the breastplate of judgment and they will be upon Aaron’s heart when he goes in before the LORD*, and Aaron will carry the judgment of the children of Israel over his heart before the LORD* continually.

28:31. “And you will make the robe of the ephod all of blue. 32. And there will be a hole in the top of it, in the middle of it: it will have a binding of woven work around the hole of it, as it were the hole of a coat of mail, so it will not be torn.
33. And upon its hem you will make pomegranates of blue, purple, and scarlet around its hem, and bells of gold between them all around, 34. a golden bell and a pomegranate, a golden bell and a pomegranate, upon the hem of the robe all around. 35. And it will be upon Aaron to minister and its sound will be heard when he goes in to the Holy Place before the LORD*, and when he comes out, so he will not die.

28:36. “And you will make a pure gold plate and engrave upon it, like the engravings of a signet, HOLINESS TO THE LORD*. 37. And you will put it on a blue lace that will be on the turban. It will be upon the forefront of the turban. 38. And it will be upon Aaron’s forehead, so Aaron can bear the iniquity of the holy things, which the children of Israel will sanctify in all their holy gifts; and it will be always upon his forehead, so they will be accepted before the LORD*.

28:39. “And you will weave the tunic of fine linen and you will make the fine linen turban and you will make the belt of needlework. 40. And for Aaron’s sons you will make tunics and you will make belts for them and you will make hats for them, for glory and for beauty. 41. And you will put them upon Aaron your brother and his sons with him, and will anoint them and consecrate them and sanctify them, so they can minister to Me in the priest’s office. 42. And you will make linen breeches to cover their nakedness; they will reach from the loins even to the thighs, 43. and they will be upon Aaron and upon his sons when they come into the Tent of Meeting, or when they come near to the altar to minister in the Holy Place, so they will not bear iniquity and die. It will be a statute forever for him and his seed after him.”

Instructions to Sanctify Priests

29.1. “And this is the thing that you will do to sanctify them to minister to Me in the priest’s office. Take one young bull and two rams without blemish, 2. and unleavened bread, unleavened cakes tempered with oil, and unleavened wafers spread with oil, you will make them of wheat flour. 3. And you will put them in one basket and bring them in the basket with the bull and the two rams. 4. And you will bring Aaron and his sons to the door of the tent of meeting and will immerse them in water. 5. And you will take the garments and put the tunic on Aaron and the robe of the ephod, the ephod, and the breastplate and gird him with the belt of the ephod. 6. And you will put the turban on his head and put the holy crown upon the turban. 7. Then you will take the anointing oil and pour it upon his head and anoint him. 8. And you will bring his sons and put tunics upon them. 9. And you will gird them with belts, Aaron and his sons, and put the hats on them, and the priest’s office will be theirs for a perpetual statute, and you will consecrate Aaron and his sons.

29:10. “And you will cause a bull to be brought before the Tent of Meeting and Aaron and his sons will put their hands on the head of the bull. 11. And you will kill the bull before the LORD*, by the door of the Tent of Meeting. 12. And you will take of the blood of the bull and put it upon the horns of the altar with your finger and pour all the blood beside the bottom of the altar. 13. And you will take all the fat that covers the innards and the appendage above the liver, and the two kidneys and the fat that is upon them, and burn them upon the altar. 14. But the flesh of the bull and its skin and its dung, you will burn with fire outside the camp: it is a sin offering.

29:15. “You will also take one ram and Aaron and his sons will put their hands on the head of the ram. 16. And you will slay the ram and you will take its blood and sprinkle it all around the altar. 17. And you will cut the ram in pieces and wash its innards and its legs, and put them with its pieces and with its head. 18. And you will burn the whole ram on the altar. It is a burnt offering to the LORD*, a sweet savor, an offering made by fire to the LORD*.

29:19. “And you will take the other ram and Aaron and his sons will put their hands on the head of the ram. 20. Then you will kill the ram and take of its blood and put it on the tip of the right ear of Aaron and upon the tip of the right ear of his sons and upon the thumb of their right hand and upon the great toe of their right foot, and sprinkle the blood all around the altar. 21. And you will take of the blood that is on the altar and of the anointing oil, and sprinkle it upon Aaron and upon his garments and upon his sons and upon the garments of his sons with him, and he will be sanctified and his garments and his sons and his sons’ garments with him. 22. Also you will take the fat and the rump of the ram and the fat that covers the innards and the lobe of the liver and the two kidneys and the fat that is on them, and the right shoulder; for it is a ram of consecration. 23. And one loaf of bread and one cake of oiled bread and one wafer out of the basket of the unleavened bread that is before the LORD*, 24. and you will put all in the hands of Aaron and in the hands of his sons, and you will wave them for a wave offering before the LORD*. 25. And you will take them from their hands and burn them on the altar for a burnt offering, for a sweet savor before the LORD*: it is an offering made by fire to the LORD*. 26. And you will take the breast of the ram of Aaron’s consecration and wave it for a wave offering before the LORD*: and it will be your part. 27. And you will sanctify the breast of the wave offering and the shoulder of the heave offering, which is waved and which is heaved up, of the ram of the consecration, of that which is for Aaron and of that which is for his sons. 28. And it will be Aaron’s and his sons’ by a statute forever from the children of Israel; for it is a heave offering and it will be a heave offering from the children of Israel of the sacrifice of their peace offering, their heave offering to the LORD*.

29:29. “And the holy garments of Aaron will be his sons’ after him, in which to be anointed and to be filled in them. 30. And that son that is priest in his stead will put them on seven days when he comes into the Tent of Meeting to minister in the Holy Place.

29:31. “And you will take the ram of the consecration and boil its flesh in the Holy Place. 32. And Aaron and his sons will eat the flesh of the ram and the bread that is in the basket, by the door of the tent of meeting. 33. And they will eat those things with which the atonement was made, to consecrate and to sanctify them, but a stranger will not eat of it, because they are holy. 34. And if any of the flesh of the consecrations or of the bread remains in the morning, then you will burn the remainder with fire. It will not be eaten, because it is holy.

29:35. “And thus will you do to Aaron and to his sons, according to all things which I have commanded you: for seven days you will consecrate them. 36. And you will offer every day a bull for a sin offering for atonement and you will cleanse the altar when you have made atonement for it, and you will anoint it to sanctify it. 37. Seven days you will make atonement for the altar and sanctify it and it will be an altar most holy: whatever touches the altar will be holy. 38. Now this is what you will offer upon the altar; two lambs of the first year day by day continually. 39. The one lamb you will offer in the morning; and the other lamb you will offer at evening. 40. And with the one lamb a tenth of an ephah of flour mixed with the fourth part of a hin of beaten oil and the fourth part of a hin of wine for a drink offering. 41. And the other lamb you will offer at evening and will do according to the grain offering of the morning and according to the drink offering, for a sweet savor, an offering made by fire to the LORD*. 42. This will be a continual burnt offering throughout your generations at the door of the Tent of Meeting before the LORD* where I shall meet you, to speak there to you. 43. And there I shall meet with the children of Israel, and it will be sanctified by My glory. 44. And I shall sanctify the Tent of Meeting and the altar. I shall sanctify also both Aaron and his sons, to minister to Me in the priest’s office. 45. And I shall dwell among the children of Israel and will be their God.
46. And they will know that I AM the LORD* their God, who brought them forth out of the land of Egypt, so I could dwell among them. I AM the LORD* their God.”

Incense Altar

30.1. “And you will make an altar on which to burn incense: you will make it of acacia. 2. A cubit will be the length of it and a cubit the breadth of it. It will be four-square and its height will be two cubits: its horns will be of the same. 3. And you will overlay it with pure gold, the top of it and the sides of it all around and its horns, and you will make a crown of gold all around it. 4. And you will make two golden rings for it under its crown upon each of its two sides, by its two corners and they will be places for the poles to carry it. 5. And you will make the poles of acacia wood and overlay them with gold. 6. And you will put it before the veil that is by the ark of the testimony, before the cover that is over the testimony, where I shall meet with you. 7. And Aaron will burn sweet incense on it every morning. When he dresses the lamps, he will burn incense upon it. 8. And when Aaron lights the lamps at evening, he will burn incense upon it, a perpetual incense before the LORD* throughout your generations. 9. You will offer no strange incense on it, or burnt offering, or grain offering: neither will you pour a drink offering on it. 10. And Aaron will make atonement upon the horns of it once in a year with the blood of the sin offering of atonements: once in the year will he make atonement upon it throughout your generations: it is most holy to the LORD.


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Torah Portion – B’shalach – After he had let go – Freedom Faith Tests – January 27, 2018

B’shalach – After he had let go

jesus-jw

Exodus 13:17-17:16
Judges 4:4-5:31 (A); 5:1-31 (S)

“Freedom Faith Tests”

by Mark Huey

Some of the details, about the miraculous deliverance of Ancient Israel from Egyptian servitude, are recorded in this week’s Torah portion, B’shalach. It includes particular attention to the ongoing struggles that the liberated nation will have to endure, as the Lord desired His chosen people to replace the burdens of slavery to other people, with a wholehearted dependence upon Him. However, as recorded in this parashah, what God wanted for Israel regarding its principal mission—to be a light, illuminating the existence and blessings available to all from the One True Creator God to humankind at large (Isaiah 42:6; 49:6)—would not come without considerable reorientation of priorities. After all, the propensity of the carnal nature, primarily focused upon self interests and self-preservation, is now released from the oppression of physical bondage to make choices about not only what to do and think, but also who or what to worship and serve. With the goal of the Holy One to possess a holy nation of priests, which will faithfully follow His ways (Exodus 19:5-6), a testing of faith commences, as perceived freedom unleashes the free will of human beings to make choices.

