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Commentary - Year 3 Sabbath 6

Numbers 13:1-33   -   Joshua 2:1, Judges 18:1   -   Psalm 105

Hebrews 11:24-40, James 2:24-26
 

 

Iyyar 8, 5763 / May 10, 2003

Iyyar 8, 5766 / May   6, 2006

Iyyar 8, 5769 / May   2, 2009    

Iyyar 6, 5772 / April 28, 2012     

Iyyar 6, 5775 / April 25, 2012      The twenty-first day of the Omer.

 

Shelah / Send Forth    SCRIPTURES should be read first

Background:

Firstly, we must recognize that God holds all the rights – to peoples and lands. We have no standing, even to question what He does.

About 4,000 years ago, God made a covenant with Abraham, which was confirmed to Isaac and Jacob / Israel. Part of this covenant was a certain Land for an everlasting possession (Genesis 15:18).

This land included all or parts of present-day Israel, Lebanon, Syria, Jordan, Iraq, and Saudi Arabia. Israel is not seeking today to take over more of this Land, but the descendants of Ishmael and Esau are seeking to destroy them in what they do possess. The Islamic Arabs admit to being the descendants of Ishmael, but claim that Ishmael was the son of promise, rather than Isaac; this is a new religion – started 2400 years after Abraham, and 600 years after Yeshua was here.

God promised to destroy the idolaters from the Land, and give it to His people who were chosen by grace (for no merit of their own). This Promised Land was said to be a land of great splendor, where the people would serve Yahweh, and He would protect them and provide for them in abundance. The final fulfillment of this covenant is expected in the near future.

Setting:

3500 years ago, having left Egyptian slavery, Israel was on the threshold of the entrance to the Promised Land. [“Israel” included followers from the seventy nations dispersed from Babel.] Spies were to be sent ahead to scope out the Land.

Numbers 13

(V.2) The people had asked Moses to send spies (from explanation of Deuteronomy 1:21-23). God granted permission for Moses to do so: “If you please” (literal translation of Numbers 13:2). Though God had already certified the condition of the Land, and promised it in victory, Moses was apparently willing to add an anticipated proof for a doubting people.

(V.23) Eight men carried four poles – two east-west and two north-south, like a tic-tac-toe symbol. A single cluster of grapes was carried on this bed of poles. Such was the bounty of the Land.

(V.25) “At the end of 40 days”: The spies spent forty days exploring the Promised Land. The people should have then been ready to enter.

(V.27-31) But the people of the Land (natural world) were seen as great – too difficult to defeat.

Ten of he spies did not learn from the lesson of Miriam and Aaron. They ‘slandered the Land’, contradicting Moses – and thereby, God Himself.

Psalm 105

(V.1-11) “Oh give thanks to Yahweh, call upon His name; make known His deeds among the peoples. Sing to Him, sing praises to Him; speak of all His wonders. Glory in His holy name; let the heart of those who seek Yahweh be glad. Seek Yahweh and His strength; seek His face continually. Remember His wonders which He has done, His marvels, and the judgments uttered by His mouth, O seed of Abraham, His servant, O sons of Jacob, His chosen ones! He is Yahweh our God; His judgments are in all the earth. He has remembered His covenant forever, the word which He commanded to a thousand generations, the covenant which He made with Abraham, and His oath to Isaac. Then He confirmed it to Jacob for a statute, to Israel as an everlasting covenant, saying, ‘To you I will give the land of Canaan as the portion of your inheritance’.

(V.41-45) “He opened the rock, and water flowed out; it ran in the dry places like a river for He remembered His holy Word with Abraham His servant; and He brought forth His people with joy, His chosen ones with a joyful shout. He gave them also the lands of the nations, that they might take possession of the fruit of the peoples' labor, so that they might keep His statutes, and observe His laws, Praise Yahweh!

Application:

Spies have been sent out into the land that has been promised to us. Yeshua has seen it, and has come to us with a good report. We have records, from Genesis 2 to Revelation 22, describing the bounty of the Land, and promising it in victory to all who overcome (Revelation 21:7).

This is a land where we can serve Yahweh, and he will protect us and provide for us abundantly. He has given us the power to take it. Will we?

Where will it be?

It will be Paradise, originally called the Garden of Eden. It will be on a renewed earth, where sin and all of its effects will be no more.

