Rabbi’s Reflections – Monday, January 11, 2021


Bonus (#4 in a series): 

“.לֶךְ-לְךָ מֵאַרְצְךָ וּמִמּוֹלַדְתְּךָ וּמִבֵּית אָבִיךָ, אֶל-הָאָרֶץ, אֲשֶׁר אַרְאֶךָּ”   

Lech-l’cha May’artzecha U’Mi’molad’t’cha U’Mi’Bayt Avicha, El-Ha’aretz, Asher Ar’e’cha.

Genesis 12:1 Then Adonai said to Abram, “Get going out from your land, and from your relatives, and from your father’s house, to the land that I will show you.”

Our word for today is the 4th word in the verse (Genesis 12:1, in case you didn’t know by now.), U’Mi’molad’t’cha.  This is a very simple word with 2 prefixes and one suffix.  “U” (a prefix “vav” means “and”) and the second prefix, “Mi” (is contracted from “Min” meaning “from”).  

“Nolad” means “birth.”  You might ask, “How did the Nun get changed into a Mem?  I’ll tell you, I don’t know, but it happens more often than you might think.  The extended meaning is “the people group you were birthed into.”  So, this is not the “Mishpocha” family, but translated “family” anyway, kind of like we (when speaking English) might use the word “peeps” to describe the people to whom we are related.

That leaves us with the personal pronoun, “L’cha” (to you or yours, possessive “you”) as a contracted suffix.  The Lamed drops off and the final Kaf attaches to the end of the word.

And there you have it, “and from your relatives.”  Say good-bye, Abraham.

Daily Bread, reading plan by Lars Enarson (https://www.thewatchman.org/)

Mon 11-Jan-2021 27th of Tevet, 5781

Ex 6:14-28 1 Ki 7 Ps 106 Lk 20:1-26 (Eph 5)

This week, (for this coming Shabbat, January 16, 2021) the Torah reading begins with Exodus 6:2, but the name for this week comes from the first word of Exodus 6:3.  The rabbis read Exodus 6:2 and said to themselves, “Nothing significant here.  Let’s keep looking for a significant word.”  The name of this week’s portion is, therefore; Va’erah (using the “vav conversive”), “And I (God) appeared.”  

Rabbi Trail:  What do I mean by the “vav conversive?”  (Also known as the “vav consecutive” https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vav-consecutive )  In classical Hebrew, (The Torah is written in classical Hebrew, as opposed to modern Hebrew.) a vav (the sixth letter of the Aleph-Bet) is appended as a prefix to many verbs which reverses the tense.  This works equally from future to past and from past to future.  The only possible explanation I can come up with is that God is writing and He will not be time constrained.  So, to Him, past is future and future is past.  Does this add to your sense of smallness (smallinity) next to the awesome God Who created the universe?  End RT.

In our reading, starting in Exodus 6:2, God continues speaking with Moses before the 10 plagues begin.  

Rabbi’s note: By the time we finish our reading for this week, (we end at the end of chapter 9)  we will read, in these 4 chapters, the story of the first 7 of the 10 plagues.  But first, we have 2 verses of Scripture that provide us with the entire order of the Passover Seder.

Exodus 6:6 Therefore say to Bnei-Yisrael: I am Adonai, and I will bring you out from under the burdens of the Egyptians. I will deliver you from their bondage, and I will redeem you with an outstretched arm and with great judgments. 7 I will take you to Myself as a people, and I will be your God. You will know that I am Adonai your God, who brought you out from under the burdens of the Egyptians.

Here, with God’s 4 “I will” statements, we have the basis of the 4 cups of the fruit of the vine consumed at the Seder, which are the 4 covenants.  Let me break them down for you.  This is short explanation, there will be other occasions to teach this in great detail.

1. The Abrahamic Covenant: Exodus 6:6b I will bring you out.  This is the cup of sanctification.  Abraham was set apart by faith.  This is the cup of being called out.

2. The Mosaic Covenant: Exodus 6:6c I will deliver you from their bondage.  By the Law, we know sin and understand the need for freedom from slavery to sin.  In the second cup, we realize the need for the 3rd cup.

3. The Salvation Covenant: Exodus 6:6d I will redeem you. Isaiah 53 identifies Yeshua as the “Arm of the Lord.”  This is the promised redemption.  This is the cup of communion.  It honors the first coming.

4. The Victory Covenant:  Exodus 6:7 I will take you to Myself as a people, and I will be your God.  After we eat the afikomen, we break into celebration.  This is the celebration of the second coming.  This is the only one of the four covenants not yet fulfilled.  Let’s look forward to it.

Week 3

Memory Verse: Hebrews 11:17 By faith Abraham, when he was tested, offered up Isaac. Yes, he who had received the promises was offering up his one and only son— 18 the one about whom it was said, “Through Isaac offspring shall be named for you.” 19 He reasoned that God was able to raise him up even from the dead—and in a sense, he did receive him back from there.

* 11 1/11     Monday:          Genesis 18-19

12   1/12     Tuesday:         Genesis 20-21

13   1/13     Wednesday:    Genesis 22 

14   1/14     Thursday:        Genesis 24

15   1/15     Friday:             Genesis 25:19-34;26

Question of the day:  Was it really a “surprise” when Sarah had a son?  Or maybe a better question of the day is, “Is anything too difficult for Adonai?”

Answer: Genesis 18:10a Then He said, “I will most surely return to you in about a year’s time, surprisingly, Sarah your wife will have a son.”

The first 3 words of Genesis 18:10, “Then He said” might cause the reader to wonder who is doing the talking.  But the Bible answers that question just a few verses later… Abraham was walking with his guests as they were departing, when we read this… Genesis 18:17 when Adonai said, “Should I keep secret from Abraham what I am about to do.”

God (as Yeshua, the Son, Who is the manifestation of God the Father) is promising to return in a year when Sarah will deliver a baby boy.  At that time, she will be 90 years old.  Exodus 18:14 Is anything too difficult for Adonai? At the appointed time I will return to you—in about a year—and Sarah will have a son.”

As Gomer Pyle used to say, “Surprise, surprise, surprise!”  The Hebrew word is “Hine” which is usually translated “behold,” but can also be translated as “suddenly.”  Just the thought of having a baby at the age of 90 made Sarah laugh, and she wan’t the only one, Abraham had already laughed… Genesis 17:17 Then Abraham fell on his face and laughed, and said to his heart, “Will a son be born to a 100-year-old man? Or will Sarah—who is 90 years old—give birth?”

The point is this, our God is a miracle working God.  Nothing is impossible to Him.  Abraham believed God for a miracle (after he recovered from his shock), and God moved.  We also, should believe in the miracle working power of God.  Why not make it a prayer right now?

1 John 5:14 Now this is the confidence we have before Him—that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. 15 And if we know that He hears us—whatever we ask—we know that we have the requests we have asked from Him.