HOME          TEMPLE SEDARIM      < PRIOR WEEK      NEXT WEEK >

 

Commentary - Year 1 Sabbath 41

Genesis 43:24 - 44:17   -   Jeremiah 42:12-17,  1 Kings 3:15   -   Psalm 37   -   Luke 19:37-48
 

 

Tevet 21, 5762 / Jan    5, 2002 

Tevet 20, 5765 / Jan    1, 200

Tevet 20, 5768 / Dec 29, 2007

Tevet 20, 5771 / Dec 25, 2010

Tevet 18, 5774 / Dec 21, 2013

Tevet 23, 5777 / Jan  21, 2017

 

Vayavei Ha-ish / Then the Man Brought   SCRIPTURES should be read first

 

(V.24) Joseph’s steward brought the eleven brothers back to Joseph’s house, after assuring them that they were not being accused of anything, but were coming to dine with the Viceroy of Egypt. While the steward was feeding their donkeys, the brothers made a beautiful arrangement of the gifts from Canaan – balsam (fragrant resin of the balsam tree – similar to frankincense or myrrh), date honey, wax and lotus (aromatic gums), pistachios and almonds (rare nuts at that time).

 

(V.26) When Joseph came at noon, they presented their tribute, and “prostrated themselves to him toward the ground”. This is the first time that all eleven brothers, including Benjamin, bowed down to him; it is seen as the fulfillment of Joseph’s first dream, “we were binding sheaves in the field, and lo, my sheaf rose up and also stood erect; and behold, your sheaves gathered around and bowed down to my sheaf” (v.37:7).

 

Then Joseph asked about their “peace” (welfare), and about the “peace” (welfare) of “your aged father” (Jacob). They answered, and bowed again.

 

(V.29) Then Joseph “lifted up his eyes”, focusing on Benjamin, “his mother’s son” (his only full brother). He said, “Is this your ‘little’ brother of whom you spoke to me?” The question seems sarcastic: Benjamin was 31 years old, and the father of ten. Then, to Benjamin, he said, “God (Elohim) be gracious to you, my son.” Use of the term “my son” seems to be emphasizing the sarcasm. The Midrash indicates much significance to this blessing, and we later find the tribe of Benjamin with Judah, when the others have been dispersed. Note that Yeshua was a Judahite/Jew (Matt.1, Luke 3), and Paul was a Benjaminite (Rom. 11:1).

 

(V.30) Joseph left the room to weep. The Midrash suggests the following account of the dialog that brought Joseph to tears:

Joseph: “Have you a maternal brother?”

Benjamin: “I had a brother, but I do not know where he is.”

Joseph: Do you have sons?”

Benjamin: “I have ten.”

Joseph: “What are their names?”

Benjamin: “Bela, Becher,” etc.

Joseph: What is the significance of these names?”

Benjamin: They all have some reference to my brother and the troubles that have befallen him. Bela – because he was swallowed up (nivla) among alien nations: Becher – because he was the firstborn (bechor) of his mother: Ashbel – because God sent him into captivity (sh’va’o El); Gera – because he became an alien (ger) in a strange land; Na’aman – because he was very pleasant (na’im) ; Achi and Rosh – because he was my brother (achi) and my superior (rosh); Muppim – because he learned from the mouth (mepi) of my father; Chuppim – because he did not witness my marriage canopy (chuppah), nor I his; and Ard – because he went down (yarad) among the nations (Sotah 36b).

 

After leaving to weep, Joseph washed his face, “fortified himself” (with great effort contained his emotions), and returned saying, “Serve bread” (the meal).

 

“And when (Yeshua) approached, He saw (Jerusalem) and wept over it, saying, "If you had known in this day, even you, the things which make for peace! But now they have been hidden from your eyes” – Luke 19:41-42.

