Rabbi’s Reflections – Friday, December 18, 2020

(Early) Shabbat Shalom,

If you think the recent presidential election in the United States was conducted on the “up and up,” then please do not read this.  I do not.  I believe there was corruption, cheating, fraud, and crimes committed on a widespread basis to affect an outcome that could not have happened any other way.  Incidentally, I found this op-ed in Arutz7 after I wrote this, https://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/293168.  Baruch Miller is confirming much of what I said here.

I generally abhor Stephen King novels.  Those crazy plots that are so distant from reality just don’t appeal to me.  But what has happened in this election is beyond anything Stephen King could dream up.  The Chi-Comms develop an artificial virus (let’s call it COVID-19).  They then send infected subjects on international flights while restricting their travel within their own country.  The timing of this infection is perfectly staged in advance with the intention of affecting the next United States election.  

The virus does its job and becomes a pandemic, instilling fear in millions, even billions.  Countries shut their economies repeatedly in an effort of minimize the spread of the virus.  Then, by fiat, laws that govern elections are changed (in violation of the Constitution) to accommodate the new dangers of public exposure to the virus.  Mail in ballots are sent to everyone.  Dead people get them.  Non-citizens get them.  Some are “brought back” and entered into the vote count by the suitcase full, no identification possible, much less required.  

For four years the liberal media outlets along with like-minded politicians have labeled President Donald J. Trump (a non-politician, more on this later), illegitimate.  They spent the entirety of his presidency in a massive effort to delegitimize him.  They appoint a special prosecutor to investigate his ties to Russia, but find nothing.  They try impeachment, but cannot get a conviction.  

And the result of all their efforts is that Donald Trump does his job as President.  The economy soars.  New levels of peace are established between Israel and many muslim nations that have historically opposed the Jewish state.  The way the VA meets the needs of veterans is reformed and dramatically improved.  There is so much more.  Think what you might about his personality and his personal conduct, there is no doubt that he is a great administrator who took the power of the presidency and used it to make the lives of most Americans better.  

Now, in the last 24 hours, we have rediscovered that politicians are… well, politicians.  Even judges, it turns out, are politicians.  When its time to stand against crime and corruption, they all run and hide, letting the media write their scripts.  If I were writing the conclusion of this story, I would have millions of followers of Yeshua pray that He would return and save His people.  And then, in answer to that prayer, He would appear. 

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

Fri 18-Dec-2020 3rd of Tevet, 5781 Chanukah Day 8

Ge 43:16-29 2 Sa 6-7 Ps 79-80 Lk 6:1-26 (2 Co 4)

Nu 7:54-8:4 1 Macc ch. 15-16

I read this Aliyah with great interest, but I couldn’t stop at verse 29.  I had to read the next verse which captures Josephs emotional response to seeing his younger brother.  Such a tender moment, and as I explained yesterday, an image of a future reality when Yeshua returns to His people.

Time for a short Hebrew lesson.  Today we are going to study the 5 words in Psalm 80:4(3).  Psalm 80:4 O God, restore us, make Your face shine, and we will be saved.  Of course, we read from right to left.  

אֱלֹהִים הֲשִׁיבֵנוּ;    וְהָאֵר פָּנֶיךָ, וְנִוָּשֵׁעָה

  1. אֱלֹהִים (Elohim) God’s name is Elohim.  It is the first name used for God in Genesis 1:1 (the 3rd word of the Hebrew text).  And it is in plural form, probably because God is 3 in 1.    
  2. הֲשִׁיבֵנוּ (HaShevaynu) The Shoresh is “shuv” meaning turn back or return.  In asking God to restore us, we are asking Him to turn back to us, or return to us. 
  3. וְהָאֵר  (V’Ha’air)  “ohr” is light. God radiates light.  The light of God existed even before He created the sun.  
  4. פָּנֶיךָ (Panecha)  A “pan” is a “face in Hebrew.  Panecha is “your face.”
  5. וְנִוָּשֵׁעָה  (V’Niv’shaya)  Yeshua means salvation.  This word is the same Shoresh (root).  The “V” in front, means “and.”  The letter “nun” denotes plural, first person, future tense (we will).  So the word as stated means “we will be saved.”      

The first part of the verse is a cry to Elohim “restore us, Lord.”  The last part of the verse starts with “and.”  “And (in the) light of Your face we will be saved.”  Moses was so close to God that he radiated light so he had to cover his face or anyone who looked at him would go blind.  May we also be so close to God as to radiate His light unto salvation.  

Week 51
Memory Verse: 1 Peter 2:11 Loved ones, I urge you as strangers and sojourners to keep away from the fleshly cravings that war against the soul.

251   12/14  Monday:         1 Peter 3-4

252   12/15  Tuesday:        1 Peter 5, 1 John 1

253   12/16  Wednesday:   1 John 2-3   

254   12/17  Thursday:       1 John 4-5

* 255 12/18  Friday:            Revelation 1

Question of the Day:  In Revelation 1, at the end of verse 18, Yeshua says… “I hold the keys of death and Sheol.”  What does that mean and why is it so important that it comes first in His revelation message to John?

Answer:  The “keys of death” is the ability to lock and unlock death.  John 10:17 “For this reason the Father loves Me, because I lay down My life, so that I may take it up again. 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.”  Yeshua is Lord over His own life, and consequently over ours too.

The “keys to Sheol (hell)” is the ability to lock and unlock hell.  Revelation 20:15 And if anyone was not found written in the Book of Life, he was thrown into the lake of fire.  

Rabbi Trail:  Do you want to argue with me whether the “lake of fire” and “Sheol” are one and the same?  Better we don’t have to find out the hard way.  End RT.

The keys to death and Sheol, and their counterparts, life and heaven, indicate authority.  Matthew 28:18 And Yeshua came up to them and spoke to them, saying, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to Me.  This is the basis for the great commission.  Joseph was given authority in every place he went in Egypt, Potiphar’s house, the jail, and ultimately all of Egypt.  And in every place he had authority, and he had the keys.  

Yeshua, likewise has the keys to everything.  Ephesians 1:22 God placed all things under Messiah’s feet and appointed Him as head over all things for His community— 23 which is His body, the fullness of Him who fills all in all.  Of course Yeshua has the keys to life and death and the keys to heaven and hell.  This understanding is “baked in” to the meaning of the title “Lord.”  

Revelation 4:11 “Worthy are You, our Lord and God, to receive glory and honor and power, For You created all things, and because of Your will they existed and were created!”