Sunday, May 14, 2023

Bamidbar - Reading #1

Bamidbar בְּמִדְבַּר - In the Wilderness

Torah Portion Numbers 1:1-4:20

Haftarah: Hosea 2:1-22

Apostolic Writings: Matthew 4:1-17


1.1 First reading — Numbers 1:1–19

1.2 Second reading — Numbers 1:20–54

1.3 Third reading — Numbers 2:1–34

1.4 Fourth reading — Numbers 3:1–13

1.5 Fifth reading — Numbers 3:14–39

1.6 Sixth reading — Numbers 3:40–51

1.7 Seventh reading — Numbers 4:1–20


Saturday, May 13, 2023

Behar/Bechukotai - Reading #7

BEHAR/BECHUKOTAI

Leviticus 25:1-27:34

Haftarah: Jeremiah 16:19-17:14

Apostolic Writing: Luke 4:14-22; Matthew 16:20-28


Reading #7 -  Leviticus 27:16-34


My Thoughts:


I am assuming that the tenth of the crops and animals that are dedicated to Hashem in this passage are actually given to the Tabernacle for the priests to manage. I do not understand all the details of this, except that Hashem asks His people to do this. And if you think of it -- it makes sense. We have crops, animals, blessings, only because Hashem has given to us. So, to give back to “Him” or to the service for Him, is appropriate and actually an honor. It reminds us that everything is His. He owns “all the cattle on the hill”. 


Challenge:


We may not have instructions here for how to give a tithe of the things we own when there is currently not a Temple, but we can figure out a way to honor these commands in our life. We can “tithe” to people and organizations that serve Hashem and His Torah to the best they are able. That’s my challenge for you today. Are you giving “back” to Hashem at least 10% of what He has “loaned” to you in this life? There are many wonderful organizations in Israel that support aging Holocaust victims, the poor, the Temple, small businesses in the areas where Jews are not highly populated and of course the wonderful ministries in our own country that help people who are not fortunate. Pray and seek out how you can financially help someone else or a ministry that serves Hashem. You will be blessed in return and you will be obeying His Torah.


Reading #7 -  Leviticus 27:16-34


27:16 “‘If a man dedicates to Hashem part of the field of his possession, then your valuation shall be according to the seed for it. The sowing of a homer of barley shall be valued at fifty shekels of silver. 17 If he dedicates his field from the Year of Jubilee, according to your valuation it shall stand. 18 But if he dedicates his field after the Jubilee, then the priest shall reckon to him the money according to the years that remain to the Year of Jubilee; and an abatement shall be made from your valuation. 19 If he who dedicated the field will indeed redeem it, then he shall add the fifth part of the money of your valuation to it, and it shall remain his. 20 If he will not redeem the field, or if he has sold the field to another man, it shall not be redeemed any more; 21 but the field, when it goes out in the Jubilee, shall be holy to Hashem, as a devoted field. It shall be owned by the priests.


22 “‘If he dedicates a field to Hashem which he has bought, which is not of the field of his possession, 23 then the priest shall reckon to him the worth of your valuation up to the Year of Jubilee; and he shall give your valuation on that day, as a holy thing to Hashem. 24 In the Year of Jubilee the field shall return to him from whom it was bought, even to him to whom the possession of the land belongs. 25 All your valuations shall be according to the shekel of the sanctuary: twenty gerahs to the shekel.


26 “‘However the firstborn among animals, which belongs to Hashem as a firstborn, no man may dedicate, whether an ox or a sheep. It is Hashem’s. 27 If it is an unclean animal, then he shall buy it back according to your valuation, and shall add to it the fifth part of it; or if it isn’t redeemed, then it shall be sold according to your valuation.


28 “‘Notwithstanding, no devoted thing that a man devotes to Hashem of all that he has, whether of man or animal, or of the field of his possession, shall be sold or redeemed. Everything that is permanently devoted is most holy to Hashem.


29 “‘No one devoted to destruction, who shall be devoted from among men, shall be ransomed. He shall surely be put to death.


30 “‘All the tithe of the land, whether of the seed of the land or of the fruit of the trees, is Hashem’s. It is holy to Hashem. 31 If a man redeems anything of his tithe, he shall add a fifth part to it. 32 All the tithe of the herds or the flocks, whatever passes under the rod, the tenth shall be holy to Hashem. 33 He shall not examine whether it is good or bad, neither shall he exchange it. If he exchanges it at all, then both it and that for which it is exchanged shall be holy. It shall not be redeemed.’”


