Rabbi’s Reflections – Wednesday, November 20, 2019
Shalom *|FNAME|*,

Here we go!  There are a few announcements.  I want to keep you updated.

  1. This Friday night, November 22nd please join us for Shabbat candle lighting and kiddish dinner (6pm) and the Kabbalat Shabbat service to follow (7-8pm).  We will have the honor of being joined by Avishalom Tekel who leads our sister congregation in Israel (North of Haifa), Tents of Mercy (Ohalei HaRachamim in Hebrew).
  2. This Shabbat morning, November 23rd, Avishalom Tekel will be ministering.  Avishalom’s ministry is briefly described above.  Don’t miss this opportunity to get to know one of God’s anointed servants from Eretz Yisrael.  Avishalom was on the stage at the Tikkun Conference in Jacksonville last weekend.  I am interested to hear his perspective.
  3. Please pray for Brenda Boush who is in her third intensive care unit at UT Hospital over the last 4 weeks.  She needs a healing touch from on high to be raised up  out of her sickness with a complete recovery.  Pray that her kidneys will function so she no longer needs dialysis.  I was able to visit with her this (Tuesday) afternoon.  She has been extubated, was having dinner and smiling with a twinkle in her eye.  We gave praise to God together.  She couldn’t stop laughing.  May her recovery continue.
  4. Please remember our dear friend Juanita Winters in your prayers.  Juanita is fighting the good fight of faith against a horrible disease (which I will not dignify with a name).  She posted her picture (on Caring Bridge https://www.caringbridge.org/visit/juanitawinters ) taken as she stands next to these two verses.  Psalm 27:13 Surely I trust that I will see the goodness of Adonai in the land of the living. 14 Wait for Adonai. Be strong, let Your heart take courage, and wait for Adonai.  Shortly afterward she was release to return from Nashville to her home in Knoxville.  Her Caring Bridge site has received over 24,000 visits.

End of announcements.

I’m reading in The Daily Bible – In Chronological Order, but I read for the day I’m living (I’m writing on November 19th).  However; I write the RR for the next day (I’m writing for November 20th).  https://www.amazon.com/Daily-Bible%C2%AE-NIV-LaGard-Smith/dp/0736944311/ref=sr_1_3?crid=ZS1W7WZUWKN8&keywords=the+daily+bible+in+chronological+order+365+daily+readings&qid=1574202137&s=books&sprefix=The+Daily+Bible%2Cstripbooks%2C264&sr=1-3

Rabbi Trail:  For the record, (so you know that I know) “tomorrow never comes….”  We’ve been through that, and it almost drove me crazy the last time.  My dear late wife, Ann (zikhronah livrakha – of blessed memory f. This leads me to the ART below), used to say, “It wouldn’t take a “drive,” (to “drive” me crazy) rather it would be more like a short putt. 

Another Rabbi Trail:  It’s time I taught you Hebrew honorifics for the deceased.  In English we usually offer an honorific, something like, “May he(she) rest in peace.”  Here is a website the will give you more detail.  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Honorifics_for_the_dead_in_Judaism#Of_blessed_memory 

There are two main ones, “of blessed memory” and “peace be upon him(her).”  They change slightly depending on masculine or feminine.  Special note: When mentioning those “T” people (in the LBGTQ community) you should use the one they used last.  In other words, the gender in which he/she/shim/it died.  (I tried to keep a straight face on that one, but couldn’t. Still can’t.)

Of blessed memory in Hebrew is “zichrono livracho” m. and “zichronah livrachah f.  Abbreviated z”l or zit’l (they have slightly different meanings). 

May he/she rest in peace in Hebrew is “alav hashalom” m. and “aleha hashalom” f. Abbreviated a”h.  Capital letters may also be used.  End ART

Let me write a short word of encouragement on this verse.  John 20:1 Early in the morning on the first day of the week, while it is still dark, Miriam from Magdala comes to the tomb. She sees that the stone had been rolled away from the tomb.

Mark, Luke and Matthew all contain consistent versions this account.  