Though men now decry the destruction of “ancient artifacts”, all of the vain works of man will be burned, to be remembered no more. Here we have desires and tendencies for all kinds of idolatries and vanities, but there such things will not exist.

There God will dwell with us, and we will be His people, and we will serve Him wholeheartedly.

Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God.” – Revelation 21:3.

For then will I turn to the people a pure language, that they may all call upon the name of Yahweh, to serve him with one consent” – Zephaniah 3:9.

In conclusion: Israel, 3500 years ago, did not then obtain the promise. It is yet to be obtained, and we may be partakers in it.

And all these, having gained approval through their faith, did not receive what was promised, because God had provided something better for us, so that apart from us they should not be made perfect” – Hebrews 11:39-40.

And if you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham's offspring, heirs of the covenant” – Galatians 3:29

 

“And He who sits on the throne said, ‘Behold, I am making all things new.’ And He said, ‘Write, for these words are faithful and true.’ And He said to me, ‘It is done. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end. I will give to the one who thirsts from the spring of the water of life without cost. He who overcomes shall inherit these things, and I will be his God and he will be My son. But for the cowardly and unbelieving and abominable and murderers and immoral persons and sorcerers and idolaters and all liars, their part will be in the lake that burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death” – Revelation 21:5-8

Notes:

Numbers 13

(V.4-15) This portion is about leaders.

 1   from the tribe of Reuben, Shammua the son of Zaccur; (desolate)

 2   from the tribe of Simeon, Shaphat the son of Hori; (he has judged)

 3   from the tribe of Judah, Caleb the son of Jephunneh; (dog)    > Caleb quieted the people

 4   from the tribe of Issachar, Igal the son of Joseph; (he redeems)

 5   from the tribe of Ephraim, Hoshea the son of Nun; (salvation) > Moses called him Yehoshua

      (Joshua the son of Nun, the attendant of Moses from his youth, - Num 11:28)    

 6   from the tribe of Benjamin, Palti the son of Raphu; (my deliverance)

 7   from the tribe of Zebulun, Gaddiel the son of Sodi; (God is my fortune)

 8   from the tribe of (Joseph) Manasseh, Gaddi the son of Susi; (my fortune)

 9   from the tribe of Dan, Ammiel the son of Gemalli; (my kinsman is God)

10  from the tribe of Asher, Sethur the son of Michael; (hidden)

11  from the tribe of Naphtali, Nahbi the son of Vophsi; (hidden)

12  from the tribe of Gad, Geuel the son of Machi. (majesty of God)

(V.16) This is a Talmudic story, that makes its point by animating a letter of the alephbet.

The Yod went before the Holy One and cried, “You have taken me from the name of that holy woman, Saray.” The Eternal replied: “I have taken you from the name of a woman, from the end of her name”, for ‘Saray’ was changed to ‘Sarah – Princess’ (Genesis 17:15). “But I will put you on the name of a man, at the beginning of his name”, and ‘Hoshea – Salvation’ was changed to ‘Yehoshua’ (or its shortened form, ‘Yeshua’) – ‘Yahweh is Salvation’ (Numbers 13:16).

News:

US Secretary of State Colin Powell is in Israel, pushing the ‘road map’, trying to force Israel to give away part of God’s land. This has been going on for several days.

For the past several days, there has been record devastation, and many deaths, in the US from tornadoes.

Today, the temperature in the Sharon region of Israel is above 100 degrees, and fires are destroying areas.

This follows a recorded pattern, over the past few years, of record calamities in the US and Israel, at the exact times when US and/or Israeli leaders are pushing for ‘concessions’ to the terrorists.

See www.watch.org , Update and Commentary, May 5, 2003.

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 1Amen. 1 Then Yahweh spoke to Moses saying, 2 "Send out for yourself men so that they may spy out the land of Canaan, which I am going to give to the sons of Israel; you shall send a man from each of their fathers' tribes, every one a leader among them." 3 So Moses sent them from the wilderness of Paran at the command of Yahweh, all of them men who were heads of the sons of Israel.

