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Yeshua HaMashiach . . . . . . . . Yahweh's Salvation for the World


Temple Triennial Cycle - Commentaries

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Sabbath Fourteen (June 15, 2002)

Shemot (Names): V’atah tetzaveh (You shall command), commonly called Exodus 27:20 – 28:43    (*Divided for seven Torah readers)

Lamp Oil

1 Amen* 20 "And you shall charge the sons of Israel, that they bring you clear oil of beaten olives for the light, to make a lamp burn continually. 21 "In the tent of meeting, outside the veil which is before the testimony, Aaron and his sons shall keep it in order from evening to morning before Yahweh; it shall be a perpetual statute throughout their generations for the sons of Israel.

Sanctifying Garments

28:1 "Then bring near to yourself Aaron your brother, and his sons with him, from among the sons of Israel, to minister as priest to Me-- Aaron, Nadab and Abihu, Eleazar and Ithamar, Aaron's sons. 2 "And you shall make holy garments for Aaron your brother, for glory and for beauty. 3 "And you shall speak to all the skillful persons whom I have endowed with the spirit of wisdom, that they make Aaron's garments to consecrate him, that he may minister as priest to Me. 4 "And these are the garments which they shall make: a breastpiece and an ephod and a robe and a tunic of checkered work, a turban and a sash, and they shall make holy garments for Aaron your brother and his sons, that he may minister as priest to Me. 5 "And they shall take the gold and the blue and the purple and the scarlet material and the fine linen.

Ephod (Skirt)

2 Amen* 6 "They shall also make the ephod of gold, of blue and purple and scarlet material and fine twisted linen, the work of the skillful workman. 7 "It shall have two shoulder pieces joined to its two ends, that it may be joined. 8 "And the skillfully woven band, which is on it, shall be like its workmanship, of the same material: of gold, of blue and purple and scarlet material and fine twisted linen. 9 "And you shall take two onyx stones and engrave on them the names of the sons of Israel, 10 six of their names on the one stone, and the names of the remaining six on the other stone, according to their birth. 11 "As a jeweler engraves a signet, you shall engrave the two stones according to the names of the sons of Israel; you shall set them in filigree settings of gold. 12 "And you shall put the two stones on the shoulder pieces of the ephod, as stones of memorial for the sons of Israel, and Aaron shall bear their names before Yahweh on his two shoulders for a memorial. 13 "And you shall make filigree settings of gold, 14 and two chains of pure gold; you shall make them of twisted cordage work, and you shall put the corded chains on the filigree settings.

Hoshen (Breastplate of judgment)

3 Amen* 15 "And you shall make a breastpiece of judgment, the work of a skillful workman; like the work of the ephod you shall make it: of gold, of blue and purple and scarlet material and fine twisted linen you shall make it. 16 "It shall be square and folded double, a span in length and a span in width. 17 "And you shall mount on it four rows of stones; the first row shall be a row of ruby, topaz and emerald; 18 and the second row a turquoise, a sapphire and a diamond; 19 and the third row a jacinth, an agate and an amethyst; 20 and the fourth row a beryl and an onyx and a jasper; they shall be set in gold filigree. 21 "And the stones shall be according to the names of the sons of Israel: twelve, according to their names; they shall be like the engravings of a seal, each according to his name for the twelve tribes. 22 "And you shall make on the breastpiece chains of twisted cordage work in pure gold.

4 Amen* 23 "And you shall make on the breastpiece two rings of gold, and shall put the two rings on the two ends of the breastpiece. 24 "And you shall put the two cords of gold on the two rings at the ends of the breastpiece. 25 "And you shall put the other two ends of the two cords on the two filigree settings, and put them on the shoulder pieces of the ephod, at the front of it. 26 "And you shall make two rings of gold and shall place them on the two ends of the breastpiece, on the edge of it, which is toward the inner side of the ephod. 27 "And you shall make two rings of gold and put them on the bottom of the two shoulder pieces of the ephod, on the front of it close to the place where it is joined, above the skillfully woven band of the ephod. 28 "And they shall bind the breastpiece by its rings to the rings of the ephod with a blue cord, that it may be on the skillfully woven band of the ephod, and that the breastpiece may not come loose from the ephod. 29 "And Aaron shall carry the names of the sons of Israel in the breastpiece of judgment over his heart when he enters the holy place, for a memorial before Yahweh continually. 30 "And you shall put in the breastpiece of judgment the Urim and the Thummim, and they shall be over Aaron's heart when he goes in before Yahweh; and Aaron shall carry the judgment of the sons of Israel over his heart before Yahweh continually.

Me’il (Robe)

5 Amen* 31 "And you shall make the robe of the ephod all of blue. 32 "And there shall be an opening at its top in the middle of it; around its opening there shall be a binding of woven work, as it were the opening of a coat of mail, that it may not be torn. 33 "And you shall make on its hem pomegranates of blue and purple and scarlet material, all around on its hem, and bells of gold between them all around: 34 a golden bell and a pomegranate, a golden bell and a pomegranate, all around on the hem of the robe. 35 "And it shall be on Aaron when he ministers; and its tinkling may be heard when he enters and leaves the holy place before Yahweh, that he may not die.

Tzitz (Head-plate)

6 Amen* 36 "You shall also make a plate of pure gold and shall engrave on it, like the engravings of a seal, 'Holy to Yahweh.' 37 "And you shall fasten it on a blue cord, and it shall be on the turban; it shall be at the front of the turban. 38 "And it shall be on Aaron's forehead, and Aaron shall take away the iniquity of the holy things which the sons of Israel consecrate, with regard to all their holy gifts; and it shall always be on his forehead, that they may be accepted before Yahweh.

Kesonet (Tunic)

7 Amen* 39 "And you shall weave the tunic of checkered work of fine linen, and shall make a (mitsnephet) turban of fine linen, and you shall make a sash, the work of a weaver. 40 "And for Aaron's sons you shall make tunics; you shall also make sashes for them, and you shall make (migbaot) caps for them, for glory and for beauty. 41 "And you shall put them on Aaron your brother and on his sons with him; and you shall anoint them and ordain them and consecrate them, that they may serve Me as priests.

Breeches (for modesty, not an outer garment)

42 "And you shall make for them linen breeches to cover their bare flesh; they shall reach from the loins even to the thighs. 43 "And they shall be on Aaron and on his sons when they enter the tent of meeting, or when they approach the altar to minister in the holy place, so that they do not incur guilt and die. It shall be a statute forever to him and to his descendants after him.

Ezekiel 43:10

10 "As for you, son of man, describe the Temple to the house of Israel, that they may be ashamed of their iniquities; and let them measure the plan.