34 These are the commandments which Hashem commanded Moses for the children of Israel on Mount Sinai.


Haftarah


My Thoughts:


In verse 17:6 we read that man is cursed who follows man not Elohim. In 17:7 we read that the man who follows Hashem is blessed. Simple isn’t it? If we follow Hashem we will be happy and fulfilled, if we do not -- then we will find life hard and barren. What do you choose? To follow or not to follow? I choose Hashem!


Challenge:


Verse 16:19 ways Hashem is a “refuge” in the day of affliction. That means when things are really going wrong you can run to Him and He will comfort and shelter you. But, only if you are following Him. Obeying His Torah, loving and serving Him. It’s like you can feel whether He is there for you or not. If you sin, it seems He leaves the room. If you do things to please Him -- it seems like He is ever present. My challenge to you today is if you are going through a difficult time, to look for Adonai. Try to trust in your heart, that He is there for you. That He does have a plan, it’s just that His time is different then our time. Try to be patient. And start praising Him for things you have asked Him to do. I am confident He will hear you. And also try your hardest to follow Torah to the best of your ability. He will reward you!


Haftarah: Jeremiah 16:19-17:14


16:19 Hashem, my strength, and my stronghold,

    and my refuge in the day of affliction,

the nations will come to you from the ends of the earth,

    and will say,

“Our fathers have inherited nothing but lies,

    vanity and things in which there is no profit.

20 Should a man make to himself gods

    which yet are no gods?”


21 “Therefore behold, I will cause them to know,

    this once I will cause them to know My hand and My might.

    Then they will know that My name is Hashem.”


17 “The sin of Judah is written with a pen of iron,

    and with the point of a diamond.

It is engraved on the tablet of their heart,

    and on the horns of your altars.

2 Even their children remember their altars

    and their Asherah poles by the green trees on the high hills.

3 My mountain in the field,

    I will give your substance and all your treasures for a plunder,

    and your high places, because of sin, throughout all your borders.

4 You, even of yourself, will discontinue from your heritage that I gave you.

    I will cause you to serve your enemies in the land which you don’t know,

    for you have kindled a fire in my anger which will burn forever.”


5 Hashem says:


“Cursed is the man who trusts in man,

    relies on strength of flesh,

    and whose heart departs from Hashem.

6 For he will be like a bush in the desert,

    and will not see when good comes,

but will inhabit the parched places in the wilderness,

    an uninhabited salt land.


7 “Blessed is the man who trusts in Hashem,

    and whose confidence is in Hashem.

8 For he will be as a tree planted by the waters,

    who spreads out its roots by the river,

and will not fear when heat comes,

    but its leaf will be green,

and will not be concerned in the year of drought.

    It won’t cease from yielding fruit.

9 The heart is deceitful above all things

    and it is exceedingly corrupt.

    Who can know it?


10 “I, Hashem, search the mind.

    I try the heart,

even to give every man according to his ways,

    according to the fruit of his doings.”


11 As the partridge that sits on eggs which she has not laid,

    so is he who gets riches, and not by right.

In the middle of his days, they will leave him.

    At his end, he will be a fool.

12 A glorious throne, set on high from the beginning,

    is the place of our sanctuary.

13 Hashem, the hope of Israel,

    all who forsake you will be disappointed.

Those who depart from me will be written in the earth,

    because they have forsaken Hashem,

    the spring of living waters.

14 Heal me, O Hashem, and I will be healed.

    Save me, and I will be saved;

    for you are my praise.


Apostolic Writing


My Thoughts:


Yeshua is prophesied in Isaiah 61. He fulfills this prophecy, even in detail. He has been sent to “preach the good news to the poor.” We were taught this meant the “good news” was His death and resurrection. Yes it is wonderful He was resurrected and ascended into heaven. But, I believe His “good news” was that of the Torah. He taught the “heart” of Torah, how Hashem loves us so much He gave us guidelines how to live and serve Him. And how we must return to Hashem, so that He will return to us. (Malachi 3:7) That was the good news! That by following Torah we have life!