In our Torah reading, the incredible contrast between faithfully following the presence of God in the pillar of fire and cloud—after a phenomenal deliverance with the inclination to simply survive—actually begins with a mention of Joseph’s deathbed desire (Genesis 50:24-25), to have his remains taken back to Canaan rather than be interred in Egypt. Such was the example established and fostered by Joseph, that for the forty-year sojourn of Ancient Israel in the wilderness, the bones of Joseph were finally laid to rest in the plot of land purchased by Jacob in Shechem, shortly after the Israelites ultimately came into the Promised Land (Joshua 24:32). While much can be said about the faith of Joseph, who was used by God to preserve the nascent nation, the fact that he only had vivid dreams early in his life to primarily draw upon for faith—versus the visible appearance of God’s presence in a pillar of fire and cloud for the liberated Israelites to witness—is a stark reminder that God alone will dispense, to different individuals, a certain measure of faith (Romans 12:3). As B’shalach records,

“Now when Pharaoh had let the people go, God did not lead them by the way of the land of the Philistines, even though it was near; for God said, ‘The people might change their minds when they see war, and return to Egypt.’ 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. Moses took the bones of Joseph with him, for he had made the sons of Israel solemnly swear, saying, ‘God will surely take care of you, and you shall carry my bones from here with you.’ Then they set out from Succoth and camped in Etham on the edge of the wilderness. The LORD 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. He did not take away the pillar of cloud by day, nor the pillar of fire by night, from before the people” (Exodus 13:17-22).

From the onset of our reading, everyone of us should consider the critical admonitions found in the opening statements of the Epistle of James, as the half-brother of the Lord described the unique relationship between joy, trials, wisdom, and faith:

“Consider it all joy, my brethren, when you encounter various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance. And let endurance have its perfect result, so that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing. But if any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all generously and without reproach, and it will be given to him. But he must ask in faith without any doubting, for the one who doubts is like the surf of the sea, driven and tossed by the wind. For that man ought not to expect that he will receive anything from the Lord, being a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways” (James 1:2-8).

It should be noted that after the initial encampment at Succoth (Exodus 12:7), Moses then followed the cloud and relocated the people to the wilderness at Etham (Exodus 13:20), before being told to reestablish camp at Baal-zephon, where they were hemmed in by the sea. It was here, between Migdol and the sea, that the Lord was going to execute a dramatic judgment on the furious Egyptians—who now were up in arms, in hot pursuit, with horses and chariots bearing down on the relatively defenseless Israelites. With their escape restricted by the seemingly impenetrable sea, the frightened Israelites immediately and perhaps justifiably—because of the dire, life-threatening circumstances—began to complain to Moses. But the Lord had a plan to show His power and majesty, not only to the mortified Israelites, but to all who would eventually learn about His defeat of the mighty Egyptian Pharaoh:

“Now the LORD spoke to Moses, saying, ‘Tell the sons of Israel to turn back and camp before Pi-hahiroth, between Migdol and the sea; you shall camp in front of Baal-zephon, opposite it, by the sea. For Pharaoh will say of the sons of Israel, “They are wandering aimlessly in the land; the wilderness has shut them in.” Thus I will harden Pharaoh’s heart, and he will chase after them; and I will be honored through Pharaoh and all his army, and the Egyptians will know that I am the LORD.’ And they did so. When the king of Egypt was told that the people had fled, Pharaoh and his servants had a change of heart toward the people, and they said, ‘What is this we have done, that we have let Israel go from serving us?’ So he made his chariot ready and took his people with him; and he took six hundred select chariots, and all the other chariots of Egypt with officers over all of them. The LORD hardened the heart of Pharaoh, king of Egypt, and he chased after the sons of Israel as the sons of Israel were going out boldly. Then the Egyptians chased after them with all the horses and chariots of Pharaoh, his horsemen and his army, and they overtook them camping by the sea, beside Pi-hahiroth, in front of Baal-zephon. As Pharaoh drew near, the sons of Israel looked, and behold, the Egyptians were marching after them, and they became very frightened; so the sons of Israel cried out to the LORD. Then they said to Moses, ‘Is it because there were no graves in Egypt that you have taken us away to die in the wilderness? Why have you dealt with us in this way, bringing us out of Egypt? Is this not the word that we spoke to you in Egypt, saying, “Leave us alone that we may serve the Egyptians”? For it would have been better for us to serve the Egyptians than to die in the wilderness.’ But Moses said to the people, ‘Do not fear! Stand by and see the salvation of the LORD which He will accomplish for you today; for the Egyptians whom you have seen today, you will never see them again forever. The LORD will fight for you while you keep silent.’ Then the LORD said to Moses, ‘Why are you crying out to Me? Tell the sons of Israel to go forward. As for you, lift up your staff and stretch out your hand over the sea and divide it, and the sons of Israel shall go through the midst of the sea on dry land. As for Me, behold, I will harden the hearts of the Egyptians so that they will go in after them; and I will be honored through Pharaoh and all his army, through his chariots and his horsemen. Then the Egyptians will know that I am the LORD, when I am honored through Pharaoh, through his chariots and his horsemen’” (Exodus 14:1-18).

This incredible miracle of deliverance, ably dramatized with some cinematic license in the 1956 classic film, The Ten Commandments, is now described in gruesome detail. So for those who have perhaps been conditioned by such a portrayal of the events, upon reading the following account, one can only imagine how this might affect the minds and hearts of those who witnessed and participated in the Exodus in person:

“The angel of God, who had been going before the camp of Israel, moved and went behind them; and the pillar of cloud moved from before them and stood behind them. So it came between the camp of Egypt and the camp of Israel; and there was the cloud along with the darkness, yet it gave light at night. Thus the one did not come near the other all night. Then Moses stretched out his hand over the sea; and the LORD swept the sea back by a strong east wind all night and turned the sea into dry land, so the waters were divided. The sons of Israel went through the midst of the sea on the dry land, and the waters were like a wall to them on their right hand and on their left. Then the Egyptians took up the pursuit, and all Pharaoh’s horses, his chariots and his horsemen went in after them into the midst of the sea. At the morning watch, the LORD looked down on the army of the Egyptians through the pillar of fire and cloud and brought the army of the Egyptians into confusion. He caused their chariot wheels to swerve, and He made them drive with difficulty; so the Egyptians said, ‘Let us flee from Israel, for the LORD is fighting for them against the Egyptians.’ Then the LORD said to Moses, ‘Stretch out your hand over the sea so that the waters may come back over the Egyptians, over their chariots and their horsemen.’ So Moses stretched out his hand over the sea, and the sea returned to its normal state at daybreak, while the Egyptians were fleeing right into it; then the LORD overthrew the Egyptians in the midst of the sea. The waters returned and covered the chariots and the horsemen, even Pharaoh’s entire army that had gone into the sea after them; not even one of them remained. But the sons of Israel walked on dry land through the midst of the sea, and the waters were like a wall to them on their right hand and on their left. Thus the LORD saved Israel that day from the hand of the Egyptians, and Israel saw the Egyptians dead on the seashore. When Israel saw the great power which the LORD had used against the Egyptians, the people feared the LORD, and they believed in the LORD and in His servant Moses” (Exodus 14:19-31).

One would think that this extraordinary miracle would be received with the awe and fear of the Lord, and a great respect for Moses, as recorded. This resulted in Moses’ effusive song of praise and worship—which gave all glory to the Lord for His actions of salvation—and should be read for not only its wonderful description of the events, but how it will be, in the future, sung by the saints as a reminder of the power and glory of the Majesty on High (Revelation 15:3). So many other encouraging songs are derived from these words, but note that as a result of this disaster for the Egyptian army, the other powers of the region were to be terrified:

“Then Moses and the sons of Israel sang this song to the LORD, and said, ‘I will sing to the LORD, for He is highly exalted; the horse and its rider He has hurled into the sea. The LORD is my strength and song, and He has become my salvation; this is my God, and I will praise Him; My father’s God, and I will extol Him. The LORD is a warrior; the LORD is His name.Pharaoh’s chariots and his army He has cast into the sea; and the choicest of his officers are drowned in the Red Sea. The deeps cover them; they went down into the depths like a stone. Your right hand, O LORD, is majestic in power, Your right hand, O LORD, shatters the enemy. And in the greatness of Your excellence You overthrow those who rise up against You; You send forth Your burning anger, and it consumes them as chaff. At the blast of Your nostrils the waters were piled up, the flowing waters stood up like a heap; the deeps were congealed in the heart of the sea. The enemy said, “I will pursue, I will overtake, I will divide the spoil; My desire shall be gratified against them; I will draw out my sword, my hand will destroy them.” You blew with Your wind, the sea covered them; they sank like lead in the mighty waters. Who is like You among the gods, O LORD? Who is like You, majestic in holiness, awesome in praises, working wonders? You stretched out Your right hand, the earth swallowed them. In Your lovingkindness You have led the people whom You have redeemed; in Your strength You have guided them to Your holy habitation. The peoples have heard, they tremble; anguish has gripped the inhabitants of Philistia. Then the chiefs of Edom were dismayed; the leaders of Moab, trembling grips them; all the inhabitants of Canaan have melted away. Terror and dread fall upon them; by the greatness of Your arm they are motionless as stone; until Your people pass over, O LORD, until the people pass over whom You have purchased. You will bring them and plant them in the mountain of Your inheritance, the place, O LORD, which You have made for Your dwelling, the sanctuary, O Lord, which Your hands have established. The LORD shall reign forever and ever.’ For the horses of Pharaoh with his chariots and his horsemen went into the sea, and the LORD brought back the waters of the sea on them, but the sons of Israel walked on dry land through the midst of the sea. Miriam the prophetess, Aaron’s sister, took the timbrel in her hand, and all the women went out after her with timbrels and with dancing. Miriam answered them, ‘Sing to the LORD, for He is highly exalted; the horse and his rider He has hurled into the sea’” (Exodus 15:1-21).