Matthew 28:2 And suddenly there was a great earthquake, for an angel of Adonai descended from heaven and came and rolled back the stone and sat on it.

Mark 16:2 Very early on the first day of the week, when the sun had risen, they come to the tomb. 3 They were saying to each other, “Who will roll away the stone for us from the entrance to the tomb?” 4 Looking up, they see that the stone (it was really huge) had been rolled away.

Luke 24:1 Now on the first day of the week, at daybreak, the women came to the tomb, carrying the spices they had prepared. 2 They found the stone had been rolled away from the tomb;

The stone is rolled away!  The resurrection eclipses the crucifixion!  The stone was not moved for His benefit, but for ours.  He wasn’t looking out from within the tomb, we were/are looking in from without the tomb. 

What a great day.  One Shabbat after another (Pesach, the Feast of Unleavened Bread, and the 7th day Shabbat) is finally concluded.  Yeshua can finally be raised up from His resting place and take back His life.

John 10:17 “For this reason the Father loves Me, because I lay down My life, so that I may take it up again.”

And again… 1 Corinthians 15:4 that He was buried, that He was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures,

Where in the Scriptures?  Hosea 6:1 Come, let us return to Adonai. For He has torn, but He will heal us. He has smitten, but He will bind us up. 2 After two days He will revive us. On the third day He will raise us up, and we will live in His presence.

You might say that Hosea was talking about Israel.  He is, but Yeshua if the first of many brethren.  (Romans 8:29)

There is a lot in the Hebrew Scriptures that happens on the third day.  The deliverance through the Red Sea happened on the third day.  Esther went in to the king after 3 days of fasting (Esther 4:16 & 5:1).

There is Jonah and so much more.  The reason I focused on this is so that we can pause and appreciate the miracle of the stone being rolled away.  That miracle reveals another miracle, the miracle of the resurrection.  

John 10:18 “No one takes it away from Me, but I lay it down on My own. I have the authority to lay it down, and I have the authority to take it up again. This command I received from My Father.”

Week 47
Memory Verse:  Colossians 2:6 Therefore as you received Messiah Yeshua  as Lord, so continue to walk in Him— 7 rooted and built up in Him and established in your faith just as you were taught, overflowing with thankfulness.

231   11/18    Monday:        Colossians 1-2

232   11/19    Tuesday:       Colossians 3-4 

* 233 11/20    Wednesday:  Ephesians 1-2

234   11/21    Thursday:      Ephesians 3-4

235   11/22    Friday:           Ephesians 5-6

Question of the day:  What are the two greatest words in the Bible?

Answer:  “But now.”  These are the first two words in Ephesians 2:13, but before we get appreciate “but now,” let’s set the stage as to why these two words are so important. 

Paul describes a very sorry state of affairs.  Ephesians 2:11 Therefore, keep in mind that once you—Gentiles in the flesh—were called “uncircumcision” by those called “circumcision” (which is performed on flesh by hand). 12 At that time you were separate from Messiah, excluded from the commonwealth of Israel and strangers to the covenants of promise, having no hope and without God in the world.

Did you catch that?  “Having no hope and without God in the world.”  That is a description of being lost.  We were separated from the promises of God.  Not included in the blessings of Abraham or any of the other forefathers.  We needed a savior.

So we all cry out, “Hosana,” that is, “save us now” and God sends His own Son to do just that.  (Now we’re ready for “but now.”)

Ephesians 2:13 But now in Messiah Yeshua, you who once were far off have been brought near by the blood of the Messiah. 14a For He is our shalom, the One who made the two into one and broke down the middle wall of separation.

That’s right, more good news.  Now we are all included.  What a blessing to have an inheritance in the promises first made to Israel, but now, through Yeshua’s once for all time sacrifice, “You who were once far off are brought near by the blood of Messiah.”

The blood supplies life to every tissue in the body.  We are all born outside the body.  We are born again into the body of Messiah where His blood (not Adam’s blood) nourishes us to life.  Todah Abba (thank You, Father).