SHEMOTH (EXODUS) 10:1 – 13:16 BO – COME IN

The name of this Torah portion is called ‘Bo’ which means, come in as it comes from the root word בּוֹא bo – Strong’s H935 which means, to come in, go in, bring in, enter, to cause to come in, to bring near.

Mosheh was once again told to ‘go in’ to Pharaoh and demand that he let Yisra’ĕl go!

As we continue to look at the account of the exodus of Yisra’ĕl from Mitsrayim, we are able to learn and are clearly reminded that these events are not only historical but are, at the same time, also very prophetic in nature as it brings us clearer pictures of the soon return of our Messiah and how we too are to be an obedient and diligent people who are set-apart and walk in the Master’s ways. When we learn the Torah and understand ‘Mosheh’ then we will be better equipped to know the True Living Torah, יהושע Messiah, and not be found clueless as to the times and be strengthened to find their refuge in Him, not being afraid of the events that will precede His coming, but rather be equipped in true obedience and the much needed endurance of guarding His Torah!

As one studies Ḥazon/Revelation then one gets a reflection of that which took place in Shemoth/Exodus, in the events that led up to Yisra’ĕl being ransomed, delivered and set free from bondage; and we are able to see how these events foreshadow, once again, the wrath of Elohim that will be poured out upon those who receive the mark of the beast and worship his image! In this section we will see that The Pěsaḥ/Passover and the Feast of Matzot/Unleavened Bread will be the sign upon our hands and between the frontlets of our eyes. Let us first continue to look at the plagues following on from the last Torah portion.

PLAGUE 8 – LOCUSTS (10:1-20)

Verse 1יהוה once again instructs Mosheh to ‘go in’ and present himself to Pharaoh, while reminding him that He had once again hardened Pharaoh’s heart! Despite the heart of Pharaoh being hardened Mosheh needed to be steadfast in his courage to do as יהוה had instructed, for יהוה was with him!

Repentance was no longer available to Pharaoh, as יהוה had strengthened Pharaoh’s heart to not listen after the plague of boils and was now hardening Pharaoh’s heart.

The Hebrew root word that is used here for ‘hardened’ is כָּבַד kaḇaḏ - Strong’s H3513 which means, heavy, weighty, burdensome, honour and is a word that is often used to translate the esteemed praise that is given to יהוה, however here it is written in the ‘hifil’ verb tense, which represents the ‘causative action’ as we see that it was יהוה who was causing Pharaoh’s heart to be hardened and therefore in the hifil verb tense it can render the meaning of, to make heavy, to make dull, to make unresponsive! יהוה was making the heart of Pharaoh dull and unresponsive to hearing the Truth, as he had continually hardened his own heart and יהוה was causing his heart, as well as the heart of all Pharaoh’s servants, to be hardened in order to reveal His great power through the signs that would continue to follow the previous ones that had already been done and had brought much destruction!

There comes a time when repentance is no longer available – a sobering realisation that should cause us to be faithful in proclaiming righteousness to a lost and hardened people – who knows they may just turn and repent!

Romiyim/Romans 9:17-21 “For the Scripture says to Pharaoh, “For this same purpose I have raised you up, to show My power in you, and that My Name be declared in all the earth.” 18 So, then, He favours whom He wishes, and He hardens whom He wishes. 19 Then you shall say to me, “Why does He still find fault? For who has resisted His counsel?” 20 But who are you, O man, to talk back to Elohim? Shall that which is formed say to him who formed it, “Why have you made me like this?” 21 Does not the potter have authority over the clay, from the same lump to make one vessel for value and another not for value?

Many often misunderstand this text and claim that if יהוה hardens whoever He wishes then He is not being fair and who then can stand any chance. What we must take note of is that יהוה is a just and righteous Elohim and he looks at the heart while man looks at the eyes, as we are reminded of this in:

Shemu’ĕl Aleph/1 Samuel 16:7But יהוה said to Shemu’ĕl, “Do not look at his appearance or at the height of his stature, because I have refused him, for not as man sees, for man looks at the eyes, but יהוה looks at the heart.

These were the words that יהוה spoke to Shemu’ĕl when he was told to go and anoint the sovereign that יהוה had chosen (Dawiḏ).

Many, who have typically hardened their hearts to hearing the Word of Truth, erroneously deem יהוה to be unfair, yet fail to recognise that He is a righteous Judge, who judges the hearts of man!

As we consider this we can be reminded of the clear words that were spoken to a disobedient and hard hearted Yisra’ĕl, in:

Yeḥezqěl/Ezekiel 33:17-20And the children of your people have said, ‘The way of יהוה is not fair.’ But it is their way which is not fair! 18 “When the righteous turns from his righteousness and does unrighteousness, he shall die because of it. 19 “But when the wrong turns from his wrongness and does right and righteousness, he shall live because of it. 20 “And you have said, ‘The way of יהוה is not fair.’ O house of Yisra’ĕl, I shall judge every one of you according to his own ways.

We would do well to learn from this – as we are not to harden our hearts when we ‘hear’ the voice of יהוה, but rather have our ears opened to HEAR (שָׁמַע shama), GUARD (שָׁמַר shamar) and DO (עָשָׂה asah) His Good Word!

No matter where you have come from, if you draw near to יהוה, He will draw near to you and as you cleanse yourself from all unrighteousness by walking in His instructions then He can use you for great things unto the esteem of His Name:

Timotiyos Bět/ 2 Timothy 2:19-21However, the solid foundation of Elohim stands firm, having this seal, “יהוה knows those who are His,” and, “Let everyone who names the Name of Messiah turn away from unrighteous-ness.” 20 But in a large house there are not only vessels of gold and silver, but also of wood and clay, some unto value and some unto no value. 21 If, then, anyone cleanses himself from these matters, he shall be a vessel unto value, having been set apart, of good use to the Master, having been prepared for every good work.

Tehillah/Psalm 95:7-8 “For He is our Elohim, and we are the people of His pasture, and the sheep of His hand. Today, if you would hear His voice: 8 “Do not harden your hearts as in Meriḇah, and as in the day of Massah in the wilderness

Tas’loniqim Bět/2Thessalonians 2:9-12The coming of the lawless one is according to the working of Satan, with all power and signs and wonders of falsehood, 10 and with all deceit of unrighteousness in those perishing, because they did not receive the love of the truth, in order for them to be saved. 11 And for this reason Elohim sends them a working of delusion, for them to believe the falsehood, 12 in order that all should be judged who did not believe the truth, but have delighted in the unrighteousness.

There comes a time when there is a ‘point of no entry’, so to speak! Some of the Yisra’ĕlites who refused to heed the call to be gathered in Goshen and stubbornly held fast to Pharaoh and his regime of enslavement would also have their hearts hardened, just as Pharaoh’s was by יהוה.

So many people today are sadly refusing to let go of and ‘come out’ of ‘Mitsrayim’ (worldly ways and traditions that feed the flesh) and/or ‘Baḇelon’ (religious traditions and systems of man-made worship) – be it for fear of man, or by stubbornly believing that the ‘church system’ that they were born into is not wrong and will therefore be consistently stubborn and hard hearted in not being willing to change, as they hold fast to the traditions of men that cause one to forsake the commands of Elohim, despite the reality of them being born into inherited lies being very clearly presented to them through the Truth of His Word!

Some will hold fast to the twisted and false beliefs of people that they know well and who also refuse to come out and be set-apart! So many will remain loyal to ear tickling doctrines and traditions of man, rather than take the necessary time to earnestly look at the truth of the Word of יהוה, without all the added theologies of man; and this will sadly be the downfall of many who have been handed over to the delusion due to a lack of the proper love for Elohim, in the Day of יהוה’s wrath!

Verse 2 – we are to recount the story of the exodus and the plagues that יהוה sent from generation to generation so that they know who the Great I AM is, and we are to speak His Word to our son’s and our son’s sons till it penetrates their hearts to know יהוה! We do well to learn from both those who oppose יהוה, as well as those who obey Him – may we learn and too find ourselves being obedient!

We are to relate/tell of these events in the hearing of our children!

The Hebrew word used here for ‘hearing’ is the word אֹזֶן ozen – Strong’s H241 which means, an ear, hear, attentive, closely, recite, reveal and comes from the root verb אָזַן azan – Strong’s H238 which means, to give, ear, listen, pay attention, perceived by ear, and while this also carries the meaning to listen and listen attentively, it literally means to ‘cup the ear’ – in other words give your complete attention and be obedient to take it all in.

We are to relate these events in the hearing of our children and this emphasises how important it is to train up our children to have ears that hear attentively!!!

The Hebrew word that is translated as ‘relate’ is תְּסַפֵּר tesapper – which comes the root word סָפַר saphar – Strong’s H5608 – meaning, ‘to score, mark as a tally, record, inscribe, recount, celebrate, commune. This root word is also translated as ‘count’ in our instruction to count 50 days to Shaḇuoth!

The root word סָפַר saphar – Strong’s H5608 is used 161 times in the Tanak (O.T), also being translated into English as, ‘tell, told, number, tell me, declared, numbering’.

This word סָפַר saphar – Strong’s H5608 is the denominative root verb of the word סֵפֶר sepher – Strong’s H5612 which means, a missive, document, writing, book, scroll, letters, and is used to describe the Book of the Torah!

As we consider the clear importance of the commanded ‘counting period to 50’ from Matzot to Shabuoth we recognise how this is a great season that teaches us to continually be a ‘counting people’ who daily ‘count the cost’ of following our Master and Redeemer, יהושע Messiah. And to be faithful in being a ‘counting people’, we need to realise that we cannot do this without the Word of Elohim – as we are to meditate on His Torah day and night and allow this סֵפֶר sepher or Book of the Torah to lead us each and every day, relating it to our children too:

Yehoshua/Joshua 1:8 “Do not let this Book of the Torah depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night, so that you guard to do according to all that is written in it. For then you shall make your way prosperous, and act wisely.

If we do not count we cannot be cleansed! To count means to reflect on where we are and repent of our sin.

The word סָפַר  saphar (spelt from right to left is with a סָ - samek, פַ - pey, ר – resh).

Now when we see these symbols as written in the ancient script we get a wonderful picture of what true cleansing entails when we ‘count’:

THE ANCIENT FORM OF WRITING THE WORD “COUNT/RELATE/TELL” – SAPHAR!

 reshpeysamek

Samek - סָ:

The ancient script has this letter pictured as samek, which is a thorn and has the meanings of ‘pierce and sharp’ and can also carry the meaning of ‘a shield’, as thorn bushes were used by shepherds to build a wall to enclose their flock in the night against the attack of predators. Another meaning would be ‘to grab hold of’ as a thorn is a seed that clings to hair and clothing.

The Word of Elohim is sharper than a doubled edged sword and when we find that we do not grab hold of His Word and allow His Word to be our shield of faith, we may find ourselves being pierced through with sin and compromise! Our praise we have for our Master is that in Him we are upheld forever, for He is the shield of our Help, as He Himself took the crown of thorns upon His head, bearing our sin and shame that we may be found to be shielded in Him! It can also give a meaning of ‘turning’, for it is the thorn that turns us away from danger to that which is secure.

 

Pey – פָּ:

This is the letter ‘pey’, which is pictured as pey, which is an ‘open mouth’ and carries the meaning of ‘speak and blow’, from the functions of the mouth, and can have the meaning of ‘scatter’ by blowing. It can also mean sword or beard as in things with edges, as well as a region in depicting a place with edges or boundaries. It also can represent that which has been spoken forth from the words of one’s mouth, as being established!

 

Resh - ר:

The ancient script has this letter pictured as resh, which is ‘the head of a man’ and carries the meaning of ‘top, beginning, first, chief’, as in being the top of the body or the head of a tribe and the one who rules; and also speaks of possession or inheritance that is decided by the chief. Our true life of praise unto יהוה, our Head, begins when we fear Him, for He is the beginning of our strength, and true separated praise entails a true fear of the One who is Chief over us!

 

When seeing the construct of this word for count in its ancient form we have a clear picture of how cleansing entails true repentance through being able to correctly count and relate the Truth to others! This ancient grouping of letters can carry various meanings for us, and in terms of being a people who count and who relate the Truth of the Word to our children, we realise that this can only be done when we:

Grab hold of the Word of the Head!

This picture, in terms of counting, teaches us that our shield and refuge is in our Head and Master, who teaches us through His Word to number our days and we recognise that When we bring our sins (pictured by the thorn) and confess them (open mouth) to יהושע our Messiah (head of a man); then He is the one who cleanses us!

In our proper telling of the Word to our children and others we shall enable them to be caused to know that יהוה is Elohim and Saviour!

This plague saw יהוה sending locusts, which is a clean insect, representing how יהוה will cleanse the land from all wickedness! The locusts represent, in one sense, the army of יהוה bringing judgement upon this wicked and adulterous land.

In verse 3 יהוה is presented once again as the Elohim of the Hebrews – He is the Elohim of those who ‘cross over’. To have יהוה as your Elohim you must be a ‘crosser-over’ so to speak – one who has crossed over from darkness (ignorance) to light (knowledge of the Truth).

The Hebrew word that is translated as ‘The Hebrews’ is the word – הָעִבְרִים ha’iḇriym f which is the plural of the root word עִבְרִי Iḇri – Strong’s H5680 which in English is ‘Hebrew’ and means, the one from beyond, the one who crossed over and comes from the root verb עָבַר aḇar – Strong’s H5674 which means, to pass over, pass through, cross over’. Aḇram was the first person to be called a Hebrew (Berěshith/Genesis 14:13) and we recognise this by his ‘crossing over’ of the Euphrates River, when leaving his father’s house and going into the Promised Land at the call and instruction of Elohim!

So, what we declare to the world through our walking in the righteousness of Messiah, by walking according to His Torah, is that we are ‘Hebrews’ – that is – we are ones who have crossed over, so to speak, as יהוה the Elohim of the Hebrews has called us out of darkness into His marvellous light:

Kěpha Aleph/1 Peter 2:9 “But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a set-apart nation, a people for a possession, that you should proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvellous light

Our ‘passing over’ or becoming a ‘Hebrew’ entails our ability to clearly listen to the commands of Elohim and guard TO DO THEM!!

Anyone can become a ‘Hebrew’, or one who ‘crosses-over’ – if they will but repent and forsake their worldly ways and walk in His Torah, being immersed in יהושע Messiah, having ‘crossed over’ from death to life in Him!

Till when shall you refuse to humble yourself before Me!

The words of יהוה that were to be spoken to Pharaoh through Mosheh are words that many need to be asked today!

The Hebrew word used here for ‘refused’ is מָאֵן maen – Strong’s H3985 which means, to refuse, absolutely refuse, and represents an intentional action as opposed to one of ignorance. So many today willingly refuse to hear the Truth that we as ambassadors of the Coming Reign are proclaiming together with His Spirit, calling people to come out and be separate! Pharaoh refused to let Yisra’ĕl go; Eḏom refused to give Yisra’ĕl passage through its borders; Yisra’ĕl refused to listen to the voice of Shemuʼěl the prophet when they demanded to have a king!

The Hebrew word that is translated as ‘humble yourself’ comes from the root verb עָנָה anah – Strong’s H6031 which means, ‘to be bowed down, afflicted, humbled’ and it can also carry the meaning ‘to be occupied or busy with’. This word עָנָה anah – Strong’s H6031 also carries the meaning of ‘giving an account or an answer. This carries the picture of the one who humbles himself and comes to give an account of what he has done. This can give us the picture of ‘coming clean’, so to speak, and confessing our sin. In order to do that one has to be looking at the One to whom you are coming clean to, and herein lies a powerful lesson in the ancient pictographic lettering of this word when understood in regards to Yom Kippur, when we are called to humble ourselves and afflict our beings, or be busy with our beings!.

In the ancient pictographic text the Hebrew word עָנָהanahH6031 looks like this:

heynunayin

Ayin - עָ:

The original pictograph for this letter is ayin and represents the idea of ‘seeing and watching’, as well as ‘knowledge’. as the eye is the ‘window of knowledge’.

Nun – נָ:

The ancient pictographic script has this letter pictured as nun, which pictures asprouting seedand gives the idea of continuation or an offspring or an heir, speaking of that which sprouts forth will be the heir of the promise of continuation, and represents one’s life expectancy.

Hey - הּ:

The ancient script has this letter as hey and is pictured as a man standing with his arms raised up and out as if pointing to something, and in essence carries the meaning of ‘behold’ as in when looking at something very great. It can also have the meaning to ‘breath’ or ‘sigh’ as when looking at a great sight and having your breath taken away so to speak! It also has the meaning of revelation or to reveal something by pointing it out.

When we understand the command for us to be ‘busy with’ our beings, and ‘be occupied or bowed down and humbled’ before our High Priest and King, we are able to recognise through these ancient pictographic symbols, the concept of fixing our eyes on Messiah, the Princely Leader and Perfecter of our faith. The picture of the eye and the seed gives us the meaning of an ‘eye of continuance’, meaning that we continue to keep our eyes fixed on the One who is to be praised, for He has covered and cleansed us in His Blood!

Pharaoh refused to humble himself before יהוה and so too do we find the same resistant attitude from so many today, who simply refuse to humble themselves before Elohim!

So many today refuse to acknowledge that they have inherited lies and futile traditions that have nullified the commands of Elohim for vain traditions of man that are falsely taught as teachings!