Challenge:


In Matthew 16:24 we are told that if we are to follow Yeshua and the Torah we are to “deny” ourselves. Why is that? Because when you have to follow rules, sometimes you must give up things that you would rather do! So, you deny yourself and obey Hashem. My challenge for you today is to review your life (once again) and see if you are “denying” yourself of fleshly desires and mental wishes. If you are not having to deny yourself of anything then chances are you are not really following some instruction in Torah. Or it could mean that maybe you have progressed far in your spiritual walk and have already “given up” your fleshly desires. You have already denied yourself so many times, that following Torah and Yeshua come naturally. Check out your life. If something is getting in the way of following Yeshua and Torah, then give it up today!


Apostolic Writing: Luke 4:14-22; Matthew 16:20-28


Luke 4:14 


Yeshua returned in the power of the Spirit into Galilee, and news about Him spread through all the surrounding area. 15 He taught in their synagogues, being glorified by all.


16 He came to Nazareth, where he had been brought up. He entered, as was his custom, into the synagogue on the Sabbath day, and stood up to read. 17 The book of the prophet Isaiah was handed to him. He opened the book, and found the place where it was written,


18 “The Spirit of Hashem is on Me,

    because He has anointed Me to preach good news to the poor.

He has sent Me to heal the broken hearted,

    to proclaim release to the captives,

    recovering of sight to the blind,

    to deliver those who are crushed,

19     and to proclaim the acceptable year of Hashem.” (Isaiah 61:1-2)


20 He closed the book, gave it back to the attendant, and sat down. The eyes of all in the synagogue were fastened on him. 21 He began to tell them, “Today, this Scripture has been fulfilled in your hearing.”


22 All testified about him, and wondered at the gracious words which proceeded out of His mouth, and they said, “Isn’t this Joseph’s son?”



Matthew 16:20 


Then he commanded the disciples that they should tell no one that He was Yeshua the Mashiach.


21 From that time, Yeshua began to show His disciples that He must go to Jerusalem and suffer many things from the elders, chief priests, and scribes, and be killed, and the third day be raised up.


22 Peter took Him aside and began to rebuke Him, saying, “Far be it from you, L-rd! This will never be done to You.”


23 But He turned and said to Peter, “Get behind me, Satan! You are a stumbling block to Me, for you are not setting your mind on the things of Elohim, but on the things of men.”


24 Then Yeshua said to His disciples, “If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, take up his cross, and follow Me. 25 For whoever desires to save his life will lose it, and whoever will lose his life for My sake will find it. 26 For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world and forfeits his life? Or what will a man give in exchange for his life? 27 For the Son of Man will come in the glory of His Father with His angels, and then He will render to everyone according to His deeds. 28 Most certainly I tell you, there are some standing here who will in no way taste of death until they see the Son of Man coming in His Kingdom.”


Friday, May 12, 2023

Behar/Bechukotai - Reading #6

BEHAR/BECHUKOTAI

Leviticus 25:1-27:34


Reading #6 -  Leviticus 27:1-15


My Thoughts:


Today we read about dedicating people, animals and houses to Hashem. I’m not sure what exactly this meant but here we have instructions on how to do this. It makes me think. Do we dedicate everything we have to Hashem? Do we dedicate our children, our spouse, our homes, our jobs and our belongings to Him? Or do we just believe we “earned” it all by our hard work and our own initiative? When we bought the house we live in, we had some special friends come over and we “anointed” it with oil, walked the property boundaries and dedicated it to Hashem. I believe this house has been set apart for Him. And now that we are selling it and moving it I pray that a family who loves Hashem, will continue to know it is really His and belongs to Him!


Challenge:


Today I challenge you to think about the things that you “have” in your life. Your home, kids, family and material items. If you haven’t already dedicated them to Hashem, then do so today. Just take time to pray, even “anoint with oil” your children, home, etc. Give it all to Hashem and thank Him for all He has given you!


