24th of the 3rd month 2020/2021.
All praise and esteem unto יהוה our Elohim who has called us out of darkness into His marvellous light! His Light is marvellous, aměn!
As we reflect on the deliverance of Yisra’ĕl, from Mitsrayim, and recollect the plagues that came over Mitsrayim, the plague of darkness that the darkness that came over Mitsrayim, primarily came in 2 stages: one was through the plague of locust that covered the land or rather, the ‘eye’, being symbolic of Ra the sun deity of Mitsrayim, that had been covered and then a thick darkness came over the land for 3 days, which was so thick that it could be felt, and was a darkness that symbolised the complete removal of the presence of Elohim, while in Goshen the Yisra’ĕlites had light, for יהוה was in their midst.
This is a wonderful picture for us, of a people who had been called out of darkness into His light – a people who would ‘draw near’ to Elohim at the sound of His voice, in loving obedience, especially as we consider that Goshen has the meaning ‘to draw near’.
His light is His presence and without such we would find ourselves in darkness.
In correctly drawing near to Him, who is The Light, calls for a pure and devoted response that is reflected in obedience to Him.
In Ya’aqoḇ/James 4:8 we are told to draw near to Elohim and He shall draw near to us and we are to cleanse our hands from sin, which is lawlessness and we are purify our hearts from double-mindedness, which is strip away the wicked syncretism of mixed theologies and doctrines of man with the Truth of His Word and be single minded and steadfast to hear, guard and do His pure Word that will keep us in the Light of His presence! .
We often declare His blessing over us as His children, as He instructed Mosheh on how Aharon would bless the children of Yisra’ĕl and by doing so, put His Name upon them that He Himself would bless them, and part of this blessing is, “יהוה make your face shine upon you…” which is a huge blessing in itself, when we begin to understand the Light of His presence, which sadly, for so many people today is simply not a reality… yet!.
In a message called, “Cause your face to shine upon us, oh יהוה!” I would like us to look at a wonderful Tehillah/Psalm, which contains the earnest cry for His face to shine upon us as His children.
Read Tehillah/Psalm 80.
This Tehillah/Psalm is a cry, and an appeal, to The Great Shepherd of Yisra’ĕl, to comes and save His people who had been given over to the discipline of being dishonoured by their neighbours.
This was an urgent call to The Great Gardener to come and restore the Vine that He had carefully planted in a good land, which, through lack of lasting fruit, was given over to be harvested, and even destroyed, by every passer-by who would pluck their fruit, which was no longer being cultivated and guarded according to His instructions.
And now, the cry was for Him to once again restore His people.
This was a cry of repentance and was an earnest plea to turn back to the One who had called them out of darkness and slavery and this was a desperate cry of help from sheep, which had been led astray, to their Good Shepherd who they had forsaken, but were now calling Him to return as they seeking to return to Him.
Kěpha Aleph/1 Peter 2:25 “For you were like sheep going astray, but have now returned to the Shepherd and Overseer of your lives.”.
This Tehillah/Psalm was written at a time when the Northern kingdom had strayed and found themselves corrupted in their worship, having surrendered under the laws and ways of the nations that יהוה had driven out and had also submitted under the corrupt and wicked kings that they had set up for themselves.
In an earnest prayer for restoration, blessing and salvation, I firmly believe that we are, once again, in a time where this cry is being lifted up by a faithful remnant, to our Good Shepherd and Light, for His very face to come and shine upon us and with this cry comes great responsibility!.
The emphasis of this Tehillah/Psalm is repeated 3 times and each time it carries a progression, in the call for His blessing and favour to come upon His children and called out ones!
There are a number of pictures for us in this Tehillah/Psalm and we can view it in a number of ways that give us great insight for us today, on how we are to truly be living as children of light and be done with darkness!.
The title of this Tehillah/Psalm 80 is written in the Hebrew text as follows:
לַמְנַצֵּחַ אֶל־שֹׁשַׁנִּים עֵדוּת לְאָסָף מִזְמוֹר׃
It can be transliterated as follows:
Lam’nats’tseaḥ el-shoshanniym eḏuth le’Asaph miz’mor
It can be translated as:
To the chief musician upon Shoshanniym-eḏuth, a psalm of Asaph.
As part of this title, the phrase שׁוֹשַׁנִּים עֵדוּת Shoshanniym Eḏuth – Strong’s H7802 means, ‘lilies of testimony, testimony of lilies’.
This word is also used in the title for Tehillah/Psalm 60.
The Hebrew word שֹׁשַׁנִּים Shoshanniym is the plural of the root word שׁוֹשָׁן shoshan – Strong’s H7799 which means, ‘lily or lily-like flower’, and is used as part of a title for both Tehillah/Psalm 45 & 69 as well.
The root word עֵדוּת eḏuth – Strong’s H5715 means, ‘testimony, witness, ordinance, warning’, and this is the word that is used for ‘The Ark of the Witness’.