Ezekiel 3:10-27

10 Moreover, He said to me, "Son of man, take into your heart all My words which I shall speak to you, and listen closely. 11 "And go to the exiles, to the sons of your people, and speak to them and tell them, whether they listen or not, 'Thus says Yahweh God.'" 12 Then the Spirit lifted me up, and I heard a great rumbling sound behind me, "Blessed be the glory of Yahweh in His place." 13 And I heard the sound of the wings of the living beings touching one another, and the sound of the wheels beside them, even a great rumbling sound. 14 So the Spirit lifted me up and took me away; and I went embittered in the rage of my spirit, and the hand of Yahweh was strong on me. 15 Then I came to the exiles who lived beside the river Chebar at Telabib, and I sat there seven days where they were living, causing consternation among them. 16 Now it came about at the end of seven days that the word of Yahweh came to me, saying, 17 "Son of man, I have appointed you a watchman to the house of Israel; whenever you hear a word from My mouth, warn them from Me. 18 "When I say to the wicked, 'You shall surely die'; and you do not warn him or speak out to warn the wicked from his wicked way that he may live, that wicked man shall die in his iniquity, but his blood I will require at your hand. 19 "Yet if you have warned the wicked, and he does not turn from his wickedness or from his wicked way, he shall die in his iniquity; but you have delivered yourself. 20 "Again, when a righteous man turns away from his righteousness and commits iniquity, and I place an obstacle before him, he shall die; since you have not warned him, he shall die in his sin, and his righteous deeds which he has done shall not be remembered; but his blood I will require at your hand. 21 "However, if you have warned the righteous man that the righteous should not sin, and he does not sin, he shall surely live because he took warning; and you have delivered yourself." 22 And the hand of Yahweh was on me there, and He said to me, "Get up, go out to the plain, and there I will speak to you." 23 So I got up and went out to the plain; and behold, the glory of Yahweh was standing there, like the glory which I saw by the river Chebar, and I fell on my face. 24 The Spirit then entered me and made me stand on my feet, and He spoke with me and said to me, "Go, shut yourself up in your house. 25 "As for you, son of man, they will put ropes on you and bind you with them, so that you cannot go out among them. 26 "Moreover, I will make your tongue stick to the roof of your mouth so that you will be dumb, and cannot be a man who rebukes them, for they are a rebellious house. 27 "But when I speak to you, I will open your mouth, and you will say to them, 'Thus says Yahweh God.' He who hears, let him hear; and he who refuses, let him refuse; for they are a rebellious house.

Jeremiah 11

1 The word which came to Jeremiah from Yahweh, saying, 2 "Hear the words of this covenant, and speak to the men of Judah and to the inhabitants of Jerusalem; 3 and say to them, 'Thus says Yahweh, the God of Israel, "Cursed is the man who does not heed the words of this covenant 4 which I commanded your forefathers in the day that I brought them out of the land of Egypt, from the iron furnace, saying, 'Listen to My voice, and do according to all which I command you; so you shall be My people, and I will be your God,' 5 in order to confirm the oath which I swore to your forefathers, to give them a land flowing with milk and honey, as it is this day."'" Then I answered and said, "Amen, O Yahweh." 6 And Yahweh said to me, "Proclaim all these words in the cities of Judah and in the streets of Jerusalem, saying, 'Hear the words of this covenant and do them. 7 'For I solemnly warned your fathers in the day that I brought them up from the land of Egypt, even to this day, warning persistently, saying, "Listen to My voice." 8 'Yet they did not obey or incline their ear, but walked, each one, in the stubbornness of his evil heart; therefore I brought on them all the words of this covenant, which I commanded them to do, but they did not.'" 9 Then Yahweh said to me, "A conspiracy has been found among the men of Judah and among the inhabitants of Jerusalem. 10 "They have turned back to the iniquities of their ancestors who refused to hear My words, and they have gone after other gods to serve them; the house of Israel and the house of Judah have broken My covenant which I made with their fathers." 11 Therefore thus says Yahweh, "Behold I am bringing disaster on them which they will not be able to escape; though they will cry to Me, yet I will not listen to them. 12 "Then the cities of Judah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem will go and cry to the gods to whom they burn incense, but they surely will not save them in the time of their disaster. 13 "For your gods are as many as your cities, O Judah; and as many as the streets of Jerusalem are the altars you have set up to the shameful thing, altars to burn incense to Baal. 14 "Therefore do not pray for this people, nor lift up a cry or prayer for them; for I will not listen when they call to Me because of their disaster. 15 "What right has My beloved in My house When she has done many vile deeds? Can the sacrificial flesh take away from you your disaster, So that you can rejoice?" 16 Yahweh called your name, "A green olive tree, beautiful in fruit and form"; with the noise of a great tumult He has kindled fire on it, and its branches are worthless. 17 And Yahweh of hosts, who planted you, has pronounced evil against you because of the evil of the house of Israel and of the house of Judah, which they have done to provoke Me by offering up sacrifices to Baal. 18 Moreover, Yahweh made it known to me and I knew it; Then Thou didst show me their deeds. 19 But I was like a gentle lamb led to the slaughter; And I did not know that they had devised plots against me, saying, "Let us destroy the tree with its fruit, And let us cut him off from the land of the living, That his name be remembered no more." 20 But, O Yahweh of hosts, who judges righteously, Who tries the feelings and the heart, Let me see Thy vengeance on them, For to Thee have I committed my cause. 21 Therefore thus says Yahweh concerning the men of Anathoth, who seek your life, saying, "Do not prophesy in the name of Yahweh, that you might not die at our hand"; 22 therefore, thus says Yahweh of hosts, "Behold, I am about to punish them! The young men will die by the sword, their sons and daughters will die by famine; 23 and a remnant will not be left to them, for I will bring disaster on the men of Anathoth-- the year of their punishment."

