Rabbi’s Reflections – Tuesday, April 21, 2020 


Counting the Omer – Day 10

Here is the proper blessing to be said each day.  This is how Jewish people fulfill the command to count.

בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה יְיָ אֱלֹהֵֽינוּ מֶֽלֶךְ הָעוֹלָם, אֲשֶׁר קִדְּשָֽׁנוּ בְּמִצְוֹתָיו, וְצִוָּֽנוּ עַל סְפִירַת הָעֹֽמֶר

Baruch Atah Adonai Elohenu Melech Ha-Olam, Asher Kid’shanu B’mitzvotav, Vitzivanu Al Sefirat Ha-Omer.

Blessed are You O Lord our God, King of the universe, who has sanctified us by his commandments and commanded us about the counting of the Omer.  Today is one week and three days of the counting of the Omer.

Today we want to continue with our second installment regarding the longing to be fascinated/filled with wonder.  We have been promised great things in Messiah Yeshua.  Hear the words of Yeshua… John 10:10b I have come that they might have life, and have it abundantly!  More abundant life is a promise from God.  

Let’s back up for a moment.  God uses our desire for wonder to draw us to Himself.  For example, when we look at His creation, we are compelled to ask, “Who made this?” (wonder)  And the follow up… “I want to know the One Who made this.” (God’s draw)

Rabbi Trail:  Use your imagination with me for a moment.  Suppose we were walking in the forest when we come to a clearing.  It’s late in the afternoon, near dusk.  On the far edge of the meadow is a log home meticulously landscaped.  The lawn is freshly mowed.  There are flower boxes hanging on the window sills with freshly planted flowers.  We look inside because the lights are on and see that the table is set for dinner with an assortment of fresh food prepared family style.  

Would we dare to think to ourselves, “Hmmm, must be nobody owns this house.  After all, I don’t see the owner.  Is it possible that nobody lives here as ‘Lord of the house.’”  Maybe the wind blew and the dust flew and poof, here’s a house, with a set table.  Of course not!  

God, created the world and everything in it.  The beautiful house in the woods didn’t just “happen” to be there, and both the entire world and we, ourselves, don’t just “happen” to be here either.  In fact, we’re all invited to join Him at His communion table, a table filled with awe and abundance.  End RT. 

Here is a life verse for me and for everyone who desires to experience God’s wonder-working power.  Ephesians 3:20 Now to Him who is able to do far beyond all that we ask or imagine, by means of His power that works in us, 21 to Him be the glory in the community of believers and in Messiah Yeshua throughout all generations forever and ever! Amen.  Let’s take all our fascination with how wonderful God is, and rest in belief that He will exceed it according to all His promises.

Rabbi Trail:  Don’t miss the phrase in verse 21 “in the community of believers.”  The promise to “do far beyond” is available to a “community.”  The Jewish mindset is oriented more toward community than the Greek mindset.  We Jews are tribal, the people of the book, the chosen people.  All our prayers on Yom Kippur are plural, “We have sinned.”  

The Greek mindset is not so.  I have a “personal salvation.”  It’s my personal walk with the Lord.  I have been baptized.  I read the Bible every day.  And so it goes.  We are not even allowed to remove the Torah from the Ark unless 10 Jewish men are present.  That’s called a “Minyan.”  End RT.

If we miss this opportunity to be fascinated and filled with wonder, there are two options.  An absence of fascination will either lead us to a life of boredom (and boredom is an open door to sin), or even worse we will become resistant, angry and hateful (which is sin).  We will never get to the “bottom” of God; His wonders are unsearchable.  Stay fascinated (filled with wonder at Who God is) my friends.  Tomorrow we will deal more extensively with the worldly counterfeits to righteous and godly fascination. 

Week 17
Memory Verse: Psalm 23:1 A psalm of David. Adonai is my shepherd, I shall not want. 2 He makes me lie down in green pastures. He leads me beside still waters. 3 He restores my soul. He guides me in paths of righteousness for His Name’s sake.

81    4/20      Monday:        2 Samuel 1-2:1-7 

* 82  4/21      Tuesday:       2 Samuel 3:1; 5; Psalm 23 

83    4/22      Wednesday:  2 Samuel 6-7

84    4/23      Thursday:      Psalm 18; 2 Samuel 9

85    4/24      Friday:          2 Samuel 11-12

Question of the day:  How do we get past Psalm 23:1?

Answer:  We can’t get past it.  Psalm 23:1 A psalm of David. Adonai is my shepherd, I shall not want.  We start by acknowledging “Adonai is my shepherd.”  That means I am one of His sheep.  Psalm 95:7 For He is our God, and we are the people of His pasture, the flock of His hand. Today, if you hear His voice.  We know we are sheep when we hear the Shepherd’s voice.  

Then there is that last phrase, “I shall not want.”  That means I shall not have lack or need.  Psalm 34:10 Fear Adonai, His kedoshim, For those who fear Him lack nothing. 11 Young lions may lack, and go hungry, but those who seek Adonai want for no good thing.

Yehovah Yireh is one of God’s names.  We are probably more comfortable with the name Jehovah Jirah, and we translate it “God is my provider.”  “Yireh” is etymologically connected to the Hebrew verb “Lir’ot” which means “to see.”  Yehovah Yireh means “God will see to it.”  

Isaiah 59 starts with a statement about God’s abilities.  Isaiah 59:1 Behold, Adonai’s hand is not too short to save, nor His ear too dull to hear.  It continues with a great description of our troubles due to sin.  Then God offers the solution.  Isaiah 59:16 He saw that there was no one— He was astonished that no one was interceding. Therefore His own arm brought salvation for Him, and His righteousness upheld Him. 

God made provision for His people.  Galatians 4:4 But when the fullness of time came, God sent out His Son, born of a woman and born under law— 5 to free those under law, so we might receive adoption as sons. 6 Now because you are sons, God sent the Ruach of His Son into our hearts, who cries out, “Abba! Father!” 7 So you are no longer a slave but a son—and if a son, also an heir through God.  Welcome to the family of God.  He is able to provide for His own.