Showing posts with label Reading #5. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Reading #5. Show all posts

Thursday, April 4, 2024

Shemini - Reading #5

Shemini שְּׁמִינִי - Eighth

Leviticus 9:1-11:47


Reading #5 - Leviticus 10:16–20


My Thoughts:


Aaron is not really allowed to do much mourning for his sons, so he chose to not eat the sin offering (verse 19). Maybe because he was sad or wanted to fast. For whatever reason it is definitely tied in with the death of his sons. And once Moses hears his reasoning he seems to excuse him. This teaches us today that sometimes we need to be flexible with people. We need to have compassion and understanding, and not judge too quickly. We need to listen to people and hear their hearts. And that means if we have to change our plans -- that’s okay. Let’s continue to learn how to treat others through Torah study. Amen!


Challenge:


Also today we learn about obeying authority. And also questioning authority. There is definitely a time and place to do so. I used to say to my employees -- “Family comes first”. So, if there were family issues or events that were important, that took precedence over work. Not all employers are like that. So today I challenge you to think about your boss/employer. Be sure to be kind and do what he/she says. If they are not understanding something you are trying to tell them then have patience and explain. Work it out. Just like Aaron did!


Reading #5 - Leviticus 10:16–20


10:16 Moses diligently inquired about the goat of the sin offering, and, behold, it was burned. He was angry with Eleazar and with Ithamar, the sons of Aaron who were left, saying, 17 “Why haven’t you eaten the sin offering in the place of the sanctuary, since it is most holy, and he has given it to you to bear the iniquity of the congregation, to make atonement for them before Hashem? 18 Behold, its blood was not brought into the inner part of the sanctuary. You certainly should have eaten it in the sanctuary, as I commanded.”


19 Aaron spoke to Moses, “Behold, today they have offered their sin offering and their burnt offering before Hashem; and such things as these have happened to me. If I had eaten the sin offering today, would it have been pleasing in Hashem’s sight?”


20 When Moses heard that, it was pleasing in his sight.

Thursday, March 28, 2024

Tzav - Reading #5

Tzav צַו - Command!

Leviticus 6:1-8:36


Reading #5 - Leviticus 8:14–21


My Thoughts:


Verse 14 says they “laid hands” on the bull. Usually “laying hands” on something or someone means some sort of dedication or transference. Here it could be both. They are dedicating this great animal to Hashem and they are “transferring” the sins of the people onto this sacrifice. Sometimes when people pray for me or others - they “lay hands” on us. I believe what they are trying to do is “transfer” Hashem’s healing power, love and grace onto the person they are praying for. Just one word of caution -- do not just let anybody lay hands on you, be sure you know the person and you trust them. They are helping Elohim’s power and plan to reach you.


Challenge:


Again, we are learning Hashem’s specific rules for sacrifice. They are carefully laid out and nothing is to be missed when applying them. We need to look at the whole Torah this way. We are to follow things exactly and not with carelessness. Pay attention to the details and learn to study each Commandment. I encourage you as you read the giving of the Laws in Torah, that you see who they apply to your life today and how you can follow them carefully and exactly as you are able. Torah is life. Breathe it in and obey it.


Reading #5 - Leviticus 8:14–21


14 He brought the bull of the sin offering, and Aaron and his sons laid their hands on the head of the bull of the sin offering. 15 He killed it; and Moses took the blood, and put it around on the horns of the altar with his finger, and purified the altar, and poured out the blood at the base of the altar, and sanctified it, to make atonement for it. 16 He took all the fat that was on the innards, and the cover of the liver, and the two kidneys, and their fat; and Moses burned it on the altar. 17 But the bull, and its skin, and its meat, and its dung, he burned with fire outside the camp, as Hashem commanded Moses. 18 He presented the ram of the burnt offering. Aaron and his sons laid their hands on the head of the ram. 19 He killed it; and Moses sprinkled the blood around on the altar. 20 He cut the ram into its pieces; and Moses burned the head, and the pieces, and the fat. 21 He washed the innards and the legs with water; and Moses burned the whole ram on the altar. It was a burnt offering for a pleasant aroma. It was an offering made by fire to Hashem, as Hashem commanded Moses.



Thursday, March 21, 2024

Vayikra - Reading #5

Vayikra  וַיִּקְרָא - And He Called

Leviticus 1:1-5:26


Reading #5 - Leviticus 4:1–26


My Thoughts:


When the priest makes these offerings for the unintentional sin of the people, they are forgiven. What is interesting is that Scripture does not say this is for intentional sin. What about that? We learn in later instructions and commandments that people who intentionally sin are either stoned (after being judged and providing witnesses) or they are cast outside the camp. Almost like there is no forgiveness for intentionally sinning. But, we know when we look at all the Torah, that He does forgive those who sin on purpose. He is a forgiving and just Elohim. And we are grateful that He is. 


Challenge:


Sin causes consequences. It hurts us, others and Hashem. Only a sacrifice and repentance can bring forgiveness. And because He loves us, He allows this. Today is a good day to check your heart in the areas where you know sin resides. Confess and repent. Bring a “sacrifice” before Hashem. It can be worship, prayer, praise and giving back to those we have sinned against. Look for reconciliation with Him and with others. Don’t wait. Sin is without cost. The sooner you take care of it, the sooner you will find freedom. Examine your heart today and change.