Nevertheless, despite the horse and the riders consumed by the waves of the sea, the march toward Canaan continued in the wilderness of Shur, with an immediate need for water for the people and their livestock. This caused a physical crisis that elicited some more grumbling from the Israelites—because the basic need for survival was being tested—and the natural inclination, regardless of the recent events—took precedence in the hearts of the delivered people:

“Then Moses led Israel from the Red Sea, and they went out into the wilderness of Shur; and they went three days in the wilderness and found no water. When they came to Marah, they could not drink the waters of Marah, for they were bitter; therefore it was named Marah. So the people grumbled at Moses, saying, ‘What shall we drink?’ Then he cried out to the LORD, and the LORD showed him a tree; and he threw it into the waters, and the waters became sweet. There He made for them a statute and regulation, and there He tested them. And He said, ‘If you will give earnest heed to the voice of the LORD your God, and do what is right in His sight, and give ear to His commandments, and keep all His statutes, I will put none of the diseases on you which I have put on the Egyptians; for I, the LORD, am your healer.’ Then they came to Elim where there were twelve springs of water and seventy date palms, and they camped there beside the waters” (Exodus 15:22-27).

After the water came forth to alleviate the need for hydrated sustenance, Moses noted the testing, by stating the demand upon the Israelites to heed the voice of the Lord, to do what was right in His sight, give ear to His commandments, and keep His statutes.

Needless to say, with the provision of water at Elim, the congregation of Israel continued to complain, because the memories of Egypt and the relatively available foodstuffs that they were accustomed to, were no longer at hand. Complaints became rampant, but once again the Lord was testing Israel with hunger pains, in order to execute another miracle that came in the form of manna from Heaven and an abundant supply of quail in the evening. But the test was not necessarily consuming the manna and quail, but instead, perhaps, in the confidence that was required to follow the direction of the Lord to gather manna for only six days, taking a Sabbath rest on the seventh day—a pattern that would require belief and adherence to His commands:

“Then they set out from Elim, and all the congregation of the sons of Israel came to the wilderness of Sin, which is between Elim and Sinai, on the fifteenth day of the second month after their departure from the land of Egypt. The whole congregation of the sons of Israel grumbled against Moses and Aaron in the wilderness. The sons of Israel said to them, ‘Would that we had died by the LORD’s hand in the land of Egypt, when we sat by the pots of meat, when we ate bread to the full; for you have brought us out into this wilderness to kill this whole assembly with hunger.’ Then the LORD said to Moses, ‘Behold, I will rain bread from heaven for you; and the people shall go out and gather a day’s portion every day, that I may test them, whether or not they will walk in My instruction. On the sixth day, when they prepare what they bring in, it will be twice as much as they gather daily.’ So Moses and Aaron said to all the sons of Israel, ‘At evening you will know that the LORD has brought you out of the land of Egypt; and in the morning you will see the glory of the LORD, for He hears your grumblings against the LORD; and what are we, that you grumble against us?’ Moses said, ‘This will happen when the LORD gives you meat to eat in the evening, and bread to the full in the morning; for the LORD hears your grumblings which you grumble against Him. And what are we? Your grumblings are not against us but against the LORD.’ Then Moses said to Aaron, ‘Say to all the congregation of the sons of Israel, “Come near before the LORD, for He has heard your grumblings.”’ It came about as Aaron spoke to the whole congregation of the sons of Israel, that they looked toward the wilderness, and behold, the glory of the LORD appeared in the cloud. And the LORD spoke to Moses, saying, ‘I have heard the grumblings of the sons of Israel; speak to them, saying, “At twilight you shall eat meat, and in the morning you shall be filled with bread; and you shall know that I am the LORD your God.”’ So it came about at evening that the quails came up and covered the camp, and in the morning there was a layer of dew around the camp. When the layer of dew evaporated, behold, on the surface of the wilderness there was a fine flake-like thing, fine as the frost on the ground. When the sons of Israel saw it, they said to one another, ‘What is it?’ For they did not know what it was. And Moses said to them, ‘It is the bread which the LORD has given you to eat. This is what the LORD has commanded, “Gather of it every man as much as he should eat; you shall take an omer apiece according to the number of persons each of you has in his tent.”’ The sons of Israel did so, and some gathered much and some little. When they measured it with an omer, he who had gathered much had no excess, and he who had gathered little had no lack; every man gathered as much as he should eat. Moses said to them, ‘Let no man leave any of it until morning.’ But they did not listen to Moses, and some left part of it until morning, and it bred worms and became foul; and Moses was angry with them” (Exodus 16:1-20).

Suffice it to say, the Lord heard the grumbling complaints, and made provision. As the people gathered the manna on the appropriate mornings, it is noted that such daily bread was to be eaten each day, or it would become foul and inedible. In a sign that He was personally interested in the minute details of everyone receiving the proper amount—everyone, regardless of the amount they gathered—had just enough to be satisfied. But once again, we see that the main focus was on God’s people having faith to observe His Sabbath, rather than simply receiving provision:

“They gathered it morning by morning, every man as much as he should eat; but when the sun grew hot, it would melt. Now on the sixth day they gathered twice as much bread, two omers for each one. When all the leaders of the congregation came and told Moses, then he said to them, ‘This is what the LORD meant: Tomorrow is a sabbath observance, a holy sabbath to the LORD. Bake what you will bake and boil what you will boil, and all that is left over put aside to be kept until morning.’ So they put it aside until morning, as Moses had ordered, and it did not become foul nor was there any worm in it” (Exodus 16:21-24).

The pattern, of taking a Sabbath rest, is an integral part of developing faith in the Holy One of Israel, and it was the primary reason that the Almighty used this basic example to compel the Ancient Israelites to trust in Him for His provision. As is noted in the following excerpt, despite some period of adjustment to the way the manna was to be gathered and consumed, it is notable that for the forty-year sojourn, the Lord provided manna to His people. For, perhaps just as Abraham had to be tested centuries earlier when the Lord provided a ram as a substitute for the sacrificial offering of Isaac (Genesis 22:4), the Israelites needed to learn that their God was the Provider in all things, including basic nutrition:

“Moses said, ‘Eat it today, for today is a sabbath to the LORD; today you will not find it in the field. Six days you shall gather it, but on the seventh day, the sabbath, there will be none.’ It came about on the seventh day that some of the people went out to gather, but they found none. Then the LORD said to Moses, ‘How long do you refuse to keep My commandments and My instructions? See, the LORD has given you the sabbath; therefore He gives you bread for two days on the sixth day. Remain every man in his place; let no man go out of his place on the seventh day.’ So the people rested on the seventh day. The house of Israel named it manna, and it was like coriander seed, white, and its taste was like wafers with honey. Then Moses said, ‘This is what the LORD has commanded, “Let an omerful of it be kept throughout your generations, that they may see the bread that I fed you in the wilderness, when I brought you out of the land of Egypt.”’ Moses said to Aaron, ‘Take a jar and put an omerful of manna in it, and place it before the LORD to be kept throughout your generations.’ As the LORD commanded Moses, so Aaron placed it before the Testimony, to be kept. The sons of Israel ate the manna forty years, until they came to an inhabited land; they ate the manna until they came to the border of the land of Canaan. (Now an omer is a tenth of an ephah.)” (Exodus 16:25-36).

As B’shalach prepares to close, with Israel relocating to the wilderness of Sin and the encampment at Rephidim, the challenge of a lack of water, once again surfaced. Naturally, this generated resentment and quarreling with Moses, because, despite the previous provisions, and the witness of the pillar of fire and cloud, a lack of faith continued. This time, the Lord instructed Moses to strike at the rock at Horeb, which resulted in a gushing forth of water, slaking the parched lips of the Israelites. But once again, the people were found to be establishing a pattern of grumbling, complaining, and even quarrelling to the point of threatening the life of Moses. The lack of faith in the presence and provision of the Holy One, was becoming quite troubling:

“Then all the congregation of the sons of Israel journeyed by stages from the wilderness of Sin, according to the command of the LORD, and camped at Rephidim, and there was no water for the people to drink. Therefore the people quarreled with Moses and said, ‘Give us water that we may drink.’ And Moses said to them, ‘Why do you quarrel with me? Why do you test the LORD?’ But the people thirsted there for water; and they grumbled against Moses and said, ‘Why, now, have you brought us up from Egypt, to kill us and our children and our livestock with thirst?’ So Moses cried out to the LORD, saying, ‘What shall I do to this people? A little more and they will stone me.’ Then the LORD said to Moses, ‘Pass before the people and take with you some of the elders of Israel; and take in your hand your staff with which you struck the Nile, and go. Behold, I will stand before you there on the rock at Horeb; and you shall strike the rock, and water will come out of it, that the people may drink.’ And Moses did so in the sight of the elders of Israel. He named the place Massah and Meribah because of the quarrel of the sons of Israel, and because they tested the LORD, saying, ‘Is the LORD among us, or not?’” (Exodus 17:1-7).