Reader 2Amen. 4 These then were their names: from the tribe of Reuben, Shammua the son of Zaccur; 5 from the tribe of Simeon, Shaphat the son of Hori; 6 from the tribe of Judah, Caleb the son of Jephunneh; 7 from the tribe of Issachar, Igal the son of Joseph; 8 from the tribe of Ephraim, Hoshea the son of Nun; 9 from the tribe of Benjamin, Palti the son of Raphu;

Reader 3Amen. 10 from the tribe of Zebulun, Gaddiel the son of Sodi; 11 from the tribe of Joseph, from the tribe of Manasseh, Gaddi the son of Susi; 12 from the tribe of Dan, Ammiel the son of Gemalli; 13 from the tribe of Asher, Sethur the son of Michael; 14 from the tribe of Naphtali, Nahbi the son of Vophsi; 15 from the tribe of Gad, Geuel the son of Machi. 16 These are the names of the men whom Moses sent to spy out the land; but Moses called Hoshea the son of Nun, Joshua.

Reader 4Amen. 17 When Moses sent them to spy out the land of Canaan, he said to them, "Go up there into the Negev; then go up into the hill country. 18 "See what the land is like, and whether the people who live in it are strong or weak, whether they are few or many. 19 "How is the land in which they live, is it good or bad? And how are the cities in which they live, are they like open camps or with fortifications? 20 "How is the land, is it fat or lean? Are there trees in it or not? Make an effort then to get some of the fruit of the land." Now the time was the time of the first ripe grapes.

Reader 5Amen. 21 So they went up and spied out the land from the wilderness of Zin as far as Rehob, at Lebo-hamath. 22 When they had gone up into the Negev, they came to Hebron where Ahiman, Sheshai and Talmai, the descendants of Anak were. (Now Hebron was built seven years before Zoan in Egypt.) 23 Then they came to the valley of Eshcol and from there cut down a branch with a single cluster of grapes; and they carried it on a pole between two men, with some of the pomegranates and the figs. 24 That place was called the valley of Eshcol, because of the cluster which the sons of Israel cut down from there.

Reader 6Amen. 25 When they returned from spying out the land, at the end of forty days, 26 they proceeded to come to Moses and Aaron and to all the congregation of the sons of Israel in the wilderness of Paran, at Kadesh; and they brought back word to them and to all the congregation and showed them the fruit of the land. 27 Thus they told him, and said, "We went in to the land where you sent us; and it certainly does flow with milk and honey, and this is its fruit. 28 "Nevertheless, the people who live in the land are strong, and the cities are fortified and very large; and moreover, we saw the descendants of Anak there. 29 "Amalek is living in the land of the Negev and the Hittites and the Jebusites and the Amorites are living in the hill country, and the Canaanites are living by the sea and by the side of the Jordan."

Reader 7Amen. 30 Then Caleb quieted the people before Moses and said, "We should by all means go up and take possession of it, for we will surely overcome it." 31 But the men who had gone up with him said, "We are not able to go up against the people, for they are too strong for us." 32 So they gave out to the sons of Israel a bad report of the land which they had spied out, saying, "The land through which we have gone, in spying it out, is a land that devours its inhabitants; and all the people whom we saw in it are men of great size. 33 "There also we saw the Nephilim (the sons of Anak are part of the Nephilim); and we became like grasshoppers in our own sight, and so we were in their sight."

 

"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."

 

Joshua 2:1

Reader 8Amen. 1 Then Joshua the son of Nun sent two men as spies secretly from Shittim, saying, "Go, view the land, especially Jericho." So they went and came into the house of a harlot whose name was Rahab, and lodged there.

 

Psalm 105    (To be sung.)