Psalm 59

1 For the choir director; set to Al-tashheth. A Mikhtam of David, when Saul sent men, and they watched the house in order to kill him. Deliver me from my enemies, O my God; Set me securely on high away from those who rise up against me. 2 Deliver me from those who do iniquity, And save me from men of bloodshed. 3 For behold, they have set an ambush for my life; Fierce men launch an attack against me, Not for my transgression nor for my sin, O Yahweh, 4 For no guilt of mine, they run and set themselves against me. Arouse Thyself to help me, and see! 5 And Thou, O Yahweh God of hosts, the God of Israel, Awake to punish all the nations; Do not be gracious to any who are treacherous in iniquity. Selah. 6 They return at evening, they howl like a dog, And go around the city. 7 Behold, they belch forth with their mouth; Swords are in their lips, For, they say, "Who hears?" 8 But Thou, O Yahweh, dost laugh at them; Thou dost scoff at all the nations. 9 Because of his strength I will watch for Thee, For God is my stronghold. 10 My God in His lovingkindness will meet me; God will let me look triumphantly upon my foes. 11 Do not slay them, lest my people forget; Scatter them by Thy power, and bring them down, O Lord, our shield. 12 On account of the sin of their mouth and the words of their lips, Let them even be caught in their pride, And on account of curses and lies which they utter. 13 Destroy them in wrath, destroy them, that they may be no more; That men may know that God rules in Jacob, To the ends of the earth. Selah. 14 And they return at evening, they howl like a dog, And go around the city. 15 They wander about for food, And growl if they are not satisfied. 16 But as for me, I shall sing of Thy strength; Yes, I shall joyfully sing of Thy lovingkindness in the morning, For Thou hast been my stronghold, And a refuge in the day of my distress. 17 O my strength, I will sing praises to Thee; For God is my stronghold, the God who shows me lovingkindness.

Hebrews 3

1 Therefore, holy brethren, partakers of a heavenly calling, consider Yeshua, the Apostle and High Priest of our confession. 2 He was faithful to Him who appointed Him, as Moses also was in all His house. 3 For He has been counted worthy of more glory than Moses, by just so much as the builder of the house has more honor than the house. 4 For every house is built by someone, but the builder of all things is God. 5 Now Moses was faithful in all His house as a servant, for a testimony of those things which were to be spoken later; 6 but Christ was faithful as a Son over His house whose house we are, if we hold fast our confidence and the boast of our hope firm until the end. 7 Therefore, just as the Holy Spirit says, "Today if you hear His voice, 8 Do not harden your hearts as when they provoked Me, As in the day of trial in the wilderness, 9 Where your fathers tried Me by testing Me, and saw My works for forty years. 10 "Therefore I was angry with this generation, And said, 'They always go astray in their heart; and they did not know My ways'; 11 As I swore in My wrath, 'They shall not enter My rest.'" 12 Take care, brethren, lest there should be in any one of you an evil, unbelieving heart, in falling away from the living God. 13 But encourage one another day after day, as long as it is still called "Today," lest any one of you be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin. 14 For we have become partakers of Christ, if we hold fast the beginning of our assurance firm until the end; 15 while it is said, "Today if you hear His voice, Do not harden your hearts, as when they provoked Me." 16 For who provoked Him when they had heard? Indeed, did not all those who came out of Egypt led by Moses? 17 And with whom was He angry for forty years? Was it not with those who sinned, whose bodies fell in the wilderness? 18 And to whom did He swear that they should not enter His rest, but to those who were disobedient? 19 And so we see that they were not able to enter because of unbelief.


The commands concerning the Tabernacle being finished, commands concerning the priests follow.

(V. 20) The oil for the menorah was extra-virgin olive oil – from the first pressing of unheated olives. The wording indicates that it had to be pure from the beginning, not purified by filtering; it was taken from only the first drop of each pressed olive. This indicates the purity of Spirit of God, which, as in this text, presents the purity to be pictured in the priesthood.

Sabbath Fifteen (June 22, 2002)

Shemot (Names): V’tzeh hadabar (This is the Word), commonly called Exodus 29    (*Divided for seven Torah readers)  

1 Amen* 1 "Now this is the Word that you shall do to them to consecrate them to minister as priests to Me: take one young bull and two rams without blemish, 2 and unleavened bread and unleavened cakes mixed with oil, and unleavened wafers spread with oil; you shall make them of fine wheat flour. 3 "And you shall put them in one basket, and present them in the basket along with the bull and the two rams. 4 "Then you shall bring Aaron and his sons to the doorway of the tent of meeting, and wash them with water. 5 "And you shall take the garments, and put on Aaron the tunic and the robe of the ephod and the ephod and the breastpiece, and gird him with the skillfully woven band of the ephod; 6 and you shall set the turban on his head, and put the holy crown on the turban. 7 "Then you shall take the anointing oil, and pour it on his head and anoint him.

2 Amen* 8 "And you shall bring his sons and put tunics on them. 9 "And you shall gird them with sashes, Aaron and his sons, and bind caps on them, and they shall have the priesthood by a perpetual statute. So you shall ordain Aaron and his sons. 10 "Then you shall bring the bull before the tent of meeting, and Aaron and his sons shall lay their hands on the head of the bull. 11 "And you shall slaughter the bull before Yahweh at the doorway of the tent of meeting. 12 "And you shall take some of the blood of the bull and put it on the horns of the altar with your finger; and you shall pour out all the blood at the base of the altar. 13 "And you shall take all the fat that covers the entrails and the lobe of the liver, and the two kidneys and the fat that is on them, and offer them up in smoke on the altar. 14 "But the flesh of the bull and its hide and its refuse, you shall burn with fire outside the camp; it is a sin offering.

3 Amen* 15 "You shall also take the one ram, and Aaron and his sons shall lay their hands on the head of the ram; 16 and you shall slaughter the ram and shall take its blood and sprinkle it around on the altar. 17 "Then you shall cut the ram into its pieces, and wash its entrails and its legs, and put them with its pieces and its head. 18 "And you shall offer up in smoke the whole ram on the altar; it is a burnt offering to Yahweh: it is a soothing aroma, an offering by fire to Yahweh. 19 "Then you shall take the other ram, and Aaron and his sons shall lay their hands on the head of the ram. 20 "And you shall slaughter the ram, and take some of its blood and put it on the lobe of Aaron's right ear and on the lobes of his sons' right ears and on the thumbs of their right hands and on the big toes of their right feet, and sprinkle the rest of the blood around on the altar. 21 "Then you shall take some of the blood that is on the altar and some of the anointing oil, and sprinkle it on Aaron and on his garments, and on his sons and on his sons' garments with him; so he and his garments shall be consecrated, as well as his sons and his sons' garments with him. 4 Amen* 22 "You shall also take the fat from the ram and the fat tail, and the fat that covers the entrails and the lobe of the liver, and the two kidneys and the fat that is on them and the right thigh (for it is a ram of ordination), 23 and one cake of bread and one cake of bread mixed with oil and one wafer from the basket of unleavened bread which is set before Yahweh; 24 and you shall put all these in the hands of Aaron and in the hands of his sons, and shall wave them as a wave offering before Yahweh. 25 "And you shall take them from their hands, and offer them up in smoke on the altar on the burnt offering for a soothing aroma before Yahweh; it is an offering by fire to Yahweh. 26 "Then you shall take the breast of Aaron's ram of ordination, and wave it as a wave offering before Yahweh; and it shall be your portion. 27 "And you shall consecrate the breast of the wave offering and the thigh of the heave offering which was waved and which was offered from the ram of ordination, from the one which was for Aaron and from the one which was for his sons. 28 "And it shall be for Aaron and his sons as their portion forever from the sons of Israel, for it is a heave offering; and it shall be a heave offering from the sons of Israel from the sacrifices of their peace offerings, even their heave offering to Yahweh.