Finally, with the incomprehensible question looming as to whether the Lord was among Israel, He allowed for yet another example of His love for His people as the dreaded Amalekites (1 Samuel 15:2-3) threatened to destroy them militarily. Given the precise instructions on how Moses was to station himself on the top of the hill, with his hands and staff extended to prevail over the warring Amalekites, his personal need to have assistance from Aaron and Hur was noted, as faithful Joshua led the counterattack:

“Then Amalek came and fought against Israel at Rephidim. So Moses said to Joshua, ‘Choose men for us and go out, fight against Amalek. Tomorrow I will station myself on the top of the hill with the staff of God in my hand.’ Joshua did as Moses told him, and fought against Amalek; and Moses, Aaron, and Hur went up to the top of the hill. So it came about when Moses held his hand up, that Israel prevailed, and when he let his hand down, Amalek prevailed. But Moses’ hands were heavy. Then they took a stone and put it under him, and he sat on it; and Aaron and Hur supported his hands, one on one side and one on the other. Thus his hands were steady until the sun set. So Joshua overwhelmed Amalek and his people with the edge of the sword. Then the LORD said to Moses, ‘Write this in a book as a memorial and recite it to Joshua, that I will utterly blot out the memory of Amalek from under heaven.’ Moses built an altar and named it The LORD is My Banner; and he said, ‘The LORD has sworn; the LORD will have war against Amalek from generation to generation’” (Exodus 17:8-16).

It is here in these concluding remarks, that a key, identifying title for the Holy One is mentioned. ADONAI nissi reminded not only the Israelites then—but Messiah followers today—that He is indeed a powerful banner of victory over His own people. Furthermore is the reminder that the descendants of Esau, through Amalek’s line (Genesis 36:12), would be perpetually at war with the saints down through the generations, despite the command to eliminate them given in this memorial account.

As our Torah reading closes, there is a stark reminder that the Almighty has and will continue to use tests to challenge the faith and perseverance of those who have ostensibly been freed from the bondage of sin, but may still be struggling with the inclinations of the flesh. May each of us learn from what we have read, and by faith be able to overcome the trials and tests of life, in order to accomplish all of the good works that the Father has foreordained for each and everyone of His chosen children.

Weekly Torah Readings: B’shalah – One New Man Bible – Jan 26, 2018

parting-sea

B’shalah

13:17. And it was, when Pharaoh had sent the people out, that God did not lead them through the way of the land of the Philistines, although that was near, for God said, “Perhaps the people will change their minds when they see war, and return to Egypt.” 18. But God led the people about, through the way of the wilderness of the Reed Sea, and the children of Israel went up armed out of the land of Egypt. 19. And Moses took Joseph’s bones with him, for he had strictly sworn the children of Israel saying, “God will surely visit you and you will carry up my bones away from here with you.” 20. And they took their journey from Sukkot and camped in Itam, at the edge of the wilderness. 21. And the LORD* went before them by day in a pillar of cloud to lead them the way, and by night in a pillar of fire, to give them light, to go by day and night. 22. He did not take away the pillar of cloud by day, or the pillar of fire by night, from before the people.

Crossing the Reed Sea

14.1. And the LORD* spoke to Moses saying, 2. “Speak to the children of Israel, to turn and camp before Pi Hakhirot, between Migdol and the sea, over against Baal-Zephon: camp by the sea before it. 3. For Pharaoh will say of the children of Israel, ‘They are entangled in the land, the wilderness has shut them in.’ 4. And I shall harden Pharaoh’s heart so he will follow after them, and I shall be honored by Pharaoh and by his entire army, so the Egyptians will know that I am the LORD*.” And they did so.

14:5. And it was told the king of Egypt that the people fled, and the heart of Pharaoh and of his servants was turned against the people and they said, “Why have we done this, that we have let Israel go from serving us?” 6. And he made his chariot ready and took his people with him. 7. And he took six hundred chosen chariots and all the chariots of Egypt, and captains over every one of them. 8. And the LORD* strengthened the heart of Pharaoh king of Egypt and he pursued after the children of Israel, and the children of Israel went out with a high hand. 9. But the Egyptians pursued after them, all the horses and chariots of Pharaoh, his horsemen and his army, and overtook them camping by the sea, beside Pi Hakhirot, before Baal Zephon.

14:10. And when Pharaoh drew near, the children of Israel lifted up their eyes and, behold, the Egyptians marched after them, and they were greatly afraid, and the children of Israel cried out to the LORD*. 11. And they said to Moses, “Have you taken us away to die in the wilderness because there were no graves in Egypt? Why have you dealt like this with us, to carry us forth out of Egypt? 12. Is this not the word that we spoke to you in Egypt saying, Let us alone, so we can serve the Egyptians? For it is better for us to serve the Egyptians, than that we should die in the wilderness.” 13. And Moses said to the people, “Do not be in awe! Stand still! See the salvation of the LORD*, (2 Chr.20:17) which He will show you today, for the Egyptians whom you have seen today, you will see them again no more forever.

14. The LORD* will fight for you, and you will hold your peace.” (Deut. 1:30, 3:22)

14:15. And the LORD* said to Moses, “Why are you crying to Me? Tell the children of Israel to go forward, 16. and lift up your staff and stretch out your hand over the sea and divide it, and the children of Israel will go through the midst of the sea on dry ground. 17. And I AM, behold, I shall strengthen the hearts of the Egyptians and they will follow them and I shall get honor for Myself from Pharaoh, and from his whole army, his chariots, and his horsemen. 18. And the Egyptians will know that I AM the LORD*, when I have gotten honor for Myself from Pharaoh on his chariots and his horsemen.”

14:19. And the angel of God, who went before the camp of Israel, removed and went behind them, and the pillar of the cloud went from before their face and stood behind them. 20. And it came between the camp of the Egyptians and the camp of Israel and it was a cloud and darkness to them, but it gave light by night to these so that the one did not come near the other all night. 21. And Moses stretched out his hand over the sea, and the LORD* caused the sea to go back by a strong east wind all that night, and made the sea dry land, and the waters were divided. 22. And the children of Israel went into the midst of the sea on the dry ground, and the waters were a wall to them on their right hand and on their left. 23. And the Egyptians pursued and went in after them to the midst of the sea, all Pharaoh’s horses, his chariots, and his horsemen. 24. And it was, that in the morning watch the LORD* looked at the army of the Egyptians through the pillar of fire and of cloud, and caused confusion with the army of the Egyptians, 25. and took off their chariot wheels, so they drove them heavily so that the Egyptians said, “Let us flee from the face of Israel, for the LORD* is fighting for them against the Egyptians.”

14:26. And the LORD* said to Moses, “Stretch out your hand over the sea, so the waters will come again upon the Egyptians, their chariots, and their horsemen.”

27. And Moses stretched forth his hand over the sea, and the sea returned to its strength when the morning appeared. And the Egyptians fled against it and the LORD* overthrew the Egyptians in the midst of the sea. 28. And the waters returned and covered the chariots, the horsemen, and the entire army of Pharaoh that came into the sea after them. There remained not so much as one of them. 29. But the children of Israel walked on dry land in the midst of the sea and the waters were a wall to them on their right hand and on their left. 30. Thus the LORD* saved Israel that day out of the hand of the Egyptians and Israel saw the Egyptians dead upon the seashore. 31. And Israel saw that great work which the LORD* did upon the Egyptians and the people revered the LORD* and believed the LORD* and his servant Moses.

Victory Song

15.1. Then Moses and the children of Israel sang this song to the LORD* (Rev. 15:3) and spoke, saying: “I shall sing to the LORD*, for He has triumphed gloriously, He has thrown the horse and his rider into the sea. 2. A strong song and melody for the LORD* has become my salvation. This is my God and I shall praise Him; the God of my father and I will exalt Him! 3. The LORD* is a Man of War! The LORD* is His name. 4. He has cast Pharaoh’s chariots and his army into the sea, his chosen captains also are drowned in the Reed Sea. 5. The depths have covered them, they sank to the bottom like a stone. 6. Your right hand, LORD*, has become glorious in power. Your right hand, LORD*, has dashed the enemy in pieces. 7. And in the greatness of Your excellency You have overthrown those who rose up against You. You sent forth Your wrath, which consumed them as stubble. 8. And with the blast of Your nostrils the waters were gathered together, the floods stood upright as a heap, the depths were solidified in the heart of the sea. 9. The enemy said, ‘I shall pursue, I shall overtake, I shall divide the plunder. My lust will be satisfied upon them. I shall draw my sword, my hand will destroy them.’ 10. You did blow with your wind, the sea covered them: they sank like lead in the mighty waters. 11. Who is like You, LORD*, among the gods?! Who is like You, glorious in holiness, fearful in praises, doing wonders?! (Ps. 71:19) 12. You stretched out Your right hand, the earth swallowed them. 13. You in Your loving kindness have led out the people that You have redeemed. You have guided them in Your strength to Your Holy Habitation. 14. The people will hear and be in awe. Sorrow will take hold of the inhabitants of Philistia. 15. Then the chiefs of Edom will be amazed. Trembling will take hold of the mighty men of Moab. All the inhabitants of Canaan will melt away. 16. Fear and terror will fall on them. By the greatness of Your arm they will be as still as a stone, until Your people cross over, LORD*, until the people You have purchased cross over. 17. You will bring them in and plant them in the mountain of Your inheritance, the place, LORD*, You have made for Yourself to dwell in, the Sanctuary, O Lord, Your hands have established. 18. The LORD* will reign forever and ever. (Rev. 11:15) 19. For the horse of Pharaoh went into the sea with his chariots and with his horsemen, and again the LORD* brought the waters of the sea upon them, but the children of Israel went on dry land in the midst of the sea.”