Reading #5 - Leviticus 4:1–26


4 Hashem spoke to Moses, saying, 2 “Speak to the children of Israel, saying, ‘If anyone sins unintentionally, in any of the things which Hashem has commanded not to be done, and does any one of them, 3 if the anointed priest sins so as to bring guilt on the people, then let him offer for his sin which he has sinned a young bull without defect to Hashem for a sin offering. 4 He shall bring the bull to the door of the Tent of Meeting before Hashem; and he shall lay his hand on the head of the bull, and kill the bull before Hashem. 5 The anointed priest shall take some of the blood of the bull, and bring it to the Tent of Meeting. 6 The priest shall dip his finger in the blood, and sprinkle some of the blood seven times before Hashem, before the veil of the sanctuary. 7 The priest shall put some of the blood on the horns of the altar of sweet incense before Hashem, which is in the Tent of Meeting; and he shall pour out the rest of the blood of the bull at the base of the altar of burnt offering, which is at the door of the Tent of Meeting. 8 He shall take all the fat of the bull of the sin offering from it: the fat that covers the innards, and all the fat that is on the innards, 9 and the two kidneys, and the fat that is on them, which is by the loins, and the cover on the liver, with the kidneys, he shall remove, 10 as it is removed from the bull of the sacrifice of peace offerings. The priest shall burn them on the altar of burnt offering. 11 He shall carry the bull’s skin, all its meat, with its head, and with its legs, its innards, and its dung 12 —all the rest of the bull—outside of the camp to a clean place where the ashes are poured out, and burn it on wood with fire. It shall be burned where the ashes are poured out.


13 “‘If the whole congregation of Israel sins, and the thing is hidden from the eyes of the assembly, and they have done any of the things which Hashem has commanded not to be done, and are guilty; 14 when the sin in which they have sinned is known, then the assembly shall offer a young bull for a sin offering, and bring it before the Tent of Meeting. 15 The elders of the congregation shall lay their hands on the head of the bull before Hashem; and the bull shall be killed before Hashem. 16 The anointed priest shall bring some of the blood of the bull to the Tent of Meeting. 17 The priest shall dip his finger in the blood and sprinkle it seven times before Hashem, before the veil. 18 He shall put some of the blood on the horns of the altar which is before Hashem, that is in the Tent of Meeting; and the rest of the blood he shall pour out at the base of the altar of burnt offering, which is at the door of the Tent of Meeting. 19 All its fat he shall take from it, and burn it on the altar. 20 He shall do this with the bull; as he did with the bull of the sin offering, so he shall do with this; and the priest shall make atonement for them, and they shall be forgiven. 21 He shall carry the bull outside the camp, and burn it as he burned the first bull. It is the sin offering for the assembly.


22 “‘When a ruler sins, and unwittingly does any one of all the things which Hashem his Elohim has commanded not to be done, and is guilty, 23 if his sin in which he has sinned is made known to him, he shall bring as his offering a goat, a male without defect. 24 He shall lay his hand on the head of the goat, and kill it in the place where they kill the burnt offering before Hashem. It is a sin offering. 25 The priest shall take some of the blood of the sin offering with his finger, and put it on the horns of the altar of burnt offering. He shall pour out the rest of its blood at the base of the altar of burnt offering. 26 All its fat he shall burn on the altar, like the fat of the sacrifice of peace offerings; and the priest shall make atonement for him concerning his sin, and he will be forgiven.



Thursday, March 14, 2024

Pekudei - Reading #5

Pekudei  פְקוּדֵי - Accounts

Torah Reading: Exodus 38:21-40:38


Reading #5 -  Exodus 40:1–16


My Thoughts:


It has been a year since the Israelites have left Egypt. And it is the beginning of the new year. This is when everything has been completed for the Tabernacle of Hashem and He is ready to have it raised. Isn’t that interesting that it would be exactly one year? It makes me think about Hashem’s perfect timing. We see that often in the Torah. Let’s apply that to our own lives. It is important to wait on Hashem when asking Him for help and even more importantly to wait for His perfect timing. Waiting is worth it. Trust me. But, really, trust Him!


Challenge:


What would that have felt like for Moses that Hashem is asking him to prepare everything for his brother to be a high priest. Moses could prepare offerings, but it was actually Aaron that would serve Hashem in the Holy of Holies. Even though Hashem regularly spoke with Moses, in a very personal way, he was not chosen to perform the High priestly duties. Think about that. Hashem’s relationship with Moses was very special and personal – and extremely anointed and important. I’m sure he did not feel “slighted” that he was not to serve in the Tabernacle. He had his own “position” with Hashem. I challenge you to look at your life and your relationship with Hashem. Are you in the “position” He has called you to be in? Or are you coveting or striving for another position? Pray and talk to Him about this.


Reading #5 - Exodus 40:1-16


40 Hashem spoke to Moses, saying, 2 “On the first day of the first month you shall raise up the tabernacle of the Tent of Meeting. 3 You shall put the ark of the covenant in it, and you shall screen the ark with the veil. 4 You shall bring in the table, and set in order the things that are on it. You shall bring in the lamp stand, and light its lamps. 5 You shall set the golden altar for incense before the ark of the covenant, and put the screen of the door to the tabernacle.


6 “You shall set the altar of burnt offering before the door of the tabernacle of the Tent of Meeting. 7 You shall set the basin between the Tent of Meeting and the altar, and shall put water therein. 8 You shall set up the court around it, and hang up the screen of the gate of the court.


9 “You shall take the anointing oil, and anoint the tabernacle and all that is in it, and shall make it holy, and all its furniture, and it will be holy. 10 You shall anoint the altar of burnt offering, with all its vessels, and sanctify the altar, and the altar will be most holy. 11 You shall anoint the basin and its base, and sanctify it.


