Rabbi’s Reflections – Saturday, March 7, 2020 

Shabbat Shalom *|FNAME|*,

T H R E E    A N N O U N C E M E N T S

1. Remember to “spring forward” early Sunday morning. (1am becomes 2am)

2. Our friends (and faithful RR readers) Judah and Hallel Schell delivered a boy (I would have said “baby boy” but you knew it was a baby, so that would be redundant) last Wednesday morning.  They have named him Zev.  We congratulate them, and we also need to pray for them.  The baby’s lungs appear underdeveloped so he is in the NICU.  Please pray for healing and against any infection so prevalent in hospitals.  I will keep you posted.

3. We will celebrate Purim as a congregation on Sunday, March 8th at 4pm.  We will begin with the reading of the Magilah (Book of Esther) and proceed to a covered dish oneg (please bring something), hamentashen (if you’re a baker, please make some) and fun and games (if you’re a gamer, please bring some).  Be sure to dress up like a character from the holiday.  (I wonder if they knew they were “dressing up” back then.)  Happy Purim everyone.

Pillar Ten: The Kingdom will be Expressed in the Coming Fullness – part 2

Yesterday I connected the concept of “the coming fullness” to the “restoration of the world,” called in Hebrew “Tikkun Olam.”   Speaking of restoration, is there any greater restoration than the miracle of the State of Israel?  Look at what God has done!

He has brought us back to the land and in doing so fulfilled His promise to the children of our forefathers.  Isaiah 11:11 It will also come about in that day that my Lord will again redeem— a second time with His hand— the remnant of His people who remain… 12 He will lift up a banner for the nations, and assemble the dispersed of Israel, and gather the scattered of Judah from the four corners of the earth.

The Bible seems to presume that Israel will be restored.  Psalm 14:7 O may He give Israel’s salvation out of Zion! When Adonai restores His captive people, Jacob will rejoice, Israel will be glad!

Peter is prophesying in the Temple to non-believing Jewish people when he says… Acts 3:19 Repent, therefore, and return—so your sins might be blotted out, 20 so times of relief might come from the presence of Adonai and He might send Yeshua, the Messiah appointed for you. 21 Heaven must receive Him, until the time of the restoration of all the things that God spoke about long ago through the mouth of His holy prophets.

Did you catch that?  “Repent… (so) He might send Yeshua,… Heaven must receive Him, until the time of the restoration of all things….”  Today, we are seeing great restorations.  Surely, the return of Yeshua is near!

What else is being restored (besides Israel)?  How about the manifest presence of God through the gifts of the Spirit.  These are the days the prophet Joel referenced… Joel 2:23 So be glad, children of Zion, and rejoice in Adonai, your God. For He gives you the early rain for prosperity, Yes, He will bring down rain for you, the early and latter rain as before.

And we close with more of the promises of Joel 2… Joel 2:25 “I shall restore to you the years that the locust, the swarming locust, the canker-worm and the caterpillar have eaten— My great army that I sent among you.” 26 “You will surely eat and be satisfied, and praise the Name of Adonai your God, who has dealt wondrously with you. Never again will My people be shamed 27 You will know that I am within Israel. Yes, I am Adonai your God —there is no other— Never again will My people be shamed.” 

As my late friend, Paco Platillero, would say, “That’s finger lickin’ good!”