Many are called but few are chosen! While the call has gone out to all, so many refuse the call, and we see Shelomoh telling us, in:

Mishlĕ/Proverbs 1:24Because I called and you refused, I have stretched out my hand and no one inclined

Yisra’ĕl refused to repent and refused to receive instruction, and so what we can clearly see from the use of this word is that those who ‘refuse’ the call of Elohim to come out and be separate simply reveal a hardness of heart and that they are stiff-necked and unwilling to submit to the Master and King of all creation, showing that they are not worthy of the call!

Iḇ’rim/Hebrews 12:25-26 “Take heed not to refuse the One speaking. For if those did not escape who refused the warning on earth, much less we who turn away from Him from heaven, 26 whose voice shook the earth then, but now He has promised, saying, “Yet once more I shake not only the earth, but also the heaven.

The Greek word used here in Iḇ’rim/Hebrews for ‘refuse’ is παραιτέομαι paraiteomai – Strong’s G3868 which means, to have nothing to do with, excuse, refuse, reject, and this word is used in this Parable recorded of in Luqas/Luke, which speaks of a certain man who gave a supper and invited many and sent his servant to those who had been invited to come for the supper was now ready, and we see some of the responses to the invite, this word παραιτέομαι paraiteomai – Strong’s G3868 being used 3 times in:

Luqas/Luke 14:18-19 “But one by one they all began making excuses. The first said to him, ‘I have bought a field, and I need to go and see it. I ask you to have me excused.’ 19 “And another said, ‘I have bought five yoke of oxen, and I am going to try them out. I ask you to have me excused.’

Excuses to be excused!!! I find this a very powerful and sobering lesson being given here in terms of what excuses actually represent – and that is that they represent an intentional refusal to submit to the call of Elohim. So many today make a wide range of excuses as to why they cannot do what is required in the Word, and will even justify these excuses in their own minds as being a valid reason, when in fact it is nothing more than a deliberate refusal to obey!

How long will the stubborn and hard hearted refuse to humble themselves before Elohim!!!

Despite the heart of so many who have backslidden being continually stubborn we recognise in Scripture the clear compassionate call of our Father calling people back along with a stern warning for not hearing and responding in true humility!

For more on the call to return please see the notes from a message called, RETURN, O BACKLSIDING YISRA’ĔL! which can be found under the ‘sermons 2016/2017’ menu on our site (http://atfotc.com) or by simply clicking on the following link:

http://atfotc.com/index.php/our-sermons/sermons-2016-2017/694-return-o-backlsiding-yisra-el-jeremiah-3

In verse 4 we still see an extension of the great mercy of יהוה declaring that ‘tomorrow’ He would send the locusts – “IF” Pharaoh still refused to let Yisra’ĕl go.

The Hebrew word translated as ‘if’ is אִם im – Strong’s H518 which is a conditional participle or primary conjunction which renders, if, though, either, neither, when, whenever. The basic meaning is “if” and this meaning can be seen in most of its occurrences. In the hundreds of passages where the word occurs, several basic types of contexts can be seen. Firstly, it occurs most often in conditional clauses, for example as in:

Berěshith/Genesis 4:7 “If you do well, is there not acceptance? And if you do not do well, sin is crouching at the door. And its desire is for you, but you should master it.

Secondly, we also find אִם im being used in oath contexts which, in reality, a larger context is assumed. In the larger, the assumed context is an oath, only rarely stated in full, as in:

Iyoḇ/Job 1:11 “But stretch out Your hand, please, and strike all that he has – if he would not curse You to Your face!

With this account that we are looking at from Shemoth/exodus 10:4 we take note that there is a clear conditional clause being set forward before Pharaoh, which highlights that Pharaoh had been given a choice to respond correctly! If Pharaoh refused to let Yisra’ĕl go then the locusts would come tomorrow! He had a clear warning and conditional clause being set forward and therefore his own stubbornness could not be used as a defence against the onslaught of the wrath of Elohim! יהוה was making it very clear here to Pharaoh… ‘If you refuse then I am going to destroy land!’

In verse 5 and 15 we see the term ‘cover the surface of the land’ being used to describe just how devastating this plague would be. In the Hebrew the word that is translated as ‘surface’ comes from the root word עין ayin – Strong’s H5869 which means ‘eye’! So the correct translation would be better rendered ‘cover the eye’, which for most of us today would not make much sense; but in understanding the wrath of יהוה being unleashed against all that has been set up against Him, through the false worship of false mighty ones, we can clearly see the language of this term being clear in showing us just who/what this plague was attacking!

On one hand it was an attack on ‘Anubis’ which was the Mitsrian mighty one that was believed to be over the fields, as well as an attack against ‘Isis’ who was believed to be their protector against locusts! It was also an attack on ‘Seth’ who they believed to be their protector of their crops! However, it was even more than just a direct attack on these false mighty ones as it was also a direct attack on ‘Ra’ who was the Mitsrian ‘sun-god’.

In Mitsrian hieroglyphics ‘Ra’ is represented as an ‘eye’ or ‘eyeball’ and so this was a direct attack on the chief deity of the land of Mitsrayim that was falsely worshipped.  So, by ‘covering the land’, this huge swarm would cover the entire land and even cover the ‘eye’, that is the ‘sun’, as the swarm would obscure the Mitsrians ability to look at the sun or their false ‘sun-god’ for help!

This is also a very powerful statement that is being made here, in that by the sending of the locusts (a clean insect) to destroy the crops of Mitsrayim, we see how יהוה was also making it clear that His ‘food’ (as represented by the locusts) – that is His Word – will destroy all others ‘foods of man’ (doctrines and theologies) that they relied upon to sustain them! We are also able to certainly recognise that each time we see locusts being used, it is in the form of judgement – and here it is no different. Mitsrayim’s food supply was being annihilated and those who do not rely upon יהוה and eat of His Word shall be consumed by His word!

Shemoth/Exodus 10:5 “And they shall cover the surface of the land, so that no one is able to see the land. And they shall eat the rest of what has escaped, which remains to you from the hail, and they shall eat every tree which grows up for you out of the field.

Shemoth/Exodus 10:12 “And יהוה said to Mosheh, “Stretch out your hand over the land of Mitsrayim for the locusts to come upon the land of Mitsrayim, and eat every plant of the land – all that the hail has left.

The word in the above two verses translated as ‘eat’ is the Hebrew root word אָכַל aḵal – H398 and means ‘eat, consume, devour or be devoured’.

This same word is used in:

Yeshayahu/Isaiah 1:19-20 “If you submit and obey, you shall eat the good of the land; 20 but if you refuse and rebel, you shall be devoured by the sword, for the mouth of יהוה has spoken.

The Hebrew word used for ‘eat’ and ‘devoured’ is the same word - אָכַל aḵal – H398.

So in essence what is being declared here in Yeshayahu/Isaiah 1, to a stubborn and rebellious Yisra’ĕl, is simply this: if you submit and obey you will eat and enjoy the good of the land – if you rebel and refuse to submit and obey you will be eaten by the sword – that is His Word that will consume you up and devour you in judgement according to His righteous right ruling! We have a choice – eat His Word and walk in Him and be satisfied or eat all the junk that is on offer from the world and neglect His Word and be eaten by the very Word that you have rejected. It is not a difficult concept to grasp – the question remains – how is your diet, and more importantly – what is filling you? Eat right and live or live wrong and be eaten:

Ḥazon/Revelation 19:15 “And out of His mouth goes a sharp sword, that with it He should smite the nations. And He shall shepherd them with a rod of iron. And He treads the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Ěl Shaddai.

Ḥazon/Revelation 19:21 “And the rest were killed with the sword which came from the mouth of Him who sat on the horse, and all the birds were filled with their flesh.

It has been reported that a swarm of locust can be anywhere from 40-80 million strong per square km and climb up to 3,000 feet (914 meters) in the air, posing problems for pilots. Depending on the wind, locust swarms can fly at around 16 to 19 km/h traveling 130 km or more in a single day! Although a locust may only weigh about 2 grams, they can eat their body weight in food every day. A small part of a small swarm could consume enough food for 2500 people! This was a huge devastation for the Land, as the locusts went everywhere and finished what the hail had begun, and they went into all the houses of the Mitsrians – from Pharaoh’s palaces to the least of the servants in the land! And this was a direct insult upon Pharaoh, who was believed to be a direct descendant of ‘Ra’, when יהוה would make it known that the plague would be such as has never been seen by any of their forefathers, revealing that יהוה alone is before all ever was and that their pagan worship of false mighty ones was worthless to help them against the True Creator of all!

Pharaoh’s servants cried out to him to let Yisra’ĕl go, as the land had been utterly wasted and they would die if he did not listen; and in verse 8 Pharaoh asks Mosheh and Aharon who would be going to serve יהוה, after saying that they could go. In other words, “You can go… but just who is going?” Pharaoh still wanted to dictate and control who could and who could not go. The church does the same thing today in enforcing their own standards for worship in assuming their authority over the Word itself! Just as the Rabbinic Pharisees did through the introduction of the Talmud and Mishnah, which are man-made prescribed forms of worship, so too has Christianity developed catechisms and dogmas and decrees that enslave the masses to do what they say, while presenting an assumed appearance of true worship!

Pharaoh would not let go of being in control, and when Mosheh told him that everyone would go and keep a joyous festival, as required by the instructions of יהוה, he hardened his stubborn heart!

Mosheh basically tells Pharaoh, ‘We are all going because we have a festival to יהוה!’

This highlights how the Feasts, which include the Sabbaths of יהוה, are for all the children of Yisra’ĕl and not just a selected few, but all!!! The Hebrew root word translated as ‘festival’ comes from the noun  חַג ḥag – Strong’s H2282 which means, a festival, feast, sacrifice, festival gathering, solemnity, which comes from the root verb חָגַג ḥagag – Strong’s H2287 which means, to make a pilgrimage, keep a pilgrimage, celebrate a feast, observe a feast, dance’.

This word חַג ḥag – Strong’s H2282 which means, a festival, feast, sacrifice, festival gathering, solemnity, in the ancient pictographic text looks like this:

gimelchet

etחַ:

The ancient script has this letter as chet which is a tent wall’, and carries a meaning of SEPARATION’, as a tent wall separates two halves of the tent; or it can also reflect the outside walls that separate the people inside from that which is outside and so can also symbolise protection and security to those inside, while picturing a cutting off of those who are outside. Hence this letter can mean ‘established, secure’ as well as ‘cut off, and separated from’. As a tent wall we are also able to recognise the picture of stones being built up to make a complete wall, having been separated from the world and built up in the master!

 Gimel – ג:

This is the letter ‘gimel’, which in the ancient script in pictured as – gimel –which is ‘a foot’  and carries the meaning to ‘walk, gather, carry’, as clearly referring to the functions of a foot; and it can also give the meaning of a gathering of people, and we know that ‘feet’ in Hebrew speaks of one’s walk and ability to keep the Feasts of יהוה, and represents one’s ‘walk’, and therefore also pictures for us the idea of ‘gathering’.

This word in its ancient pictographic form can have the meaning of ‘SEPARATED GATHERING’, and teaches us the necessity of being gathered together as commanded, in order to properly perform the Feasts of יהוה.

The Feasts of יהוה, which includes His Sabbaths, are separated gatherings and cannot be properly performed alone!

All Yisra’ĕl – that is the entire Bride of Elohim, is to perform His festivals and the world cannot hold any back!!!

Verse 10 – Pharaoh’s response – he was saying in effect the following: “You and your little ones can go but יהוה had better be with you or else!!!Watch for evil is before your face! The Hebrew root word that is frequently translated as ‘evil’ is the adjective רַע ra – Strong’s H7451 meaning, bad, evil, wicked, harmful’. This word is often expressed in the feminine form as רָעָה ra’ah and comes from the root verb רָעַע ra’a – Strong’s H7489 which means, to be evil, bad, act wickedly, practice evil, work calamity, do harm, be displeasing.; and in effect pictures the warning that if Elohim was not with them then wickedness would be before their face and, according to Pharaoh; they would be in serious trouble. This was a threat by Pharaoh, who considered himself to be their sun-god Ra-incarnate, and so he was intimating to Mosheh that יהוה had better be with them or else they would find themselves facing Ra – their sun-god, which יהוה had just attacked and revealed as false and worthless, yet Pharaoh still held fast to his pagan beliefs and hated the Truth and those who follow the Truth!

In Hebrew the word רָעָה ra’ah – Strong’s H7462 also can carry the meaning of ‘shepherd’ as well as to pasture, graze, consume, feed – and clearly points to יהושע – Our Good Shepherd – Our Strong Head that was lifted up and exalted on High, as we see in Tehillah/Psalm 80:1רֹעֵה יִשְׂרָאֵל –  Ro’eh Yisra’ĕl which means ‘Shepherd of Yisra’ĕl or in Tehillah/Psalm 23 –  יהוה רֹעִי יהוה ro’iyיהוה is my Shepherd, and this is very interesting as we see that רָעָה ra’ah sounds the same as the Hebrew word for “watch/see” – which is רָאָה ra’ah – Strong’s H7200 – meaning, to see, look, observe, pay close attention, consider, appear, provide, yet is spelt with a difference of one letter – an in fact at root level we can even notice how evil and shepherd uses the same letters!

The difference between the feminine form of evil, written as רָעָה  ra’ah (evil, wickedness) and רָאָה ra’ah (see, observe, pay attention) is the middle letter – with ‘evil’ containing the letter – ‘עָ’ – ‘ayin’ and ‘to see’ contains the letter ‘אָ’ – ‘aleph’. This should be a clear ‘wakeup call’ for us to see how things may sound and look correct, and at times may even be written with the same letters, yet may cause us to ‘look’ at what is wrong – many of our father’s teachings and ways may sound good and true yet when tested against the measuring stick of the Torah we find that most of what we inherited was in fact not good at all and what we must learn is that corrupt practices spoil our relationship with יהוה!

Verse 11 – Pharaoh offers them a compromise – let your men go – it was a start but we are never to compromise the Truth for anything! Some of them would have thought that they could take their wives the next year and then their kids – this was not an option – there is to be NO COMPROMISING in the life of a true worshipper of יהוה!

In Mitsrayim only the males would engage in worship, this is not so with יהוה, and we are to never bargain away His commands for the seeming bridge of assumed peace with the world – we must obey His instructions and not give in to compromise!

Sadly many today do just that by still participating on pagan rooted feasts of Christianity with family in order to not offend them in order to keep the peace, so to speak. We cannot do that – we are to worship the Father in Spirit and in Truth; and we are all to do so, not just the males!!!

In verse 13 the term ‘east wind’ in the Hebrew comes from the word קָדִים qaḏim – Strong’s H6921 which comes from the root verb קֶדֶם qeḏem – Strong’s H6924 meaning, east, former, ancient, earliest times and in the Hebrew mind this can often give reference to going back to the ancient paths – speaking of returning to the Covenant made with Aḇraham, and the coming destruction upon the disobedient in order to cleanse and deliver a covenanted people! יהוה was coming to cleanse and deliver His covenanted people!

Verse 16

We see that after the locust came and covered the land that Pharaoh summonsed Mosheh and Aharon and asked them to pray for him for he acknowledged that he had sinned against יהוה and Mosheh and Aharon; and very clearly confessed this, yet still refused to submit to the Torah (instructions) of יהוה, given through Mosheh.

Even Pharaoh acknowledged that by sinning against יהוה it was the same as sinning against Mosheh, who had been given the authority of יהוה. We too need to realise that when one sins against Mosheh (that is represented by the Torah), then we are sinning against יהוה! Those who cast aside the Torah are in fact walking in lawlessness and by their stubborn rebellious traditions they are walking contrary to the commands of יהוה.

To break the Torah is sin against יהוה – this is a serious wakeup call that is needed for so many that have been blinded and hardened by falsehood and lies of erroneous traditions.

He simply believed that if the judgement of יהוה was removed then everything would get back to normal! This was not true repentance – he knew he was wrong yet just wanted to get out of trouble and had learned nothing from all these encounters! This is the same common attitude of the Church at large today – pictured clearly for us as today’s ‘Mitsrayim’ – they want the judgements of יהוה turned away yet will not submit under the authority of His Torah.

Mosheh prays to יהוה and He sends a west wind to remove the locusts – the Mitsrians would now not even be able to eat the locusts and would get hungry!!!

The Hebrew term for ‘west wind’ is רוּחַ־יָם ruaḥ-yam – which would literally be rendered as ‘wind from the sea

Once again יהוה strengthened Pharaoh’s heart and then…

PLAGUE 9 – DARKNESS (10:21-29)

This was an abnormal darkness and Pharaoh was given no warning here – this was a darkness one could ‘feel’. Have you ever ‘felt’ the darkness of evil? Well this was way worse!!!

The Hebrew root word for ‘felt’ is מָשַׁשׁ mashash – Strong’s H4959 which means, to feel, grope and we see this word also being used in reference to the curses for disobedience in:

Deḇarim/Deuteronomy 28:28-29 יהוה shall smite you with madness and blindness and bewilderment of heart. 29 “And you shall be groping at noon, as a blind man gropes in darkness, and not prosper in your ways. And you shall be only oppressed and plundered all the days, with no one to save you.

In speaking of fools that will be caught in their craftiness and the counsel of schemers that will be swept away we see in:

Iyoḇ/Job 5:14 “By day they encounter darkness, and at noon they grope as in the night.