12 “You shall bring Aaron and his sons to the door of the Tent of Meeting, and shall wash them with water. 13 You shall put on Aaron the holy garments; and you shall anoint him, and sanctify him, that he may minister to me in the priest’s office. 14 You shall bring his sons, and put tunics on them. 15 You shall anoint them, as you anointed their father, that they may minister to me in the priest’s office. Their anointing shall be to them for an everlasting priesthood throughout their generations.” 16 Moses did so. According to all that Hashem commanded him, so he did.

Thursday, March 7, 2024

Vayakhel - Reading #5

Vayakhel  וַיַּקְהֵל - And He Assembled

Torah Reading: Exodus 35:1-38:20


Reading #5 - Exodus 36:20–37:16


My Thoughts:


I was reading online about acacia wood. That it is basically indestructible. It is very resistant to any type of bugs and diseases. This makes sense that Hashem would pick this type of wood to encompass the most sacred “housing” for Himself. The whole “house” and walls of the Tabernacle are made of this wood. And there are no windows to allow for fresh air. You would need this type of wood, acacia, to protect what you were placing inside of your dwelling. Hashem knows about everything and is particular. We need to pay attention to that.


Challenge:


In verses 37:1-9 we read about the construction requirements for the Ark of the Covenant (mercy seat). Remember, this the “chair” in the Holy of Holies in which the Elohim of everything will be dwelling. It is all covered with gold and specifically “covered” with angels. Angels worship Elohim in heaven, now He is wanting them to play an important part of His revelation on earth. I really believe we each have an angel watching over our lives. Psalm 91:11-12 confirms this – His angels are sent to be given charge over our lives. Maybe it’s time we actually thank Hashem for giving us angels to watch out for us. I encourage you to take time for that right now.


Reading #5 - Exodus 36:20–37:16


20 He made the boards for the Tabernacle of acacia wood, standing up. 21 Ten cubits was the length of a board, and a cubit and a half the width of each board. 22 Each board had two tenons, joined to one another. He made all the boards of the tabernacle this way. 23 He made the boards for the tabernacle, twenty boards for the south side southward. 24 He made forty sockets of silver under the twenty boards: two sockets under one board for its two tenons, and two sockets under another board for its two tenons. 25 For the second side of the tabernacle, on the north side, he made twenty boards 26 and their forty sockets of silver: two sockets under one board, and two sockets under another board. 27 For the far part of the tabernacle westward he made six boards. 28 He made two boards for the corners of the tabernacle in the far part. 29 They were double beneath, and in the same way they were all the way to its top to one ring. He did this to both of them in the two corners. 30 There were eight boards and their sockets of silver, sixteen sockets—under every board two sockets.


31 He made bars of acacia wood: five for the boards of the one side of the tabernacle, 32 and five bars for the boards of the other side of the tabernacle, and five bars for the boards of the tabernacle for the hinder part westward. 33 He made the middle bar to pass through in the middle of the boards from the one end to the other. 34 He overlaid the boards with gold, and made their rings of gold as places for the bars, and overlaid the bars with gold.


35 He made the veil of blue, purple, scarlet, and fine twined linen, with cherubim. He made it the work of a skillful workman. 36 He made four pillars of acacia for it, and overlaid them with gold. Their hooks were of gold. He cast four sockets of silver for them. 37 He made a screen for the door of the tent, of blue, purple, scarlet, and fine twined linen, the work of an embroiderer; 38 and the five pillars of it with their hooks. He overlaid their capitals and their fillets with gold, and their five sockets were of bronze.


37 Bezalel made the ark of acacia wood. Its length was two and a half cubits, and its width a cubit and a half, and a cubit and a half its height. 2 He overlaid it with pure gold inside and outside, and made a molding of gold for it around it. 3 He cast four rings of gold for it in its four feet—two rings on its one side, and two rings on its other side. 4 He made poles of acacia wood and overlaid them with gold. 5 He put the poles into the rings on the sides of the ark, to bear the ark. 6 He made a mercy seat of pure gold. Its length was two and a half cubits, and a cubit and a half its width. 7 He made two cherubim of gold. He made them of beaten work, at the two ends of the mercy seat: 8 one cherub at the one end, and one cherub at the other end. He made the cherubim of one piece with the mercy seat at its two ends. 9 The cherubim spread out their wings above, covering the mercy seat with their wings, with their faces toward one another. The faces of the cherubim were toward the mercy seat.


10 He made the table of acacia wood. Its length was two cubits, and its width was a cubit, and its height was a cubit and a half. 11 He overlaid it with pure gold, and made a gold molding around it. 12 He made a border of a hand’s width around it, and made a golden molding on its border around it. 13 He cast four rings of gold for it, and put the rings in the four corners that were on its four feet. 14 The rings were close by the border, the places for the poles to carry the table. 15 He made the poles of acacia wood, and overlaid them with gold, to carry the table. 16 He made the vessels which were on the table, its dishes, its spoons, its bowls, and its pitchers with which to pour out, of pure gold.


Thursday, February 29, 2024

Ki Tisa - Reading #5

Ki Tisa  כִּי תִשָּׂא - When You Elevate
Exodus 30:11-34:35

Reading #5 - Exodus 34:1–9


My Thoughts:


We serve an Elohim of “second chances”. Moses, in anger, broke the first set of holy tablets. But, Hashem in His kindness and mercy gives him the chance to make a second set of tablets. Hashem invites Moses back up the mountain and He descends in a cloud. Moses bows and worships Him. Isn’t it so kind that He is fair with Moses and His people. He is giving them the Ten Commandments the “base” of all Laws. Think if He decided not to return the Commandments. Who knows what would have happened. Would there have been chaos? Would they have arrived in the Promised Land? It certainly would have been different. We know the Torah gives life. Hashem was giving “life” to Moses with the second set. Amen.