Reading #6 - Leviticus 27:1-15


27 Hashem spoke to Moses, saying, 2 “Speak to the children of Israel, and say to them, ‘When a man consecrates a person to Hashem in a vow, according to your valuation, 3 your valuation of a male from twenty years old to sixty years old shall be fifty shekels of silver, according to the shekel of the sanctuary. 4 If she is a female, then your valuation shall be thirty shekels. 5 If the person is from five years old to twenty years old, then your valuation shall be for a male twenty shekels, and for a female ten shekels. 6 If the person is from a month old to five years old, then your valuation shall be for a male five shekels of silver, and for a female your valuation shall be three shekels of silver. 7 If the person is from sixty years old and upward; if he is a male, then your valuation shall be fifteen shekels, and for a female ten shekels. 8 But if he is poorer than your valuation, then he shall be set before the priest, and the priest shall assign a value to him. The priest shall assign a value according to his ability to pay.


9 “‘If it is an animal of which men offer an offering to Hashem, all that any man gives of such to Hashem becomes holy. 10 He shall not alter it, nor exchange it, a good for a bad, or a bad for a good. If he shall at all exchange animal for animal, then both it and that for which it is exchanged shall be holy. 11 If it is any unclean animal, of which they do not offer as an offering to Hashem, then he shall set the animal before the priest; 12 and the priest shall evaluate it, whether it is good or bad. As the priest evaluates it, so it shall be. 13 But if he will indeed redeem it, then he shall add the fifth part of it to its valuation.


14 “‘When a man dedicates his house to be holy to Hashem, then the priest shall evaluate it, whether it is good or bad. As the priest evaluates it, so it shall stand. 15 If he who dedicates it will redeem his house, then he shall add the fifth part of the money of your valuation to it, and it shall be his.


Thursday, May 11, 2023

Behar/Bechukotai - Reading #5

BEHAR/BECHUKOTAI

Leviticus 25:1-27:34


Reading #5 -  Leviticus 26:10-46


My Thoughts:


We read today all about the “cost” of not following Hashem and His Commandments. And it is so sad and horrible. The worst is the “scattering” out of the Land. If we can’t be in the Land -- we can’t go to the Temple or even have a Temple. The punishment for sinning against Hashem is HUGE and always has been. But, He continues to be full of mercy and grace. Verses 40 and 41 give us the solution, the resolve. First, we must repent. Earnestly, confess to Hashem our sins and make restitution. Secondly, we must walk humbly before Him. In other words, put Hashem first in our lives. Revolve our lives around Him and His Scriptures, not expect Him to revolve Himself around what we choose. And lastly, we must accept our punishment. We learn when we are punished and most likely we will be more careful not to sin again in fear of Hashem and His punishment. We know sin has consequences, and it is super hard to accept these. But, we must so that we can return to Him, and return to the LAND! We want to stay attached to the Covenant with Hashem. Let’s be careful from now on.


Challenge:


Priorities. This week I was miserable. We are in the middle of getting ready to sell our house, and as most of you know that is an incredible amount of work. I have been working hard and have been overwhelmed. What really happened is that I started to worry about a lot of things and it brought great stress. All my priorities were getting “out of order”. Put “stuff” before Elohim, instead of keeping Him in first place! Then through talking with some prayer partners I realized that I was not trusting Hashem. I have been trying to do everything in my own strength, instead of relying on Him. It has been suffocating to live this way. Last night I made a decision. My life is Elohim’s and whatever and however He wants to move in my life -- it is time to surrender it all to Him. I want Him to be in my everyday life, showing me the way. I want to go back to trusting Him and following Him. I want to depend on Him to lead my way, and not try to do this all on my own. That is my challenge to you today, to turn everything over to Hashem today. If you are struggling, ask Him for help and then wait on Him. Try to stop doing things on your own and trust in Him. Put Elohim back in the first spot in your life. Make Him number one! Then everything else will fall into line. Amen!



Reading #5 -  Leviticus 26:10-46


26:10 You shall eat old supplies long kept, and you shall move out the old because of the new. 11 I will set My tent among you, and My soul won’t abhor you. 12 I will walk among you, and will be your Elohim, and you will be My people. 13 I am Adonai your Elohim, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, that you should not be their slaves. I have broken the bars of your yoke, and made you walk upright.


14 “‘But if you will not listen to me, and will not do all these commandments, 15 and if you shall reject My statutes, and if your soul abhors My ordinances, so that you will not do all My commandments, but break My covenant, 16 I also will do this to you: I will appoint terror over you, even consumption and fever, that shall consume the eyes, and make the soul to pine away. You will sow your seed in vain, for your enemies will eat it. 17 I will set my face against you, and you will be struck before your enemies. Those who hate you will rule over you; and you will flee when no one pursues you.