 And again in:

Iyoḇ/Job 12:25 “They grope in darkness, having no light, and He makes them stagger like a drunkard.

The Word of יהוה is our light and lamp!

Tehillah/Psalm 119:105 “Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.

Those who do not have His Word, and those who refuse to submit to and walk in His Word shall grope in the darkness and be like a drunkard, while those who have His Light and guard to walk as children of Light shall be sober and alert and walk in the full assurance of His presence and protection.

The Hebrew word that is used here for ‘darkness’ comes from the root word חשֶׁךְ ḥosheḵ – Strong’s H2822 which means, darkness, obscurity and comes from the root verb חָשַׁךְ asha – Strong’s H2821 which means, to be or grow dark, make it dark.

When Elohim created the heavens and the earth ‘darkness’ was on the face of the deep, and Elohim said ‘Let Light come to be’ and He separated the ‘light’ from the ‘darkness’ and called the ‘light’ day and the ‘darkness’ he called night. 

Thick darkness came over the land and they could not even see each other for 3 days!!! This darkness represented the complete removal of the presence of יהוה from the Mitsrians while the ‘Light’ of His presence remained with the children of Yisra’ĕl who had light in their dwellings!

Yeshayahu/Isaiah 60:2 “For look, darkness covers the earth, and thick darkness the peoples. But יהוה arises over you, and His esteem is seen upon you.

In Goshen there was light for יהוה was with His people while Mitsrayim were in thick darkness – their sun-god had forsaken them, so to speak, and this would have left them in great fear and turmoil! יהוה was attacking all that they worshipped and brought it to nought and for 3 days they did not see their sun! This is a wonderful foreshadow of how his very presence with His people will be the light they need as His esteem shall be the light for the renewed Yerushalayim:

Ḥazon/Revelation 21:23 “And the city had no need of the sun, nor of the moon, to shine in it, for the esteem of Elohim lightened it, and the Lamb is its lamp.

Darkness snuffed out life for Mitsrayim; and without light life ceased. Scripture said that no one could move. They were literally paralyzed for those three days. Without the life support of light, even the air around them was thickened and immobile and breathing was even difficult for many. Fire could not even burn. This plague was so terrible they could actually feel the darkness.

Tas’loniqim Aleph/1 Thessalonians 5:4-5 “But you, brothers, are not in darkness, so that this Day should overtake you as a thief. 5 For you are all sons of light and sons of the day. We are not of the night nor of darkness.

Eph’siyim/Ephesians 5:6-11 “Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of these the wrath of Elohim comes upon the sons of disobedience. 7 Therefore do not become partakers with them. 8 For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Master. Walk as children of light 9 for the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness, and righteousness, and truth 10 proving what is well-pleasing to the Master. 11 And have no fellowship with the fruitless works of darkness, but rather reprove them.

The Greek word that is used here in Sha’ul’s letter to the believers in Ephesos and in Thessalonica for ‘darkness’ is σκότος skótos – Strong’s G4655 which means, physical darkness, darkened eyesight, blindness and is also used to metaphorically describe, spiritual darkness, implying error and ignorance, sin and misery and immorality.

Sha’ul makes it very clear to us that we are to walk as children of light and have nothing to do with the fruitless works of darkness and the Greek word used here for ‘walk’ is περιπατέω peripateō – Strong’s G4043 and carries the same meaning and that is, ‘to walk, behaviour, to conduct one’s self, to make one’s way, to tread with the feet, to make one’s life’.

In Verse 22 the Hebrew word translated as ‘thick’ is אֲפֵלָה aphelah – Strong’s H653 which means, darkness, gloominess, calamity, thick, gloom.

Mishlĕ/Proverbs 4:19 “The way of the wrong is like darkness; they do not know at what they stumble.

This word speaks of a very thick darkness – the blackest darkness! We also see here a shadow picture reference to the Day of יהוה, as we see this word used in speaking of the Day of יהוה in:

Yo’ĕl/Joel 2:2 “a day of darkness and gloom, a day of clouds and thick darkness, like the morning clouds spread over the mountains – a people many and strong, the like of whom has never been, nor shall there ever be again after them, to the years of many generations.

The wrong who forsake the path of straightness walk in darkness and are walking without Elohim!!!! In other words they are simply groping about in the dark being led by others who are in the dark!

The wrong grope around in the dark and they do not even know at what they stumble!!!

The wrong who refuse to walk in The Light of the Truth, by walking in the Torah of Elohim, are like the blind leading the blind as they grope around in the dark and have no clue as to what they are doing wrong!

Yoḥanan Aleph/1 John 2:9-11he one who says he is in the light, and hates his brother, is in the darkness until now. 10 The one who loves his brother stays in the light, and there is no stumbling-block in him. 11 But the one who hates his brother is in the darkness and walks in the darkness, and does not know where he is going, because the darkness has blinded his eyes.

Yoḥanan/John 12:35יהושע, therefore, said to them, “Yet a little while the light is with you. Walk while you have the light, lest darkness overtake you. And he who walks in darkness does not know where he is going.

This thick darkness that was felt for 3 days was an awakening statement to the Mitsrians for it seemed to them as though their sun-god Ra, who was considered to be the father of all Pharaohs, was dead and so that would also threaten the existence of having future Pharaohs.

Verse 23 – Nobody got up from their place – they could not see each other. This is a great lesson and picture for us, in that when we ‘walk in darkness’, that is in ignorance of the Truth, then we too will not see our neighbour, and so this darkness also represents for us today the sin of pride and selfishness, where you are blinded to the urgent needs or burdens of your brother/neighbour; and so we can see the clear picture of how no one ‘loved’ their neighbour anymore! Each one was groping around in their own pity party, feeling sorry for themselves because they had just lost all that they ever had or thought that they had. They had gone in to a state of depression. The locusts brought one kind of darkness but now this darkness was escalated to a much deeper one where it was now felt even on the inside! Having no hope is the worst darkness one can find themselves in and here they had truly lost all hope – their mighty ones were dead and Pharaoh was powerless and there may have even been the sound of weeping and wailing in the ‘outer darkness’ – a picture of what so many will face when they come to the reality that all they have ever followed in their sun-worship doctrines of Constantine is all falsehood and lies! Depression had hit hard and brought about disunity – a key lesson for us is that when we find ourselves a little depressed – the best way to remedy the situation is to go and serve another – be light to someone else – that will remove that darkness over your life for perfect love drives out all fear – and we are told to be perfect for He is perfect and love for Elohim is to guard to do all He commands – therefore perfect love – represents perfect, uncompromised obedience – this will drive out darkness and fear and find the light of His presence fill us with strength and joy!

Constantine saw himself as the sun-god and he changed or rather attempted to change יהוה’s calendar by bringing in a solar calendar so that the masses would pay homage to him. For many centuries, under the passing down of inherited lies, we have all found ourselves caught under the snare of sun-worship and its abominable practices and now as we are commanded to be set-apart we see how faithful יהוה is in restoring to us His Appointed Times and His calendar cycles.

With the children of Yisra’ĕl having ‘light’ in Goshen we recognise that even in the darkest times we have with us the One who ‘created’ darkness and so even in the deepest darkness, with יהוה in our midst, it is as light:

Tehillah/Psalm 139:11-12 “If I say, “Darkness shall cover me,” then night would be light to me; 12 even darkness is not dark for You, but night shines as the day – as is darkness, so is light.

In verse 23 the word translated as ‘light’ is אוֹר  ‘oor’ – Strong’s H216 which we know in Scripture, in being the opposite to darkness, carries with it the clear significance it has for us in speaking of knowledge and insight and understanding as opposed to ignorance and confusion. In fact in Berěshith/Genesis 1:3 when Elohim said, “let light come to be”; I firmly believe that He was in essence saying that His Word brings order to the chaos, and wisdom and understanding is established by His Word as His Light brings order that restores confusion!

Right here in the beginning of creation we see the power and effect of the Word of Elohim – it separated the light from the darkness! And when we understand that darkness is a picture of folly and light a picture of wisdom then we see that His Word shows us the clear difference by separating all that is folly from that which is of wisdom:

Qoheleth/Ecclesiastes 2:13 “Then I saw that wisdom is better than folly, as light is better than darkness.

Mishlĕ/Proverbs 6:23 “For the command is a lamp, and the Torah a light, and reproofs of discipline a way of life

Here we see both the use of the words ‘lamp’ - נֵר ner; and ‘light’ - אוֹר  oor, and what we understand is that His Torah is the fullness of all His clear instructions, statutes and commands, and we must therefore recognise that His Torah lights our path – as revealed through the life, death and resurrection of Messiah; and therefore we need to realise that the lamp for our feet is brought forth in our diligence to hear, guard and do His clear commands as seen in His Torah!

Mattithyahu/Matthew 6:22-24 “The lamp of the body is the eye. If therefore your eye is good, all your body shall be enlightened. 23 “But if your eye is evil, all your body shall be darkened. If, then, the light that is within you is darkness, how great is that darkness! 24 “No one is able to serve two masters, for either he shall hate the one and love the other, or else he shall cleave to the one and despise the other. You are not able to serve Elohim and mammon.

The eye is the lamp! What are you fixing your eyes on? Eyes without true ‘love’ are blinded to the True Light of the Word, and we know that ‘love’ for Elohim is to obey His commands – so when many claim that the Torah is no longer applicable or valid and cast it behind them, their eyes are clearly blinded by a ‘confused’ application of what is and assumed love with no regard for the fixing of one’s eyes on the Truth! An evil eye is a dysfunctional eye that may have the appearance of seeing yet are unable to ‘know’ or perceive!

We are to fix our eyes on Messiah, as we meditate daily on His Torah and let His Word dwell in us richly:

Qolasim/Colossians 3:16 “Let the Word of Messiah dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing with pleasure in your hearts to the Master in psalms and songs of praise and spiritual songs.

The Torah is to be upon our hearts, in order that we shine brighter and brighter until the perfect day when the Light and Word comes and dwells completely in our midst:

Kěpha Bět/2 Peter 1:19-21And we have the prophetic word made more certain, which you do well to heed as a light that shines in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts, 20 knowing this first, that no prophecy of Scripture came to be of one’s own interpretation, 21 for prophecy never came by the desire of man, but men of Elohim spoke, being moved by the Set-apart Spirit.

Yoḥanan/John 12:46 “I have come as a light into the world, so that no one who believes in Me should stay in darkness.

יהושע Messiah came to light our path that we may not walk in darkness and confusion anymore, and as we walk daily in His commands we shine brighter and brighter:

Mishlĕ/Proverbs 4:18 “But the path of the righteous is like the light of dawn, that shines ever brighter unto the perfect day.

Just as the instructions were given to make the lamps burn with clear pressed oil in Shemoth/Exodus 27:20  we recognise that we too need to make sure that the ‘oil’ which lights our lamp is clear and pure, and just as the priests were commanded to tend it from evening until morning before יהוה as a law forever; and as taught in the parable of the ten virgins we also see the clear need to have our lamps filled with oil and not dare be found empty on the day of His visitation, reminding us how we too are to keep our lamps burning in these ‘dark times’ until the morning comes!

Romiyim/Romans 13:12 “The night is far advanced, the day has come near. So let us put off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armour of light.

Now if our lamps are to be tended continually then we see the need to constantly be on guard as to what we set our eyes upon – for our eyes are to be looking to יהושע Messiah (Iḇ’rim/Hebrews 12:2)!!!

Lamps filled with pure and clear oil! There are many today who have lamps in their hand and presume to be walking on a sure path, while they have been misguided by inherited lies and tradition, as the confusion of man has mixed the clear and pure oil of the Truth with false worship practices, and as a result have contaminated the oil to the point of it becoming a wicked counterfeit that leads many on a path to destruction under the guidance of a false light as its source, which will be proved to be darkness when the True Light appears before all!

The following two verses make it very clear:

Mishlĕ/Proverbs 13:9 “But the lamp of the wrong is put out.

Mishlĕ/Proverbs 24:20 “For there is no future for the evil-doer; the lamp of the wrongdoers is put out.

What we can notice from these two verses is that we see the use of the word ‘lamp’ - נֵר ner is used, yet we see no connection of this lamp to the True Light - אוֹר oor of יהוה.

Mishlĕ/Proverbs 21:4 “A haughty look, a proud heart, the lamp of the wrong, are sin.

The wrongdoers have a lamp and that lamp claims that the Torah is not necessary, as they allow their lamps of tradition to set their feet on a path of falsehood that intends to change the Appointed Times and laws of Elohim, which I remind you cannot be changed! Those who have lamps without the Torah will find out that the light that is in them is darkness and their lamps will be put out! The lamp of the wrongdoers have a lamp that keeps a different day for assembled worship and celebrates different feasts, while claiming to have a right to the Covenant Promises of Elohim, while casting His Words and instructions on how to walk in the path of light behind them – and this is what the Master יהוה says to the wrong who have changed His times and laws as a lamp for their paths:

Tehillah/Psalm 50:16-17 “But to the wrong Elohim said, “What right have you to recite My laws, or take My covenant in your mouth, 17 “While you hated instruction and cast My Words behind you?

Dawiḏ declared that יהוה was His lamp – and we too must declare this clear Truth as The Word of Elohim being evident as our lamp and light. If יהוה is not your lamp then who is? We cannot serve two masters, and sadly today we can clearly see how so many, especially in light of the corrupt season of man-made tradition of worship that we find ourselves in the midst of, will hold fast to the traditions of man, while they neglect the commands of Elohim. Their lamps have a wrong source and so they actually have no true light!

Lamp and Light – we need them both – and both are contained in the revelation of His Word and our submission to walking in His Word!

The word אוֹר  ‘oor’ – Strong’s H216 comes from the primitive root verb אוֹר or – Strong’s H215 which means, to be or become light, give light, and from this we see the derivative - אוּר ur – Strong’s H217 which actually means, a flame, fire, fires, lightor light of fire. The plural of the word אוּר ur is used in:

Shemoth/Exodus 28:30 “And into the breastplate of right-ruling you shall put the Urim and the Tummim, and they shall be on the heart of Aharon when he goes in before יהוה . And Aharon shall bear the right-ruling of the children of Yisra’ĕl on his heart before יהוה , continually.

אוּרִים Urim – Strong’s H224 means ‘lights, illuminations’ – this was placed in the breastplate of right-ruling of the High Priest, together with the תֻּמִּים Tummim – plural of תֹּם tom, and carries the meaning of ‘perfections

While there is no evidence to clearly tell us what the Urim and Tummim consisted of, be it stones or any other substance, what we can see is that the High Priest would use these in order to get right-ruling and so speaks of seeking the perfect truth from יהוה. What is very interesting and worthy of noting is that the first letter of ‘Urim’ is the א ‘aleph’ and the first letter of Tummim is the ת ‘taw’:

Ḥazon/Revelation 1:8 “I am the ‘Aleph’ and the ‘Taw’, beginning and end,” says יהוה “who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty.

Yeshayahu/Isaiah 44:6 “Thus said יהוה, Sovereign of Yisra’ĕl, and his Redeemer, יהוה of hosts, ‘I am the First and I am the Last, besides Me there is no Elohim.

What are the urim and tummim? They are the things that illuminate and perfect. We know that יהושע is the Light and He was the Perfect Lamb, and so this represents for us our need to hunger and thirst for righteousness and be perfect before Elohim, for He is perfect and we are called to be the salt and light, which we can only be when we seek out His Right-Ruling and walk according to that which is to be upon our heart – His Torah (notice the positioning of the Urim and Tummim in the breastplate – by the heart!!!)

He writes His Torah on our hearts and so it is our hearts and mouths that we may do it!

Yisra’ĕl had the ‘light/illumination’ of the Truth and therefore were not in darkness!

In our Master, יהושע Messiah, is life and the life is the light of men!!! (Yoḥanan/John 1:4)

Those who are in the Master and stay in Him have life and life abundantly and need not fear the darkness of evil.

When we consider the clear picture of Yisra’ĕl having light while Mitsrayim were in thick darkness we are also able to recognise the joy of having the strength and power of our Master giving us secure light in our sojourning.

What is worth taking note of, in terms of the Hebrew word for light, we are able to see a powerful Truth beiong given to us through the ancient pictographic of this word:

The Hebrew word that is translated as ‘light’ – אוֹר oor – Strong’s H216 is written in the ancient pictographic script as follows:

 reshwawaleph

Aleph – א:

This is the letter ‘aleph’, in the ancient script is pictured as aleph, the head of an ox, and represents ‘strength’, meaning ‘muscle’ as the ox is the strongest of the livestock animals. This also carries the meaning of ‘yoke’, as an ox is placed in a yoke in order to plough or pull a heavy load in the right direction. This can also picture for us the ‘red heifer’ sacrifice that יהושע Messiah fulfilled!

 

Waw/Vav – וֹ:

This is the Hebrew letter ‘waw’ or ‘vav’ which in the ancient script is pictured as waw, which is a peg or ‘tent peg’, which was used for securing or tying the tent or other items. The possibility of it having a Y-shape is to show that it prevents the rope from slipping off. The root meaning of this letter is ‘to add, secure or hook’ as well as ‘bind’.

 

Reshרִ:

The ancient script has this letter as resh and is pictured as ‘the head of a man’ and has the meaning of the head of a man as well as ‘chief, top, begging or first’. It has the meaning of ‘top’, as in the top or head of a body, and ‘chief’, as in a head of a tribe or people; as well as the one who rules the people. Every House has a head of the home, and all in the House submit to the instructions of the One who is head of the home, listening to and obeying the words that the Head speaks!