1 Oh give thanks to Yahweh, call upon His name; make known His deeds among the peoples. 2 Sing to Him, sing praises to Him; speak of all His wonders. 3 Glory in His holy name; let the heart of those who seek Yahweh be glad. 4 Seek Yahweh and His strength; seek His face continually. 5 Remember His wonders which He has done, His marvels and the judgments uttered by His mouth, 6 O seed of Abraham, His servant, O sons of Jacob, His chosen ones! 7 He is Yahweh our God; His judgments are in all the earth. 8 He has remembered His covenant forever, the word which He commanded to a thousand generations, 9 the covenant which He made with Abraham, and His oath to Isaac. 10 Then He confirmed it to Jacob for a statute, to Israel as an everlasting covenant, 11 saying, "To you I will give the land of Canaan as the portion of your inheritance," 12 when they were only a few men in number, very few, and strangers in it. 13 And they wandered about from nation to nation, from one kingdom to another people. 14 He permitted no man to oppress them, and He reproved kings for their sakes: 15 "Do not touch My anointed ones, and do My prophets no harm." 16 And He called for a famine upon the land; He broke the whole staff of bread. 17 He sent a man before them, Joseph, who was sold as a slave. 18 They afflicted his feet with fetters, he himself was laid in irons; 19 until the time that his word came to pass, the word of Yahweh tested him. 20 The king sent and released him, the ruler of peoples, and set him free. 21 He made him lord of his house and ruler over all his possessions, 22 to imprison his princes at will, that he might teach his elders wisdom. 23 Israel also came into Egypt; thus Jacob sojourned in the land of Ham. 24 And He caused His people to be very fruitful, and made them stronger than their adversaries. 25 He turned their heart to hate His people, to deal craftily with His servants. 26 He sent Moses His servant, and Aaron, whom He had chosen. 27 They performed His wondrous acts among them, and miracles in the land of Ham. 28 He sent darkness and made it dark; and they did not rebel against His words. 29 He turned their waters into blood and caused their fish to die. 30 Their land swarmed with frogs even in the chambers of their kings. 31 He spoke, and there came a swarm of flies and gnats in all their territory. 32 He gave them hail for rain, and flaming fire in their land. 33 He struck down their vines also and their fig trees, and shattered the trees of their territory. 34 He spoke, and locusts came, and young locusts, even without number, 35 And ate up all vegetation in their land, and ate up the fruit of their ground. 36 He also struck down all the firstborn in their land, the first fruits of all their vigor. 37 Then He brought them out with silver and gold, and among His tribes there was not one who stumbled. 38 Egypt was glad when they departed, for the dread of them had fallen upon them. 39 He spread a cloud for a covering, and fire to illumine by night. 40 They asked, and He brought quail, and satisfied them with the bread of heaven. 41 He opened the rock and water flowed out; it ran in the dry places like a river. 42 For He remembered His holy word with Abraham His servant; 43 And He brought forth His people with joy, His chosen ones with a joyful shout. 44 He gave them also the lands of the nations, that they might take possession of the fruit of the peoples' labor, 45 So that they might keep His statutes and observe His laws, Praise Yahweh!

 

Hebrews 11:24-40

Reader 9Amen. 24 By faith Moses, when he had grown up, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh's daughter, 25 choosing rather to endure ill-treatment with the people of God than to enjoy the passing pleasures of sin, 26 considering the reproach of the Messiah greater riches than the treasures of Egypt; for he was looking to the reward. 27 By faith he left Egypt, not fearing the wrath of the king; for he endured, as seeing Him who is unseen. 28 By faith he kept the Passover and the sprinkling of the blood, so that he who destroyed the firstborn would not touch them. 29 By faith they passed through the Red Sea as though they were passing through dry land; and the Egyptians, when they attempted it, were drowned.

Reader 10Amen. 30 By faith the walls of Jericho fell down after they had been encircled for seven days. 31 By faith Rahab the harlot did not perish along with those who were disobedient, after she had welcomed the spies in peace. 32 And what more shall I say? For time will fail me if I tell of Gideon, Barak, Samson, Jephthah, of David and Samuel and the prophets, 33 who by faith conquered kingdoms, performed acts of righteousness, obtained promises, shut the mouths of lions, 34 quenched the power of fire, escaped the edge of the sword, from weakness were made strong, became mighty in war, put foreign armies to flight.

Reader 11Amen. 35 Women received back their dead by resurrection; and others were tortured, not accepting their release, so that they might obtain a better resurrection; 36 and others experienced mockings and scourgings, yes, also chains and imprisonment. 37 They were stoned, they were sawn in two, they were tempted, they were put to death with the sword; they went about in sheepskins, in goatskins, being destitute, afflicted, ill-treated 38 (men of whom the world was not worthy), wandering in deserts and mountains and caves and holes in the ground. 39 And all these, having gained approval through their faith, did not receive what was promised, 40 because God had provided something better for us, so that apart from us they would not be made perfect.

 

James 2:24-26

Reader 12Amen. 24 You see that a man is justified by works, and not by faith alone. 25 And in the same way was not Rahab the harlot also justified by works, when she received the messengers and sent them out by another way? 26 For just as the body without the spirit is dead, so also faith without works is dead.

 

"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."


 

© 2003  Beikvot HaMashiach
(Followers of the Messiah)

 

 

 

 

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