Rabbi’s Reflections – Thursday, May 6, 2021


Counting the Omer – Day 33

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 counting the counting of the Omer.  Today is four weeks and five days of the counting of the Omer.

Lag B’Omer (Lamed = 30, Gimel = 3) the 33rd day of the counting of the Omer has a special designation in Judaism.  The entire 49 days of counting are solemn, as we count our blessings.  But on this day, every kind of celebration is permitted.  Many people get married on Lag B’Omer.  Traditionally, people picnic on this day.  Especially in Israel, but also in many Jewish communities around the world, Lag B’Omer is a celebration holiday.    

I mention it here so you will know about it.  It has its roots in Kabbalah (Jewish mysticism), which I am not going to glorify by going into the details.  We don’t believe in Jewish mysticism.  We believe in the Jewish savior.  Only He has the power to forgive sins and bring us into right relationship with Himself.  

Listen to His words… Matthew 11:28 Come to Me, all who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. 29 Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and ‘you will find rest for your souls.’ 30 For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.”

In Yeshua, every day is Lag B’Omer.

You know I’ve been writing about God’s attributes.  In doing so, we have been counting our blessings to be included in the family of One so great.  How great is our God?  “Ki Gadol Elohai” we say in Hebrew.  But, while “Ki” can be translated “how” in Biblical Hebrew, it is usually translated “because” in modern Hebrew.  So in Hebrew the question answers itself.  How great is our God?  Just because God is great.

While God has various attributes, they are not part of a whole, but each attribute is a whole of a whole.  God is not broken into parts.  He is all in all.   1 Timothy 1:17 Now to the King eternal, immortal, invisible, the only God, be honor and glory forever and ever. Amen.

In His revelation to Moses, God gave Himself a name. Exodus 6:3 of the TLV contains a huge mistranslation.  God revealed His name “Yud-Hay-Vav-Hay” to Moses.  The Hebrew says God was NOT known to the patriarchs by that name.  That name is taken from the first letter of each Hebrew words in the sentence, “He will be(Yud), He is(Hay), And(Vav) He was(Hay).”

This not only speaks to His attribute of being eternal, but also His attribute of being self-existent.  His glory, His shalom, everything that can possibly describe God relates to His wholeness.  Nobody created any part of Him.  Nobody adds to Him or takes away from Him.  And when we believe in Yeshua, we ourselves become complete in Him because Yeshua is the revelation of Father.  Colossians 2:9 For all the fullness of Deity lives bodily in Him, 10 and in Him you have been filled to fullness. He is the head over every ruler and authority.

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

Thu 6 May-2021 24th of Iyar, 5781

Le 26:10-46 Jer 8 Job 29 (Mt 26:36-75) Ro 9

We love to sing the Shema.  At Shomair, we face the east and point to the place of Yeshua’s return.  Shema means “hear” or “listen.”  An even better translation would be to “take heed” or “obey.”  In Leviticus 26:14 “But if you will not listen to Me, nor carry out all these mitzvot,…”  The Hebrew is “And if you will not ‘Shema’….”  What follows isn’t pretty.

God describes in great detail the consequences of disobeying Him.  All those blessings we spoke about yesterday… well they’re out the window.  God prophesies sickness and disease, famine and defeat, fear when there is nothing to fear, plagues and wild animals.  Every type of calamity times seven is the payment for disobedience.  Could God have been more specific in explaining His plan?  Yet disobey we did.

This Aliyah is particularly long, because the rabbis hate to end on a negative note.  It’s not until the last few verses of chapter 26 that we find some positive promises… Leviticus 26:44 “Yet for all that, when they are in the land of their enemies, I will not reject them, nor will I hate them into utter destruction, and break My covenant with them, for I am Adonai their God. 45 But for their sake I will remember the covenant of their ancestors, whom I brought out of the land of Egypt in the sight of the nations, that I might be their God. I am Adonai.”

There has to be a righteous remnant in Israel today for these promises to be a reality.  As we can see with our own eyes, God has not rejected Israel.  That righteous remnant are the Messianic believers in Israel.  Probably something less than 2% of the population of Israel are followers of Yeshua, but that righteous remnant is a start.  

A little “Chametz” (leaven) is enough to make the whole batch rise.  So too, a few faithful followers of Yeshua are enough to be used of God to bring all Israel to repentance.  Let’s pray for exactly that.

Week 19
Memory Verse: Psalm 139:15 My frame was not hidden from You when I was made in the secret place, when I was woven together in the depths of the earth. 16 Your eyes saw me when I was unformed, and in Your book were written the days that were formed— when not one of them had come to be.

91   5/7 Monday:        Psalm 119:129-176; 139

92   5/8 Tuesday:       Pslam 148 – 150
93   5/9 Wednesday: 1 Kings 2
* 94 5/10 Thursday:   1 Kings 3; 6
95   5/11 Friday:        1 Kings 8, 9:1-9

Question of the day:  God asks the question of the day today.  Hear what God asks Solomon… 1 Kings 3:5 At Gibeon Adonai appeared to Solomon in a dream by night, and God said: “Ask for what should I give you?” 

Answer: And we all know Solomon’s request was pleasing to God.  1 Kings 3:11 So God said to him: “Because you asked for this thing—and have not asked for yourself long life, nor asked for yourself riches, nor asked for the life of your enemies, but asked for yourself understanding to discern justice— 12 behold, I have done according to your words. I have given you a wise and discerning mind, so that there has been none like you before you, nor shall anyone like you arise after you.

The entire world seems to be on a quest for justice.  In the world’s quest for justice, murderers go free and the innocent are condemned.  Seeking justice without seeking God is foolishness.  Matthew 6:33 But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.  Do you suppose one of “these things” might be justice?  

God is just.  Psalm 89:15(14)a Righteousness and justice are the foundation of Your throne.  But wait, there’s more… doing justice cannot be separated from walking with God… Micah 6:8 He has told you, humanity, what is good, and what Adonai is seeking from you: Only to practice justice, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with your God.

Once again (in honor of Cinco de Mayo), as we say in Hebrew, Vaya con Dios, Muchachos.