5 Amen* 29 "And the holy garments of Aaron shall be for his sons after him, that in them they may be anointed and ordained. 30 "For seven days the one of his sons who is priest in his stead shall put them on when he enters the tent of meeting to minister in the holy place. 31 "And you shall take the ram of ordination and boil its flesh in a holy place. 32 "And Aaron and his sons shall eat the flesh of the ram, and the bread that is in the basket, at the doorway of the tent of meeting. 33 "Thus they shall eat those things by which atonement was made at their ordination and consecration; but a layman shall not eat them, because they are holy. 34 "And if any of the flesh of ordination or any of the bread remains until morning, then you shall burn the remainder with fire; it shall not be eaten, because it is holy.

6 Amen* 35 "And thus you shall do to Aaron and to his sons, according to all that I have commanded you; you shall ordain them through seven days. 36 "And each day you shall offer a bull as a sin offering for atonement, and you shall purify the altar when you make atonement for it; and you shall anoint it to consecrate it. 37 "For seven days you shall make atonement for the altar and consecrate it; then the altar shall be most holy, and whatever touches the altar shall be holy. 38 "Now this is what you shall offer on the altar: two one year old lambs each day, continuously. 39 "The one lamb you shall offer in the morning, and the other lamb you shall offer at twilight; 40 and there shall be one-tenth of an ephah of fine flour mixed with one-fourth of a hin of beaten oil, and one-fourth of a hin of wine for a libation with one lamb. 41 "And the other lamb you shall offer at twilight, and shall offer with it the same grain offering as the morning and the same libation, for a soothing aroma, an offering by fire to Yahweh. 42 "It shall be a continual burnt offering throughout your generations at the doorway of the tent of meeting before Yahweh, where I will meet with you, to speak to you there.

7 Amen* 43 "And I will meet there with the sons of Israel, and it shall be consecrated by My glory. 44 "And I will consecrate the tent of meeting and the altar; I will also consecrate Aaron and his sons to minister as priests to Me. 45 "And I will dwell among the sons of Israel and will be their God. 46 "And they shall know that I am Yahweh their God who brought them out of the land of Egypt, that I might dwell among them; I am Yahweh their God.

Isaiah 61:6

1 The Spirit of Yahweh God is upon me, because Yahweh has anointed me to bring good news to the afflicted; He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to captives, and freedom to prisoners; 2 to proclaim the favorable year of Yahweh, and the day of vengeance of our God; to comfort all who mourn, 3 to grant those who mourn in Zion, giving them a garland instead of ashes, the oil of gladness instead of mourning, the mantle of praise instead of a spirit of fainting. So they will be called oaks of righteousness, the planting of Yahweh, that He may be glorified. 4 Then they will rebuild the ancient ruins, they will raise up the former devastations, and they will repair the ruined cities, the desolations of many generations. 5 And strangers will stand and pasture your flocks, and foreigners will be your farmers and your vinedressers. 6 But you will be called the priests of Yahweh; you will be spoken of as ministers of our God. You will eat the wealth of nations, and in their riches you will boast. 7 Instead of your shame you will have a double portion, and instead of humiliation they will shout for joy over their portion. Therefore they will possess a double portion in their land, everlasting joy will be theirs. 8 For I, Yahweh, love justice, I hate robbery in the burnt offering; and I will faithfully give them their recompense, and I will make an everlasting covenant with them. 9 Then their offspring will be known among the nations, and their descendants in the midst of the peoples. All who see them will recognize them because they are the offspring whom Yahweh has blessed.

Psalm 60    For the choir director; according to Shushan Eduth. A Mikhtam of David, to teach; when he struggled with Aram-naharaim and with Aram- zobah, and Joab returned, and smote twelve thousand of Edom in the Valley of Salt.

1 O God, Thou hast rejected us. Thou hast broken us; Thou hast been angry; O, restore us. 2 Thou hast made the land quake, Thou hast split it open; heal its breaches, for it totters. 3 Thou hast made Thy people experience hardship; Thou hast given us wine to drink that makes us stagger. 4 Thou hast given a banner to those who fear Thee, that it may be displayed because of the truth. Selah. 5 That Thy beloved may be delivered, save with Thy right hand, and answer us! 6 God has spoken in His holiness: "I will exult, I will portion out Shechem and measure out the valley of Succoth. 7 "Gilead is Mine, and Manasseh is Mine; Ephraim also is the helmet of My head; Judah is My scepter. 8 "Moab is My washbowl; over Edom I shall throw My shoe; shout loud, O Philistia, because of Me!" 9 Who will bring me into the besieged city? Who will lead me to Edom? 10 Hast not Thou Thyself, O God, rejected us? And wilt Thou not go forth with our armies, O God? 11 O give us help against the adversary, for deliverance by man is in vain. 12 Through God we shall do valiantly, and it is He who will tread down our adversaries.

1 Peter 2:1-25

1 Therefore, putting aside all malice and all guile and hypocrisy and envy and all slander, 2 like newborn babes, long for the pure milk of the word, that by it you may grow in respect to salvation, 3 if you have tasted the kindness of the Lord. 4 And coming to Him as to a living stone, rejected by men, but choice and precious in the sight of God, 5 you also, as living stones, are being built up as a spiritual house for a holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ. 6 For this is contained in Scripture: "Behold I lay in Zion a choice stone, a precious corner stone, and he who believes in Him shall not be disappointed." 7 This precious value, then, is for you who believe. But for those who disbelieve, "The stone which the builders rejected, This became the very corner stone," 8 and, "A stone of stumbling and a rock of offense"; for they stumble because they are disobedient to the word, and to this doom they were also appointed. 9 But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for God's own possession, that you may proclaim the excellencies of Him who has called you out of darkness into His marvelous light; 10 for you once were not a people, but now you are the people of God; you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy. 11 Beloved, I urge you as aliens and strangers to abstain from fleshly lusts, which wage war against the soul. 12 Keep your behavior excellent among the Gentiles, so that in the thing in which they slander you as evildoers, they may on account of your good deeds, as they observe them, glorify God in the day of visitation. 13 Submit yourselves for the Lord's sake to every human institution, whether to a king as the one in authority, 14 or to governors as sent by him for the punishment of evildoers and the praise of those who do right. 15 For such is the will of God that by doing right you may silence the ignorance of foolish men. 16 Act as free men, and do not use your freedom as a covering for evil, but use it as bondslaves of God. 17 Honor all men; love the brotherhood, fear God, honor the king. 18 Servants, be submissive to your masters with all respect, not only to those who are good and gentle, but also to those who are unreasonable. 19 For this finds favor, if for the sake of conscience toward God a man bears up under sorrows when suffering unjustly. 20 For what credit is there if, when you sin and are harshly treated, you endure it with patience? But if when you do what is right and suffer for it you patiently endure it, this finds favor with God. 21 For you have been called for this purpose, since Christ also suffered for you, leaving you an example for you to follow in His steps, 22 who committed no sin, nor was any deceit found in His mouth; 23 and while being reviled, He did not revile in return; while suffering, He uttered no threats, but kept entrusting Himself to Him who judges righteously; 24 and He Himself bore our sins in His body on the cross, that we might die to sin and live to righteousness; for by His wounds you were healed. 25 For you were continually straying like sheep, but now you have returned to the Shepherd and Guardian of your souls.