Challenge:


Who are the guilty in verse 7? Hashem has already said He will forgive iniquity. I think the “guilty” are those who do NOT repent, nor do they want to. They just remain in sin and guilt. They choose themselves over Hashem. And even more sad, is their sin is visited on to generations to come. My challenge today is to look over your life. Is there a sin in your life that you will not repent of, or let go? Be honest. If there is -- ask for repentance and turn your life around (teshuvah). We know sin separates us from Hashem. Repentance brings us closer!


Reading #5 - Exodus 34:1–9


34 Hashem said to Moses, “Chisel two stone tablets like the first. I will write on the tablets the words that were on the first tablets, which you broke. 2 Be ready by the morning, and come up in the morning to Mount Sinai, and present yourself there to me on the top of the mountain. 3 No one shall come up with you or be seen anywhere on the mountain. Do not let the flocks or herds graze in front of that mountain.”


4 He chiseled two tablets of stone like the first; then Moses rose up early in the morning, and went up to Mount Sinai, as Hashem had commanded him, and took in his hand two stone tablets. 5 Hashem descended in the cloud, and stood with him there, and proclaimed Hashem’s name. 6 Hashem passed by before him, and proclaimed, “Hashem! Hashem, a merciful and gracious Elohim, slow to anger, and abundant in loving kindness and truth, 7 keeping loving kindness for thousands, forgiving iniquity and disobedience and sin; and who will by no means clear the guilty, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children, and on the children’s children, on the third and on the fourth generation.”


8 Moses hurried and bowed his head toward the earth, and worshiped. 9 He said, “If now I have found favor in your sight, Hashem, please let Hashem go among us, even though this is a stiff-necked people; pardon our iniquity and our sin, and take us for your inheritance.”

Thursday, February 22, 2024

Tetzaveh - Reading #5

Tetzaveh תְּצַוֶּה - You Shall Command

Exodus: 27:20-30:10


Reading #5 - Exodus 29:19–37


My Thoughts:


Hashem is getting His priests ready for the Tabernacle. It is important to anoint the ears (so they may hear clearly), the thumb (so that their actions will be good) and the foot (to anoint the path of wherever they go). Everything Hashem does is intentional and not random. Sacrifices and clothing are so important in getting ready for service to Hashem. That is why all these instructions are given so that this very special place has people who are prepared in special ways to go before Hashem. It is a very privileged time to be in the Tabernacle. And as we will see soon, if the priests are not following instructions they will not be allowed to enter. Same for our lives. If we are not following His instructions (Laws) we will not be able to “enter” into eternal life.


Challenge:


They spend seven days atoning the altar and getting it ready (verse 37). They are preparing the altar and making it holy for sacrifice. I think about us praying as a sacrifice and the space we pray in. Is it “holy” space? In other words, is it set apart and special for your prayer time? I have a place in my living room that I like to pray in every morning. I put some pictures of Israel and the Temple. That kind of makes it a special place. Maybe you could think of a way to make your prayer space a special place. Add a picture, candle, worship music or anything that you have to make it special. We don’t have the Temple right now, but we can still have a special place to “meet” with Hashem. Try it, you will really love being in your prayer time!


Reading #5 - Exodus 29:19–37


29:19 “You shall take the other ram, and Aaron and his sons shall lay their hands on the head of the ram. 20 Then you shall kill the ram, and take some of its blood, and put it on the tip of the right ear of Aaron, and on the tip of the right ear of his sons, and on the thumb of their right hand, and on the big toe of their right foot; and sprinkle the blood around on the altar. 21 You shall take of the blood that is on the altar, and of the anointing oil, and sprinkle it on Aaron, and on his garments, and on his sons, and on the garments of his sons with him: and he shall be made holy, and his garments, and his sons, and his sons’ garments with him. 22 Also you shall take some of the ram’s fat, the fat tail, the fat that covers the innards, the cover of the liver, the two kidneys, the fat that is on them, and the right thigh (for it is a ram of consecration), 23 and one loaf of bread, one cake of oiled bread, and one wafer out of the basket of unleavened bread that is before Hashem. 24 You shall put all of this in Aaron’s hands, and in his sons’ hands, and shall wave them for a wave offering before Hashem. 25 You shall take them from their hands, and burn them on the altar on the burnt offering, for a pleasant aroma before Hashem: it is an offering made by fire to Hashem.


26 “You shall take the breast of Aaron’s ram of consecration, and wave it for a wave offering before Hashem. It shall be your portion. 27 You shall sanctify the breast of the wave offering and the thigh of the wave offering, which is waved, and which is raised up, of the ram of consecration, even of that which is for Aaron, and of that which is for his sons. 28 It shall be for Aaron and his sons as their portion forever from the children of Israel; for it is a wave offering. It shall be a wave offering from the children of Israel of the sacrifices of their peace offerings, even their wave offering to Hashem.


29 “The holy garments of Aaron shall be for his sons after him, to be anointed in them, and to be consecrated in them. 30 Seven days shall the son who is priest in his place put them on, when he comes into the Tent of Meeting to minister in the holy place.


31 “You shall take the ram of consecration and boil its meat in a holy place. 32 Aaron and his sons shall eat the meat of the ram, and the bread that is in the basket, at the door of the Tent of Meeting. 33 They shall eat those things with which atonement was made, to consecrate and sanctify them; but a stranger shall not eat of it, because they are holy. 34 If anything of the meat of the consecration, or of the bread, remains to the morning, then you shall burn the remainder with fire. It shall not be eaten, because it is holy.