When we consider these ancient pictographic letters that render the word for ‘light’ we can clearly see a powerful lesson, in terms of our Master, the Light of the world, giving us the rendering:

STRENGTH SECURED IN THE HEAD!

 

We have great confidence and security in being able to be strong and courageous as we walk in the Light as our Master, who is our Head, is in the Light and in Him we have been secured into His Covenants of promise, having called us out of darkness into His marvellous light, for His Word lights our path in a dark and depraved world! 

 

Verse 24 – Pharaoh tries to get Mosheh to leave stuff behind – to leave the herds and livestock! His own livestock had been destroyed and tried to hold on to what belonged to יהוה’s people. On another level this is just how the Church is desperately attempting at keeping many of the flock in Mitsrayim – after all if everyone left the church how would the leaders get fed!!! They are doing their utmost at keeping those who are seemingly unable to speak for themselves.

 

Verse 26 – we will leave nothing behind! We are to give our all unto יהוה – daily living sacrifices! We cannot leave ‘half’ of our life in the world so to speak – when the Father requires our all. There are too many today who have ‘come out’ of the church, yet still continue in many of its practices and theological dogmas that often run contrary to the Truth of the Word as they attempt to have the best of both worlds. If we leave something in Mitsrayim, we may just be tempted to go back and perhaps even be found to have returned to where we tried to be set free from!

Until we leave our ‘Mitsrayim’ we will not properly know how to serve יהוה fully! Gathering in Goshen is a start but is not enough – we have to go into the wilderness – literally the place of hearing His Word serving Him as His Word requires, not ever using grace as an excuse for lawlessness.

Verse 28-29 – Pharaoh tells Mosheh to get out and watch out for if he ever saw Pharaoh again he would die, to which Mosheh responds by saying that it is true that he would never see Pharaoh’s face again, and disregarded all authority Pharaoh may have assumed; for Mosheh’s life was never in Pharaoh’s hands but rather in יהוה’s and no matter the threats the enemy may make – we need not be afraid of them for no weapon formed against us shall prosper when we are walking in the protection of a Covenant Keeping Elohim!

CHAPTER 11

PLAGUE 10 – DEATH OF THE FIRSTBORN (11:1-10)

This would be the last plague that יהוה would bring upon Pharaoh and Mitsrayim – what a relief this must have been to Mosheh; and what we can learn from Mosheh is a very great lesson on the patient endurance of a true set-apart one:

Ḥazon/Revelation 14:12 “Here is the endurance of the set-apart ones, here are those guarding the commands of Elohim and the belief of יהושע.

The Greek word used here for ‘endurance’ is ὑπομονή hupomonē – Strong’s G5281 which means, a patient enduring, steadfastness, perseverance, a remaining behind, and this word comes from the Greek word ὑπομένω hupomenō – Strong’s G5278 which means, to stay behind, to await, endure, which comes from the two words: 1) ὑπό hupo – Strong’s G5259 which means ‘under, in subjection to’, and 2) μένω menō – Strong’s G3306 and means, to stay, abide, remain, stand’ – which is the word that is used in Yoḥanan/John 15 where we are told to ‘stay in, remain in’ Messiah!

Proper endurance in the Master calls for us to ‘stay in’ Him and ‘be in subjection to’ Him, by guarding His commands!

This plague on the firstborn was a direct attack on Pharaoh, who assumed to be a ‘god-king’, and the death of his firstborn son who was to succeed him on the throne was also considered to be a mighty one of the Mitsrians and killing his firstborn was to Mitsrayim as killing of a mighty one they worshipped!

Up until now Pharaoh may have simply assumed that Yisra’ĕl would go and worship יהוה in the wilderness and then come back and so this plague would cause him to ‘drive out’ the nation of Yisra’ĕl.

The word for ‘drive’ here in verse 1 in Hebrew is גָּרַשׁ garashStrong’s H1644 meaning, to drive out, cast out, dismiss, driven away, divorced - and is the same word also used for divorced in:

Bemiḏbar/Numbers 30:9 “But any vow of a widow or a divorced woman, by which she has bound herself, stands against her.

And so in effect it would get to the point where Pharaoh would divorce Yisra’ĕl, in a manner of speaking, and renounce all authority over her. This would leave Yisra’ĕl a free woman who could now be betrothed to her Redeemer, King and Husband – יהוה. We too are to realise that we are no longer ‘married’ to Mitsrayim and are betrothed to our King and Saviour who is coming again for a ready Bride! Just as in this exodus account where Yisra’ĕl had favour in receiving great provision for what would be used in the wilderness to build all that was necessary for the building and for the worship in the Tabernacle, so too will we once again see provision for His set-apart Bride to be adorned and made ready for His return.

Everything belongs to יהוה, and this transferal of wealth and goods proved just that!

Tehillah/Psalm 24:1 “The earth belongs to יהוה, and all that fills it – The world and those who dwell in it.

Mishlĕ/Proverbs 13:22 “A good man leaves an inheritance to his children’s children, but the wealth of the sinner is stored up for the righteous.

The objects that were handed over would be used for the building of the Tabernacle in the Wilderness and is a picture of a Bride being adorned for the day of Her Betrothal: silver, gold and garments!

Similar language of that which we see of how יהוה provides for and adorns His called out Bride with much beauty and splendor in Yeḥezqěl – although they whored after the nations and were scattered among the nations – we must learn from this and not make the same mistake but take that which he provides and be properly dressed in righteousness.

Yeḥezqěl/Ezekiel 16:10-13 “And I dressed you in embroidered work and gave you sandals of leather. And I wrapped you in fine linen and covered you with silk. 11 “And I adorned you with ornaments, and I put bracelets on your wrists, and a chain on your neck. 12 “And I put a ring on your nose, and earrings in your ears, and a crown of adorning on your head. 13 “Thus you were adorned with gold and silver, and your dress was of fine linen, and silk, and embroidered cloth. You ate fine flour, and honey, and oil. And you were exceedingly pretty, and became fit for royalty.

This death of the firstborn would freak Pharaoh totally out so that he would literally drive out Yisra’ĕl and they would end up draining Mitsrayim of its wealth by asking for objects of silver and gold.

Verse 3יהוה gave His people favour in the eyes of the Mitsrites!

The Hebrew word that is translated as ‘favour comes from the root word חֵן en – Strong’s H2580 meaning, grace, adornment, favour, gracious which comes from the primitive root חָנַן anan – Strong’s H2603 meaning, show favour, be gracious to, dealt graciously with, given to them voluntarily, shown favour. These two words, חֵן en and חָנַן anan, are collectively used 141 times in the Tanak (O.T.).

חֵן en can best be described as ‘a gracious and favourable action passing from a superior to an inferior’ and is an action that cannot be forced upon or demanded! This in many ways carries the same concept of the ‘Christian’ idea or concept of ‘grace’ as understood through the Greek word χάρις charis – Strong’s G5485 meaning, grace, kindness, blessing, favour. חֵן en is poured out as a gift to a people who have no ‘claim’ to it as it is given freely and so we see that this certainly is not a ‘new’ concept as it is a continuous theme right through the Scriptures as seen in the Loving Kindness extended by יהוה to Yisra’ĕl, His Covenanted people!

in English the term ‘grace’ is often understood as being likened to the Hebrew word חֶסֶד ḥeseḏ – Strong’s H2617 which means, goodness, kindness, deeds of devotion, faithfulness and appears 248 times in the Tanak (OT) – almost 2 times more than the Greek word translated as ‘grace’ in the Renewed Covenant (N.T.)!!!

In the Hebrew the concepts of חֵן en and חֶסֶד ḥeseḏ go hand in hand in understanding our loving relationship with יהוה. What we must understand though is that both חֵן en and חֶסֶד ḥeseḏ are uniquely related in terms of understanding the fullness of our relationship with our Creator.

What we find in Scripture is that חֶסֶד ḥeseḏ is used only where there is a prior relationship bond, be it through family, marriage or kinship, and it is used in regards to a bond or relationship that produces in the bond itself a requirement or an obligation for action, where both parties share חֶסֶד ḥeseḏ and can expect from each other and even demand in a sense reciprocal responsibilities, and so חֶסֶד ḥeseḏ is not a free gift, but is rather the devotion and faithfulness shown as a result of a covenanted relationship! What we need to recognize is that חֵן en is offered on the basis of חֶסֶד ḥeseḏ as a result of a Covenant. Yisra’ĕl and יהוה are obligated to each other, in marriage, as a result of the Covenants made by יהוה with Aḇraham, Yitsḥaq and Ya’aqoḇ!

חֵן en may certainly be, and actually is, the primary reason behind the establishment of the Covenants of Promise, however the moment the Covenants were made, obligation became attached to it by both parties. And while Yisra’ĕl constantly broke their obligation to the Covenants we see how lovingly committed יהוה is by extending His favour to us, an undeserving people and by His חֵן en (being gracious toward us and adorning us with favour in His eyes) He has extended to us His Kindness - חֶסֶד ḥeseḏ – His loving-commitment to the Covenants which He remains faithful to in being obligated and fully committed to; and thus because of His  חֵן en which is freely given to us, we too are now by our acceptance of His free gift also required to express true commitment in understanding our obligation to guarding the Covenant!

Verse 5 – all the firstborn of the land will die! From Pharaoh’s son to the firstborn of the woman who was behind the hand mill, as well as the firstborn of cattle – in other words this would too so that Pharaoh was no different to the rest of the Mitsrians and he was even being reduced to the same level of the animals – he was no deity and this would become very evident to all!

Verse 6 – the huge cry would be heard! Can you think just for a moment the terrible sound of the shrieking and tears of the thousands of houses weeping for the death of their firstborns!!! This language used here reminds me of the parables regarding the end times that יהושע spoke regarding the worthless servants who are thrown ‘outside’ into outer darkness where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.

Verse 7 – Not even a dog would ‘move its tongue’ against the children of Yisra’ĕl! Dogs were used in Mitsrayim for hunting and so there were loads of them and they were also held in high regard and even mummified! The birth of a greyhound was seen just as important as the birth of a son. Anubis, the Mitsrian deity of mummification was half dog – half man, who according to their pagan beliefs assisted in the rites of the dead being admitted to the ‘underworld and was believed to testify on behalf of the deceased! Anubis is also pictured in ancient Egyptian as protecting the tomb of Pharaoh and ‘spoke on his behalf’.

By יהוה causing the dogs to be silent towards the Yisra’ĕlites He was showing that no ‘dog’ needs to intercede for His people – for He is the One who speaks for them and as we know we have an intercessor before the Father – יהושע Messiah – a righteous One:

Yoḥanan Aleph/1 John 2:1 My little children, I write this to you, so that you do not sin. And if anyone sins, we have an Intercessor with the Father, יהושע Messiah, a righteous One.

 

There also would be no sound from the ‘dogs’ among Yisra’ĕl for there would be no ‘death’ of the firstborn among the children of Elohim who guarded His Word – making a clear distinction between – who is of the world and who belongs to יהוה – who is of Mitsrayim and who is of Yisra’ĕl!

These events would cause a clear distinction being made between Mitsrayim and Yisra’ĕl after which Pharaoh would demand that they leave!

Verse 9 – Pharaoh will not listen! The fact remains that Mitsrayim will remain Mitsrayim until it is utterly destroyed – The Church will remain the Church until it is finally destroyed – we cannot change it from within – what we can do is minimise its population by taking others out of it with us as we draw near to Elohim and become sojourners in the wilderness learning to hear His voice!!!

CHAPTER 12

INSTRUCTION FOR PĚSAḤ - 10TH AND FINAL PLAGUE

When the year begins:

Verse 2 – “This new moon is the beginning of new moons for you, it is the first new moon of the year for you.

A highly critical verse for a nation being delivered from many generations of slavery – one we today need also take very careful care to hear, guard and do as we have also come out of many years/centuries of inherited lies. You will also notice that in verse 1 that יהוה spoke to Mosheh in Mitsrayim – that is to also show us today just how He also clearly spoke to us while we were still in Mitsrayim (Church), so to speak, and it is now clear that a new way of things were truly about to begin. What we must take careful not of here is that יהוה did NOT, at this point, change His own established order and calendar of His Appointed Times. What He was doing was telling His called out nation to strip away all that they had followed under an enslaved regime and return now to His Way and His reckoning of time!

Yisra’ĕl for over 400 years or so were under the influence of a sun/solar calendar which was a direct worship unto the pagan deity Ra, which יהוה had now clearly shown by His Mighty wonders and power that Ra was no mighty one at all and destroyed the seeming evidence of such erroneous beliefs. In order for Yisra’ĕl to be on their wonderful journey of freedom having been set free from bondage by the Mighty work Hand of Elohim they had to get back to the beginning! This was and always is the beginning of the year according to יהוה, and Yisra’ĕl had lost this under the Mitsrayim way of calendar keeping centred around sun-worship. יהוה was setting back in order His timing and calendar that was instituted at Creation. This was the first instruction given to a nation and the essence was simply this, “have nothing to do with sun-worship and get in line with My Word!”.

For us who have come out of Mitsrayim have too found it very confusing at first to keep track of יהוה’s Scriptural calendar that begins in this month of Aḇiḇ, when the barley is ripe in the ear. Months begin at the sighting of the renewed moon (first sliver) and it is the moon that ‘renews’ every month.

There are many in the Torah walk that have sadly missed the mark with this vital truth – and why I say vital is simply because if we get the beginning wrong then the rest of the year will be out and we may find ourselves celebrating His Feasts at the wrong times due to ignorance of the True starting point!

Many torah observant believers claim to follow what has been labelled the ‘Enoch calendar’ which sets aside the renewal of the moon for determining the months and holds that the moon is merely there for various ‘planting’ seasons of various plants and vegetables. I will quote a couple of verses from Ḥanoḵ which clearly speaks of the moon giving the marker for months:

Ḥanoḵ chapter 78:

: 6-7 “When the moon begins its cycle, it appears in the sky one half of a seventh part; it will become fully illumined from the fourteenth day; 7 it completes its illumination the fifteenth, becoming fulfilled according to the sign of the year and becoming fifteen parts. Thus the moon waxes in fifteen parts.

Here we see the description of how the moon ‘waxes’ – that is to become full which is completed on the 15th of the month and then begins to ‘wane’ – which is to decrease in its illumination from the sun.

: 11 “During all the seasons when the moon is made to run its cycle, the light is being beamed into it the moon facing the sun until the illumination of the moon is completed in the course of fourteen days; and when it is lit completely, it radiates light in the sky.

During all the seasons the moon is made to run its cycle of illumination – so it clearly not only appointed for seasons but also for the marker of the monthly cycle!

This next verse is the one that I like to show as it is clear when the month begins and lines up with our text in Shemoth:

: 12 “On the first day, it is called the new moon because on that day the illumination begins to set upon it.

The first day of the month is when we ‘SEE’ the illumination begin and so it is also clear that the month cannot begin on what some call the ‘dark moon’ either.

Other arguments to whether our text here in Shemoth/Exodus is referring to the moon are that moon and month are not the same, and so I briefly want to explain a couple of key Hebrew words or terms with Scriptural evidence that show that when speaking the new/renewed month it is clearly speaking of the cycle of the moon.

For many of you this may seem insignificant, but I want to briefly present to you from Scripture when our year begins and this is very significant. So please bear with me!

The Hebrew root words used for ‘beginning of new moons’ in the Scriptures 2009 translation, or in other translations as ‘beginning of months’, and written as רֹאשׁ חֳדָשִׁים -  ‘rosh ḥodeshim is:

H7218 - ראֹשׁ rosh’ – and means ‘head or beginning or source’ – that is the beginning point. It speaks of the starting point and also carries the meaning of ‘head’ as in the crucial part of the body, and is also translated as chief. In the context of the passage in question it is a clear beginning point of the year.

H2320 - חֹדֶשׁodesh – means ‘month’ and the plural of this word is חֳדָשִׁיםḥodeshim (months) and by extension is also translated and understood as ‘moons’.

Many argue that this word does not mean moon as the word for moon in Hebrew is:

H3394 - יָרֵחַ yarea – the word used for moon, and is first used in Berěshith/Genesis 37:9. In the Scriptural text it is understood that the word odesh also refers to the moon. In fact there is another word that also describes the moon, when it is full, as in:

Mishlĕ/Proverbs 7:20 “He took a bag of silver with him; He comes home on the day of the covering.

This is a wonderful pointer to our Messiah coming to be united with His Bride for Sukkot/Tabernacles which begins on the 15th of the 7th month (which is the full moon).

The Hebrew root for covering here is;

H3677 - כֶּסֶא kese’ – means ‘full moon’ or the full covering of the moon – that is when it is fully illumined!

Another Hebrew word used for moon is:

H3842 - לְבָנָה leḇanahrefers to the full moon when it is fully ‘white’ coming from the root word which means to be or become white and is used in:

Yeshayahu/Isaiah 24:23 “And the moon shall blush, and the sun shall be ashamed, for יהוה of hosts shall reign on Mount Tsiyon, and in Yerushalayim, and before His elders, in esteem!

This speaking once again of His second coming when the ‘white moon’ will be turned red – Blood Moon – at His Appointed Time!!!