Miriam’s Song

15:20. And Miriam the prophetess, the sister of Aaron, took a tambourine in her hand and all the women went out after her with tambourines and with dances. 21. And Miriam sang to them, “Sing to the LORD*, for He has triumphed gloriously. He has thrown the horse and his rider into the sea.”

15:22. So Moses brought Israel from the Reed Sea and they went out into the wilderness of Shur and they went three days in the wilderness and found no water.

23. And when they came to Marah, they could not drink of the waters of Marah, for they were bitter: therefore the name of it was called Marah. 24. And the people murmured against Moses saying, “What will we drink?” 25. And he cried to the LORD*, and the LORD* showed him a tree and he cast it into the waters, and the waters were made sweet. He made a statute and an ordinance there for them and there he proved to them 26. and said, “If you will diligently hearken to the voice of the LORD* your God and will do that which is right in His sight and will give ear to His commandments and keep all His statutes, I shall put none of these diseases upon you, which I have brought upon the Egyptians, for I AM the LORD* Who heals you.”

15:27. And they came to Elim, where there were twelve wells of water and seventy palm trees, and they camped there by the waters. 16.1. And they took their journey from Elim, and the entire congregation of the children of Israel came to the wilderness of Sin, which is between Elim and Sinai, on the fifteenth day of the second month after their departing from the land of Egypt.

After Victory, Complaining

16:2. And the whole congregation of the children of Israel murmured against Moses and Aaron in the wilderness. 3. And the children of Israel said to them, “Would that we had died by the hand of the LORD* in the land of Egypt, when we sat by the pots of meat, when we ate bread to the full. For you have brought us out into this wilderness, to kill this whole assembly with hunger.”

16:4. Then the LORD* said to Moses, “Look, I shall rain bread from heaven for you, and the people will go out and gather a day’s portion each day, so I can test them, whether or not they will walk in My Torah (Teaching). 5. And it will be that on the sixth day they will prepare what they bring in, and it will be twice as much as they gather daily.” 6. And Moses and Aaron said to all the children of Israel, “At evening, then you will know that the LORD* has brought you out from the land of Egypt. 7. And in the morning, then you will see the glory of the LORD*, for He heard your murmurings against the LORD*, and what are we that you murmur against us?” 8. Then Moses said, “This will be, when the LORD* gives you flesh to eat in the evening and bread to the full in the morning, for the LORD* heard your murmurings which you murmur against Him and what are we? Your murmurings are not against us, but against the LORD*.”

16:9. And Moses spoke to Aaron, “Say to the entire congregation of the children of Israel, Come near before the LORD*, for He has heard your murmurings!” 10. And it happened as Aaron spoke to the whole congregation of the children of Israel that they looked toward the wilderness and, behold, the glory of the LORD* appeared in the cloud.

The LORD* Provides

16:11. And the LORD* spoke to Moses saying, 12. “Ihave heard the murmurings of the children of Israel. Speak to them saying, ‘At evening you will eat flesh and in the morning you will be filled with bread, and you will know that I AM the LORD* your God.’” 13. And it was that at evening the quails came up and covered the camp, and in the morning the dew lay all around the camp. 14. And when the dew that lay evaporated, behold, upon the face of the wilderness something fine and scaly, as fine as the hoar frost on the ground. 15. And when the children of Israel saw it, they said to one another, “Man-hu?” They did not know what it was. And Moses said to them, “This is the bread which the LORD* has given you to eat. (John 6:31) 16. This is that which the LORD* has commanded, Each man gather it according to his eating, an omer for each person, according to the number of your persons: take for each person in his tent.”

16:17. The children of Israel did so and gathered; somemore, some less. 18. And when they measured it with an omer, the one who gathered much had nothing left over and the one who gathered little had no lack. (2 Cor. 8:15) Each person gathered according to his eating.

16:19. And Moses said, “Let no man leave any till morning.” 20. Nevertheless they did not listen to Moses, but some of them left of it until the morning and it bred worms and stank, and Moses was very angry with them. 21. And they gathered it every morning, each man according to his eating, and it melted when the sun grew hot. 22. And it was, on the sixth day they gathered a double portion, two omers for one person, and all the leaders of the congregation came and told Moses. 23. And he said to them, “This is what the LORD* has said, Tomorrow is the rest of the holy Sabbath to the LORD*: bake that which you will bake today, and boil what you will boil, and that which remains over lay up for you to be kept until the morning.” 24. And they laid it up till the morning, as Moses said. And it did not stink, neither was there any worm in it 25. and Moses said, “Eat that today, for today is a Sabbath to the LORD*, today you will not find it in the field. 26. Six days you will gather it, but on the seventh day, the Sabbath, in it there will be none.”

16:27. And it happened that some of the people went out on the seventh day to gather and they found none. 28. And the LORD* said to Moses, “How long do you refuse to keep My commandments and My Torah (Teaching)? 29. See, for the LORD* has given you the Sabbath, therefore He gives you the bread for two days on the sixth day. Each person stay in his place, let no man go out of his place on the seventh day.” 30. And the people rested on the seventh day. 31. And the House of Israel called the name of it Man. And it was like coriander seed, white, and the taste of it was like wafers made with honey.

16:32. And Moses said, “This is the thing that the LORD* commands. Fill an omer of it to be kept for your generations, so they can see the bread with which I have fed you in the wilderness, when I brought you out from the land of Egypt.” 33. And Moses said to Aaron, “Take a pot and put an omer full of man(na) in it, and lay it up before the LORD*, to be kept for your generations.” 34. So Aaron laid it up as the LORD* commanded Moses, to be kept before the Testimony. 35. And the children of Israel ate man(na) for forty years, until they came to an inhabited land. They ate man(na) until they came to the borders of the land of Canaan. 36. Now an omer is the tenth part of an ephah.

Strike the Rock for Water

17.1. And the whole congregation of the children of Israel journeyed from the wilderness of Sin, by their travels, according to the commandment of the LORD* and pitched in Refidim, but there was no water for the people to drink. 2. Therefore the people contended with Moses and said, “Give us water so we can drink.” And Moses said to them, “Why argue with me? Why do you tempt the LORD*?” 3. And the people were thirsty for water there, and the people murmured against Moses and said, “Why did you bring us up out of Egypt to kill us and our children and our cattle with thirst?”

17:4. And Moses cried to the LORD* saying, “What will I do with this people? They are almost ready to stone me.” 5. And the LORD* said to Moses, “Go on before the people and take the elders of Israel with you, and your staff with which you struck the river. Take it in your hand and go. 6. Behold, I shall stand in front of you there on the rock in Horeb and you will strike the rock, and there water will come out of it, so the people can drink.” And Moses did so in the sight of the elders of Israel. 7. And he called the name of the place Massah (Test) and Meribah (Contention), because of the chiding of the children of Israel and because they tempted the LORD* by saying, “Is the LORD* among us or not?”

Aaron and Hur Hold up Moses’ Hands

17:8. Then Amalek came and fought with Israel in Refidim. 9. And Moses said to Joshua (Y’hoshea), “Choose men from among us and go out, fight with Amalek. Tomorrow I shall stand on the top of the hill with the staff of God in my hand.” 10. So Joshua did as Moses told him and fought with Amalek, and Moses, Aaron, and Hur went up to the top of the hill. 11. And it happened, when Moses held up his hand, that Israel prevailed: and when he let down his hand, Amalek prevailed. 12. But Moses’ hands were heavy so they took a stone and put it under him and he sat on it, and Aaron and Hur held up his hands, one on one side and the other on the other side, and his hands were steady until the going down of the sun. 13. And Joshua weakened Amalek and his people with the edge of the sword.

17:14. And the LORD* said to Moses, “Write this in a book for  a memorial and repeat it in the ears of Joshua, for I shall utterly blot out the remembrance of Amalek from under heaven.” 15. And Moses built an altar and called the name of it Adonai-Nissi, The LORD* is My Miracle. 16. For he said, “Because the LORD* has sworn that the LORD* will have war with Amalek from generation to generation.” (Click to Source)

Shabbat Shalom! – Weekly Torah portion from the One New Man Bible – Bo – Jan 19, 2018

jesus-jw

10.1. And the LORD* said to Moses, “Come in to Pharaoh! For I have strengthened his heart and the heart of his servants, so I could show these signs of Mine before him, 2. and so you could tell in the ears of your son, and of your son’s son, what things I have done in Egypt and My signs which I have done among them, so you will know how that I AM the LORD*.”

10:3. And Moses and Aaron came in to Pharaoh and said to him, “Thus says the LORD* God of the Hebrews, ‘How long will you refuse to humble yourself before Me? Send My people away! So they can serve Me! 4. Otherwise, if you refuse to send My people away, behold, tomorrow I shall bring the locusts into your border, 5. and they will cover the face of the earth, so no one will be able to see the earth, and they will eat the residue of that which has escaped, which remains to you from the hail and will eat every tree of the field that grows for you. 6. And they will fill your houses, the houses of all your servants, and the houses of all the Egyptians, which neither your fathers nor your fathers’ fathers have seen, since the day that they were upon the earth to this day.’” And he turned and went out from Pharaoh.

10:7. And Pharaoh’s servants said to him, “How long will this man be a snare to us? Let the people go, so they can serve the LORD* their God. Do you not know yet that Egypt is destroyed?” 8. And Moses and Aaron were brought again to Pharaoh and he said to them, “Go! Serve the LORD* your God, but who will go?” 9. And Moses said, “We will go with our young and with our old, with our sons and with our daughters, with our flocks and we will go with our herds, for we must hold a feast to the LORD*.” 10. And he said to them, “Let the LORD* be so with you, as I shall send you and your little ones out. See to it, for evil is before you. 11. Not so! Now only men can go and serve the LORD*, for that you did desire.” And they were driven out from Pharaoh’s presence.