35 “You shall do so to Aaron and to his sons, according to all that I have commanded you. You shall consecrate them seven days. 36 Every day you shall offer the bull of sin offering for atonement. You shall cleanse the altar when you make atonement for it. You shall anoint it, to sanctify it. 37 Seven days you shall make atonement for the altar, and sanctify it; and the altar shall be most holy. Whatever touches the altar shall be holy.

Thursday, February 8, 2024

Mishpatim - Reading #5

Mishpatim מִּשְׁפָּטִים - Laws

Exodus: 21:1-24:18


Reading #5 - Exodus 23:6–19


My Thoughts:


The last command in this reading is not to boil a young goat in its mother’s milk (verse 19). At first glance we can feel this is a very humane act, which it is. But some sages believe it represents pagan worship. The pagans would sacrifice a baby goat in its mother’s milk. And of course, Hashem does not want us performing or even copying any type of pagan worship. He is the only Elohim we serve. He wants us to know that under no way does He want us to perform pagan worship. When the Israelites were coming into the Land they would be exposed to many different pagan gods. Hashem cares for us and instructs us ahead of time. Amen.


Challenge:


I love in verse 10 how Hashem has us rest our crops in the seventh year, and that the poor will have a way to eat. He provides for everyone -- rich and poor. And He is instructing His people how to take care of those around us. So, today my challenge is for you to think about if you are providing in some way for the poor or those around you who need special help. If you aren't, ask Hashem to give you an opportunity to do so. And He will. I actually got a text from a former client before a recent holiday asking for help. Our family along with five other family friends decided to help her and her seven children. We gave her food and presents. Her children were so excited! I know it was from Hashem because we were more blessed then the family was!


Reading #5 - Exodus 23:6–19


6 “You shall not deny justice to your poor people in their lawsuits.


7 “Keep far from a false charge, and don’t kill the innocent and righteous; for I will not justify the wicked.


8 “You shall take no bribe, for a bribe blinds those who have sight and perverts the words of the righteous.


9 “You shall not oppress an alien, for you know the heart of an alien, since you were aliens in the land of Egypt.


10 “For six years you shall sow your land, and shall gather in its increase, 11 but the seventh year you shall let it rest and lie fallow, that the poor of your people may eat; and what they leave the animal of the field shall eat. In the same way, you shall deal with your vineyard and with your olive grove.


12 “Six days you shall do your work, and on the seventh day you shall rest, that your ox and your donkey may have rest, and the son of your servant, and the alien may be refreshed.


13 “Be careful to do all things that I have said to you; and don’t invoke the name of other gods or even let them be heard out of your mouth.


14 “You shall observe a feast to me three times a year. 15 You shall observe the feast of unleavened bread. Seven days you shall eat unleavened bread, as I commanded you, at the time appointed in the month Abib (for in it you came out of Egypt), and no one shall appear before me empty. 16 And the feast of harvest, the first fruits of your labors, which you sow in the field; and the feast of ingathering, at the end of the year, when you gather in your labors out of the field. 17 Three times in the year all your males shall appear before the Lord Hashem.


18 “You shall not offer the blood of my sacrifice with leavened bread. The fat of my feast shall not remain all night until the morning.


19 You shall bring the first of the first fruits of your ground into the house of Hashem your Elohim.


“You shall not boil a young goat in its mother’s milk.

Friday, February 2, 2024

Yitro - Reading #6

Yitro יִתְרוֹ - Jethro

Exodus: 18:1-20:22


Reading #6 - Exodus 19:20–20:14


My Thoughts:


The worship of idols is against everything Hashem stands for. When He gives the Commandments, He warns us that the sin of idolatry will fall on to our descendants. And if we do not worship false gods, He will bless us by being kind to us (verses 5 & 6)! Which do you choose for your life? To be treated wonderfully from Hashem with blessings, or to have your children and their children cursed because of your sin? Think about it and make a decision. Follow Hashem and His Commandments and have no other gods before you!


Challenge:


Today I challenge you to look at the “idols” in your life. You may be surprised what you do worship -- I know I am. Yes, we worship and love Hashem. But, we do other things too. What about TV? We sit before it, we eat before it, we absorb ourselves in it -- isn’t that like an idol? The same with our social media, computers and phones. I’ll bet you spend more time on those things then you do studying the Word of Elohim. I know I do.

It’s time for a change. Be sure to do your devotions and study every morning. Then try to minimize your time on electronics and media. Pray to Hashem throughout the day. Love others more than yourself. By doing all these things, I believe those “idols” in our lives will disappear slowly. We must try. He has commanded us to do so.


Reading #6 - Exodus 19:20–20:14


19:20 Hashem came down on Mount Sinai, to the top of the mountain. Hashem called Moses to the top of the mountain, and Moses went up.


21 Hashem said to Moses, “Go down, warn the people, lest they break through to Hashem to gaze, and many of them perish. 22 Let the priests also, who come near to Hashem, sanctify themselves, lest Hashem break out on them.”


23 Moses said to Hashem, “The people can’t come up to Mount Sinai, for you warned us, saying, ‘Set bounds around the mountain, and sanctify it.’”


24 Hashem said to him, “Go down! You shall bring Aaron up with you, but don’t let the priests and the people break through to come up to Hashem, lest He break out against them.”


25 So Moses went down to the people, and told them.


20 Elohim spoke all these words, saying, 2 “I am Hashem your Elohim, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage.


3 “You shall have no other gods before Me.


4 “You shall not make for yourselves an idol, nor any image of anything that is in the heavens above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth: 5 you shall not bow yourself down to them, nor serve them, for I, Hashem your Elohim, am a jealous Elohim, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children, on the third and on the fourth generation of those who hate me, 6 and showing loving kindness to thousands of those who love me and keep my commandments.


