Rabbi’s Reflections – Friday, March 26, 2021

(Early) Shabbat Shalom,

ANNOUNCEMENT:  This Shabbat Ben Juster, President of Tikkun America, will be ministering at Shomair for the first time.  We are very glad to welcome him as he is assuming the mantle of his father, Dan.  The service starts at 10:30.  Please plan to attend as we get to know Ben and his family and let them get to know us.  

Rabbi Trail: My good friend, David Chansky, sent this to me…. This thought came from the Lubavitcher Rebbe and Chabad.

“Chametz” (חמץ) and “Matzah” (מצה), Notice both the similarity and the difference in the two words?  “Chametz” meaning leaven,  is spelled “Chet-Mem-Tsadee (sofit – at the end of the word).  Matzah is spelled “Mem-Tsadee-Hey”.

They both use a “Mem” and “Tzadi.”  The difference between the two words is that Matzah ends with a “Hey” while Chametz starts with a “Chet,” two letters that have similar looks.  The difference between the “Chet” and “Hey” is that the “Hey” has a small opening on the top of the letter, while the “Chet” is closed.  Thus the saying goes that Chametz (leaven representing sin), though the letter “Chet” is closed, leaven can get in.  While Matzah, ending in “Hey,” the letter is open  must be watched so as to keep it from becoming leaven. thus we must remember to be careful not to let any Chametz into our pure offering of Matzah on Pesach.  This is a typical rabbinical midrash.  

My response to David was this… I have a little different take.  Matzah ends with “Hey” which represents God’s name.  Chametz starts with the letter “Chet” which is the first letter of the word “Chayt” meaning sin.  Keeping the leaven out requires humility (not being puffed up by leaven) which leads us to God.  Putting the leaven in leads to sin and separation from God.  Blessings for a happy Pesach.  End RT.

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

Fri 26 Mar-2021 13th of Nisan, 5781 

Le 8:22-29 Isa 37 Pr 27 Ac 26 (Rev 20)

There is a lot packed into the 8 verses of Today’s (Aliyah) Torah reading.  The blood of the ram is used for anointing Aaron and his sons.  But only their right side is anointed.  The ear (be careful what you hear, think), the thumb (be careful what you grab, hold on to), and the great toe (be careful where you walk and how you walk) are all anointed with blood.  Then matzah is offered to God as a burnt offering.

Today, we don’t have the blood of rams, even though we are the fulfillment of God’s promise to make a kingdom of priests.  How do we know God has promised?  Here are two examples… Exodus 19:6a So as for you, you will be to Me a kingdom of kohanim and a holy nation.  Revelation 1:5b To Him who loves us and has freed us from our sins by His blood 6 and made us a kingdom, kohanim to His God and Father—to Him be glory and power forever! Amen!

But before the anointing with blood, Aaron and his sons laid their hands on the head of the ram.  The reality of every sacrifice is Yeshua.  He intercedes for us as He alone is able to take our place as the once-for-all-time atonement.  He is our great high priest… Hebrews 4:14 Therefore, since we have a great Kohen Gadol who has passed through the heavens, Yeshua Ben-Elohim, let us hold firmly to our confessed allegiance.  

And thus, His anointing becomes our anointing.  Philippians 3:13 Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself as having taken hold of this. But this one thing I do: forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, 14 I press on toward the goal for the reward of the upward calling of God in Messiah Yeshua.

Week 13

Memory Verse: Judges 2:12 They abandoned Adonai, the God of their fathers, who had brought them out of the land of Egypt, and followed other gods from among the gods of the peoples around them, and bowed down to them. So they provoked the anger of Adonai.

61   3/25    Monday:         Joshua 5:10-15, 6

62   3/26    Tuesday:        Joshua 7-8

63   3/27    Wednesday:   Joshua 23,24

64   3/28    Thursday:      Judges 2-3

* 65 3/29    Friday:           Judges 4

Question of the day:  Who saved the day?

Answer:  There are women throughout the Bible who are significant in God’s plan for the world.  One of them is the answer to our question today.  Yael is the wife of Heber the Kenite.  She, single handedly, killed Sisera, the commander of Jabin’s army, just as Deborah prophesied to Barak.  

The real question to ask after reading this chapter is, “How will God use you to advance His plan to establish His kingdom.  Let me offer a word of caution here.  Nothing is wasted in the kingdom of God.  He created you for a purpose, a purpose no less than Yael’s purpose.  Man or woman, Jew or Gentile, slave or free, it doesn’t matter to God.  He loves you and has a plan for your life that will be a blessing to Him.  

Ephesians 1:4 He chose us in the Messiah before the foundation of the world, to be holy and blameless before Him in love. 5 He predestined us for adoption as sons through Messiah Yeshua, in keeping with the good pleasure of His will—… 9 He made known to us the mystery of His will, in keeping with His good pleasure that He planned in Messiah. 10 The plan of the fullness of times is to bring all things together in the Messiah—both things in heaven and things on earth, all in Him.