Rabbi’s Reflections – Monday, February 15, 2021


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

Man 15-Feb-2021 3rd of Adar, 5781

Ex 25:17-30 2 Ki 18 Ps 143 Jn 15 (Phm)

Here, in the Aliyah reading for today, are more instructions on making the furniture and other appointments for the Mishkan, “Tabernacle in the Wilderness.”  I want to focus on the last verse.  But, before I do, let’s discuss the word “Mishkan.”  

Mishkan uses the same Shoresh (Shin-Kaf-Nun) as “Shekainah,” which is the radiant glory of God.  Moses shined from being in the presence of the radiant glory of God.  Exodus 34:29 Now it happened, when Moses came down from Mount Sinai with the two tablets of the Testimony in his hand when he came down from the mountain, that Moses did not know that the skin of his face was radiant, because God had spoken with him.  But this is 9 chapters ahead of where we are today, so we’re getting ahead of ourselves.  

Rabbi Trail:  The Shoresh itself (Shachan) means to settle down or dwell.  It is the Shoresh of the Hebrew words for neighbor and neighborhood.  Here (in the Torah), God takes 40 chapters of Scripture to describe how we must honor Him if we expect to live in His neighborhood.  Yeshua’s first coming doesn’t make all of this meaningless, He confirms it and adds to its meaning through His sacrificial life.  Isaiah 42:20 You have seen many things, but you do not pay attention. Though ears are open, no one hears.” 21 Adonai was pleased, for the sake of His righteousness, to make Torah great and glorious.  Another translation says that Yeshua came “to magnify the Law (Torah) and make it honorable.”  End RT. 

The last verse of the 2nd Aliyah of this week’s Torah portion is Exodus 25:30 Always set the bread of the Presence on the table before Me.  Both words, “presence” and “before,” use the same Shoresh (Peh-Nun-Hey) which essentially refers to “a face.”  To be “before” someone is to be “in their face.”  

But why bread?  Bread is a symbolic food of sustenance.  God connects bread to His word… Yeshua quoted Deuteronomy 8:3 back to the devil.  Matthew 4:4 But He replied, “It is written, ‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.’”  

The bread was to be fresh and 12 loaves were to be kept before the Lord with the old loaves being removed each week.  Each loaf was significant, being made from almost 5 pounds of flour.  It is not known if these loaves were leavened or unleavened.  If I had to guess, I would say they were leavened except during Passover.  

By commanding ceremonial bread, God is letting us know that He wants us to walk before Him blameless.  This instruction is repeated throughout Scripture to many biblical characters, and ultimately to us.  God is also giving us careful instruction to live according to His word.  

Finally, Yeshua gave us bread as the symbol of His body.  1 Corinthians 10:16b  The bread which we break—isn’t it a sharing of Messiah’s body?  To follow Yeshua is to receive a consecration of purity.  1 Peter 1:14 Like obedient children, do not be shaped by the cravings you had formerly in your ignorance. 15 Instead, just like the Holy One who called you, be holy yourselves also in everything you do. 16 For it is written, “Kedoshim you shall be, for I am kadosh.”  (Leviticus 11:44)

The last word today is “Selah.”  It means, “Take a moment and think about what has just been said.  Ask yourself, ‘How should I change my life, so I can be more like Yeshua?’”

Week 8

Memory Verse: Galatians 5:14 For the whole Torah can be summed up in a single saying: “Love your neighbor as yourself.”

* 36 2/15    Monday:         Exodus 19-20

37   2/16    Tuesday:        Exodus 24-25

38   2/17    Wednesday:   Exodus 26-27

39   2/18    Thursday:       Exodus 28-29

40   2/19    Friday:            Exodus 30-31

Question of the day:  Early in chapter 19 we read about a “kingdom of priests.”  What does it mean to be a “kingdom of priests?”

Answer:  The Hebrew term is “Mamlechet Kohanim.”  Exodus 19:6a So as for you, you will be to Me a kingdom of kohanim and a holy nation.’   Melech is “king” and a derivation of the same Shoresh is “Mamlechet” meaning “kingdom.”  Of course, “Kohen” is “priest” with “kohanim” being plural.

Rabbi Trail: As the Hawaiians say, “The big “kehuna”  End RT.

That’s the technical side, but there is always a spiritual reality to Scripture.  Yeshua is the only King AND Priest.  In ancient Israel, both kings and priests were anointed but only Yeshua is both.  The Hebrew word for anointed is “Mashach” from which we get “Mashiach.”  Yeshua is the only one to receive the double anointing of both King AND Priest.  

We see this truth in the first few verses of the book of Hebrews.  Hebrews 1:3 This Son is the radiance of His glory and the imprint of His being, upholding all things by His powerful word. When He had made purification for our sins, He sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high.  

Don’t miss it!  “Purification for our sins” can only be performed by a priest.  Hebrews 7:17 For it is testified, “You are a kohen forever, according to the order of Melechizedek .”  Seated with “majesty on high” is only done by a king.  Thus, Jacob prophesied over Judah… Genesis 49:10 The scepter will not pass from Judah, nor the ruler’s staff from between his feet, until he to whom it belongs will come. To him will be the obedience of the peoples. 

Just like Yeshua, we also have a duel role of king and priest.  To rule and reign with Him and to intercede for the people.  Ephesians 2:10 For we are His workmanship—created in Messiah Yeshua for good deeds, which God prepared beforehand so we might walk in them.