7 “You shall not misuse the name of Hashem your Elohim, for Hashem will not hold him guiltless who misuses His name.


8 “Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. 9 You shall labor six days, and do all your work, 10 but the seventh day is a Sabbath to Hashem your Elohim. You shall not do any work in it, you, nor your son, nor your daughter, your male servant, nor your female servant, nor your livestock, nor your stranger who is within your gates; 11 for in six days Hashem made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested the seventh day; therefore Hashem blessed the Sabbath day, and made it holy.


12 “Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be long in the land which Hashem your Elohim gives you.


13 “You shall not murder.


14 “You shall not commit adultery.

Thursday, February 1, 2024

Yitro - Reading #5

Yitro יִתְרוֹ - Jethro

Exodus: 18:1-20:22


Reading #5 - Exodus 19:7–19


My Thoughts:


What an exciting experience! Thunderings, lightning, smoke, fire and a very loud trumpet. Hashem is descending on Mt. Sinai in front of His chosen nation to speak to them! I can hardly imagine what this would be like! It would be so wonderfully overwhelming and probably frightening -- in a good way. This particular scene and the giving of the Law would create love for Hashem and obedience for centuries to come. And if we believe the prophets, His glory will return again -- to the Temple in Jerusalem. And He will send His Mashiach to rule and reign forever. We should be praying every day for His return! And for the Temple in Jerusalem to be built. Do not take this lightly. Just like He appeared in the most extreme, incredible way to Moses and His people -- so will He return to the Temple Mount, with great appearance! Get ready! Study Scripture so you know what to expect. Be repenting daily and seeking His face. 


Challenge:


Some say it’s been about fifty days since the Hebrew people have left Egypt, to the giving of the Law on Mt. Sinai. That is when we celebrate the Feast of Shavuot. This year when you get ready to celebrate this Feast, and you are counting the “omer” for fifty days, be sure to think of the occurrence we read of today. Take time to imagine what it was like when Hashem appeared to give the Law. Make sure you are continuing to give Him reverence in your life. Make sure you are staying clean and obedient to His Word. Wear your tzit-tzit to remember you to follow His Law. Show Him your love by loving others more than yourself. Get ready. Daily.


Reading #5 - Exodus 19:7–19


19:7 Moses came and called for the elders of the people, and set before them all these words which Hashem commanded him. 8 All the people answered together, and said, “All that Hashem has spoken we will do.”


Moses reported the words of the people to Hashem. 9 Hashem said to Moses, “Behold, I come to you in a thick cloud, that the people may hear when I speak with you, and may also believe you forever.” Moses told the words of the people to Hashem. 10 Hashem said to Moses, “Go to the people, and sanctify them today and tomorrow, and let them wash their garments, 11 and be ready for the third day; for on the third day Hashem will come down in the sight of all the people on Mount Sinai. 12 You shall set bounds to the people all around, saying, ‘Be careful that you don’t go up onto the mountain, or touch its border. Whoever touches the mountain shall be surely put to death. 13 No hand shall touch him, but he shall surely be stoned or shot through; whether it is animal or man, he shall not live.’ When the trumpet sounds long, they shall come up to the mountain.”


14 Moses went down from the mountain to the people, and sanctified the people; and they washed their clothes. 15 He said to the people, “Be ready by the third day. Don’t have sexual relations with a woman.”


16 On the third day, when it was morning, there were thunders and lightnings, and a thick cloud on the mountain, and the sound of an exceedingly loud trumpet; and all the people who were in the camp trembled. 17 Moses led the people out of the camp to meet Elohim; and they stood at the lower part of the mountain. 18 All of Mount Sinai smoked, because Hashem descended on it in fire; and its smoke ascended like the smoke of a furnace, and the whole mountain quaked greatly. 19 When the sound of the trumpet grew louder and louder, Moses spoke, and Elohim answered him by a voice.

Thursday, January 25, 2024

Beshalach - Reading #5

Beshalach בְּשַׁלַּח - When He Sent Out

Exodus:13:17-17:16


Reading #5 - Exodus 15:27–16:10


My Thoughts:


Wow! Bread from the sky (verse 16:4)? Can you even imagine that Hashem loves His people (and us) so very much that He heard their “hunger pains” and blessed them with bread literally from the sky. I never thought of it this way before, but that’s how it covered the ground! If our Elohim can send bread from the sky and part the waters of the sea so that thousands of people can walk through it -- well I guess, He can do anything! I encouraged you to take a moment and reflect on how deep and how high Hashem’s love is for us. No matter how rough things can get, if we are following Him with full faith, He will meet our needs -- even in miraculous ways. Thank you Hashem!


Challenge:


Hashem is getting ready to “test” His people. Yes, He delivers this miraculous bread from heaven (actually for 40 years), but He also sets a Law. Only gather enough on the 6th day of the week to last you that day and the Shabbat. The rest will rot. How tempting it would have been to gather more! Think of it, you are starving and you never want you or your family to starve again! So, you naturally would want to gather as much as you could. However, Hashem says not to do that! What faith and courage it would take to obey Him! 


Do you have a situation in your life where God has blessed you, but you want more? I challenge you to put your trust in Him for your future, and accept with gratefulness what He has given you now. He will provide all you need, if you just ask Him.


Reading #5 - Exodus 15:27–16:10


15:27 They came to Elim, where there were twelve springs of water and seventy palm trees. They encamped there by the waters.