18 “‘If you in spite of these things will not listen to Me, then I will chastise you seven times more for your sins. 19 I will break the pride of your power, and I will make your sky like iron, and your soil like bronze. 20 Your strength will be spent in vain; for your land won’t yield its increase, neither will the trees of the land yield their fruit.


21 “‘If you walk contrary to Me, and won’t listen to Me, then I will bring seven times more plagues on you according to your sins. 22 I will send the wild animals among you, which will rob you of your children, destroy your livestock, and make you few in number. Your roads will become desolate.


23 “‘If by these things you won’t be turned back to Me, but will walk contrary to Me, 24 then I will also walk contrary to you; and I will strike you, even I, seven times for your sins. 25 I will bring a sword upon you that will execute the vengeance of the covenant. You will be gathered together within your cities, and I will send the pestilence among you. You will be delivered into the hand of the enemy. 26 When I break your staff of bread, ten women shall bake your bread in one oven, and they shall deliver your bread again by weight. You shall eat, and not be satisfied.


27 “‘If you in spite of this won’t listen to Me, but walk contrary to Me, 28 then I will walk contrary to you in wrath. I will also chastise you seven times for your sins. 29 You will eat the flesh of your sons, and you will eat the flesh of your daughters. 30 I will destroy your high places, and cut down your incense altars, and cast your dead bodies upon the bodies of your idols; and My soul will abhor you. 31 I will lay your cities waste, and will bring your sanctuaries to desolation. I will not take delight in the sweet fragrance of your offerings. 32 I will bring the land into desolation, and your enemies who dwell in it will be astonished at it. 33 I will scatter you among the nations, and I will draw out the sword after you. Your land will be a desolation, and your cities shall be a waste. 34 Then the land will enjoy its Sabbaths as long as it lies desolate and you are in your enemies’ land. Even then the land will rest and enjoy its Sabbaths. 35 As long as it lies desolate it shall have rest, even the rest which it didn’t have in your Sabbaths when you lived on it.


36 “‘As for those of you who are left, I will send a faintness into their hearts in the lands of their enemies. The sound of a driven leaf will put them to flight; and they shall flee, as one flees from the sword. They will fall when no one pursues. 37 They will stumble over one another, as it were before the sword, when no one pursues. You will have no power to stand before your enemies. 38 You will perish among the nations. The land of your enemies will eat you up. 39 Those of you who are left will pine away in their iniquity in your enemies’ lands; and also in the iniquities of their fathers they shall pine away with them.


40 “‘If they confess their iniquity and the iniquity of their fathers, in their trespass which they trespassed against Me; and also that because they walked contrary to Me, 41 I also walked contrary to them, and brought them into the land of their enemies; if then their uncircumcised heart is humbled, and they then accept the punishment of their iniquity, 42 then I will remember My covenant with Jacob, My covenant with Isaac, and also My covenant with Abraham; and I will remember the land. 43 The land also will be left by them, and will enjoy its Sabbaths while it lies desolate without them; and they will accept the punishment of their iniquity because they rejected My ordinances, and their soul abhorred My statutes. 44 Yet for all that, when they are in the land of their enemies, I will not reject them, neither will I abhor them, to destroy them utterly and to break My covenant with them; for I am Hashem their Elohim. 45 But I will for their sake remember the covenant of their ancestors, whom I brought out of the land of Egypt in the sight of the nations, that I might be their Elohim. I am Hashem.’”


46 These are the statutes, ordinances, and laws, which Hashem made between Him and the children of Israel in Mount Sinai by Moses.


Wednesday, May 10, 2023

Behar/Bechukotai - Reading #4

BEHAR/BECHUKOTAI

Leviticus 25:1-27:34


Reading #4 -  Leviticus 25:39-26:9


My Thoughts:


In the verses 26:3-5 we learn from Hashem that if we follow His Commandments that even more blessings will come to us. We will have rain, crops growing and bearing fruit and bread to eat. And in verses 6-8 we receive even more promises if we follow Torah. We will have peace in the Land, no animal attacks and a special power over our enemies! What beautiful rewards Hashem has in store for us for simply following His instructions! Do you think these are available today? I do. I can see a big difference when I am obedient. Things in life go so much easier. I feel His Presence around me and good things happen to me and my family. And in the reverse when I am disobedient it seems like I am on my own. It’s lonely and sometimes scary. It is a negative feeling that only by repenting and obeying again -- do I feel peace. How about you?