 

(V.32) The Egyptians did not eat sheep (see v.46:34 & Exodus 8:22), but Joseph had an animal prepared for his brothers’ meal; therefore he had his brothers eat separated from the Egyptians that were present, and Joseph ate separated from them all, which would not be surprising for a person of his position. It is interesting to note the saying that the food of the Hebrews was loathsome to Egypt: there were only seventy Hebrews in the world at the time, so they must have been notable. Even earlier (v.40:15) Joseph had called Canaan the “Land of the Hebrews”.

 

Joseph had his brothers seated in order by age: they looked at one another in astonishment (the oldest ten were very close in age, all being born within seven years, now in their late forties to early fifties). Joseph gave Benjamin – either gifts or food portions – five times as much as the others. It is generally agreed that Joseph was testing to see if the other brothers would be jealous of his only full brother, as they had been with him.

 

They all ate, and drank to the point of being lightheaded and merry.

 

In chapter 44 we see the final test: by setting up Benjamin to be accused of stealing his personal silver cup, Joseph would find out if the other brothers were jealous of Benjamin – their father’s favorite, as they had been with Joseph. Would they stand up for Benjamin, or no?

 

Upon being accused, they suggested that, if the cup was found with one of them, that one could be executed, and the rest could be taken as slaves (as accomplices to the crime). When they came before Joseph, their words meant that, though they were innocent of the accusation, God was bringing this upon them for some other sin, and they were prepared to be slaves. But Joseph said that he would not be so unjust: the one on whom it was found would be taken as a slave, and the others would be freed – they could go up to their father. [The stage is set for next week.]

 

Psalm 37

 

The first portion of this Psalm clearly fits Joseph’s situation, and is a strong lesson for us:

1 Do not fret because of evildoers, be not envious toward wrongdoers. 2 For they will wither quickly like the grass and fade like the green herb. 3 Trust in Yahweh and do good; dwell in the land and cultivate faithfulness. 4 Delight yourself in Yahweh; and He will give you the desires of your heart. 5 Commit your way to Yahweh, trust also in Him, and He will do it. 6 He will bring forth your righteousness as the light and your judgment as the noonday. 7 Rest in Yahweh and wait patiently for Him; do not fret because of him who prospers in his way, because of the man who carries out wicked schemes. 8 Cease from anger and forsake wrath; do not fret; it leads only to evildoing.

 

This Psalm contains the basis for one of Yeshua’s beatitudes: “Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth” (Matt.5:5). The meek shall inherit the earth (v.9, 21), and dwell therein forever (v.29), and delight themselves in abundant peace (v.11), but the wicked will be cut off from it (v.34). These verses could refer to Canaan, or the whole earth. From other Scriptures, we see that they also mean Eden/Paradise.

 

At the end of the Psalm, we clearly see why the faithful are called meek:

40 Yahweh helps them and delivers them; He delivers them from the wicked and saves them, because they take refuge in Him.

 

As Joseph said to the Pharaoh, it is not because of anything in us, but Yahweh – the God of grace and mercy – saves us from sin, and from the wicked; and He is our refuge, and provider; and He promises us eternal life on an earth renewed as the original Eden.

 

Luke 19:

37 As soon as He was approaching, near the descent of the Mount of Olives, the whole crowd of the disciples began to praise God joyfully with a loud voice for all the power (dunamis) which they had seen, 38 shouting: “Blessed is the King who comes in the  Name of Yahweh; peace in heaven and glory in the highest!” I learned this week that there is no specific word in the Greek Apostolic Writings for “miracle”. There are three words that are often translated miracle: dunamis – power (from which we get “dynamite”), teras – wonder, and semeion – sign. Through such people as Moses, Elijah, Yeshua, and the Apostles, God displayed His Power, doing wondrous things that made people marvel, granting signs to authenticate His Word. The neo-Pentecostal idea, that these kinds of “miracles” are the right of all believers today to perform, is a misunderstanding of the Scriptures.

 

45 Yeshua entered the Temple and began to drive out those who were selling, 46 saying to them, “It is written, 'And My House shall be a house of prayer,' but you have made it a robber’s den.”