16 They took their journey from Elim, and all the 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 out of the land of Egypt. 2 The whole congregation of the children of Israel murmured against Moses and against Aaron in the wilderness; 3 and the children of Israel said to them, “We wish that we had died by Hashem’s hand in the land of Egypt, when we sat by the meat pots, when we ate our fill of bread, for you have brought us out into this wilderness to kill this whole assembly with hunger.”


4 Then Hashem said to Moses, “Behold, I will rain bread from the sky for you, and the people shall go out and gather a day’s portion every day, that I may test them, whether they will walk in my law or not. 5 It shall come to pass on the sixth day, that they shall prepare that which they bring in, and it shall be twice as much as they gather daily.”


6 Moses and Aaron said to all the children of Israel, “At evening, you shall know that Hashem has brought you out from the land of Egypt. 7 In the morning, you shall see Hashem’s glory; because he hears your murmurings against Hashem. Who are we, that you murmur against us?” 8 Moses said, “Now Hashem will give you meat to eat in the evening, and in the morning bread to satisfy you, because Hashem hears your murmurings which you murmur against him. And who are we? Your murmurings are not against us, but against Hashem.” 9 Moses said to Aaron, “Tell all the congregation of the children of Israel, ‘Come close to Hashem, for he has heard your murmurings.’” 10 As Aaron spoke to the whole congregation of the children of Israel, they looked toward the wilderness, and behold, Hashem’s glory appeared in the cloud.

Thursday, January 18, 2024

Bo - Reading #5

Bo, בֹּא - Come!

Exodus:10:1-13:16

Reading #5 - Exodus 12:21–28


My Thoughts:


This Pesach (Passover) miracle is to be remembered and passed down from generation to generation. It is a Feast that we are required to memorialize each year. It is not meant to be some heavy “burden” -- but rather a wonderful reminder of Hashem’s mercy and grace. He heard His people “cries” and He answered them. He delivered them out of slavery and into a Land of milk and honey. Celebrating Pesach every year can draw us back into time, a time where Hashem held His arms out to His people and redeemed them. 


I am sure this was very unexpected to them. After all, they were probably asking to be delivered from slavery, not necessarily to be moved into a different country. Maybe they had forgotten the promise made to their fathers. The promise of Israel. Nevertheless, Hashem did not forget. And now it was time to bring them home. May we never forget that Hashem does hear our prayers and He does have answers. They may just look different then what we expected.


Challenge:


Are you asking Hashem to deliver you out of a certain situation? Keep believing He has heard you and will redeem you, it just may surprise you how He does it. Try to be strong and keep faith. Trust that He will move in His time. Open your eyes and see if your “exodus” has begun!


Reading #5 - Exodus 12:21–28


21 Then Moses called for all the elders of Israel, and said to them, “Draw out, and take lambs according to your families, and kill the Passover. 22 You shall take a bunch of hyssop, and dip it in the blood that is in the basin, and strike the lintel and the two door posts with the blood that is in the basin. None of you shall go out of the door of his house until the morning. 23 For Hashem will pass through to strike the Egyptians; and when He sees the blood on the lintel, and on the two door posts, Hashem will pass over the door, and will not allow the destroyer to come in to your houses to strike you. 24 You shall observe this thing for an ordinance to you and to your sons forever. 25 It shall happen when you have come to the land which Hashem will give you, as He has promised, that you shall keep this service. 26 It will happen, when your children ask you, ‘What do you mean by this service?’ 27 that you shall say, ‘It is the sacrifice of Hashem’s Passover, who passed over the houses of the children of Israel in Egypt, when He struck the Egyptians, and spared our houses.’”


The people bowed their heads and worshiped. 28 The children of Israel went and did so; as Hashem had commanded Moses and Aaron, so they did.


Thursday, January 11, 2024

Va'eira - Reading #5

Va'eira  וָאֵרָא - And I Appeared

Torah Portion: Exodus 6:2-9:35

Reading #5 - Exodus 8:7–18


My Thoughts:


All of what Moses done is to prove that “...there is no one like Hashem our Elohim.” (verse 8:10) Moses is dealing with a Godless culture or really a culture of many gods. Ultimately, we know that Hashem just wants everyone to know Him and serve Him. Here is a way to show the Pharaoh who He is. And the Pharaoh does begin to see the “hand” of Elohim. In all the miracles of destruction. But, he is stubborn. He believes for a minute and then when things become good again, he dismisses it all. Isn’t that a lot like us? Our faith is so strong when we are witnessing Hashem’s miracles, and then grows weak when we get used to it all. Maybe it is time to appreciate, love and give glory to Hashem every day of our life!


Challenge:


Do you have any “frogs” or “lice” in your life that you cannot get rid of? Maybe it is time to turn it all over to G-d. Maybe it is time to believe He really does exist, and He really does love you. Take a minute to praise Him for all the good He has done in your life! And then ask Him to help you through this time of trouble. Guaranteed He will remove the frogs and lice, it just may not look like you think it should.


Reading #5 - Exodus 8:7–18


The magicians did the same thing with their enchantments, and brought up frogs on the land of Egypt.


8 Then Pharaoh called for Moses and Aaron, and said, “Entreat Hashem, that he take away the frogs from me and from my people; and I will let the people go, that they may sacrifice to Hashem.”


9 Moses said to Pharaoh, “I give you the honor of setting the time that I should pray for you, and for your servants, and for your people, that the frogs be destroyed from you and your houses, and remain in the river only.”


10 Pharaoh said, “Tomorrow.”


Moses said, “Let it be according to your word, that you may know that there is no one like Hashem our Elohim. 11 The frogs shall depart from you, and from your houses, and from your servants, and from your people. They shall remain in the river only.”