Challenge:


In verses 26:1-2 we have a strong reminder about idols and Sabbaths. When the Israelites were going into their Land they were going to meet up with a lot of false worship and other gods. Our G-d, Elohim, wanted to make sure this didn't happen. Because what happens when people worship idols and forget Sabbath? They “stray” away from Hashem! They lose that strong Presence from Him. It only brings disaster! So my challenge for you today, in a very dark and scary world is to remember who you worship. Remember Hashem is your one and only Elohim. And He sets aside a special day for us to spend with Him -- the Shabbat. So, YOU set aside that day for Him! Start right now!



Reading #4 -  Leviticus  25:39-26:9


25:39 “‘If your brother has grown poor among you, and sells himself to you, you shall not make him to serve as a slave. 40 As a hired servant, and as a temporary resident, he shall be with you; he shall serve with you until the Year of Jubilee. 41 Then he shall go out from you, he and his children with him, and shall return to his own family, and to the possession of his fathers. 42 For they are my servants, whom I brought out of the land of Egypt. They shall not be sold as slaves. 43 You shall not rule over him with harshness, but shall fear your Elohim.


44 “‘As for your male and your female slaves, whom you may have from the nations that are around you, from them you may buy male and female slaves. 45 Moreover, of the children of the aliens who live among you, of them you may buy, and of their families who are with you, which they have conceived in your land; and they will be your property. 46 You may make them an inheritance for your children after you, to hold for a possession. Of them you may take your slaves forever, but over your brothers the children of Israel you shall not rule, one over another, with harshness.


47 “‘If an alien or temporary resident with you becomes rich, and your brother beside him has grown poor, and sells himself to the stranger or foreigner living among you, or to a member of the stranger’s family, 48 after he is sold he may be redeemed. One of his brothers may redeem him; 49 or his uncle, or his uncle’s son, may redeem him, or any who is a close relative to him of his family may redeem him; or if he has grown rich, he may redeem himself. 50 He shall reckon with him who bought him from the year that he sold himself to him to the Year of Jubilee. The price of his sale shall be according to the number of years; he shall be with him according to the time of a hired servant. 51 If there are yet many years, according to them he shall give back the price of his redemption out of the money that he was bought for. 52 If there remain but a few years to the year of jubilee, then he shall reckon with him; according to his years of service he shall give back the price of his redemption. 53 As a servant hired year by year shall he be with him. He shall not rule with harshness over him in your sight. 54 If he isn’t redeemed by these means, then he shall be released in the Year of Jubilee: he and his children with him. 55 For to me the children of Israel are servants; they are my servants whom I brought out of the land of Egypt. I am Hashem your Elohim.


26:1 “‘You shall make for yourselves no idols, and you shall not raise up a carved image or a pillar, and you shall not place any figured stone in your land, to bow down to it; for I am Hashem your Elohim.


2 “‘You shall keep my Sabbaths, and have reverence for my sanctuary. I am Hashem.


3 “‘If you walk in my statutes and keep my commandments, and do them, 4 then I will give you your rains in their season, and the land shall yield its increase, and the trees of the field shall yield their fruit. 5 Your threshing shall continue until the vintage, and the vintage shall continue until the sowing time. You shall eat your bread to the full, and dwell in your land safely.


6 “‘I will give peace in the land, and you shall lie down, and no one will make you afraid. I will remove evil animals out of the land, neither shall the sword go through your land. 7 You shall chase your enemies, and they shall fall before you by the sword. 8 Five of you shall chase a hundred, and a hundred of you shall chase ten thousand; and your enemies shall fall before you by the sword.


Tuesday, May 9, 2023

Behar/Bechukotai - Reading #3

BEHAR/BECHUKOTAI

Leviticus 25:1-27:34


Reading #3 -  Leviticus 25:29-38


My Thoughts:


Again in verses 35-38 Hashem tells us how to help out the poor. We are not to take interest on loaning money, nor give him food for profit. It seems like Hashem is always making sure ALL His people are taking care of. If we are blessed to have money we are to share it with those more unfortunate. He loves all of us, and does not want any of us to be in need. That must be what the command is to “love one another” means. It means not only to love someone but to take care of them. Let’s start that today.