(1 Peter 1:1-5) Peter, an apostle of Yeshua the Messiah, to those who reside as aliens, scattered throughout Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia, who are chosen according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, by the sanctifying work of the Spirit, that you may obey Yeshua the Messiah and be sprinkled with His blood: may grace and peace be yours in fullest measure. Blessed be Yahweh, the Father of our Lord Yeshua the Messiah, who according to His great mercy has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Yeshua the Messiah from the dead, to obtain an inheritance which is imperishable and undefiled and will not fade away, reserved in heaven for you, who are protected by the power of God through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.

“Priest” is not a title of exaltation; it’s a position of responsibility.

God first established the priesthood of the firstborn: when a firstborn failed to perform, God replaced him with another. Cain was a firstborn, but because of his sin, the office was given to Seth. Reuben was a firstborn, but because of his sin, the office was given to Joseph.

In time God said, (Numbers 3:12) “Now, behold, I have taken the Levites from among the sons of Israel instead of every first-born . . . So the Levites shall be Mine.” In today’s portion (v.9), God further states, “they shall have the priesthood by a perpetual hukah / statute” (third category commandment). This Levitical Priesthood had / will have its function in the Tabernacle in the Wilderness, and the Holy Temple in Jerusalem.

We know that Yeshua came as a Priest according to the original order of the firstborn – the Malchi-tzedek priesthood; He was of the Tribe of Judah, not Levi. He is the ultimate High-priest that the others typify. This does not automatically abolish the office of Levitical Priest in the Temple. Levitical Priests have a responsibility to portray Yeshua to the people (partly through animal offerings). When, 1932 years ago, they had grossly failed in their duty, the Temple was destroyed: this was not the first time, and it was not forever. (Solomon’s Temple was destroyed and offerings ceased; Herod’s Temple was destroyed and offerings ceased: Ezekiel’s Temple will have animal offerings restored because that is appointed by God.)

In every family, there is to be a priest of the family – preferably the firstborn. This is not a Temple position, but a family position of responsibility. Peter tells us that this applies as well to believing gentiles.

As patriarch of the family (it’s still hard for me to feel that old), I have the primary responsibility to act as priest for the family; I take this as a grave responsibility, not something to show off how exalted I am. It doesn’t make me any more worthy than anyone else, and it’s no basis for a title.

(V. 1) A Levite, to be ordained as priest, must first show that his own atonements are through Yeshua. Laying their hands on the bull implies confession of sins and need of atonement – the bull representing Yeshua.

(V. 2) Three kinds of unleavened loaves were brought: unleavened breads were made with twice as much oil as unleavened loaves, and unleavened wafers were made without oil. This is seen to signify that the priests were to be satisfied with being servants of God, regardless of their degree of personal wealth.

(V. 4) Then the candidate must be “baptized” – immersed in a mikvah.

(V. 6) The Crown of Sanctity refers to the head-plate inscribed with Kodesh l’Yahweh / Holy to Yahweh.

(V. 7) Anointing  was performed (making the candidate Messiah Priest) by pouring specially perfumed olive oil upon his head.

(V. 20) Through the ear is hearing and understanding. Through the hands are actions of faith. Through the feet one follows God.

(V. 40) Every elevation offering, and every peace offering, is accompanied by unleavened wheat-oil bread. This bread is completely burned upon the Altar. Also, wine is poured onto the Altar. (Elevation offerings go up in smoke, making a pleasing aroma to God.)

Sabbath Sixteen (June 29, 2002)

Shemot (Names): V’ashit mizbe'ach (You shall make an altar), commonly called Exodus 30:1-10 

And you shall make an altar to burn incense upon: of shittim wood shall you make it. A cubit shall be the length thereof, and a cubit the breadth thereof; foursquare shall it be: and two cubits shall be the height thereof: the horns thereof shall be of the same. And you shall overlay it with pure gold, the top thereof, and the sides thereof round about, and the horns thereof; and you shall make for it a crown of gold round about. And two golden rings shall you make to it under the crown of it, by the two corners thereof, upon the two sides of it shall you make it; and they shall be for places for the staves to bear it withal. And you shall make the staves of shittim wood, and overlay them with gold.
And you shall put it before the veil that is by the ark of the testimony, before the mercy seat that is over the testimony, where I will meet with you. And Aaron shall burn thereon sweet incense every morning: when he dresses the lamps, he shall burn incense upon it. And when Aaron lights the lamps at even, he shall burn incense upon it, a perpetual incense before Yahweh throughout your generations. You shall offer no strange incense thereon, nor burnt sacrifice, nor grain offering; neither shall you pour drink offering thereon. And Aaron shall make an atonement upon the horns of it once in a year with the blood of the sin offering of atonements: once in the year shall he make atonement upon it throughout your generations:
it is most holy to Yahweh.

This altar is called the Golden Altar, the Incense Altar, and the Inner Altar (in contrast to the Brazen Altar for sacrifice in the outer court). It was located in the Holy Place, in front of the center of the veil, where the the poles of the Ark of the Covenant protruded from the other side. It was about 20" (1 cubit) square and 40" (2 cubits) tall, with four extensions on its upper corners and two carrying poles through support rings.


Incense was to be burned on this Golden Altar every morning when ashes of the wicks were cleaned from the menorah, and every evening when flames were made to ascend from the menorah. Perpetual or continual means every day regularly, but not all day.