12 Moses and Aaron went out from Pharaoh, and Moses cried to Hashem concerning the frogs which he had brought on Pharaoh. 13 Hashem did according to the word of Moses, and the frogs died out of the houses, out of the courts, and out of the fields. 14 They gathered them together in heaps, and the land stank. 15 But when Pharaoh saw that there was a respite, he hardened his heart, and didn’t listen to them, as Hashem had spoken.


16 Hashem said to Moses, “Tell Aaron, ‘Stretch out your rod, and strike the dust of the earth, that it may become lice throughout all the land of Egypt.’” 17 They did so; and Aaron stretched out his hand with his rod, and struck the dust of the earth, and there were lice on man, and on animal; all the dust of the earth became lice throughout all the land of Egypt. 18 The magicians tried with their enchantments to produce lice, but they couldn’t. There were lice on man, and on animal.

Thursday, January 4, 2024

Shemot - Reading #5

Shemot, שְׁמוֹת - Names

Torah Portion: Exodus 1:1-6:1


Reading #5 - Exodus 3:16–4:17


My Thoughts:


Hashem is determined to use Moses. Even though he is scared and objects. What is so interesting is that Hashem works through his doubts with him. He promises that He will do miracles, signs and wonders. That He will make Moses rod do special things to convince people. And Hashem promises to put words into his mouth to speak. Moses is still afraid. Hashem gets a little upset with him, but then agrees to using his brother Aaron as a mouthpiece. It’s like Hashem is telling Moses, “Don’t worry, I’ve got you covered.” 


Isn’t that what Hashem does with us? He tells us to do something, we give a thousand excuses, and He stays with us through it all. That is the coolest thing. So, don’t be afraid to carry out Hashem’s task. He is there and He will help you!


Challenge:


I have a brave challenge for you today. Look around you and see if Hashem is showing you something that someone needs. Take that need, pray about it and ask Hashem to do a miracle. Don’t do anything (unless Hashem tells you to) -- just pray about it. And see what He does. Be sure to pray HIS WILL in the situation. You may be super surprised at His answer to your prayer! I just thought of someone and prayed a special prayer for Hashem to help this person (actually a couple). I will wait, continue praying and see what happens.


Reading #5 - Exodus 3:16–4:17


16 Go and gather the elders of Israel together, and tell them, ‘Hashem, the Elohim of your fathers, the Elohim of Abraham, of Isaac, and of Jacob, has appeared to me, saying, “I have surely visited you, and seen that which is done to you in Egypt. 17 I have said, I will bring you up out of the affliction of Egypt to the land of the Canaanite, the Hittite, the Amorite, the Perizzite, the Hivite, and the Jebusite, to a land flowing with milk and honey.”’ 18 They will listen to your voice. You shall come, you and the elders of Israel, to the king of Egypt, and you shall tell him, ‘Hashem, the Elohim of the Hebrews, has met with us. Now please let us go three days’ journey into the wilderness, that we may sacrifice to Hashem, our Elohim.’ 19 I know that the king of Egypt won’t give you permission to go, no, not by a mighty hand. 20 I will reach out my hand and strike Egypt with all my wonders which I will do among them, and after that he will let you go. 21 I will give this people favor in the sight of the Egyptians, and it will happen that when you go, you shall not go empty-handed. 22 But every woman shall ask of her neighbor, and of her who visits her house, jewels of silver, jewels of gold, and clothing. You shall put them on your sons, and on your daughters. You shall plunder the Egyptians.”


4 Moses answered, “But, behold, they will not believe me, nor listen to my voice; for they will say, ‘Hashem has not appeared to you.’”


2 Hashem said to him, “What is that in your hand?”


He said, “A rod.”


3 He said, “Throw it on the ground.”


He threw it on the ground, and it became a snake; and Moses ran away from it.


4 Hashem said to Moses, “Stretch out your hand, and take it by the tail.”


He stretched out his hand, and took hold of it, and it became a rod in his hand.


5 “This is so that they may believe that Hashem, the Elohiim of their fathers, the Elohim of Abraham, the Elohim of Isaac, and the Elohim of Jacob, has appeared to you.” 6 Hashem said furthermore to him, “Now put your hand inside your cloak.”


He put his hand inside his cloak, and when he took it out, behold, his hand was leprous, as white as snow.


7 He said, “Put your hand inside your cloak again.”


He put his hand inside his cloak again, and when he took it out of his cloak, behold, it had turned again as his other flesh.


8 “It will happen, if they will not believe you or listen to the voice of the first sign, that they will believe the voice of the latter sign. 9 It will happen, if they will not believe even these two signs or listen to your voice, that you shall take of the water of the river, and pour it on the dry land. The water which you take out of the river will become blood on the dry land.”


10 Moses said to Hashem, “O Hashem, I am not eloquent, neither before now, nor since you have spoken to your servant; for I am slow of speech, and of a slow tongue.”


11 Hashem said to him, “Who made man’s mouth? Or who makes one mute, or deaf, or seeing, or blind? Isn’t it I, Hashem? 12 Now therefore go, and I will be with your mouth, and teach you what you shall speak.”


13 Moses said, “Oh, Lord, please send someone else.”


14 Hashem’s anger burned against Moses, and he said, “What about Aaron, your brother, the Levite? I know that he can speak well. Also, behold, he is coming out to meet you. When he sees you, he will be glad in his heart. 15 You shall speak to him, and put the words in his mouth. I will be with your mouth, and with his mouth, and will teach you what you shall do. 16 He will be your spokesman to the people. It will happen that he will be to you a mouth, and you will be to him as God. 17 You shall take this rod in your hand, with which you shall do the signs.”