Now why I am showing you these is to show you various words used to describe the moon and now through a couple of Scriptures I will too show you why month and moon are interchangeable and thought of as the same in the Hebraic mind:

Melaḵim Aleph/1 Kings 6:38 “And in the eleventh year, in the month Bul, the eighth month, the house was completed in all its matters and according to all its plans. Thus he built it for seven years.

Month – this is the Hebrew word H3394 - יָרֵחַ yarea, while the next word for month – is H2320 - חֹדֶשׁodesh.

Here in the same verse we have both words being used to describe the month, showing us that month and moon are interchangeably used in Scripture. Another example is in:

Melaḵim Aleph/1 Kings 8:2 “And all the men of Yisra’ĕl assembled to Sovereign Shelomoh at the festival in the month of Ěythanim, which is the seventh month.(colour coded as above)

Another witness that shows 2 verses referring to the same reference to a specific month/moon:

Melaḵim Aleph/1 Kings 6:1 “And it came to be, in the four hundred and eightieth year after the children of Yisra’ĕl had come out of the land of Mitsrayim, in the fourth year of the reign of Shelomoh over Yisra’ĕl, in the month of Ziw, which is the second month, that he began to build the House of יהוה.

The reference or definitive marker of time here for us is the month of Ziw – month here using the word - H2320 - חֹדֶשׁodesh, while in reference to the same month in:

Melaḵim Aleph/1 Kings 6:37 “In the fourth year the foundation of the House of יהוה was laid, in the month Ziw.”

Same month name but this time the word for month is H3394 - יָרֵחַ yarea.

If that is not enough for you, just one verse later I have a 3rd witness of both words being used in the same verse for the month:

Melaḵim Aleph/1 Kings 6:38 “And in the eleventh year, in the month Bul, the eighth month, the house was completed in all its matters and according to all its plans. Thus he built it for seven years.

Both yarea and odesh used in reference to the month showing us that moon and month are the same!

Now in clearing all that up, verse 2 here in Shemoth/Exodus 12 tells us that this month/new moon of their departure from Mitsrayim will be the beginning of new moons and it is the first of the year – in other words this is the beginning of the year. ‘Year’ in Hebrew is H8141 - שָׁנָה shanah’ and usually has a ה (hey) before it to make it ‘the year’ – ‘hashanah’ – In Hebrew the New Year is known as Rosh Hashanah – the ‘head’ of the year!

In this verse2 the phrase ‘it is the first new moon of the year for you’ is written as follows:

 

רִאשׁוֹן הוּא לָכֶם לְחָדְשֵׁי הַשָּׁנָה  – ‘rishon huw laḵam l’ḥadshey hashanah and broken down is as follows:

 

רִאשׁוֹןrishon – Strong’s H7223 which means, former, first, chief, before, beginning and this is from the root word ראֹשׁ rosh – Strong’s H7218 meaning, head, beginning, topas already discussed.

 

הוּאhuw – Strong’s H1931  which is a pronoun that means, he, she, it 

 

לָכֶםlaḵam – this is from the word אַתָּה attah – Strong’s H859 which means, you (masculine singular), and with the ‘lamed – לָ – being used as a preposition meaning, to, for, the construct of the word changes to the plural rendering it as meaning, for you (plural)’.

 

לְחָדְשֵׁיl’ḥadshey is from the root word חֹדֶשׁ ḥodesh – Strong’s H2320 meaning, new moon, month as already discussed.

 

הַשָּׁנָהhashanah – ‘the year’ from שָׁנָה shanah Strong’s H8141 meaning, a year, annual, yearly, annually.

 

The reason for breaking this down in this manner is to simply show that the clear instruction being given to Yisra’ĕl is that this first month will be for you (Yisra’ĕl) the month that begins the year!!!

In Rabbinical Judaism there are errors in their man made calendars that call Rosh Hashanah at the 1st of the 7th month, when it is Yom Teruah (Feast of Trumpets). In fact some rabbinic teachings have 4 ‘new years’ in the year to signify different seasons and agriculture. This is simply crazy and very confusing, which the Word of יהוה is not to those who will but just hear and obey! The Rabbinic way of naming the 7th month as the head of the year is in no way different to the major error that Christianity has done in replacing the 7th day Sabbath with the sun-worship practice of worshipping on the 1st day of the week, hence the pagan name of the day called after its man-driven purpose of falsified worship – Sun-Day! Both have tried to change – and I say tried to because no one can change יהוה’s order of Appointed Times as set in the Creation Week – Both Rabbinic Judaism and Christianity has attempted to change 7 for 1! Rosh Hashanah always was and is always at the 1st month – the month known as the month of Aḇiḇ - the month Yisra’ĕl came out of Mitsrayim! Aḇiḇ is referred to as the clear marker of which month will be the first in Chapter 13:4 and will briefly explain it in the context of where we are at in discussing the timing of the New Year:

What is Aḇiḇ (Aviv)?

Aḇiḇ refers to a stage that occurs in the development of the barley crops. The meaning of the word Aḇiḇ is the stage in the growth of grain when the seeds have reached full size and are filling with starch, but have not dried yet.

Shemoth/Exodus 9:31 “And the flax and the barley were smitten, for the barley was in the head and the flax was in bud.

The word used for ‘in the head’ is אָבִיב Aḇiḇ - Strong’s H24 which means, fresh young ears, fresh heads of grain, and indicates for us the stage of the barley at the time of the plague of hail. What is interesting for us to notice here is that the barley was damaged but as you read the next verse we see that the wheat and the spelt were not. This gives us clear indication that ‘Aḇiḇ’ is a stage of growth that has passed the early development of ‘green ears’, for as they develop they become lighter in colour and more brittle.

The reason that the barley was destroyed and the wheat was not is that the barley had reached the stage in its development called Aḇiḇ and as a result had become brittle enough to be damaged by the hail. In contrast, the wheat and spelt were still early enough in their development, at a stage when they were flexible and not susceptible to being damaged by hail. 

The first month of the year begins at the sighting of the first sliver of the new moon closest to the equinox, when the barley is ‘Aḇiḇ’ – or ‘ripe in the ear’. We have certainly taken note over the past few years in our own observations that the barley is ALWAYS ‘Aḇiḇ’ after the equinox (spring in Norther Hemisphere and autumn in Southern Hemisphere).

The timing of the beginning of the year is crucial, so that the rest of the year can be in sync with יהוה's correct seasons and that His Feasts take place at the correct times. What many fail to recognise is that by going simply according to a barley report alone is incorrect and not 100% Scriptural. While barley plays a significant role it is not the deciding factor alone that determines the year start.

Berěshith/Genesis 1:14 clearly tells us that the two lights in the expanse (sun and moon) are for signs and appointed times, and for days and years which teaches us our need to recognise the cycles of the sun and moon.

The sun divides the year into its four seasons and the moon is renewed monthly which give us the months. The timing of the first new moon must line up with the correct season, which is Aḇiḇ, when the ripening starts. Understanding that the sun divides the seasons, we are therefore able to take not that the new moon closest to the equinox (fall equinox here in southern hemisphere and spring equinox in the northern hemisphere) will be the beginning of months for us, in the season on Aḇiḇ. At the ‘turn of the year’ is when Sukkoth is held as it is the time of bringing in the fruit harvest (according to spring equinox in northern hemisphere). The ‘turn of the year’ is the time of the year when the sun ‘turns’ in its cycles and changes the seasons.

What the barley report does do for us is simply confirm the season that we are entering into or have entered in to and this not only marks for us the clear starting point but also carries great symbolic significance for us as we know that a phrase used very often in Scripture is, ‘he who has an ear to hear’, and what this shows us is the following: That when you are ripe in the ear – that is that when your ear is attentive to the very Living Word – the Torah (instructions) of יהוה, then you are able to begin your ‘journey’ of faith in the Living Word!

2-3 weeks after the beginning of the first month the barley moves on from being Aḇiḇ and is ready to be brought as a ‘wave-sheaf’ offering which is a sacrifice brought from the first stalks cut in the harvest and is brought on the day after the Sabbath during the Feast of Matzot (Unleavened Bread) – on the 1st day of the week known as First Fruits – ‘bikkurim’ as described in Wayyiqra/Leviticus 23:10-11.

Instructions for Pěsaḥ and Matzot (Passover and Unleavened Bread)

Verse 3-5 – on the 10th day of the 1st month – Lamb selection day!

A perfect year old lamb was to be selected from the flock of sheep or goats and kept for 4 days. Here we see the beautiful foreshadowing of the redemptive work of Messiah – the sinless Lamb who on the 10th day of the 1st month came into Yerushalayim and went to His Father’s house and was examined and questioned for 4 days where no one could find fault:

Luqas/Luke 23:13-15 “And Pilate, having called together the chief priests and the rulers and the people, 14 said to them, “You brought this Man to me, as one who turns away the people. And look, I have examined Him in your presence and have found no guilt in this Man regarding the charges which you make against Him, 15 and neither did Herodes, for I sent you back to him. And look, He has done none at all deserving death.

יהושע was a ‘year old lamb’ as He perfectly came to fulfil the 70 week prophecy of Dani’ěl. His ministry was 70 weeks and not 3 ½ years; which, if it was, would have rendered Him unable to be the Pěsaḥ Lamb!

Verse 6 – On the 14th all the congregation slay it between the evenings:

"Between the evenings": the word for "evening" is עֶרֶב ereḇ - Strong’s H6153 meaning, evening, twilight, sunset, and from the root it carries the idea of the time of day when it is becoming or growing dark (sunset/dusk), so it is done between the time we can first notice the decline of daylight and the time daylight transitions into night at sunset and so between the evenings can be better translated as between the sunsets which is a wonderful proof text for us as to the beginning and end of day – from sunset to sunset. Here the Pěsaḥ is as the 14th of the month is fading into the 15th. By the time of the second Temple, it was offered between the first and second evening oblation, which translates to the ninth hour (3:00 p.m.) on the 14th, which is exactly when יהושע was slain on Passover. Why the 14th? The way to write the number 14 in Hebrew (יד) is with the letters yod י (10) and dalet ד (4), which spell the word for "hand" H3027 - יָד yaḏ.

Indeed, יהוה had said He would stretch out His hand over Mitsrayim:

Shemoth/Exodus3:20 “And I shall stretch out My hand and smite Mitsrayim with all My wonders which I shall do in its midst. And after that he shall let you go. - and lay His hand on it:

Shemoth/Exodus 7:4 “And Pharaoh is not going to listen to you, and I shall lay My hand on Mitsrayim, and bring My divisions and My people, the children of Yisra’ĕl, out of the land of Mitsrayim by great judgments.

The Pěsaḥ/Passover lamb was therefore to be kept until the fullness of יהוה's hand (Messiah) comes. יהושע, thus, is the one who strikes Mitsrayim down!

All the assembly of the congregation shall slay it – we are all guilty for His death, yet He lay down His own life showing His intense love for us – taking our sin upon Himself. He died because of our sinfulness. He took our sins upon Himself and died our death. He is the Pěsaḥ/Passover Lamb. He is our redemption. No other sacrifice is needed for our sins. It is finished.

Verse 7-36  – Blood on the doorposts – יהושע is the door of His sheep (Yoḥanan/John 10:7) and it is His Blood that covers us and gives us access to His favour, mercy and shalom.

Putting the blood on the lintel and doorposts would in effect be spelling the letter – ח – ‘ḥet’ which is the first letter in the word for life, which is the Hebrew word חַי ḥay – Strong’s H2416 and means, life, alive, living, flowing, fresh, running; and the Torah or commands are to represent to us life and we know that we are to have the 10 words on our doorposts. While Christianity places much emphasis on being prepared for death, Mosheh commands us to put the words of the Torah on our doorposts, for the commandments are ‘life to us’:

Deḇarim/Deuteronomy 32:47 “For it is not a worthless Word for you, because it is your life, and by this Word you prolong your days on the soil which you pass over the Yardĕn to possess.

The Word being spoken of here is as mentioned in the preceding verse – the Words of the Torah – The Torah is ‘life’ – יהושע Messiah is the Living Torah – the Word made flesh and it is His Blood that we have applied to the door of our hearts – for He knocks and anyone who opens will have the Living Torah come and dwell in them. The Torah is all about life – it represents life and shows us how we are to live here and now – the dead do not praise יהוה (Tehillah/Psalm 115:17).

In the ancient pictographic symbols of this word, we are given a greater insight in understanding how יהושע Messiah is THE LIFE! This word - חַי ḥay in the ancient script look like this:

yadchet

et חַ

The ancient script has this letter as chet which is a tent wall’, and carries a meaning of separation’, as a tent wall separates two halves of the tent; or it can also reflect the outside walls that separate the people inside from that which is outside and so can also symbolise protection and security to those inside, while picturing a cutting off of those who are outside. Hence this letter can mean ‘established, secure’ as well as ‘cut off, separated from’. As a tent wall we are also able to recognise the picture of stones being built up to make a complete wall.

Yod – י

The ancient script has this letter as yad which is ‘an arm and hand’ and carries the meaning of ‘work, make, throw’, from the primary functions of the arm and hand, and it also represents worship or giving thanks in the extending of hands as a gesture of this. The work of one’s hands is the basic meaning of this letter!

From this ancient pictographic lettering of the word for LIFE we are clearly able to see how by the work of Messiah – the outstretched arm and hand of Elohim, we as living stones, are built up in Him as the Dwelling Place of the Living Elohim!

So while emphasis is placed on the ‘afterlife’ by the mainstream church – what we must realise is that we are to guard our life that we have been given in our Master, right here and now – for Messiah came to give us life abundantly and have no fear of death – for He has conquered death!

What matters is how we ‘live’ and how our lives are to be a living praise to Him now!

The Hebrew word used ‘doorposts’ is מְזוּזָה mezuzah – Strong’s H4201 which means, doorpost, gate post. This word is used 19 times in the Scriptures and is used for the gateposts of the city of Azzah (Gaza), which Shimshon carried away together with the gate, which is a symbolic picture of the authority of the enemy being carried away and being destroyed!

This word is used for the gateposts of the Tabernacle court, as well as the gateposts of the Temple that Shelomoh built, as well as those described by Yeḥezqěl in referring to the Millennial Temple. In Shemoth/Exodus 12:7, 22-23 we see how the Yisra’ĕlites applied the blood of the lamb to the doorposts of their homes.

This word is also used to describe a servant who declared his love for his master after being released in the 7th year. If the servant desired to stay then he would be brought to the doorpost and his master would pierce his ear and the servant would belong to his master forever! We are also instructed to write the commands on our doorposts, as seen in:

Deḇarim/Deuteronomy 6:9And you shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.”

Deḇarim/Deuteronomy 11:20and shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates

While we can certainly see that the term מְזוּזָה mezuzah – Strong’s H4201 means doorpost, what we find today is that some people market and sell what they call a ‘mezuzah’, and what they are selling is a small handmade item that has a piece of paper rolled up inside with the commands written on them, and this can be attached to the doorposts of one’s home. While the idea may sound inviting, what we take note of here is that mezuzah simply means ‘doorpost’ and everyone has doorposts, and they do not need to buy a marketed product, but rather just obey the Word and write the commands on their doorposts. This can be done in many creative ways while not neglecting the command, as we have taken the 10 words of Elohim in Hebrew and written them with a wood burning tool on the doorposts of our front door, which certainly causes a great number of discussions that can be an opening for many to come to know the commands of our Elohim, while at the same time always being a reminder to our whole family that we are to always guard His commands, and that He protects of going out and coming in!

 

Use hyssop (verse 22) – The use of the hyssop plant was a prophetic picture of the impaling of Messiah:

Yoḥanan/John 19:29-30 “A bowl of sour wine stood there, and they filled a sponge with sour wine, put it on hyssop, and held it to His mouth. 30 So when יהושע took the sour wine He said, “It has been accomplished!” And bowing His head, He gave up His spirit.

Without the applying of the Blood of Messiah in our lives we have no cleansing and forgiveness! 

 

 

hyssop

Hyssop - A woody Eurasian plant (Hyssopus officinalis) having spikes of small blue flowers and aromatic leaves used in perfumery and as a condiment. The Hebrew word for hyssop is - אֵזוֹב ezo – Strong’s H231 and was used for sprinkling in some of the sacrifices and purifications of the Yisra’ĕlites. In consequence of its detergent qualities, or from its being associated with the purificatory services, It is described in Melaḵim Aleph/1 Kings 4:33 as growing on or near walls. Besides being thus fit for sprinkling, having cleansing properties and growing on walls, the true hyssop should be a plant common to Mitsrayim, Sinai and Yisra’ĕl, and capable of producing a stick three or four feet long, since on a stalk of hyssop the sponge of vinegar was held up to Messiah on the stake. Yoḥanan/John 19:29 “A bowl of sour wine stood there, and they filled a sponge with sour wine, put it on hyssop, and held it to His mouth.

Dawiḏ also used the term ‘hyssop’ – ‘Purge me with ezo as a picture of cleansing and forgiveness by the Blood of Messiah:

Tehillah/Psalm 51:7 “Cleanse me with hyssop, and I am clean; Wash me, and I am whiter than snow.

The 2 doorposts can also represent the 2 houses of Yisra’ĕlYehuḏah and Yisra’ĕl (Ephrayim), being brought together by the Blood of the Lamb – our Messiah!