The incense required a special formula, which was not to be made for any other purpose. Incense of any other formula, or for any other purpose (such as freewill offering), was called "strange fire."


Each year on the Day of the Atonements (Yom haKippurim), blood from the Goat for Yahweh (the elevation offering burned on the Outer Altar) was to be sprinkled on this Inner Altar. The High Priest walked to the right of the Incense Altar to enter the Holy of Holies once a year.

Malachi 1:11 - 2:7
For from the rising of the sun even to the going down of the same My Name shall be great among the Gentiles; and in every place incense shall be offered to My Name, and a pure offering: for My Name shall be great among the heathen, says Yahweh of hosts. But you have profaned it, in that you say, “The table of Yahweh is polluted; and the fruit thereof, even his meat, is contemptible.” You said also, “Behold, what a weariness is it!” And you have snuffed at it, says Yahweh of hosts; and you brought that which was torn, and the lame, and the sick; thus you brought an offering: should I accept this of your hand? says Yahweh. But cursed be the deceiver, who has in his flock a male, and vows, and sacrifices to Yahweh a corrupt thing: for I am a great King, says Yahweh of hosts, and My Name is dreadful among the heathen. And now, O you priests, this commandment is for you. If you will not hear, and if you will not lay it to heart, to give glory to My Name, says Yahweh of hosts, I will even send a curse upon you, and I will curse your blessings: yea, I have cursed them already, because you do not lay it to heart. Behold, I will corrupt your seed, and spread dung upon your faces, even the dung of your solemn feasts; and one shall take you away with it. And you shall know that I have sent this commandment to you, that my covenant might be with Levi, says Yahweh of hosts. My covenant was with him of life and peace; and I gave them to him for the fear wherewith he feared Me, and was afraid before My Name. The law of truth was in his mouth, and iniquity was not found in his lips: he walked with Me in peace and equity, and did turn many away from iniquity. For the priest's lips should keep knowledge, and they should seek the law at his mouth: for he is the messenger of Yahweh of hosts.

From this prophet we learn that incense offerings to Yahweh relate to the world beyond Israel.

Psalm 61
Hear my cry, O God; attend to my prayer.
From the end of the earth will I cry to You, when my heart is overwhelmed: lead me to the rock that is higher than I. For You have been a shelter for me, and a strong tower from the enemy. I will abide in Your tabernacle for ever: I will trust in the covert of Your wings. Selah. For You, O God, have heard my vows: You have given me the heritage of those that fear Your Name. You will prolong the king's life: and his years as many generations. He shall abide before God forever: O prepare mercy and truth, which may preserve him. So will I sing praise to Your Name forever, that I may daily perform my vows.

From Psalm 61 being tied to this week's Torah portion we find that prayer is related to the Incense Altar. We also find them relating to defense against sin and dwelling forever in God's tabernacle. Praising the Name of Yahweh forever (last verse) is a part of praying without ceasing (I Thessalonians 5:17).

Luke 1:5-25
here was in the days of Herod, the king of Judaea, a certain priest named Zachariah, of the course of Abia: and his wife was of the daughters of Aaron, and her name was Elisabeth. And they were both righteous before God, walking in all the commandments and ordinances of the Lord blameless. And they had no child, because that Elisabeth was barren, and they both were now well stricken in years. And it came to pass, that while he executed the priest's office before God in the order of his course, According to the custom of the priest's office, his lot was to burn incense when he went into the Temple of Yahweh. And the whole multitude of the people were praying without at the time of incense. And there appeared to him an angel of the Lord standing on the right side of the altar of incense.  And when Zachariah saw him, he was troubled, and fear fell upon him. But the angel said unto him, Fear not, Zachariah: for your prayer is heard; and your wife Elisabeth shall bear you a son, and you shall call his name John. And you shall have joy and gladness; and many shall rejoice at his birth. For he shall be great in the sight of the Lord, and shall drink neither wine nor strong drink; and he shall be filled with the Holy Spirit, even from his mother's womb. And many of the children of Israel shall he turn to the Lord their God. And he shall go before him in the spirit and power of Elias, to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the disobedient to the wisdom of the just; to make ready a people prepared for the Lord. And Zachariah said to the angel, Whereby shall I know this? for I am an old man, and my wife well stricken in years. And the angel answering said unto him, I am Gabriel, that stand in the presence of God; and am sent to speak to you, and to show you these glad tidings. And, behold, you shall be dumb, and not able to speak, until the day that these things shall be performed, because you believe not my words, which shall be fulfilled in their season. And the people waited for Zachariah, and marvelled that he tarried so long in the temple. And when he came out, he could not speak to them: and they perceived that he had seen a vision in the temple: for he beckoned to them, and remained speechless. And it came to pass, that, as soon as the days of his ministration were accomplished, he departed to his own house. And after those days his wife Elisabeth conceived, and hid herself five months, saying, Thus has the Lord dealt with me in the days wherein he looked on me, to take away my reproach among men.

Being of the course of Abia shows that Zachariah was serving the week following the Feast of  the Firstfruits (Pentecost), the tenth week of the Festival Year (the eight courses of I Chronicles 24:1-10 begin with the first sabbath of Nisan, and two weeks are added for festivals when all priests served).


Even if Zachariah did not recognize the man as an Angel, he might be fearful of seeing someone at the (right side of the Altar) entrance to the Holy of Holies -- where entering would bring a man immediate death. And only a properly prepared priest could enter even the Holy Place where Zachariah was. If he did recognize the man as an Angel, why would he be so doubtful of an Angel's words?


Note that the multitude outside was praying while Zachariah was at the Incense Altar.

Revelation 8:3-4 & 14:11
And another angel came and stood at the altar, having a golden censer; and there was given unto him much incense, that he should offer it with the prayers of all saints upon the golden altar which was before the throne. And the smoke of the incense, which came with the prayers of the saints, ascended up before God out of the angel's hand.

And the smoke of their torment ascends up for ever and ever: and they have no rest day nor night, who worship the beast and his image, and whosoever receives the mark of his name.

In seeking the symbolism of offering incense on the Golden Altar, it may be clearly seen from these passages that it is related to the prayers of God's people. The word for "perpetual" or "continual" incense offerings is the same as the word for prayer "without ceasing," which means to pray at all the appointed times -- evening, morning, and noon (Psalm 55:17 and Daniel 6:13-16; remember that the Biblical day begins with evening).


Two types of elevation offerings are noted. Animal sacrifices are burned at the Brasen Altar in the Outer Court: their aroma ascends to the heavens. Incense offerings are burned on the Golden Altar in the enclosed Inner Court: their sweet aroma also ascends to the heavens. The former is the aroma of the sin sacrifice, representing Yeshua's crucifixion, without which one's own torment will be as smoke ascending forever. The latter is the sweet aroma of prayers of those who bear His Name -- His saints.