Challenge:


Here is a challenge for you today. It will take a little bit of work but it will go along with what Torah has taught us today. Look in your cupboards. Do you have any extra food, or an abundance of food? Separate out what you extra and put it in bags. Take it down to your local food kitchen or to a neighbor in need. Share your food with those in need today. Do a mitzvah today for those in need. Or even better, take a minute to pray and ask Hashem who needs some monetary help today. He will bring someone to mind. Follow through and help out that person. Do it today, do not delay. You will be blessed. Guaranteed.


Reading #3 -  Leviticus 25:29-38


25:29 “‘If a man sells a dwelling house in a walled city, then he may redeem it within a whole year after it has been sold. For a full year he shall have the right of redemption. 30 If it isn’t redeemed within the space of a full year, then the house that is in the walled city shall be made sure in perpetuity to him who bought it, throughout his generations. It shall not be released in the Jubilee. 31 But the houses of the villages which have no wall around them shall be accounted for with the fields of the country: they may be redeemed, and they shall be released in the Jubilee.


32 “‘Nevertheless, in the cities of the Levites, the Levites may redeem the houses in the cities of their possession at any time. 33 The Levites may redeem the house that was sold, and the city of his possession, and it shall be released in the Jubilee; for the houses of the cities of the Levites are their possession among the children of Israel. 34 But the field of the pasture lands of their cities may not be sold, for it is their perpetual possession.


35 “‘If your brother has become poor, and his hand can’t support himself among you, then you shall uphold him. He shall live with you like an alien and a temporary resident. 36 Take no interest from him or profit; but fear your Elohim, that your brother may live among you. 37 You shall not lend him your money at interest, nor give him your food for profit. 38 I am Hashem your Elohim, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, to give you the land of Canaan, and to be your Elohim.


Monday, May 8, 2023

Behar/Bechukotai - Reading #2

BEHAR/BECHUKOTAI

Leviticus 25:1-27:34


Reading #2 - Leviticus 25:19-28


My Thoughts:


What a wonderful, fair and just Elohim we serve. He tells His people not to plant in the seventh year, and He knows they are thinking “What shall we eat in the seventh year?”. So, He provides abundantly. His provision is so generous that He provides enough fruit for three years! Until they can replant the 8th year and sow the 9th year. You cannot be more fair and just then that! It shows us that He will not ask us anything unless it is fair and righteous. He does not want us to starve or fail. What He really wants is that we will love Him with our whole heart, soul and strength. And to follow His Commandments. If we do -- we have life and liberty! Forever!


Challenge:


I heard it discussed that the Year of Jubilee and the return of the Land to original owners, really teaches us that nothing is really ours. That the Land actually belongs to Hashem in the end. People are really just “leasing” it from Him in a sense. It makes you think. Is anything really ours? When we die, we die alone, naked and without any possessions. So, did we really ever “own” anything? We must appreciate our lives every day, be grateful for what we have, work hard, serve Adonai, love and worship Him and follow His Commands. My challenge for you today is to think about this and then do it. 


Reading #2 - Leviticus 25:19-28


25:19 The land shall yield its fruit, and you shall eat your fill, and dwell therein in safety. 20 If you said, “What shall we eat the seventh year? Behold, we shall not sow, nor gather in our increase;” 21 then I will command my blessing on you in the sixth year, and it shall bear fruit for the three years. 22 You shall sow the eighth year, and eat of the fruits from the old store until the ninth year. Until its fruits come in, you shall eat the old store.


23 “‘The land shall not be sold in perpetuity, for the land is mine; for you are strangers and live as foreigners with me. 24 In all the land of your possession you shall grant a redemption for the land.


25 “‘If your brother becomes poor, and sells some of his possessions, then his kinsman who is next to him shall come, and redeem that which his brother has sold. 26 If a man has no one to redeem it, and he becomes prosperous and finds sufficient means to redeem it, 27 then let him reckon the years since its sale, and restore the surplus to the man to whom he sold it; and he shall return to his property. 28 But if he isn’t able to get it back for himself, then what he has sold shall remain in the hand of him who has bought it until the Year of Jubilee. In the Jubilee it shall be released, and he shall return to his property.