Verse 8 – eat the flesh on that night with unleavened bread and bitter herbs:

On that night is referring the 15th of the 1st month (in the month the barley is Aḇiḇ), which marks the beginning of the Feast of Matzot (Unleavened Bread). When the Lamb has been prepared on the 14th then after sunset, which starts the new day of the 15th we have the Pěsaḥ/Passover Meal. That which we eat is as follows – roast lamb, unleavened bread and bitter herbs – that is as simple and wonderful as it gets – I say this because that is it! Many people follow a prescribed order of events at the Pěsaḥ meal, known as the Seder meal, that has been developed through the centuries with many traditions and prescribed prayers. Although this may be very insightful and carry great well-presented meanings, I fear that these traditions have become ‘law’ for many, and as we look at the Word we find the clear instructions for us in keeping this Feast of Pěsaḥ/Passover and Matzot/Unleavened Bread.

The Pěsaḥ meal is eaten on the first night of Matzot and the requirements are: lamb, bitter herbs and unleavened bread. Other delicacies can certainly be added to enhance this joyous occasion provided that there is no yeast or alcohol in them – no alcohol, for the modern form of making alcohol today is by the use of adding yeast to invoke the fermentation process!

Eat the flesh – They were to eat the ‘flesh’ or rather eat the meat – that is the ‘body’ of the animal. This is a prophetic foreshadow of the words of Messiah:

Yoḥanan/John 6:53-56 “יהושע therefore said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Aḏam and drink His blood, you possess no life in yourselves. 54 “He who eats My flesh and drinks My blood possesses everlasting life, and I shall raise him up in the last day. 55 “For My flesh is truly food, and My blood is truly drink. 56 “He who eats My flesh and drinks My blood stays in Me, and I in him.

It is on this night that we ‘eat the flesh and drink the blood’ of Messiah! For many this seems barbaric yet how can we dispute the very words of Messiah – the very words that caused many to stumble. When we partake of the unleavened bread and the Lamb on this night we are symbolically eating of the flesh of Messiah that provided for us in order for us to become one with Him. It is also on this night that we partake of the ‘cup’ – that is to drink of His Blood – by drinking of the fruit of the vine – all in remembrance of Him. At the time of the exodus this meal and the meals that each generation would eat each year before Messiah came foreshadowed His redemptive work. Now after His death and resurrection we have this meal as a remembrance of His work through His body and blood!

Fruit of the vine is unfermented grape juice – that which is first off the vine – the fresh juice from the vine that has had no time to ferment and contains no alcohol or yeast, for Messiah was without sin!

The cup of remembrance and bread of remembrance we partake of once a year at Pěsaḥ:

Sha’ul tells us:

Qorintiyim Aleph/1 Corinthians 11:26 “For as often as you eat this bread and drink this cup, you proclaim the death of the Master until He comes.

As we have already discussed, the Torah represents ‘life’ and not death, yet once a year we proclaim and remember the death of Messiah – the very body that was broken and blood that was shed for you and me. To do this more often would be in direct violation to the Word of Elohim, for we proclaim Messiah risen each and every day as we live out His Torah fully unto Him! Those who are rehearsing a twisted tradition rooted in pagan sun-worship of this ‘remembrance’ more than what is required and instructed in Scripture are sadly proclaiming the death of Messiah over and over when Sha’ul makes it clear we are to do this only once a year – as often as you have the Pěsaḥ/Passover meal – no more than this. A word that had developed over time in a skew attempt at worshipping the Saviour is called ‘communion’ which is not found anywhere in Scripture!

We are commanded to guard this service at the appointed time each year – do not add or take away – we do not get to ‘worship’ Elohim any way we choose and think it is worship – He has given us His instructions that we are to guard forever – from generation to generation. So in a nutshell this is what we do for the Pěsaḥ Meal and Matzot:

  • 14th of the 1st – prepare the Meal and get rid of all leaven from our homes (check your product labels for any yeast products)
  • 15th of the 1st  - on the night of the 15th (that is at the end of the 14th at sunset) we come together and eat the meal which consists of:
  1. oRoast Lamb, bitter herbs and Matzot (unleavened bread)
  2. oFruit of the Vine – ‘grape juice’

We also recite the story of the Exodus, and on the 1st day (15th) we have a set-apart gathering, and on the 7th day we have a set-apart gathering. For the entire week we eat unleavened bread (no yeast) – see the sermon titled, ‘Get rid of the leaven’ from our website (http://atfotc.com) under the sermons 2011/2012 menu or by clicking on the following link:

http://atfotc.com/index.php/our-sermons/sermons-2011-2012/226-get-rid-of-the-leaven-matthew-16-1-20

Only those who have accepted Messiah as Master and Saviour and have repented and been immersed (which by the circumcision of Messiah we are buried with Him ‘in immersion’ – and also raised with Him through belief) can partake in the Pěsaḥ/Passover Meal, as it was only those who applied the blood of the lamb on the doorposts that did not see death but were ‘passed over’ and were redeemed under the blood!

This plague hit Mitsrayim hard – there was a great weeping all over as the firstborn of every family of the Mitsrians were struck dead after which Pharaoh called for Mosheh and Aharon and told them to get out, and as they were instructed so they received a great amount of gold and silver and garments.

Verses 14-17:

 

There are a number of key elements that stand out here in this passage I have just read, and first off we need to realise that it is a ‘remembrance’ – which is the Hebrew word זִכָּרוֹןzikkaronH2146 meaning ‘memorial, commemoration or remembrance’ and comes from the root word זָכַרzaḵarH2142 which means ‘to remember, or be mindful, or bring to remembrance’.

There is NO WAY that we, as set apart and chosen people of Elohim, must neglect to remember to Keep His Feasts!!! They should be in the forefront of our thinking, constantly remembering to guard and keep ALL His Appointed Times – for His Feasts also help us to continually be reminded of His Mighty work of redemption that He has brought us through His own Blood, and a clear reminder that He is coming again to fetch His ready Bride, that He has called out, cleansed and clothed with righteousness!!!

When יהושע Messiah had His last meal with His taught ones He told them, when taking the cup and bread, that they were to do this in ‘remembrance’ of Him, which Sha’ul also reminds us of in Qorintiyim Aleph/1 Corinthians 11:23-25, showing us how this lines up with Shemoth/Exodus 12:14 with the instruction that this day shall become a remembrance. This has both the meaning of how it is a day that must be continually remembered, as well as how it would become a remembrance to us; for when Messiah was impaled and shed His Blood for us, this day became an everlasting remembrance, a continued remembrance of how we proclaim His death until He comes again!

Secondly, we are to ‘celebrate it as a festival to יהוה’!!! You cannot remember this feast without CELEBRATING it!!! The Hebrew word translated as ‘celebrate’ is the verb חָגַג ḥagag – Strong’s H2287 which means, to make a pilgrimage, keep a pilgrimage, celebrate a feast, observe a feast, dance’, and the Hebrew root word translated as ‘festival’ is the noun חַג ḥag – Strong’s H2282 which we have already discussed in this commentary and means, a festival, feast, sacrifice, festival gathering, solemnity, which comes from the root verb חָגַג ḥagag! We are to חָגַג ḥagag a חַג ḥag, so to speak! The word solemnity means, a solemn event or occasion, formal or ceremonious observance of an occasion or event.

This Feast is a formal observance of this event, done so with great joy, and even dancing!!!

It is also a ‘solemn event’, reminding us that this is not just some regular meeting, but a formal occasion that calls for our utmost respect, attention and reverent observance; and this is what all His Feast are for us! Understanding this should cause us to make sure that we give the proper respect and commitment to all of the Feasts of יהוה. This means that we should never make excuses not to perform them or be absent from attending them, as well as making sure that we are always punctual with our complete observance. Many people will never miss a business meeting or even a social with their colleagues and friends, yet will often shrug off the need to show proper respect for gathering when called to. Let us be reminded how we are to treat His Feasts with the utmost respect and joyful reverence, for these are our ‘scheduled meetings’ with our Master and Redeemer!

This is an everlasting law –not a burdensome law – as we are commanded to have a great feast! For seven days we are to eat ‘unleavened bread’ – this is a command! And the Hebrew root word translated as ‘unleavened bread’ is מַצָּה matstsah –Strong’s H4682. Bread without leaven – what I want to look at a little more closely, is what we are commanded to get rid of. We are told that we are to cause leaven to cease from our houses, and here the Hebrew root word translated as the ‘leaven’ we are to cause to cease is שְׂאֹר se’or – Strong’s H7603 – ‘leaven, swelling by fermentation’ and comes from the word שָׁאַר sha’ar – Strong’s H7604 which means, ‘to remain, left over and to swell up’. שְׂאֹר se’or is that which causes fermentation or leavening. שְׂאֹר se’or, in the ancient times, it was understood as being the left over batch of old dough that had been left long enough for fermentation to be reached, and sometimes is called sourdough or yeast.

This remaining old fermented left over would be added to new batch of dough to assist in the bread making process. שְׂאֹר se’or is not limited to bread alone, but generally refers to that which causes fermentation, and once added to a product it becomes ‘leavened’. We are commanded to not consume that which is leavened,  which is the Hebrew noun חָמֵץ ḥamets – Strong’s H2557 which means, that which is leavened, which comes from the primitive root verb חָמֵץ ḥamets – Strong’s H2556 – which means, ‘to be sour or leavened, or that which is leavened’. חָמֵץ ḥamets is not the leaven itself, but rather that which had been leavened, and is typically understood as bread that has been leavened. What is worth taking note of however, is that the root word translated as ‘vinegar’ is derived from the verb חָמֵץ ḥamets – Strong’s H2556, and that is the Hebrew noun that is spelt the same, but has different vowel pointings חֹמֶץ ḥomets – Strong’s H2558, which is a clear indication for us that ‘vinegar’ is something that should be removed from our homes during Matzot. It is no coincidence that this word is closely related, as it pictures for us the great work of our Master, who removed the bitterness of sin!

Tehillah/Psalm 69:21 “And they gave me gall for my food, and for my thirst they gave me vinegar to drink.

This verse in Tehillim was a prophetic wording of that which would be done to the Master when he was on the stake, as we see in:

Yoḥanan/John 19:29 “A bowl of sour wine stood there, and they filled a sponge with sour wine, put it on hyssop, and held it to His mouth.

Here we are able to see a clear picture of the removal of the last of the ‘leavened/soured’ product, representing our sin and lawlessness, as after this we see in the next verse the clear words of Messiah declaring that the cleansing has been done, as He Himself had caused leaven to cease, before the great Feast:

Yoḥanan/John 19:30 “So when יהושע took the sour wine He said, “It has been accomplished!” And bowing His head, He gave up His spirit.

The Greek word used here for ‘sour wine’ is ὄξος oxos – Strong’s G3690 and is the word that is used in the LXX (Septuagint – Greek translation of the Tanak) as the equivalent for the Hebrew word ḥomets – Strong’s H2558.

What is worth noting at this time is the notion that many have, in saying that alcoholic wine is something that is permitted during Pěsaḥ and Matzot. In Hebrew there are 3 words that are used in referring to wine or grape juice, which is either fermented or unfermented. The Hebrew word that is typically translated as ‘new wine’ is תִּירוֹשׁ tiyrosh – Strong’s H8492 which means, fresh or new wine, grape juice, must. ‘Must’ is the expressed juice of fruit, especially grapes, or is understood as being the pulp and skins of crushed grapes, hence this word תִּירוֹשׁ tiyrosh is understood as fresh grape juice that has just been squeezed out! The word that is translated more frequently as ‘wine’ is the Hebrew root word יַיִן yayin – Strong’s H3196 which means, banquet, wine, grape. While most assume that ‘yayin’ is used exclusively in reference to fermented grape juice or alcoholic wine, we need to realise that there are many references in Scripture where this word can also be understood as being grape juice. While there are many examples I could mention, I will just highlight a couple, to show that ‘yayin’ can refer interchangeably to both fermented and unfermented grape juice. Here are a couple of examples of verses where the word ‘yayin’ is used, yet when looking at the context, needs to be understood as meaning fresh grape juice and not a fermented alcoholic drink.

Yeshayahu/Isaiah 16:10 “Gladness is taken away, and joy from the orchard; in the vineyards there is no singing, nor shouting; No treaders tread out wine in their presses; I have made their acclamation cease.

The context of this passage relates to Elohim’s judgement upon Mo’aḇ for their pride, and part of this judgement is in the removal of gladness and joy from the orchards and vineyards.

Here we are told that there is no singing or rejoicing and that there are no treaders to tread out the wine in their presses! While ‘yayin’ is used here, it is clear that this reference is referring to that which is tread out in the press, which is grapes – hence there will be no grape juice. Some may argue that this is a poetic imagery of allowing the grape juice or ‘yayin’ to become alcoholic.

We see a similar passage in:

Yirmeyahu/Jeremiah 48:33 “Joy and gladness have been taken away from the orchard and from the land of Mo’aḇ. And I have made wine to cease from the winepresses. No one treads with shouting – the shouting is no shouting!

 Once again we are given the imagery of the treading of grapes to cease!

In another clear example of ‘yayin’ not meaning an alcoholic beverage is seen in:

Ěḵah/Lamentations 2:11-12My eyes are spent with tears, My inward parts ferment, My bile has been poured on the ground Because of the destruction of the daughter of my people, As children and the infants languish In the streets of the city. 12 They say to their mothers, “Where is grain and wine?” As they languish like the wounded In the streets of the city, As their life is poured out in their mothers’ bosom.

Once again the word יַיִן yayin is used here and translated as ‘wine’, yet we need to look at who it is who is asking for this. In verse 11 we see how the children and infants languish in the streets! Infants – that is small babies and toddlers! The children and infants say to their mothers – ‘where is grain and wine?’. We need to understand the clear context here – there is absolutely no way that a child or infant is going to ask their mother for alcoholic wine!!!

While there are many other references I could make, I simply wanted to highlight that we can in no way limit the Hebrew word יַיִן yayin as that which refers only to a fermented grape juice or alcoholic wine, but that while it certainly does refer to this in many instances, it can also be rendered as the simple reference to fresh or unfermented grape juice.

The 3rd Hebrew word that we find in Scripture that is used in connection with wine or strong fermented drink is שֵׁכָר sheḵar – Strong’s H7941 which means, intoxicating drink, liquor, string drink, which comes from the root verb שָׁכַר shaḵar – Strong’s H7937 which means, to be or become drunk, drunken, make yourself drunk.

What is also interesting to take note of is that nowhere in Scripture is any reference made to the Cup that the Master took when He had His Last Meal with His taught ones as being alcoholic. In fact there is no mention of any wine or grape Juice, yet we understand that the grape juice, or understood as the ‘blood of the grapes’, refers to the Blood of Messiah.

We partake of the Cup by drinking ‘grape juice’ in remembrance of His Blood that was shed for us, and we realise that He Himself has taken away the שְׂאֹר se’or – that which causes fermentation, when He took the ‘sour wine’ and then said it is finished!

Coming back therefore to the Feast of Pěsaḥ and Matzot, we find clear reference to making sure that we too cause שְׂאֹר se’or to cease from our homes, and this includes that which causes bread to rise or ferment, as well as any vinegar or sour wine! In the passage of Shemoth/Exodus 12:15 that we read, the instruction is clear, “you cause leaven to cease from your houses”. The Hebrew word that is translated as the phrase’ cause to cease’ is שָׁבַת shaḇath – Strong’s H7673 which means, to cease, desist, rest, observe, observe the rest, put an end, and here it is written in the ‘hiphil’ verb tense, which expresses a causative action can be understood as meaning, to cease or put an end to, remove, exterminate, destroy, cause to desist from. We are therefore commanded, in a manner of speaking, to ‘EXTERMINATE THE LEAVEN’!!!

While we do this practical application, we realise that in the practical observance of this command, we are reminded of how we are to rid ourselves of much leaven that can cause us to become full of pride and sin, which we need to cleanse ourselves of:

Qorintiyim Aleph/1 Corinthians 5:7-8 “Therefore cleanse out the old leaven, so that you are a new lump, as you are unleavened. For also Messiah our Passover was offered for us. 8 So then let us observe the festival, not with old leaven, nor with the leaven of evil and wickedness, but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth.

The Greek word for ‘leaven’ is ζύμη zumē – Strong’s G2219 and is the Greek word used in the LXX (Septuagint – Greek translation of the Tanak) as the equivalent to the Hebrew word שְׂאֹר se’or, and it is this ‘old leaven’ that we are to cleanse out and cause to cease from our dwellings. This Hebrew word שָׁבַת shaḇath  – Strong’s H7673, meaning, cause to cease, exterminate is also used in the ‘hiphil’ verb, which is the causative tense in another passage of Scripture which I feel is pertinent to this teaching tonight:

Wayyiqra/Leviticus 2:13 “And season with salt every offering of your grain offering, and do not allow the salt of the covenant of your Elohim to be lacking from your grain offering. With all your offerings you bring salt.

The phrase, ‘to be lacking’ is translated from this Hebrew word שָׁבַת shaḇath – Strong’s H7673, and so here we see a very vital lesson being given to us at this time of the year! While we are to exterminate the leaven, we must never lack salt! All your offerings you bring with salt! Romiyim/Romans 12:1 tells us that we are to offer up our bodies as a living offering, set-apart and well pleasing to Elohim for this is our reasonable worship. Having said that, it is clear then that if we are to be an offering, living that is, unto יהוה, then we too are to be salted – for all offerings must have salt!