"And you shall make an altar to burn incense upon" is seen as instruction to establish a place for regular prayer -- every day at the appointed times in the appointed manner -- no strange fire. (The Shemoneh Esrei and the Disciples Prayer of Matthew 6:9-13 teach the appointed manner.)


And as usual, we see that the spiritual (prayer) and the physical (incense) counterparts are seen together -- not one or the other, not one without the other -- both are commanded, both were done together at the Tabernacle in the wilderness and in the Holy Temple at Jerusalem.


We often consider the Commandments of God: how we are to love Yahweh with all of our heart, soul, mind, and strength; and love our neighbor as our self. But Yeshua gave us a “new” commandment – a concept bringing the second commandment to a new level: from loving our neighbor as our self, to loving one another as He loved us!

Consider: we might pray for physical prosperity for our neighbor, as we would like for our self. But we should pray for spiritual prosperity for one another, as Yeshua prayed for us. It often seem easier to desire natural things, than to desire spiritual growth – which can mean we have to change our habits, to repent.

What if every time we realized that we had sought our own will instead of God’s, we had to bring an animal offering?  We are supposed to do what that represents – confess to God and change our habits!

Sabbath Seventeen (July 6, 2002)

Shemot (Names): Ki Tissa (When you take a census), commonly called Exodus 30:11-38

The Census

1 Amen* 11 Yahweh also spoke to Moses, saying, 12 "When you take a census of the sons of Israel to number them, then each one of them shall give a ransom for himself to Yahweh, when you number them, that there may be no plague among them when you number them. 13 "This is what everyone who is numbered shall give: half a shekel according to the shekel of the sanctuary (the shekel is twenty gerahs), half a shekel as a contribution to Yahweh. 14 "Everyone who is numbered, from twenty years old and over, shall give the contribution to Yahweh.

2 Amen* 15 "The rich shall not pay more, and the poor shall not pay less than the half shekel, when you give the contribution to Yahweh to make atonement for yourselves. 16 "And you shall take the atonement money from the sons of Israel, and shall give it for the service of the tent of meeting, that it may be a memorial for the sons of Israel before Yahweh, to make atonement for yourselves."

The Laver

3 Amen* 17 And Yahweh spoke to Moses, saying, 18 "You shall also make a laver of bronze, with its base of bronze, for washing; and you shall put it between the tent of meeting and the altar, and you shall put water in it. 19 "And Aaron and his sons shall wash their hands and their feet from it; 20 when they enter the tent of meeting, they shall wash with water, that they may not die; or when they approach the altar to minister, by offering up in smoke a fire sacrifice to Yahweh. 21 "So they shall wash their hands and their feet, that they may not die; and it shall be a perpetual statute for them, for Aaron and his descendants throughout their generations."

Anointing oil

4 Amen* 22 Moreover, Yahweh spoke to Moses, saying, 23 "Take also for yourself the finest of spices: of flowing myrrh five hundred shekels, and of fragrant cinnamon half as much, two hundred and fifty, and of fragrant cane two hundred and fifty, 24 and of cassia five hundred, according to the shekel of the sanctuary, and of olive oil a hin. 25 "And you shall make of these a holy anointing oil, a perfume mixture, the work of a perfumer; it shall be a holy anointing oil.

5 Amen* 26 "And with it you shall anoint the tent of meeting and the ark of the testimony, 27 and the table and all its utensils, and the lampstand and its utensils, and the altar of incense, 28 and the altar of burnt offering and all its utensils, and the laver and its stand. 29 "You shall also consecrate them, that they may be most holy; whatever touches them shall be holy.

6 Amen* 30 "And you shall anoint Aaron and his sons, and consecrate them, that they may minister as priests to Me. 31 "And you shall speak to the sons of Israel, saying, 'This shall be a holy anointing oil to Me throughout your generations. 32 'It shall not be poured on anyone's body, nor shall you make any like it, in the same proportions; it is holy, and it shall be holy to you. 33 'Whoever shall mix any like it, or whoever puts any of it on a layman, shall be cut off from his people.'"


7 Amen* 34 Then Yahweh said to Moses, "Take for yourself spices, stacte and onycha and galbanum, spices with pure frankincense; there shall be an equal part of each. 35 "And with it you shall make incense, a perfume, the work of a perfumer, salted, pure, and holy. 36 "And you shall beat some of it very fine, and put part of it before the testimony in the tent of meeting, where I shall meet with you; it shall be most holy to you. 37 "And the incense which you shall make, you shall not make in the same proportions for yourselves; it shall be holy to you for Yahweh. 38 "Whoever shall make any like it, to use as perfume, shall be cut off from his people."

2 Kings 12:5

4 Then Jehoash said to the priests, "All the money of the sacred things which is brought into the house of Yahweh, in current money, both the money of each man's assessment and all the money which any man's heart prompts him to bring into the house of Yahweh, 5 let the priests take it for themselves, each from his acquaintance; and they shall repair the damages of the house wherever any damage may be found. 6 But it came about that in the twenty-third year of King Jehoash the priests had not repaired the damages of the house. 7 Then King Jehoash called for Jehoiada the priest, and for the other priests and said to them, "Why do you not repair the damages of the house? Now therefore take no more money from your acquaintances, but pay it for the damages of the house." 8 So the priests agreed that they should take no more money from the people, nor repair the damages of the house.

Psalm 62    For the choir director; according to Jeduthun. A Psalm of David.

1 My soul waits in silence for God only; from Him is my salvation. 2 He only is my rock and my salvation, my stronghold; I shall not be greatly shaken. 3 How long will you assail a man, that you may murder him, all of you, like a leaning wall, like a tottering fence? 4 They have counseled only to thrust him down from his high position; they delight in falsehood; they bless with their mouth, but inwardly they curse. Selah. 5 My soul, wait in silence for God only, for my hope is from Him. 6 He only is my rock and my salvation, my stronghold; I shall not be shaken. 7 On God my salvation and my glory rest; the rock of my strength, my refuge is in God. 8 Trust in Him at all times, O people; pour out your heart before Him; God is a refuge for us. Selah. 9 Men of low degree are only vanity, and men of rank are a lie; in the balances they go up; they are together lighter than breath. 10 Do not trust in oppression, and do not vainly hope in robbery; if riches increase, do not set your heart upon them. 11 Once God has spoken; twice I have heard this: that power belongs to God; 12 and lovingkindness is Thine, O Lord, for Thou dost recompense a man according to his work.