10:12. And the LORD* said to Moses, “Stretch out your hand over the land of Egypt for the locusts, so they can come up upon the land of Egypt and eat every herb of the land, all that the hail has left.” (Rev. 9:3)

Locusts

10:13. (8thAnd Moses stretched forth his staff over the land of Egypt, and the LORD* brought an east wind upon the land all that day and all night. When it was morning, the east wind brought the locusts.

10:14. And the locusts went up over all the land of Egypt and rested in all the borders of Egypt: they were very grievous. There were no such locusts as they before they came, neither after them will be such. 15. For they covered the face of the whole earth, so that the land was darkened and they ate every herb of the land and all the fruit of the trees which the hail had left, and there remained not any green thing in the trees, or in the herbs of the field, through all the land of Egypt. (Rev. 9:13)

10:16. Then Pharaoh called for Moses and Aaron in haste and he said, “I have sinned against the LORD* your God and against you. 17. Now please forgive my sin only this once and plead with the LORD* your God, so He may only take this death away from me.” 18. And he went out from Pharaoh and pled with the LORD*. 19. And the LORD* turned a mighty strong west wind, which took away the locusts and cast them into the Reed Sea. There did not remain one locust in all the border of Egypt. 20. But the LORD* strengthened Pharaoh’s heart, so that he would not send out the children of Israel.

10:21. And the LORD* said to Moses, “Stretch out your hand toward heaven, so there will be darkness over the land of Egypt, even darkness that can be felt.” (Rev. 16:10)

Darkness

10:22. (9th) And Moses stretched forth his hand toward heaven and there was a thick darkness in all the land of Egypt for three days. 23. They did not see one another, nor could anyone rise from his place for three days, but all the children of Israel had light in their dwellings.

10:24. And Pharaoh called to Moses and said, “Go! Serve the LORD*! Only let your flocks and your herds stay, let your little ones also go with you.” 25. And Moses said, “You must also give us sacrifices and burnt offerings, so we can sacrifice to the LORD* our God. 26. Our cattle will also go with us. There will not be a hoof left behind, for we must take it to serve the LORD* our God, and we do not know with what we must serve the LORD*, until we come there.” 27. But the LORD* strengthened Pharaoh’s heart and he would not send them out. 28. And Pharaoh said to him, “Get away from me! Take heed for yourself! You will not see my face again, for on the day you see my face you will die.” 29. And Moses said, “You have spoken well, I shall not again see your face in all the earth.

11.1. And the LORD* said to Moses, “I shall still bring one more plague upon Pharaoh and upon Egypt. Afterwards he will let you go from here. When he does send you out, he will surely thrust you out from here altogether.”

The People Gather Egyptian Wealth

11:2. “Speak now in the ears of the people, let each man ask from his neighbor, and each woman from her neighbor, jewels of silver, and jewels of gold.” (Gen. 15:14,15, Acts 7:6,7) 3. And the LORD* gave the people favor in the sight of the Egyptians. Moreover the man Moses was very great in the land of Egypt, in the sight of Pharaoh’s servants and in the sight of the people.

11:4. And Moses said, “Thus says the LORD*, About midnight I shall go out into the midst of Egypt. 5. And all the firstborn in the land of Egypt will die, from the firstborn of Pharaoh who sits on his throne, even to the firstborn of the maidservant that is behind the mill, and all the firstborn of beasts. 6. And there will be a great cry throughout all the land of Egypt, such as there was none like it, nor will there be like it any more. 7. But against any of the children of Israel not one dog will move his tongue against man or beast, so you will know how the LORD* puts a difference between the Egyptians and Israel. 8. And all your servants will come down to me, and bow themselves down to me saying, ‘You and all the people who follow you, Get out!’ Then after that I shall go out.” And he went out from Pharaoh in a great anger.

11:9. And the LORD* said to Moses, “Pharaoh will not listen to you so My wonders can be multiplied in the land of Egypt.”10. And Moses and Aaron did all these wonders before Pharaoh, but the LORD* strengthened Pharaoh’s heart so that he would not send the children of Israel out of his land.

Passover Commanded

12.1. And the LORD* spoke to Moses and Aaron in the land of Egypt saying, 2. “This month will be the beginning of months for you: it will be the first month of the year for you. 3. Speak to the whole congregation of Israel saying, On the tenth day of this month they will take for themselves – each man – a lamb, according to the house of their fathers, a lamb for a house. 4. And if the household is too little for the lamb, let him and his neighbor next to his house take it according to the number of people, each man according to how much he eats will make your count for the lamb. 5. Your lamb will be without blemish, a male of the first year. You will take it out from the sheep or from the goats. 6. And you will keep it up until the fourteenth day of the same month, and the whole assembly of the congregation of Israel will kill it at twilight.7. And they will take of the blood and strike it on the two side posts and on the upper door post of the houses, in which they will eat it. 8. And they will eat the flesh, roasted with fire, and unleavened bread in that night. They will eat it with bitter herbs. 9. Do not eat it raw, or sodden at all with water, but roasted with fire, its head with its legs and with its entrails. 10. And do not let anything of it remain until the morning. And that which remains of it until the morning you will burn with fire. 11. And thus you will eat it, with your loins girded, your shoes on your feet and your staff in your hand. And you will eat it in haste. It is the LORD’s* Passover. 12. For I shall pass through the land of Egypt this night and will strike all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, both man and beast, and I shall execute judgment against all the gods of Egypt. I AM the LORD*! 13. And the blood will be as a token for you upon the houses where you are, and when I see the blood, I shall pass over you and the plague will not be upon you to destroy you, when I strike the land of Egypt.”

Feast of Unleavened Bread Commanded

12:14. “And this day will be a memorial for you and you will keep it a feast to the LORD* throughout your generations. You will keep it a feast by an ordinance forever. 15. Seven days you will eat unleavened bread. Even the first day you will put away leaven out of your houses, for whoever eats leavened bread from the first day until the seventh day, that soul will be cut off from Israel. 16. And on the first day there will be a holy convocation, and on the seventh day there will be a holy convocation for you; no manner of work will be done in them, save that which every man must eat, that only may be done by you. 17. And you will observe matsot, unleavened bread, for in this selfsame day I have brought your hosts out of the land of Egypt. Therefore you will observe this day in your generations by an ordinance forever. 18. In the first month, on the fourteenth day of the month at dusk, you will eat unleavened bread until the twenty-first day of the month at evening.19. Seven days no leaven will be found in your houses, for whoever eats that which is leavened, even that soul will be cut off from the congregation of Israel, whether he is a stranger or born in the land. 20. You will eat nothing leavened. In all your dwellings you will eat unleavened bread.”

12:21. Then Moses called for all the elders of Israel and said to them, “Choose and take for yourselves a lamb according to your families, and kill the Passover lamb. 22. And you will take a bunch of hyssop and dip it in the blood that is in the basin and strike the lintel and the two side posts with the blood that is in the basin, and none of you will go out of the door of his house until the morning. 23. For the LORD* will pass through to strike the Egyptians, and when He sees the blood upon the lintel and on the two side posts, the LORD* will pass over the door and will not allow the destroyer to come in to your houses to strike you. 24. And you will observe this thing for an ordinance for you and your sons forever. 25. And it will be, when you come to the land which the LORD* will give you, according as He has promised, that you will keep this service. 26. And it will be, when your children say to you, ‘What do you mean by this service?’ 27. That you will say, ‘It is the sacrifice of the LORD’s* Passover, Who passed over the houses of the children of Israel in Egypt, when He struck the Egyptians and delivered our houses.’” And the people bowed their heads and worshipped. 28. And the children of Israel went away and did so, as the LORD* had commanded Moses and Aaron, so they did.

Firstborn, Last of the Plagues

12:29. (10thAnd it was at midnight that the LORD* struck all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, from the firstborn of Pharaoh who sat on his throne to the firstborn of the captive in the dungeon, and all the firstborn of animals. 30. And Pharaoh got up in the night, he, all his servants, and all the Egyptians. And there was a great cry in Egypt, for there was not a house where there was not one dead. 31. And he called for Moses and Aaron by night and said, “Get up! Get out from among my people! Both you and the children of Israel, go! Serve the LORD*, as you have said. 32. Also take your flocks and your herds, as you have said, and be gone. And bless me also.” 33. And the Egyptians were urgent upon the people, so they would send them out of the land in haste, for they said, “We will all be dead men.” 34. And the people took their dough before it was leavened, their kneading-troughs being bound up in their clothes upon their shoulders. 35. And the children of Israel did according to the word of Moses, and they asked from the Egyptians jewels of silver, jewels of gold, and clothes. 36. And the LORD* gave the people favor in the sight of the Egyptians, so that they granted their requests, such things as they required. And they emptied Egypt.

12:37. And the children of Israel journeyed from Rameses to Succoth, about six hundred thousand men on foot, besides children. 38. And a mixed multitude also went up with them, and flocks and herds, very many cattle. 39. And they baked unleavened cakes of the dough which they brought out of Egypt, for it was not leavened because they were thrust out of Egypt and could not tarry, nor had they prepared any food for themselves.

12:40. Now the stay of the children of Israel who dwelled in Egypt was four hundred thirty years. 41. And it was at the end of the four hundred thirty years, even the selfsame day, it was that all the hosts of the LORD* went out from the land of Egypt. 42It is a night to be guarded, never forgotten, to the LORD* for bringing them out from the land of Egypt. This is that night of the LORD* to be observed by all the children of Israel in their generations.