The grain offering in the Hebrew is known as מִנְחָה minḥah – Strong’s H4503 and means, ‘a gift, tribute, meal offering, present. This is a picture of something that a bride brings to please her husband! There is no blood in this offering and therefore does not  represent atonement for sin, however it does still represent the one bringing it and is symbolic of the work of our hands, as it is prepared by the one bringing the offering. Once we accept the atoning work of Messiah, we must not stop there, but must rather continue daily in bringing Him our all as we recognise clearly that what we do daily does count.

Mattithyahu/Matthew 5:13 “You are the salt of the earth, but if the salt becomes tasteless, how shall it be seasoned? For it is no longer of any use but to be thrown out and to be trodden down by men.

Marqos (Mark) 9:49-50 “For everyone shall be seasoned with fire, and every offering shall be seasoned with salt. 50 “Salt is good, but if the salt becomes tasteless, how shall you season it? Have salt in yourselves, and be at peace among one another.

Luqas (Luke) 14:34-35 “The salt is good, but if the salt becomes tasteless, with what shall it be seasoned? 35 “It is not fit for land, nor for manure, they throw it out. He who has ears to hear, let him hear!

In the passages we have just read we see the words of יהושע speaking of salt; In Mattithyahu it is at the beginning of the Sermon on the Mount; In Marqos it is joined immediately to not causing offense or others to sin and in Luqas it is supplemented to a series of sayings regarding the conditions for discipleship. In other words it is clear that salt carries with it significant meaning in our lives being offered up as a daily living offering. But why salt, what is it about salt that gives the offerings as being acceptable and carrying such depth of meaning?

In the offerings salt was used as a preservative to typify the eternal nature of the ‘Covenant of Salt’ existing between יהוה and Yisra’ĕl. The term “covenant of salt” refers to an everlasting ordinance, and is a figurative form of expression founded upon the conservative property of salt which keeps meat from corruption.

The context of יהושע’s words in calling us the ‘salt of the earth’ was linked to persecution, for יהושע tells us that we are the salt of the earth straight after telling us how blessed we are when we are persecuted for righteousness’ sake and for the sake of His Name. It is the very persecutions and trials that will ‘grind’ us or rather ‘pulverise’ us to becoming effective salt that can be used.

If we undergo the grinding process of His Word – Living obediently to it in a disobedient world, we must put in to practice straight away that which we learn and discover or else the purpose will be lost; and Yaʽaqoḇ tells us to consider it pure joy when we face trials of many kinds, as it matures us. If we complain instead, sadly the salt of the Word being worked out in us will be wasted!

With Salt being a reference to the everlasting ordinances, we are able to see how being ‘seasoned with salt’, gives a clear picture of us being a people who walk according to the Covenants of promise that we have been grafted in to by the Blood of Messiah. When we realise that we are to ‘never lack salt’ we must understand that we are to be a people who never stray from the Covenants of which we are an integral part of; and therefore we walk according to the Renewed Covenant that יהוה has written upon our hearts! Ensuring that we walk in and stay in the Covenant, through our complete loving obedience to His commands, so that our words will be words that are seasoned with salt and we shall be able to boldly answer those who ask us about the hope/expectation that we have in our Master, יהושע Messiah!

Qolasim/Colossians 4:6 “Let your word always be with favour, seasoned with salt, so that you know how you ought to answer each one.

Our words can only be seasoned with salt when our actions are in line with true obedience to the Torah of Elohim!

For this Feast of Pesah/Matzot we are to have a set-apart gathering on the 1st and 7th day!

Let us briefly look at these two words that are translated as ‘set-apart gathering

A – Set-Apart:

This is the Hebrew word  קֹדֶשqoḏesh/ko-ḏeshStrong’s H6944 – and it means ‘apartness/ consecrated/ dedicated/ that which is dedicated and separated unto יהוה’. The word is really self-explanatory and carries with it great weight in its identification of truly setting something or someone apart from another with a clear distinction of being marked as separate and apart from the rest.

B – Gatherings:

This is the Hebrew word: מִקְרָא miqraStrong’s H4744, meaning: assembly/ group/ convocation/ a collective of people gathered for a purpose/a calling together, which comes from the root word קָרָא qara – Strong’s H7121 meaning, ‘proclaim, call, read, summons, invite, to be called out.

The Sabbaths and Appointed Times of יהוה are the set-apart gatherings that are to be proclaimed and kept!

Verse 15 & 19 – Shall be cut off!

The phrase that I want to highlight here from verses 15 & 19 is: shall be cut off, which is written in Hebrew as follows: וְנִכְרְתָהveniḵrethah, which comes from the root verb כָּרַת karath – Strong’s H3772 which means, to cut off, cut down, eliminate, kill, cut covenant and it is written in the ‘niphal’ verb tense which is the passive of the ‘qal’ verb tense and expresses the reflexive action, which has the clear meaning of being cut off or cut down or having failed. This expresses the reflexive action for disobedience and is a stern warning against having ears that do not hear! It is this ‘being cut off’, or the real danger thereof, that so many people are totally oblivious to as they are not listening attentively to the Word and are not guarding the Covenant! As I was looking at this phrase, “he shall be cut off’ I was once again reminded of how important it is for us to hear, guard and do the commands of Elohim, lest we find that we are cut off and destroyed by fire.

The Hebrew word root word כָּרַת karath – Strong’s H3772 is used well over 280 times in Scripture, yet in this form: וְנִכְרְתָהveniḵrethah, it is written 18 times in 18 verses in the Tanak, with 16 of these being found with the Torah (Berěshith/Genesis to Deḇarim/Deuteronomy) and the other two times it is found in the prophets.

I thought it would be best to present a brief study on some of these verses in order to highlight the need for us to be a hearing people that guard the Covenant that we have been grafted in to as we continue to stay in the Master by obeying His voice so that we are not cut off and are destroyed!

The first time we see this root word כָּרַת karath – Strong’s H3772 being written in the form: וְנִכְרְתָהveniḵrethah is in:

Berěshith/Genesis 17:13-14He who is born in your house, and he who is bought with your silver, has to be circumcised. So shall My covenant be in your flesh, for an everlasting covenant. 14 “And an uncircumcised male child, who is not circumcised in the flesh of his foreskin, his life shall be cut off from his people – he has broken My covenant.

In Chapter 15 of Berěshith/Genesis we are able to see the Covenant that יהוה made with Aḇraham and in Chapter 17 in Berěshith/Genesis we are given the instructions that were commanded and to be obeyed as a ‘sign of the Covenant’, where every male child was to be circumcised and any male child who was not circumcised would be cut off, for they would have broken the Covenant. Without going in to greater detail on these instructions regarding circumcision and what it means for us today, in Messiah, what we do recognise is that any male that did not obey this command was to be cut off. What we must recognise, as the body of Messiah, is that we still adhere to this Torah, yet our circumcision is done not with the hands of men but is from above and when we are immersed in the Name of יהושע Messiah we receive a circumcision from above, causing us to be grafted in to the Covenants of Promise that we were once far off from.

For more on this topic as well as other key factors regrading Covenant, please see the article, “UNDERSTANDING COVENANT!” which can be found on our site under the ‘articles’ menu or by clicking on the following link:

http://atfotc.com/index.php/2012-04-19-08-30-28/view/653-understanding-covenant

Without going in to detail, which you can get more info on from the article that is linked above, what we must recognise is that when יהוה made Covenant with Aḇram, He made it while Aḇram was uncircumcised and then He gave him the ‘sign’ of the Covenant which would be to ‘THE SEED (singular)’! The Seed is Messiah, which Sha’ul teaches us clearly about in Romiyim/Romans. Every make child from the time of receiving the sign of the Covenant had to be circumcised at 8 days old until Messiah, The Seed, who would secure the ‘sign’ of the Covenant and at His death He would, by His Blood, cause us to enter in to Covenant, which we enter in to by being immersed into His Name. I therefore make it clear that this Torah is not nullified in any way but perfectly met in Messiah and our ability to guard this Torah is to ensure that anyone who desires to be a part of the Body of Messiah, eat the Pěsaḥ Meal and be grafted in to the Covenants of Promise, MUST be immersed in the Name of Messiah!!! In order to be grafted in, by the Blood of Messiah, to the covenants of promise that we were once far off from, one needs to repent and be immersed in the Name of יהושע Messiah, and we therefore understand that anyone who has not been immersed in the Name of יהושע Messiah cannot partake in the Passover Meal, as it is clear in the Torah that ‘no uncircumcised’ may eat of it (Shemoth/Exodus 12:48). Messiah makes it clear that unless we ‘eat of Him we have no part in Him’, making it clear that we are to be immersed in His Name in order to enter in to His Covenant and partake of the Covenant Meal of Pěsaḥ (Passover). There are so many today who claim to be of the body of Messiah yet they have not been immersed in His True Name, nor do they guard to keep the Feast of Pěsaḥ and Matzot (Unleavened Bread).

Having said that, let us take get back to the 2 verses we find in this week’s Torah Portion, where we see this word וְנִכְרְתָהveniḵrethah being used:

Shemoth/Exodus 12:15 “Seven days you shall eat unleavened bread. Indeed on the first day you cause leaven to cease from your houses. For whoever eats leavened bread from the first day until the seventh day, that being shall be cut off from Yisra’ĕl.

Shemoth/Exodus 12:19 “For seven days no leaven is to be found in your houses, for if anyone eats what is leavened, that same being shall be cut off from the congregation of Yisra’ĕl, whether sojourner or native of the land.

In the above two verses that we see from Shemoth/Exodus 12 it is made very clear that anyone who does not guard the clear command to not eat any leaven during the 7 days of Matzot will be cut off! If you eat leavened bread during Matzot/Unleavened Bread you will be cut off!

Verse 20 – Eat Unleavened Bread! While we certainly must highlight the clear command to not eat that which is leavened we must also not forget the clear command to eat unleavened bread every day during the 7 days of Matzot!!!

Verse 23 – יהוה would pass on to smite the Mitsrites!

Shemoth/Exodus 12:23 “And יהוה shall pass on to smite the Mitsrites, and shall see the blood on the lintel and on the two doorposts, and יהוה shall pass over the door and not allow the destroyer to come into your houses to smite you.

In these clear instructions given to Yisra’ĕl in regards to the application of the blood being applied to the doorposts, יהוה gave a very severe and clear warning that the houses which did not have the blood of the Passover Lamb on the doorposts, would face the death in the house, while those who had done as commanded would be ‘passed over’!

The Hebrew word translated here in this verse as ‘pass on’ in reference to the smiting of the Mitsrites is עָבַר aḇar – Strong’s H5674, from which the word for ‘wrath’ - עֶבְרָה eḇrah – Strong’s H5678 comes!

The Hebrew word translated as ‘pass’ in reference to יהוה passing over the door of the houses that applied the blood of the Passover Lamb is פָּסַח pasaḥ – Strong’s H6452 which means, to pass or spring over, and it is from this verb that we get the Hebrew word פֶּסַח pesaḥ - Strong’s H6543 which means, Passover, Passover offerings, the festival of Passover.

The warning here was clear back then, and the same warning still applies today. יהוה would ‘pass on’ and ‘smite’ the Mitsrites, but ‘pass’ over those who had been covered by the blood!!! Herein lies a great truth – be covered by the Blood or be destroyed! We know that the Master יהושע Messiah tells us that unless we eat the flesh of the Son of Aḏam and drink His blood, we possess no life in ourselves, and it is through our immersion in His Name that we are given access to the partaking of the Passover Meal and Matzot, by which we are marked in our worship and sealed in Him, as long as we ‘stay in Him’. Having been grafted in by the Blood of Messiah through our immersion and partaking of His Feasts, we stay in Him by guarding His word, keeping His Sabbath and Feasts and are able to stand firm before the Son of Aḏam.  As Aḇraham ‘crossed over’ the Euphrates and became the first ‘Hebrew’, we too realise that we who have ‘Come out of Baḇel (which is located ‘across the river’) have crossed over into the marvellous Light of the Master, and being hidden in Him are appointed deliverance and not wrath!

Tas’loniqim Aleph/ 1 Thessalonians 5:9 “Because Elohim did not appoint us to wrath, but to obtain deliverance through our Master יהושע Messiah

As we consider the Day of the wrath of יהוה approaching near, we are able to hear the clear warning: CROSS OVER OR YOU WILL BE CROSSED OVER, or PASSOVER OR YOU WILL BE PASSED OVER!

Those who neglect the urgent need to keep the Sabbaths and Feasts of יהוה do not possess life and the wrath of Elohim remains on them:

Yoḥanan/John 3:36He who believes in the Son possesses everlasting life, but he who does not obey the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of Elohim remains on him.

This is a great verse that shows that ‘belief’ alone shall not save you, but the obeying of the commands will hide you in the day of His wrath!

Mal’aḵi/Malachi 3:2 “And who is able to bear the day of His coming, and who is able to stand when He appears? For He is like the fire of a refiner, and like the soap of a launderer.

Tehillah/Psalm 76:7 “You, You are to be feared; and who would stand in Your presence when You are displeased?

The Hebrew word for ‘displeased’ here is אַף aph – Strong’s H639 which I described earlier as also meaning ‘wrath’.

We are either those who have passed over and are marked by the Blood of the Passover Lamb, or we shall be passed over and destroyed in the wrath of Elohim!

When looking at the Hebrew word for ‘wrath’ that comes from the root verb meaning to ‘pass over’ or ‘pass through’ in the ancient pictographic script, in the context of the coming day of the wrath of יהוה, we are able to understand more of the clear prophetic warnings given to us in Scripture:

This Hebrew word for ‘wrath’ - עֶבְרָה eḇrah – Strong’s H5678 in the ancient script looks like this:

heyreshbeitayin

Ayin - עֶ:

This is the letter ‘ayin’ and in the ancient alphabet this letter is pictured as ayin, which is ‘an eye’ and represents the idea of seeing and watching, as well as knowledge, as the eye is the window of knowledge.

Bet - בְ:

The ancient script has this letter as beit, which pictures a tent floor plan and means, ‘house’ or ‘tent’. It represents family and the importance of those who are inside the tent as opposed to the tent structure itself.

Resh – רָ:

The Ancient picture for this letter is resh, ‘the head of a man’. This letter has the meanings of ‘head or man’ as well as ‘chief, top, beginning or first’.

Hey – ה:

The original pictograph for this letter is hey, a man standing with his arms raised out. The meaning of the letter is ‘behold, look, breath, sigh and reveal or revelation’ from the idea of revealing a great sight by pointing it out. It also carries for us the meaning of surrender as we lift up our hands and submit to יהוה as we lift our hands in praise, declaring His authority under which we humbly submit!

As we consider these ancient pictures in terms of the coming wrath we are able to see the clear warning:

LOOK, OR BEHOLD, THE MASTER (HEAD) OF THE HOUSE IS COMING OUT!!!

With this in mind let us consider the following verses:

Miḵah/Micah 1:3For look, יהוה is coming out of His place, and He shall come down and shall tread on the high places of the earth.

Yeshayahu/Isaiah 26:21 “For look, יהוה is coming out of His place to punish the inhabitants of the earth for their crookedness. And the earth shall disclose her blood, and no longer cover her slain.

The decree has gone out and the call is very loud and clear – Come out! Passover – that is accept the work of Messiah and partake in His Feasts and the complete obedience to his Word and stay in Him or be crossed over and destroyed in the wrath of Elohim.

Yeshayahu/Isaiah 13:13 “So I shall make the heavens tremble, and the earth shall shake from her place, in the wrath of יהוה of hosts and in the day of the heat of His displeasure.

In this verse we see the two Hebrew words we have discussed in reference to His wrath - עֶבְרָה eḇrah – Strong’s H5678 (wrath) and אַף aph – Strong’s H639 (displeasure).

 

Iyoḇ/Job 21:30That the wicked is kept for the day of calamity. They are brought to the day of wrath.

The Day of the wrath of the Lamb is drawing near and we are called to stand firm in righteousness and not be led astray by the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes and the pride of life. Many who assume to “have it all” today, must realise that now amount of worldly wealth, possessions or status will profit them in the day of the wrath of יהוה.

Tsephanyah/Zephaniah 1:18 clearly tells us that silver and gold will note be able to deliver anyone in the day of the wrath of יהוה! So who is able to stand?

Mishlĕ/Proverbs 11:4 “Riches do not profit in the day of wrath, but righteousness delivers from death.

Righteousness delivers from death:

Deḇarim/Deuteronomy 6:25And it is righteousness for us when we guard to do all this command before יהוה our Elohim, as He has commanded us.

 As we consider the question of who is able to stand, may we hear the call of our Master who has instructed us to watch, pray and stand before the Son of Aḏam, as we find our refuge in Him who has covered us in His Blood!

Woe to those who are not covered in the Blood of the lamb, for their only awaits for them a fierce outpouring of the displeasure of Elohim on the great Day of the wrath of the Lamb!

Who is able to stand? Do you stand covered in Messiah or shall you be exposed? Herein lies the urgent call to come out and be separate! And the further need for us to call others out, as we shine the light of this truth, not wavering in our steadfast position in the Master – for then we shall be able to stand, as we abide in Him and He in us, completely clothed in the armour of light, dressed in the fine linen of set-apartness!

