Lech-Lecha לֶךְ-לְךָ Go Forth Yourself!
Torah Portion Genesis 12:1-17:27
Haftarah: Isaiah 54:1-55:5
Apostolic Scripture: Luke 17:20-27
SHABBAT READING #7 - Genesis 17:7–27
A sign of Hashem’s covenant is circumcision. You may think this is odd, I always have. But at a recent Torah portion study with friends, someone suggested something very interesting. He said the reason for the circumcision is that the “seed” (sperm) which creates comes from that part of the body. After circumcision a scar forms, and it is “through” this scar that the seed travels. In other words, ancestry is traveling through and witnessing the reminder of the scar (covenant) every time someone is created!
This makes total sense. The reminder of the covenant is the scar. The “seed” passes through this covenant agreement. Then creation happens. Isn’t it amazing how incredible our Elohim is in every aspect of our life?
Abraham was 100 years old when Sarah became pregnant. That’s a long time to wait for a promise to be fulfilled. And it’s not only waiting that long, but even believing that this miracle could happen at this age! It reminds me that Hashem is outside of all time!
My challenge to you today is to reflect back on how Hashem answered a prayer for you, but in His time -- not yours. As you think about this, give Him some mighty praise for His faithfulness. And show your gratefulness for Him today by doing something wonderful for someone else!
READING #7 - Genesis 17:7–27
17:7 I will establish my covenant between me and you and your offspring after you throughout their generations for an everlasting covenant, to be a Elohim to you and to your offspring after you. 8 I will give to you, and to your offspring after you, the land where you are traveling, all the land of Canaan, for an everlasting possession. I will be their Elohim.”
9 Elohim said to Abraham, “As for you, you shall keep my covenant, you and your offspring after you throughout their generations. 10 This is my covenant, which you shall keep, between me and you and your offspring after you. Every male among you shall be circumcised. 11 You shall be circumcised in the flesh of your foreskin. It will be a token of the covenant between me and you. 12 He who is eight days old shall be circumcised among you, every male throughout your generations, he who is born in the house, or bought with money from any foreigner who is not of your offspring. 13 He who is born in your house, and he who is bought with your money, must be circumcised. My covenant shall be in your flesh for an everlasting covenant. 14 The uncircumcised male who is not circumcised in the flesh of his foreskin, that soul shall be cut off from his people. He has broken my covenant.”
15 Elohim said to Abraham, “As for Sarai your wife, you shall not call her name Sarai, but her name shall be Sarah. 16 I will bless her, and moreover I will give you a son by her. Yes, I will bless her, and she will be a mother of nations. Kings of peoples will come from her.”
17 Then Abraham fell on his face, and laughed, and said in his heart, “Will a child be born to him who is one hundred years old? Will Sarah, who is ninety years old, give birth?” 18 Abraham said to Elohim, “Oh that Ishmael might live before you!”
19 Elohim said, “No, but Sarah, your wife, will bear you a son. You shall call his name Isaac. I will establish my covenant with him for an everlasting covenant for his offspring after him. 20 As for Ishmael, I have heard you. Behold, I have blessed him, and will make him fruitful, and will multiply him exceedingly. He will become the father of twelve princes, and I will make him a great nation. 21 But I will establish my covenant with Isaac, whom Sarah will bear to you at this set time next year.”
22 When He finished talking with him, Elohim went up from Abraham. 23 Abraham took Ishmael his son, all who were born in his house, and all who were bought with his money: every male among the men of Abraham’s house, and circumcised the flesh of their foreskin in the same day, as Elohim had said to him. 24 Abraham was ninety-nine years old when he was circumcised in the flesh of his foreskin. 25 Ishmael, his son, was thirteen years old when he was circumcised in the flesh of his foreskin. 26 In the same day both Abraham and Ishmael, his son, were circumcised. 27 All the men of his house, those born in the house, and those bought with money from a foreigner, were circumcised with him.
THIS WEEK’S HAFTARAH:
A beautiful promise in 54:10 “My loving kindness will not depart from you, and My covenant of peace will not be removed.” This is so important to remember in times of trouble and stress. Things may seem impossible but He is the G-d of possibilities! Think of it, His kindness will never leave you! And neither will His peace. You just have to step into it and live it.
I made a decision many years ago that I would choose “peace” in my home. It is a choice, trust me. You can either encourage strife, worry and arguments with your spouse/family or you can choose to walk in peace. What does that look like? It means you close your mouth instead of saying something hurtful. It means you take time to listen when you are really not interested. It means that the person next to you becomes more important than you.
So, I challenge you today to choose peace. Walk in peace and lift up those around you. Do not succumb to unrest and stress in your relationships. It takes only one person to change a relationship and that can be you!