Ordinance of the Passover

12:43. And the LORD* said to Moses and Aaron, “This is the ordinance of the Passover: No stranger will eat of it. 44. But every man’s servant that is bought for money, when you have circumcised him, then he will eat of it. 45. Aforeigner and a hired servant will not eat of it. 46. It will be eaten in one house, you will not carry out any of the flesh abroad out of the house, nor will you break a bone of it. (John 19:33) 47. All the congregation of Israel will keep it. 48. And when a stranger sojourns with you and keeps the Passover to the LORD*, let all his males be circumcised and then let him come near and keep it, and he will be as one that is born in the land, for no uncircumcised person will eat of it. 49. One Torah (Teaching) will be for the one that is home born and for the stranger who lives among you.” 50. So all the children of Israel did this, as the LORD* commanded Moses and Aaron, so they did. 51. And it happened the selfsame day, the LORD* did bring the children of Israel out of the land of Egypt by their hosts.

Deliverance Proclaimed

13.1. And the LORD* spoke to Moses saying, 2. “Sanctify to Me all the firstborn, whoever opens the womb among the children of Israel, of man and of beast. It is Mine.” (Luke 2:22,23)

13:3. And Moses said to the people, “Remember this day on which you came out from Egypt, out of the house of bondage, for by strength of hand the LORD* brought you out from this place. There will not be eaten any leavened bread. 4. This day in the month Aviv you came out. 5. And it will be when the LORD* brings you into 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 will keep this service in this month. 6. Seven days you will eat unleavened bread, and in the seventh day will be a feast to the LORD*. 7. Unleavened bread will be eaten seven days, and no leavened bread will be seen with you, neither will there be leaven seen with you in all your quarters. 8. And you will show your son on that day saying, ‘This is done because of what the LORD* did for me when I came out of Egypt.’

9. And it will be for a sign to you upon your hand and for a memorial between your eyes that the LORD’s* Torah (Teaching) may be in your mouth, for with a strong hand the LORD* has brought you out of Egypt. 10. You will therefore keep this ordinance in its season from year to year.”

Firstborn are the LORD’s*

13:11. “And it will be when the LORD* brings you into the land of the Canaanites, as He swore to you and to your fathers and will give it to you, 12. that you will set apart to the LORD* all that opens the womb, and every firstling that comes of an animal which you have; the males will be the LORD’s*. 13. And every firstling of a donkey you will redeem with a lamb, and if you will not redeem it, then you will break its neck, and you will redeem all the firstborn of man among your children. 14. And it will be when your son asks you in time to come, saying, ‘What is this?’ that you will say to him, By strength of hand the LORD* brought us out from Egypt, from the house of bondage. 15. And it was, when Pharaoh would hardly let us go, that the LORD* slew all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, both the firstborn of man and the firstborn of beast. Therefore I sacrifice to the LORD* all that opens the womb, being males, but I redeem all the firstborn of my children. 16. And it will be for a token upon your hand, and for frontlets between your eyes for by strength of hand the LORD* brought us forth out of Egypt.’” (Click to Source)

 

Weekly Torah Readings: Va-era – One New Man Bible – Jan 12, 2018

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Va-era

6:2. And God spoke to Moses and said to him, “I AM the LORD*! 3. And I appeared to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob by My name El Shaddai (God Almighty), but I was not known to them by My name LORD*. 4. And I have also established My covenant with them, to give them the land of Canaan, the land of their pilgrimage, in which they were strangers. 5. And I have also heard the groaning of the children of Israel, whom the Egyptians are keeping in bondage, and I have remembered My covenant.”

Origin of Communion

6:6. “Therefore say to the children of Israel, ‘I AM the LORD*, and I will bring you out from under the burdens of the Egyptians, and I will rescue, deliver, you from their bondage, and I will redeem you with an outstretched arm and with great judgments  7. and I will take you to Myself for a people, and I shall be God to you and you will know that I AM the LORD* your God, Who brings you out from under the burdens of the Egyptians. 8. And I shall bring you into the land, concerning which I lifted up My hand to give it to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob and I shall give it to you for a heritage. I AM the LORD*!’”

6:9. And Moses spoke so to the children of Israel, but they did not listen to Moses because of lack of spirit, and the hard labor.

6:10. And the LORD* spoke to Moses saying, 11. “Come in! Speak to Pharaoh king of Egypt, to send the children of Israel out of his land.” 12. And Moses spoke before the LORD* saying, “See, the children of Israel have not listened to me, so how will Pharaoh listen to me? I am of uncircumcised, sealed, lips.” 13. And the LORD* spoke to Moses and to Aaron, and gave them a charge for the children of Israel and for Pharaoh king of Egypt, to bring the children of Israel out of the land of Egypt.

6:14. These are the heads of their fathers’ houses: The sons of Reuben the firstborn of Israel: Hanoch, and Pallu, Hezron, and Carmi; these are the families of Reuben. 15. And the sons of Simeon: Jemuel, Jamin, Ohad, Jakhin, Zohar, and Shaul the son of a Canaanite woman; these are the families of Simeon. 16. And these are the names of the sons of Levi according to their generations: Gershon, Kohath, and Merari; and the years of the life of Levi were a hundred thirty-seven years. 17.The sons of Gershon; Libni and Shimi, according to their families. 18. And the sons of Kohath; Amram, Izhar, Hebron, and Uzziel: and the years of the life of Kohath were a hundred thirty-three years. 19. And the sons of Merari; Mahali and Mushi: these are the families of Levi according to their generations.

6:20. And Amram took Jochebed (Yokheved), his father’s sister, for his wife and she bore him Aaron and Moses: and the years of the life of Amram were a hundred thirty-seven years. 21. And the sons of Izhar; Korah, Nepheg, and Zichri. 22.And the sons of Uzziel; Mishael, Elzaphan, and Sithri. 23. And Aaron took for himself Elisheva, daughter of Amminadab, sister of Nahshon, for his wife and she bore him Nadab, Abihu, Elazar, and Itamar. 24. And the sons of Korah; Assir, Elkanah, and Abiasaph: these are the families of the Korahites. 25. And Elazar, Aaron’s son, took for himself one of the daughters of Putiel for his wife and she bore Phineas. These are the heads of the fathers of the Levites according to their families. 26. These are the families of Aaron and Moses, to whom the LORD* said, “Bring out the children of Israel from the land of Egypt according to their hosts.” 27. These are the ones who spoke to Pharaoh king of Egypt, to bring out the children of Israel from Egypt: these are Moses and Aaron. 28. And it came to pass on the day when the LORD* spoke to Moses in the land of Egypt,

6:29. That the LORD* spoke to Moses saying, “I AM the LORD*! Tell everything that I say to you to Pharaoh king of Egypt.”30. And Moses said before the LORD*, “Behold, I am of uncircumcised, sealed, lips, how will Pharaoh listen to me?”

Moses Prepares for Pharaoh

7.1. And the LORD* said to Moses, “See, I have made you a god to Pharaoh, and Aaron your brother will be your prophet.2. You will speak all that I command you and Aaron your brother will speak to Pharaoh, so he will send the children of Israel out of his land. 3. And I shall harden Pharaoh’s heart and multiply My signs and My wonders in the land of Egypt. 4.But Pharaoh will not pay attention to you, so that I can lay My hand upon Egypt and bring out My armies, My people the children of Israel, out of the land of Egypt by great judgments. 5. And the Egyptians will know that I AM the LORD*, when I stretch forth My hand over Egypt and bring out the children of Israel from among them.”

7:6. And Moses and Aaron did so, as the LORD* commanded them, so they did. 7. And Moses was eighty years old and Aaron eighty-three years old, when they spoke to Pharaoh.

7:8. And the LORD* spoke to Moses and to Aaron saying, 9. “When Pharaoh speaks to you saying, ‘Show a miracle for yourself!’ Then you will say to Aaron, ‘Take your staff and cast it before Pharaoh.’ It will become  a serpent.” 10. And Moses and Aaron went in to Pharaoh and they did as the LORD* had commanded and Aaron cast down his staff before Pharaoh and before his servants, and it became a serpent. 11. Then Pharaoh also called the wise men and the sorcerers. Now the magicians of Egypt, they also did in like manner with their enchantments. 12. For each man cast down his staff and they became serpents, but Aaron’s staff swallowed up their staffs. 13. And He hardened Pharaoh’s heart and he did not pay attention to them, as the LORD* had said.

7:14. And the LORD* said to Moses, “Pharaoh’s heart is hardened. He refuses to send the people out. 15. Go to Pharaoh in the morning. Then, when he goes out to the water, you will stand by the river’s bank to meet him and you will take the staff which was turned to a serpent in your hand. 16. And you will say to him, ‘The LORD* God of the Hebrews has sent me to you saying, Send My people away! So they can serve Me in the wilderness. And behold, till now you would not listen. 17. Thus says the LORD*, By this you will know that I AM the LORD*! Behold, I shall strike the waters in the river with the staff that is in my hand, and they will be turned to blood.    (Rev. 11:6) 18. And the fish that are in the river will die and the river will stink and the Egyptians will not be able to drink the water of the river.’”