It was the duty of a priest to cleanse the Temple. Only a priest could cleanse the Temple. The very purpose of the Temple was to represent and portray Yeshua. Here Yeshua, as our Priest, was fulfilling His duty, and also making a final showing of how the Temple should represent Him.

 

41 When He approached Jerusalem, He saw the city and wept over it, 42 saying, “If you had known in this day, even you, the things which make for peace! But now they have been hidden from your eyes. 43 For the days will come upon you when your enemies will throw up a barricade against you, and surround you and hem you in on every side, 44 and they will level you to the ground and your children within you, and they will not leave in you one stone upon another, because you did not recognize the time of your visitation.”

Here the reason is clearly given, why the Holy Temple would be destroyed: because Yeshua was rejected! Messiah’s visitation was not recognized! Why should the Temple be left, when its purpose of representing Yeshua was not being fulfilled?

 

The rejection of Yeshua has been wrongly used as a condemnation against all Hebrews, or all “Jews”.

47 And He was teaching daily in the Temple; but the chief priests and the scribes and the leading men among the people were trying to destroy Him, 48 and they could not find anything that they might do, for all the people were hanging on to every word He said.

 

Readings:

"Blessed are You, Yahweh our God, King of the Universe,

Who chose us from among all peoples by giving us Your Torah.

Blessed are You, Yahweh, giver of the Torah."

 

Reader 1*  Amen. 1 (Vayave ha-ish et-ha-anashim beitah Yoseph /

                                     Then-came-in the-man with-the-men into-house of  Joseph)

24 Then the man brought the men into Joseph's house and gave them water, and they washed their feet; and he gave their donkeys fodder. 25 So they prepared the present for Joseph's coming at noon; for they had heard that they were to eat a meal there. 26 When Joseph came home, they brought into the house to him the present which was in their hand and bowed to the ground before him. 27 Then he asked them about their welfare, and said, "Is your old father well, of whom you spoke? Is he still alive?" 28 They said, "Your servant our father is well; he is still alive." They bowed down in homage.

Reader 2*  Amen. 29 As he lifted his eyes and saw his brother Benjamin, his mother's son, he said, "Is this your youngest brother, of whom you spoke to me?" And he said, "May God be gracious to you, my son." 30 Joseph hurried out for he was deeply stirred over his brother, and he sought a place to weep; and he entered his chamber and wept there. 31 Then he washed his face and came out; and he controlled himself and said, "Serve the meal."

Reader 3*  Amen. 32 So they served him by himself, and them by themselves, and the Egyptians who ate with him by themselves, because the Egyptians could not eat bread with the Hebrews, for that is loathsome to the Egyptians. 33 Now they were seated before him, the firstborn according to his birthright and the youngest according to his youth, and the men looked at one another in astonishment. 34 He took portions to them from his own table, but Benjamin's portion was five times as much as any of theirs. So they feasted and drank freely with him.

Reader 4*  Amen. 44:1 Then he commanded his house steward, saying, "Fill the men's sacks with food, as much as they can carry, and put each man's money in the mouth of his sack. 2 "Put my cup, the silver cup, in the mouth of the sack of the youngest, and his money for the grain." And he did as Joseph had told him. 3 As soon as it was light, the men were sent away, they with their donkeys.

Reader 5*  Amen. 4 They had just gone out of the city, and were not far off, when Joseph said to his house steward, "Up, follow the men; and when you overtake them, say to them, 'Why have you repaid evil for good? 5 'Is not this the one from which my lord drinks and which he indeed uses for divination? You have done wrong in doing this.'" 6 So he overtook them and spoke these words to them. 7 They said to him, "Why does my lord speak such words as these? Far be it from your servants to do such a thing. 8 "Behold, the money which we found in the mouth of our sacks we have brought back to you from the land of Canaan. How then could we steal silver or gold from your lord's house?