54 “Sing, barren, you who didn’t give birth;
break out into singing, and cry aloud, you who didn’t travail with child:
for more are the children of the desolate than the children of the married wife,” says Hashem.
2 “Enlarge the place of your tent,
and let them stretch out the curtains of your habitations;
don’t spare: lengthen your cords, and strengthen your stakes.
3 For you will spread out on the right hand and on the left;
and your offspring will possess the nations
and settle in desolate cities.
4 “Don’t be afraid, for you will not be ashamed.
Don’t be confounded, for you will not be disappointed.
For you will forget the shame of your youth.
You will remember the reproach of your widowhood no more.
5 For your Maker is your husband; Hashem of Armies is His name.
The Holy One of Israel is your Redeemer.
He will be called the Elohim of the whole earth.
6 For Hashem has called you as a wife forsaken and grieved in spirit,
even a wife of youth, when she is cast off,” says your Elohim.
7 “For a small moment I have forsaken you,
but I will gather you with great mercies.
8 In overflowing wrath I hid my face from you for a moment,
but with everlasting loving kindness I will have mercy on you,” says Hashem your Redeemer.
9 “For this is like the waters of Noah to me;
for as I have sworn that the waters of Noah will no more go over the earth,
so I have sworn that I will not be angry with you, nor rebuke you.
10 For the mountains may depart,
and the hills be removed;
but My loving kindness will not depart from you,
and My covenant of peace will not be removed,”
says Hahsem who has mercy on you.
11 “You afflicted, tossed with storms, and not comforted,
behold, I will set your stones in beautiful colors,
and lay your foundations with sapphires.
12 I will make your pinnacles of rubies,
your gates of sparkling jewels,
and all your walls of precious stones.
13 All your children will be taught by Hashem;
and your children’s peace will be great.
14 You will be established in righteousness.
You will be far from oppression,
for you will not be afraid,
and far from terror,
for it shall not come near you.
15 Behold, they may gather together, but not by me.
Whoever gathers together against you will fall because of you.
16 “Behold, I have created the blacksmith who fans the coals into flame,
and forges a weapon for his work;
and I have created the destroyer to destroy.
17 No weapon that is formed against you will prevail;
and you will condemn every tongue that rises against you in judgment.
This is the heritage of Hashem’s servants,
and their righteousness is of Me,” says Hashem.
55 “Hey! Come, everyone who thirsts, to the waters!
Come, he who has no money, buy, and eat!
Yes, come, buy wine and milk without money and without price.
2 Why do you spend money for that which is not bread,
and your labor for that which doesn’t satisfy?
Listen diligently to me, and eat that which is good,
and let your soul delight itself in richness.
3 Turn your ear, and come to me.
Hear, and your soul will live.
I will make an everlasting covenant with you, even the sure mercies of David.
4 Behold, I have given him for a witness to the peoples,
a leader and commander to the peoples.
5 Behold, you shall call a nation that you don’t know;
and a nation that didn’t know you shall run to you,
because of Hashem your Elohim,
and for the Holy One of Israel;
for He has glorified you.”
THIS WEEK’S APOSTOLIC SCRIPTURE:
Look at verse 17:24 “...for as the lightning, when it flashes out of one part under the sky, shines to another part under the sky so will the Son of Man be in His day.” Many people have wondered what this means in regards to the return of the Mashiach (Messiah). Does it mean that I will be able to see Yeshua come in the sky at the same time someone in China will? How is that possible?
I believe the “lightning” is really the GLORY of G-d! That when the Mashiach comes He will be descending from the presence of the Almighty -- Hashem! He will be so clothed with glory that no matter where we will be standing we will be able to look up and see HIS GLORY. It will be unimaginable! And so wonderful.
Look for G-d’s glory today in the world. Look for His glory in creation, in other people and in everything around you! You will be surprised. When you start observing what He is doing around you. Just open your eyes. He wants you to see!
17:20 Being asked by the Pharisees when Elohim’s Kingdom would come, He answered them, “G-d’s Kingdom doesn’t come with observation; 21 neither will they say, ‘Look, here!’ or, ‘Look, there!’ for behold, G-d’s Kingdom is within you.”
22 He said to the disciples, “The days will come when you will desire to see one of the days of the Son of Man, and you will not see it. 23 They will tell you, ‘Look, here!’ or ‘Look, there!’ Don’t go away or follow after them, 24 for as the lightning, when it flashes out of one part under the sky, shines to another part under the sky; so will the Son of Man be in His day. 25 But first, He must suffer many things and be rejected by this generation. 26 As it was in the days of Noah, even so it will also be in the days of the Son of Man. 27 They ate, they drank, they married, and they were given in marriage until the day that Noah entered into the ship, and the flood came and destroyed them all.