The Plagues Begin

7:19. And the LORD* spoke to Moses, “Say to Aaron, ‘Take your staff! Stretch out your hand over the waters of Egypt, over their streams, over their rivers, over their ponds, and over all their pools of water, so they will become blood, (Rev. 8:8) and there will be blood throughout the whole land of Egypt, both in vessels of wood, and in vessels of stone.’” 20. (1st)And Moses and Aaron did so, as the LORD* commanded and he lifted up the staff and struck the waters in the river, in the sight of Pharaoh and in the sight of his servants, and all the waters that were in the river were turned to blood. 21. And the fish in the river died and the river stank, and the Egyptians could not drink of the water of the river, and there was blood throughout all the land of Egypt.  (Rev. 16:3) 22. And the magicians of Egypt did so with their enchantments and Pharaoh’s heart was strengthened, and he did not listen to Moses and Aaron, as the LORD* had said. 23. And Pharaoh turned and went into his house and he did not pay attention to this either.  24. And all the Egyptians dug round about the river for water to drink, for they could not drink of the water of the river. 25. And seven days were fulfilled, after the LORD* had smitten the river. (Rev. 16:4)

7:26. And the LORD* spoke to Moses, “Come to Pharaoh! Say to him, ‘Thus says the LORD*, Send My people away! So they can serve Me! 27. And if you refuse to send them, behold, I AM will plague all your borders with frogs. 28. And the river will bring forth frogs abundantly, which will go up and come into your house, into your bedchamber, upon your bed, into the house of your servants, upon your people, into your ovens, and into your kneading-troughs. 29. And the frogs will come upon you, upon your people, and upon all your servants.’”

Frogs

8.1. And the LORD* spoke to Moses, “Say to Aaron, Stretch forth your hand with your staff over the streams, over the rivers, and over the ponds and cause frogs to come up upon the land of Egypt.” 2. (2NDAnd Aaron stretched out his hand over the waters of Egypt, and the frogs came up and covered the land of Egypt. 3. And the magicians did so with their enchantments, and brought up frogs upon the land of Egypt.

8:4. Then Pharaoh called for Moses and Aaron and said, “Plead with the LORD*, so He will take the frogs away from me and from my people and I shall send the people out, so they can sacrifice to the LORD*.” 5. And Moses said to Pharaoh, “Glorify yourself over me! When will I plead for you, for your servants, and for your people, to destroy the frogs from you and your houses, so they may just remain in the river?” 6. And he said, “Tomorrow.” And he said, “It will be according to your word so you will know that there is no one like the LORD* our God, 7. and the frogs will depart from you, from your houses, from your servants, and from your people. They will remain only in the river.” 8. And Moses and Aaron went out from Pharaoh and Moses cried to the LORD* because of the frogs which he had brought against Pharaoh. 9. And the LORD* did according to the word of Moses and the frogs died out of the houses, out of the villages, and out of the fields.10. And they gathered them together in heaps, and the land stank. 11. But when Pharaoh saw that there was respite, he strengthened his heart, and paid no attention to them, as the LORD* had said.

Lice

8:12. And the LORD* said to Moses, “Say to Aaron, Stretch out your staff and strike the dust of the land, so there will be lice throughout all the land of Egypt.”      13. (3rd) And they did so. Aaron stretched out his hand with his staff and struck the dust of the earth, and it became lice upon man and upon beast. All the dust of the land became lice throughout all the land of Egypt. 14. And the magicians did so with their enchantments to bring forth lice, but they could not. So there were lice upon man and upon beast. 15. Then the magicians said to Pharaoh, “This is the finger of God.” But Pharaoh’s heart was strengthened and he did not listen to them, as the LORD* had said.

8:16. And the LORD* said to Moses, “Rise up early in the morning and stand before Pharaoh. Behold, he comes out to the water here and say to him, “Thus says the LORD*, Send My people away! So they can serve Me! 17. Or else, if you will not send My people away, behold, I shall send swarms of flies upon you, upon your servants, upon your people, and into your houses. And the houses of the Egyptians and also the ground that they are on will be full of swarms of flies. 18. And I shall sever in that day the land of Goshen, in which My people dwell, so no swarms of flies will be there, so you will know that I AM the LORD* in the midst of the earth. 19. And I shall put a division between My people and your people. This sign will happen tomorrow.”

Flies

8:20. (4th) And the LORD* did so and there came a grievous swarm of flies into the house of Pharaoh, his servants’ houses, and into all the land of Egypt. The land was corrupted by reason of the swarm of flies. 21. And Pharaoh called for Moses and for Aaron and said, “Go! Sacrifice to your God in the land.”

8:22. And Moses said, “It is not right to do that, for our sacrifice to the LORD* our God will be an abomination for the Egyptians, so we will sacrifice the abomination of the Egyptians before their eyes, and will they not stone us?  23. We will go three days’ journey into the wilderness and sacrifice to the LORD* our God, as He will command us.” 24. And Pharaoh said, “I shall send you, so you can sacrifice to the LORD* your God in the wilderness, only you will not go very far away. Plead on my behalf!”

8:25. And Moses said, “See, I am going out from you and I shall plead with the LORD* that the swarms of flies will depart from Pharaoh, from his servants and from his people, tomorrow, but Do not let Pharaoh deal deceitfully any more in not sending the people to sacrifice to the LORD*! 26. And Moses went out from Pharaoh and pled with the LORD*. 27.And the LORD* did according to the word of Moses and He removed the swarms of flies from Pharaoh, from his servants, and from his people; there remained not one. 28. And Pharaoh strengthened his heart at this time too, he did not send the people out.

Send My People Away

9.1. Then the LORD* said to Moses, “Come in to Pharaoh! Tell him, ‘Thus says the LORD* God of the Hebrews, Send My people away! So they can serve Me!

2. For if you refuse to send them out and will still hold them, 3. behold, the hand of the LORD* is upon your cattle that are in the field, upon the horses, upon the donkeys, upon the camels, upon the oxen, and upon the sheep: there will be a very severe plague. 4. And the LORD* will separate between the cattle of Israel and the cattle of Egypt and nothing will die of all that belongs to the children of Israel.’” 5. And the LORD* appointed a set time saying, “Tomorrow the LORD* will do this thing in the land.”

Plague on Animals

9:6. (5thAnd the LORD* did that thing on the next day and all the cattle of Egypt died, but not one of the cattle of the children of Israel died. 7. And Pharaoh sent and, behold, there was not one of the cattle of the Israelites dead. But the heart of Pharaoh was strengthened and he did not send the people out.

9:8. And the LORD* said to Moses and to Aaron, “Take for yourselves handfuls of ashes of the furnace and let Moses sprinkle it toward the heavens in the sight of Pharaoh. 9. And it will become small dust in the whole land of Egypt and will be a boil breaking forth with boils upon man and upon beast throughout all the land of Egypt.”

Boils and Blisters

9:10. (6thAnd they took kiln ashes and stood before Pharaoh and Moses sprinkled it up toward heaven, and it became boils and blisters bursting forth upon man and upon beast. (Rev. 16:2) 11. And the magicians could not stand before Moses because of the boils, for the boils were upon the magicians and upon all the Egyptians. 12. And the LORD* strengthened the heart of Pharaoh and he paid no attention to them, as the LORD* had told Moses.

9:13. And the LORD* said to Moses, “Get up early in the morning and stand before Pharaoh and say to him, ‘Thus says the LORD* God of the Hebrews, Send My people away! So they can serve Me! 14. For I shall at this time send all My plagues upon your heart, upon your servants, and upon your people, so you will know that there is no one like Me. 15. For now I shall stretch out My hand, so I can strike you and your people with pestilence and you will be cut off from the earth. 16.And for this I have raised you up, in order to show you My power and that My name may be declared throughout all the earth. (Rom. 9:17)

9:17. “Do you still exalt yourself against My people, so that you will not send them out? 18. Behold, tomorrow about this time I shall cause it to rain a very severe hail, such as has not been in Egypt since its foundation even until now. 19.Therefore send now, gather your cattle and all that you have in the field, for every man and animal that is found in the field, and will not be brought home, the hail will come down upon them and they will die.” 20. He who feared the word of the LORD* among the servants of Pharaoh made his servants and his cattle flee into the houses 21. and he who did not regard the word of the LORD* left his servants and his cattle in the field.

9:22. And the LORD* said to Moses, “Stretch forth your hand toward heaven, so there will be hail in the whole land of Egypt, upon man, upon beast, and upon every herb of the field, throughout the land of Egypt.”

Hail

9:23. (7th) And Moses stretched forth his staff toward heaven and the LORD* sent thunder and hail, and the fire ran along upon the ground, and the LORD* rained hail upon the land of Egypt. 24. So there was hail, and fire was flaming up amidst the hail, very grievous, such as there was none like it in all the land of Egypt since it became a nation. 25. And the hail struck throughout all the land of Egypt all that was in the field, both man and beast and the hail struck every herb of the field and broke every tree of the field. (Rev. 8:7) 26. Only in the land of Goshen, where the children of Israel were, was there no hail.

9:27. And Pharaoh sent and called for Moses and Aaron and said to them, “I have sinned this time: the LORD* is righteous and I and my people are wicked. 28. Plead with the LORD*, for it is enough, that there will be no more mighty thunderings and hail, and I shall send you out and you will stay no longer.”

9:29. And Moses said to him, “As soon as I leave the city, I shall spread abroad my hands to the LORD*, the thunders will cease, neither will there be any more hail, so you will know how that the earth is the LORD’s*. 30. But as for you and your servants, I know that you will not yet revere the LORD* God.” 31. And the flax and the barley were smitten, for the barley was in the ear and the flax was in bloom. 32. But the wheat and the rye were not smitten, for they had not grown up.

9:33. And Moses went out of the city from Pharaoh and spread his hands abroad to the LORD*, and the thunders and hail ceased, and the rain was not poured upon the earth. 34. And when Pharaoh saw that the rain and the hail and the thunders had ceased, he sinned yet more and strengthened his heart, he and his servants. 35. And the heart of Pharaoh was strengthened, and he would not send the children of Israel out, as the LORD* had spoken by Moses. (Click to Source)