How are you dressed? Are you covered in the Passover Blood, or when looking intently into the mirror of the Word, have you been exposed through complacency and compromise and stand ashamed and naked and in danger of the wrath of Elohim remaining on you?

Romiyim/Romans 13:12-14 “The night is far advanced, the day has come near. So let us put off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armour of light. 13 Let us walk becomingly, as in the day, not in wild parties and drunkenness, not in living together and indecencies, not in fighting and envy, 14 but put on the Master יהושע Messiah, and make no provision for the lusts of the flesh.

Herein lays the clear call to be awake and watchful, so that we are able to stand before the Son of Aḏam!

He who has ears let Him hear what has been declared!!!

 

Verse 37-38from Ra‘meses to Sukkoth! – Ra‘meses means ‘child of the sun’ and Sukkoth means ‘booths or temporary shelters’. Yisra’ĕl were leaving ‘sun-worship’ to be sojourners in the shelter of Elohim! Over 600,000 men – there were well over 2 million people altogether – and there was a mixed multitude – there were many who had ‘interwoven’ themselves with Yisra’ĕl and feared יהוה and if they too would accept Him as saviour and Elohim, could too be grafted in the nation of Yisra’ĕl.

רַעַמְסֵס Ra’meses – Strong’s H7486 means, child of the sun’: which was a city in lower Mitsrayim that was built by Hebrew slaves; probably located in the region of in Goshen. Remember that Goshen was the best part of the land that was given to the Yisra’ĕlites where they could tend their sheep and were protected from the plagues sent upon Mitsrayim.

Yisra’ĕl had invested much time and effort into building this city where they dwelt, and had to leave – they had to leave behind that which they had built – and this is an important lesson for us as we too have to leave behind the places of pagan worship that we perhaps have invested much or even all our time, energy and resources in as we realise how we were in fact in bondage and enslaved to the lies of man-made traditions and worship practices that are twisted forms of sun worship. We have to leave the ‘child of the sun’ – that is, we have to leave all forms of ‘Tammuz’ worship and all that is related to pagan sun-worship!!! Mitsrayim literally means “worshipers of ra” or “sun god”. In the Hebrew, the word used for Egypt is מִצְרַיִם MitsrayimStrong’s H4714, which is the dual of  מָצוּר  matsur – Strong’s H4692 meaning, siege enclosure, siege, entrenchment  which comes from the primitive root word  צוּר  tsur – Strong’s H6696 meaning, to confine, bind, besiege. These words all mean one form or another of being constricted or shut in and enclosed. Just as יהוה delivered our fathers back then from bondage to a system of enslavement, so too does our Mighty Maker release us from bondage to enslavement of man’s twisted traditions and worship practices.

By His Blood – the Blood of יהושע Messiah He has come to set the captives free and release from darkness the prisoners.

They went from Ra‘meses on to סֻכֹּת Sukkoth – Strong’s H5523 which means, booths. This for me is a wonderful picture of the people of Elohim, Yisra’ĕl – that is you and me included, who turn away from what the world has to offer, as we see our dwelling is with the most high, who will come and tabernacle with us.

Sukkoth we know refers to the 7th Feast of Booths when it shadow picture for us the time when יהושע will come to take up His Bride and ‘Sukkoth’ with Her. What is a powerful picture for us in understanding where we are headed toward – Sukkoth – and our need to steer clear of what the world has to offer, we have full assurance that this promise is true as being sealed by the Blood of Messiah!!!

When we look at the word for Sukkot in the ancient Script we find a beautiful confirmation of this fact:

 tawkaphsamek

Samech – סֻ:

The modern name for this letter is samech, yet it is also known in the ancient script as ‘sin’.

This letter is pictured as samek- a thorn and has the meanings of pierce and sharp and can also carry the meaning of a shield as thorn bushes were used by shepherds to build a wall to enclose his flock in the night against the attack of predators. Another meaning would be ‘to grab hold of’ as a thorn is a seed that clings to hair and clothing.

 

Kaph - כֹּ:

The ancient form of this letter is kaph - meaning the open palm of a hand. The meaning behind this letter is to bend and curve from the shape of a palm as well as to tame or subdue as one has been bent to another’s will (under their hand) as an open hand symbolises submission. This also can picture for us a palm or palm branch from the curved palm shape.

Taw -  ת:

The ancient for of this letter is taw - meaning two crossed sticks. It was a type of a mark as being displayed by two crossed sticks and has the meaning of mark, sign or signature or identification, used as a marker to identify people, places or things. It can also carry the meaning of ‘seal’ or ‘covenant’.

Now when we understand that these three letters make up סֻכֹּת Sukkoth I find it very fascinating as we see being pictured here that יהושע is Most certainly our Good Shepherd who has sealed us in His Blood as יהוה extended His Right Hand to us and we see that Messiah not only had a ‘crown of thorns’ put on His Head and had a reed placed in His right hand, as well as being stricken for us, but He willingly gave His Life for us in order to secure us and cause us to be made into the Dwelling Place of the Most High where He will Sukkoth with us when the two sticks (Yehuḏah and Ephrayim) are brought back together as One!

 

Verse 39 – Unleavened cakes – no time to rise as they were driven out!

Our lives too must be rid of sin – never allowing and temptations to linger long enough to birth sin but we must rather be girded about with truth, sober and alert always!

Verse 40-41 – 430 years to the day – יהוה is always on time – His timing is perfect and He is not slow as we understand slowness but is rather patient with us, desiring that all come to repentance and the knowledge of the Truth.

(Kěpha Bět/2 Peter 3:9/ Timotiyos Aleph/1 Timothy 2:4)

 

Verse 42 – Night of watches! The Hebrew Word used here for ‘watches’ is שׁמּר ‘shimmur’ H8107 and comes from the root word שׁמר shâmar – Strong’s H8104 which carries the meaning ‘to guard, observe, give heed’. It is on this night that we ‘keep watch’ and observe a ‘night of watches’ as we enjoy a feast and stay awake interceding for the Bride of Messiah and those still in bondage.

 

Verse 43-49 – who can eat the Pěsaḥ Meal?

יהוה makes it very clear to Mosheh who may or may not eat this remembrance meal. This is not a night where we invite guests who are not of the family of Messiah and have a great big party with people who do not walk the Torah walk of faith! A foreigner or a temporary resident or a hired worker are those people who reflect hearts that are not interested in serving the Elohim of Yisra’ĕl and have no right to eat of this meal! This is not the meal to be ‘reaching out to the nations’ so to speak – this is for the House of Yisra’ĕl!

Those who may eat of it are all slaves, aliens and native born who desire to serve and walk in the ways of יהוה and are those with circumcised hearts, who have put aside their own desires, to embrace and follow after the Elohim of Aḇraham, Yitsḥaq and Ya’aqoḇ, and have entered into a covenant relationship with יהוה by faith. Circumcision is not the actual covenant itself; it is the sign of the Covenant as we see in Berěshith/Genesis 15 and 17. Circumcision was given thirteen years after Aḇraham received the Covenant of יהוה by faith. There is much debate today regarding circumcision and eating the Pěsaḥ meal and although I will not proceed into covering all the aspects of circumcision, however the fact remains that it is very clear according to Scripture that circumcision is that of the heart done not by the hands of men as one studies carefully the accounts in Ma’asei/Acts and the writings of Sha’ul that clearly explains and outlines the basis of circumcision of the heart, and I am pretty sure that both Timotiyos, who got physically circumcised, as well as Titos, who did not, would have both eaten the Pěsaḥ Meal each year!

For a more in-depth look at circumcision please see the Torah portion commentary on Berěshith/Genesis 17!

Verse 49 – One Torah for both the stranger and native born! There are twisted teachings today that say that only the ‘Jews’ have to keep the Torah, and yet still other say that anyone who is not a Jew and wishes to follow the Torah may not as they are only allowed to follow what is called the “Noahide laws” – for more on this please see the DVD called the Imposter available at www.followersofyah.com

There are not different instructions for different groups of people desiring to follow Elohim!!! There is ONE Torah and it applies to all who believe in the Elohim of Aḇraham, Yitsḥaq and Ya’aqoḇ.

The erroneous teaching that ‘the Torah has been done away with’, as claimed under the ridiculous banner of a false grace message, is a big fat lie! ONE Torah – His Word is eternal – Heaven and earth will pass away – but His Word remains!!! Not one stroke of the pen shall by no means pass away until all be done!

 

Chapter 13: 1-16

Consecration of the first born

Verse 2 – All the firstborn are to be set-apart to יהוה. All the firstborn of Mitsrayim and those who did not put the blood of the lamb on the doorposts were killed, while the firstborn of those covered under the blood were redeemed and now belonged to יהוה. Firstborn also carries the picture of first fruits speaking of a sure promise of a fully redeemed people. יהושע is the firstborn of all creation, the firstborn among many brethren and also the firstborn among the dead, and Him being the head of the body, the assembly is first in all and is set-apart unto Elohim and so we who are in Him are a set-apart people chosen and royal priesthood. We are to be set-apart for He is set-apart!!!

Verse 4Aḇiḇ – we have discussed this above

Verse 15

יהוה told Mosheh that when the future generations ask what this service means and what the consecration of the firstborn means then they were to be told of how the strong Hand of יהוה delivered them from bondage, and when Pharaoh hardened his heart יהוה killed every firstborn in Mitsrayim, both of man and beast – and that is why the slaughtering to יהוה of the beasts, must be of the male that opens the womb; and of the sons – every first born he ransoms. We also take note that even Heḇel brought to יהוה an offering of the firstborn of the flock:

Berěshith/Genesis 4:4 “And Heḇel also brought of the first-born of his flock and of their fat. And יהוה looked to Heḇel and his offering

Sha’ul, in speaking of Messiah, says in:

Qolasim/Colossians 1:15 “who is the likeness of the invisible Elohim, the first-born of all creation.

Messiah, being the firstborn from the dead, provided for us the perfect ransom for us to not only be redeemed by His own blood, but also be called sons of Elohim:

Ḥazon/Revelation 1:5 “and from יהושע Messiah, the trustworthy witness, the first-born from the dead, and the ruler of the sovereigns of the earth. To Him who loved us and washed us from our sins in His own blood

Messiah was the perfect sacrifice and He ‘opened the womb’, therefore making Himself perfect the perfect offering of consecration for all. In Yeshayahu we see a wonderful picture in the Hebrew lettering that renders this picture clearly for us – as the One who is the Ruler of all – is the One who opened the womb to be a perfect sacrifice that would ransom the called out children of the Most High:

Yeshayahu/Isaiah 9:6-7 “For a Child shall be born unto us, a Son shall be given unto us, and the rule is on His shoulder. And His Name is called Wonder, Counsellor, Strong Ěl, Father of Continuity, Prince of Peace. 7 Of the increase of His rule and peace there is no end, upon the throne of Dawiḏ and over His reign, to establish it and sustain it with right-ruling and with righteousness from now on, even forever. The ardour of יהוה of hosts does this.

The term here ‘of the increase’ is in Hebrew – לְםַרְבֵּהl’marbeh– and comes from the root word - מַרְבֶּה marbeh – Strong’s H4766 which means, abundance, increase, great’; and here is speaking of the increase of the rule and shalom of Messiah as King! What you will notice as you look carefully at these words in Hebrew is that this verse contains something very peculiar; and it is the only place in Scripture that we see this occur: And that is that the letter at the beginning of this word מַרְבֶּה marbeh, which is a ‘מַ’ – ‘mem’ is changed to being a ‘םַ’ – ‘closed mem’, which grammatically should only be used at the end of a word. By this fascinating ‘mystery’ of a ‘closed mem’ at the beginning of a word, in referring to Messiah shows us how He is the one who ‘opens the womb’ as this passage is dealing directly the ‘Child that is born unto us’ – and we know that Messiah was born of a maiden (one with a closed womb):

Yeshayahu/Isaiah 7:14 “Therefore יהוה Himself gives you a sign: Look, the maiden conceives and gives birth to a Son, and shall call His Name Immanu’ĕl.

This miraculous birthing in the flesh of Messiah, provided for us the perfect offering for our ransom – as Messiah, not only being the firstborn from the dead – making us who are ‘in’ Him ransomed unto Elohim, but He also was the perfect slaughtering that would acceptable to יהוה, in satisfying the requirement as opening the womb, becoming the perfect Lamb, Ram and Bull offering for our deliverance and redemption!!!

Verses 9, 10, 16 – sign on your hand and as frontlets between your eyes!

The Hebrew word for ‘sign’ is – אוֹת oth – Strong’s H226 meaning, a sign, banner, pledge, witness, token, proof and comes from the primitive root אָוָה avah – Strong’s H184 which means, to sign, mark, describe with a mark.

This feast of Pěsaḥ and Matzot are vitally important for us – for it is one of our distinguishing marks of worship. In Yeḥezqĕl 20:12 &20 we are also told that the Shabbat is our sign between us and יהוה forever.

Yeḥezqĕl/Ezekiel 20:12 “And I also gave them My Sabbaths, to be a sign between them and Me, to know that I am יהוה who sets them apart.

Yeḥezqěl/Ezekiel 20:20 “And set apart My Sabbaths, and they shall be a sign between Me and you, to know that I am יהוה your Elohim.

This is a great verse to ensure that you have 20/20 vision (perfect eyesight) as you fix your eyes on Messiah!!! If you miss the Sabbath you are BLIND!

יהוה is saying in the texts above that He gave us His Sabbath as a wonderful sign of His power to create and His power to sanctify (set us apart and save) us. In the Scriptures, the words seal, sign, mark, and token are used interchangeably. יהוה's sign, the Sabbath, represents His esteemed power to rule as Creator and Saviour. His Sabbath and His feasts are our seal on our foreheads and our right hand.

In fact it does not just stop at the Sabbath and Pěsaḥ/Matzot, but in keeping all the Appointed Times of יהוה marks our obedience and defines our worship, as we obey all He has commanded us to do!

Ḥazon/Revelation 13:16 says people will receive the mark of the beast in the forehead or in the hand. What does this mean?

The forehead represents the mind:

Hebrews 10:16 “This is the covenant that I shall make with them after those days, says יהוה, giving My laws into their hearts, and in their minds I shall write them

A person who receives the mark of the beast will be marked in the forehead by their ‘decision’ to keep Sunday as a set-apart day.

The hand is a symbol of work:

Ecclesiastes 9:10 “All that your hand finds to do, do it with your might; for there is no work or planning or knowledge or wisdom in the grave where you are going.

A person who receives the mark of the beast will be marked in the hand by working on יהוה's Set-Apart Sabbath; or by going along with Sunday laws for practical reasons (job, family, etc.). What is clear is that the mark of the beast is either on the hand or on the forehead, whereas the sign of our worship toward יהוה is on both our hand and forehead (frontlets between your eyes) – showing very clearly that to have the true sign of pure worship unto יהוה is to worship Him in total obedience, in having our minds renewed daily as we meditate on His Word and be found guarding to ‘do’ all He has commanded us!

The sign, or mark, for either יהוה or the beast may in many ways be invisible to people, yet we shall be known by our fruit – fruit of righteousness or unrighteousness – fruit of obedience or lawlessness!!!

You will, in essence, mark yourself by accepting either יהוה's sign or mark, the Sabbath, Feasts and the guarding and doing of His commands; or the beast's mark – sun-day worship or neglect to keep Sabbath by working, buying  or selling on יהוה’s Set-Apart Day. Though each one’s mark may be physically invisible to men, יהוה will know who has which mark:

Timotiyos Bět/2 Timothy 2:19However, the solid foundation of Elohim stands firm, having this seal, “יהוה knows those who are His,” and, “Let everyone who names the Name of Messiah turn away from unrighteous-ness.

The Torah is to be upon our mouths – in our mouths and in our hearts – TO DO IT!!! Men are given beards as a picture of having guards at this gate. The mark of our worship is by our ‘doing’ of His Word and following His Torah in loving obedience and as Qolasim/Colossians 3:17 says:

And whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the Name of the Master יהושע, giving thanks to Elohim the Father through Him.

We are marked by our obedience to His instructions - to hear, guard and do all He has commanded us to!

As we diligently await our Masters return may we be found to be marked by our obedience having the sign of worship on our hands and heads!

Being committed to kingdom works also empowers us to bring our thoughts into captivity. As we commit our works to יהוה, our thoughts will be established.

Mishlĕ/Proverbs 16:3 “Commit your works to יהוה, and your plans shall be established.

As יהושע’s brother, Ya’aqoḇ emphasized that יהוה’s community is about both faith and works. Only when we commit both our minds and hands to Torah can redemption come. If we put the Kingdom first in our minds, it will be first in our works. 

The Feast of Pěsaḥ and Matzot shall also be for us a ‘reminder’ between our eyes, and the Hebrew word used in verse 9  for ‘reminder’ is זִכָּרוֹןzikkaronH2146 meaning ‘memorial, commemoration or remembrance’ and comes from the root word זָכַרzaḵar H2142 which means ‘to remember, or be mindful, or bring to remembrance’.

There is NO WAY that we, as set apart and chosen people of Elohim, must neglect to remember to Keep His Feasts!!! They should be in the forefront of our thinking, constantly remembering to guard and keep ALL His Appointed Times – for His Feasts also help us to continually be reminded of His Mighty work of redemption that He has brought us through His own Blood, and a clear reminder that He is coming again to fetch His ready Bride, that He has called out, cleansed and clothed with righteousness!!!

Shalom!