(Note: This Psalm uses only Elohim and Adonai.)

Romans 5:10-11

1 Therefore having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Yeshua the Messiah, 2 through whom also we have obtained our introduction by faith into this grace in which we stand; and we exult in hope of the glory of God. 3 And not only this, but we also exult in our tribulations, knowing that tribulation brings about perseverance; 4 and perseverance, proven character; and proven character, hope; 5 and hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out within our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us. 6 For while we were still helpless, at the right time Messiah died for the ungodly. 7 For one will hardly die for a righteous man; though perhaps for the good man someone would dare even to die. 8 But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Messiah died for us. 9 Much more then, having now been justified by His blood, we shall be saved from the wrath of God through Him. 10 For if while we were enemies, we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son, much more, having been reconciled, we shall be saved by His life. 11 And not only this, but we also exult in God through our Lord Yeshua the Messiah, through whom we have now received the reconciliation. 12 Therefore, just as through one man sin entered into the world, and death through sin, and so death spread to all men, because all sinned-- 13 for until the Law sin was in the world; but sin is not imputed when there is no law. 14 Nevertheless death reigned from Adam until Moses, even over those who had not sinned in the likeness of the offense of Adam, who is a type of Him who was to come. 15 But the free gift is not like the transgression. For if by the transgression of the one the many died, much more did the grace of God and the gift by the grace of the one Man, Yeshua the Messiah, abound to the many. 16 And the gift is not like that which came through the one who sinned; for on the one hand the judgment arose from one transgression resulting in condemnation, but on the other hand the free gift arose from many transgressions resulting in justification. 17 For if by the transgression of the one, death reigned through the one, much more those who receive the abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness will reign in life through the One, Yeshua the Messiah. 18 So then as through one transgression there resulted condemnation to all men, even so through one act of righteousness there resulted justification of life to all men. 19 For as through the one man's disobedience the many were made sinners, even so through the obedience of the One the many will be made righteous. 20 And the Law came in that the transgression might increase; but where sin increased, grace abounded all the more, 21 that, as sin reigned in death, even so grace might reign through righteousness to eternal life through Yeshua the Messiah our Lord.


The Census

Three portions (terumot):

(V.13) This they shall give – a half shekel as a portion to Yahweh.

(V.14) Everyone . . . shall give the portion of Yahweh.

(V.15) . . . give the portion of Yahweh.

(V.11) [Pass around half-shekel for everyone to see.]

Census taking was allowed only by counting the required offering, not by head-count. Thus, only the faithful (over twenty years old) were counted – those who contributed their portion.

Everyone was to have an equal part in providing for the Tabernacle / Holy Temple. The rich and poor were to give the same “portion”. This may have a spiritual significance: we all are under the same requirement to provide place in our hearts for God – and time dedicated for worship and devotion.

The Laver

(V.17) Bronze Laver. (Photo from Temple Institute)

Washing at the bronze laver was for sanctity, not physical cleanliness. Picture this: because of the Hebrew wording, that the hands were to be washed together with the feet, the priests would wash the right hand and right foot together, then the left hand and left foot together. They were required to portray holiness in their walk and actions in dealing with holy things, and they were required to portray holiness in their walk and actions when dealing with evil. This is a picture of Messiah Yeshua, and we should follow in holiness.

The laver is the basis for the rabbinic institution of washing the hands before prayer: we should have sin confessed and be dedicated to God to properly pray (James 5:16, 1 John 1:9).

“20 when they enter the tent of meeting, they shall wash with water, that they may not die; or when they approach the altar to minister, by offering up in smoke a fire sacrifice to Yahweh.”

If it were said that they would “die if they did not wash”, that would imply immediate death; but “washing so that they do not die” implies eventual death for the cause.

Anointing oil

(V.22) [Hold up bottle with hin of olive oil.]

For anointing, more than a gallon of olive oil was prepared by Moses, with the addition of myrrh and cinnamon and other fragrant spices.

This is called the oil of holy anointment. Olive oil does not mix with other liquids: it symbolizes separation – being holy / separated unto God.

It was to be used to consecrate the vessels of the Tabernacle / Temple. These vessels were of such a degree of sanctity that whatever touched them became holy. This does not refer to things that should not be placed in the vessels and could not attain holiness, but to their normal contents, such as oil or flour for offerings. Thus we are instructed to respect things that are consecrated for God’s service – things that God has instituted, not idolatrous things.

The anointing oil was used to consecrate the sons of Aaron, Kings of Israel, and High Priests. It is taught (in Orthodox circles) that Moses made the only batch, and that its remainder will be found only when Messiah comes.


(V.34) Golden censor and golden incense altar. (Photos from Temple Institute)

[Pass around frankincense for everyone to smell.]

The previous Torah lesson dealt with prayer and the incense altar.

2 Kings

Joash was anointed with the special oil (2 Kings 11:12). He became King of Israel at seven years of age, and did what was pleasing in Yahweh’s sight (2 Kings 11:21-12:1). He had the “portions” brought in to repair the Temple.

Psalm 62 teaches against setting our hearts upon money; doing so is causative of dishonesty and oppression. (As James expounds, the love of money is the root of all kinds of evil.) We are to rely completely upon Elohim (the Judge of creation), Who will recompense every man according to his actions. We are to seek holiness, not riches. With this attitude, we will gladly provide the required portions (terumot) and freewill offerings for building and maintaining God’s sanctuary.

Money is like fire: either can be beneficial or destructive, depending upon how it is used. Ultimately, either can be beneficial or destructive to our eternal reward.

Romans 5

Perceiving ourselves as recipients of Yeshua’s righteousness.

Exodus 30:16 says “to make atonement for yourselves.” Romans 5:11 says that through Yeshua “we have now received the atonement.” Paul makes a well-thought-out explanation.

We have been justified by Yeshua through faith.

Through Adam, we all became subject to death – death for sin, even those who don’t commit the same sin as Adam, even those who had no law to instruct them otherwise. Thia is not teaching “Adamic sin – sin that is imputed to us from Adam, it is teaching that we all have inherited a sinful nature, and act contrary to glorifying God: we miss the mark.

Though Adam is a forerunner to Messiah Yeshua, there is a difference. Through Yeshua’s righteousness, we are accounted as righteous – that is the second atonement, the first being our sin accounted to Yeshua, who suffered for it.

Now, we are to grow in grace, and live in holiness.

It may be difficult for us, knowing that we are sinful beyond even our understanding, to view ourselves as righteous. But we should understand that God calls us the righteous, and we should live accordingly, displaying holiness, even as the priests were to do by cleansing at the laver.

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