Reader 6*  Amen. 9 "With whomever of your servants it is found, let him die, and we also will be my lord's slaves." 10 So he said, "Now let it also be according to your words; he with whom it is found shall be my slave, and the rest of you shall be innocent." 11 Then they hurried, each man lowered his sack to the ground, and each man opened his sack. 12 He searched, beginning with the oldest and ending with the youngest, and the cup was found in Benjamin's sack. 13 Then they tore their clothes, and when each man loaded his donkey, they returned to the city.

Reader 7*  Amen. 14 When Judah and his brothers came to Joseph's house, he was still there, and they fell to the ground before him. 15 Joseph said to them, "What is this deed that you have done? Do you not know that such a man as I can indeed practice divination?" 16 So Judah said, "What can we say to my lord? What can we speak? And how can we justify ourselves? God has found out the iniquity of your servants; behold, we are my lord's slaves, both we and the one in whose possession the cup has been found." 17 But he said, "Far be it from me to do this. The man in whose possession the cup has been found, he shall be my slave; but as for you, go up in peace to your father."

 

"Blessed are You, Yahweh our God, King of the Universe,

Who in giving us Yeshua, the Living Torah, has planted everlasting life in our midst.

Blessed are You, Yahweh, giver of the Torah."

______________________

 

"Blessed are You, Yahweh our God, King of the Universe,

Who selected good prophets, delighting in their words which were spoken truthfully.

Blessed are You, Yahweh, Who chose the Torah, Your servant Moses, Your people Israel,

and the prophets of truth and righteousness."

 

Jeremiah 42:12-17

Reader 8*  Amen. 12 'I will also show you compassion, so that he will have compassion on you and restore you to your own soil. 13 'But if you are going to say, "We will not stay in this land," so as not to listen to the voice of Yahweh your God, 14 saying, "No, but we will go to the land of Egypt, where we will not see war or hear the sound of a trumpet or hunger for bread, and we will stay there"; 15 then in that case listen to the word of Yahweh, O remnant of Judah. Thus says Yahweh of Hosts, the God of Israel, "If you really set your mind to enter Egypt and go in to reside there, 16 then the sword, which you are afraid of, will overtake you there in the land of Egypt; and the famine, about which you are anxious, will follow closely after you there in Egypt, and you will die there. 17 "So all the men who set their mind to go to Egypt to reside there will die by the sword, by famine and by pestilence; and they will have no survivors or refugees from the calamity that I am going to bring on them."'"

 

1 Kings 3:15

Reader 9*  Amen. 15 Then Solomon awoke, and behold, it was a dream. And he came to Jerusalem and stood before the ark of the covenant of Yahweh, and offered burnt offerings and made peace offerings, and made a feast for all his servants.

 

Psalm 37    (To be sung)   A Psalm of David.

1 Do not fret because of evildoers, be not envious toward wrongdoers. 2 For they will wither quickly like the grass and fade like the green herb. 3 Trust in Yahweh and do good; dwell in the land and cultivate faithfulness. 4 Delight yourself in Yahweh; and He will give you the desires of your heart. 5 Commit your way to Yahweh, trust also in Him, and He will do it. 6 He will bring forth your righteousness as the light and your judgment as the noonday. 7 Rest in Yahweh and wait patiently for Him; do not fret because of him who prospers in his way, because of the man who carries out wicked schemes. 8 Cease from anger and forsake wrath; do not fret; it leads only to evildoing. 9 For evildoers will be cut off, but those who wait for Yahweh, they will inherit the land. 10 Yet a little while and the wicked man will be no more; and you will look carefully for his place and he will not be there. 11 But the humble will inherit the land and will delight themselves in abundant prosperity. 12 The wicked plots against the righteous and gnashes at him with his teeth. 13 Yahweh laughs at him, for He sees his day is coming. 14 The wicked have drawn the sword and bent their bow to cast down the afflicted and the needy, to slay those who are upright in conduct. 15 Their sword will enter their own heart, and their bows will be broken. 16 Better is the little of the righteous than the abundance of many wicked. 17 For the arms of the wicked will be broken, but Yahweh sustains the righteous. 18 Yahweh knows the days of the blameless, and their inheritance will be forever. 19 They will not be ashamed in the time of evil, and in the days of famine they will have abundance. 20 But the wicked will perish; and the enemies of Yahweh will be like the glory of the pastures, they vanish-- like smoke they vanish away. 21 The wicked borrows and does not pay back, but the righteous is gracious and gives. 22 For those blessed by Him will inherit the land, But those cursed by Him will be cut off. 23 The steps of a man are established by Yahweh, and He delights in his way. 24 When he falls, he will not be hurled headlong, because Yahweh is the One who holds his hand. 25 I have been young and now I am old, yet I have not seen the righteous forsaken or his descendants begging bread. 26 All day long he is gracious and lends, and his descendants are a blessing. 27 Depart from evil and do good, so you will abide forever. 28 For Yahweh loves justice and does not forsake His godly ones; they are preserved forever, but the descendants of the wicked will be cut off. 29 The righteous will inherit the land and dwell in it forever. 30 The mouth of the righteous utters wisdom, and his tongue speaks justice. 31 The law of his God is in his heart; his steps do not slip. 32 The wicked spies upon the righteous and seeks to kill him. 33 Yahweh will not leave him in his hand or let him be condemned when he is judged. 34 Wait for Yahweh and keep His way, and He will exalt you to inherit the land; when the wicked are cut off, you will see it. 35 I have seen a wicked, violent man spreading himself like a luxuriant tree in its native soil. 36 Then he passed away, and lo, he was no more; I sought for him, but he could not be found. 37 Mark the blameless man, and behold the upright; for the man of peace will have a posterity. 38 But transgressors will be altogether destroyed; the posterity of the wicked will be cut off. 39 But the salvation of the righteous is from Yahweh; He is their strength in time of trouble. 40 Yahweh helps them and delivers them; He delivers them from the wicked and saves them, because they take refuge in Him.

 

Luke 19:37-48

Reader 10*  Amen. 37 As soon as He was approaching, near the descent of the Mount of Olives, the whole crowd of the disciples began to praise God joyfully with a loud voice for all the miracles which they had seen, 38 shouting: "Blessed is the King who comes in the  Name of the Lord; Peace in heaven and glory in the highest!" 39 Some of the Pharisees in the crowd said to Him, "Teacher, rebuke Your disciples." 40 But Yeshua answered, "I tell you, if these become silent, the stones will cry out!" 41 When He approached Jerusalem, He saw the city and wept over it, 42 saying, "If you had known in this day, even you, the things which make for peace! But now they have been hidden from your eyes. 43 "For the days will come upon you when your enemies will throw up a barricade against you, and surround you and hem you in on every side, 44 and they will level you to the ground and your children within you, and they will not leave in you one stone upon another, because you did not recognize the time of your visitation." 45 Yeshua entered the temple and began to drive out those who were selling, 46 saying to them, "It is written, 'And My House shall be a house of prayer,' but you have made it a robber’s den." 47 And He was teaching daily in the temple; but the chief priests and the scribes and the leading men among the people were trying to destroy Him, 48 and they could not find anything that they might do, for all the people were hanging on to every word He said.

 

"Blessed are You, Yahweh our God, King of the Universe,

Rock of Ages, righteous throughout all generations.

You are the faithful God, promising and then performing, speaking and then fulfilling,

for all Your words are true and righteous.

Faithful are You, Yahweh our God, and faithful are Your words,

for no word of Yours shall remain unfulfilled;

You are a faithful and merciful God and King.

Blessed are You, Yahweh our God, Who are faithful in fulfilling all Your words."


© 2004  Beikvot HaMashiach
(Followers of the Messiah)