The word מִזְמוֹר miz’mor – Strong’s H4210 means, ‘melody’; and this comes from the primitive root verb זָמַר zamar – Strong’s H2167 which means, ‘to make music (in praise of Elohim), sing praises’.
The name אָסָף Asaph – Strong’s H623 means ‘gatherer’, and Asaph was appointed as one of the chief musicians under Dawiḏ..
So, the title of this Psalm of Asaph, highlights the description of the witness of lilies!!!
What we see in Scripture, especially in Shir HaShirim/Song of Songs, we see this term for lilies being used. In Melaḵim Aleph/1 Kings 7 it is used to describe the shape of the capitals that were on top of the columns in the Temple, as well as the rim of the Sea of cast metal (bronze laver).
In Shir HaShirim/Song of Songs it is used 8 times, in referring to the Bride and/or Bridegroom, and in Hoshěa/Hosea 14:5, we see the clear promise that Yisra’ĕl will once again blossom like a lily, which pictures a restored beauty and abundance, after true repentance and the work of redemption.
This melody is therefore, a clear call by a backslidden bride, for the true adornment of the presence of יהוה, to be restored upon His called-out Bride and highlights the repentant heart that seeks the face of Elohim to once again shine upon His beloved!.
Verses 1-3 – The Appeal
After recognising the error of their ways, the Psalmist makes an appeal, as I said, to the Shepherd of Yisra’ĕl. This was an acknowledgment, in itself, of who the True Leader was, and when we see the term ‘who dwells between the keruḇim’, we must realise that, in the Hebraic mind-set, this fully represented the sure presence of Elohim, who always dwells between the Keruḇim, which would help them realise that He was in their midst and this is where they could come and receive His instructions:
Shemoth/Exodus 25:20-22 “And the keruḇim shall be spreading out their wings above, covering the lid of atonement with their wings, with their faces toward each other, the faces of the keruḇim turned toward the lid of atonement. 21 “And you shall put the lid of atonement on top of the ark, and put into the ark the Witness which I give you. 22 “And I shall meet with you there, and from above the lid of atonement, from between the two keruḇim which are on the ark of the Witness, I shall speak to you all that which I command you concerning the children of Yisra’ĕl.”.
The call that is given hear by the Psalmist, at the beginning of this melody, is for יהוה to give ear to this melody of repentance.
The Hebrew word that is translated as ‘give ear’ is הַאֲזִינָה ha’aziynah and comes from the root verb אָזַן azan – Strong’s H238 which means, ‘to give, ear, listen, pay attention, perceived by ear’.
It is written in the ‘causative’ tense, highlighting the earnest plea for The Shepherd of Yisra’ěl to hear this cry and request being presented, in seeking his face to once again shine upon His Bride.
The Hebrew text has this opening request written as: רֹעֵה יִשְׂרָאֵל הַאֲזִינָה – Ro’eh Yisra’ěl ha’azinyah, which can be translated as ‘Shepherd of Yisra’ěl, give ear’.
This was an earnest call for the Shepherd of Yisra’ěl to incline His ear to His flock that had wandered from the Truth!
There was no assumption being made that יהוה will listen and do as they say, but rather, here we see the clear understanding of the need to be earnestly seeking Him, knowing that they had turned their ears from hearing His Torah and, as a result, had found themselves being handed over to their enemies, as a result of their disobedience.
This call for the Shepherd of Yisra’ěl to please have ears to hear, is done as a repentant call, for we know what it says in:
Mishlĕ/Proverbs 28:9 “He who turns away his ear from hearing the Torah, even his prayer is an abomination.”
The Psalmist did not want this melody to be an abomination in the ears of the Shepherd of Yisra’ĕl, but rather, seeks to draw near in repentance and acknowledgment of who The Only True Shepherd is, highlighting that they were once again seeking to be led in Truth and no longer stray from the Shepherd that protects and guides..
This opening statement is a clear confession of an acknowledgment that there is Only One Shepherd who can lead Yisra’ĕl, and while Yisra’ěl had been led astray by the nations, this psalm is a cry for the True Shepherd to return and lead His flock once again, protecting his flock from being led away in sin!.
The Hebrew word for ‘shepherd’ is רָעָה ra’ah – Strong’s H7462 which can carry the meaning of, ‘shepherd’, as well as, ‘to pasture, graze, consume, feed’.
Let us look at the ancient pictographic rendering of this word for ‘Shepherd’ – רָעָה ra’ah – Strong’s H7462:.
Resh – רָ
The ancient script has this letter as 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. Top as in the top or head of a body and chief an is head of a tribe or people as well as the one who rules the people..
Ayin – עָ
In the ancient script this letter is drawn as – and is pictured as an eye and carries the meaning of ‘insight and understanding’ or that to which you look upon..
Hey – ה
The ancient script has this letter as 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..
In looking at these pictures, in terms of the word ‘shepherd’ or ‘feed’, we are able to clearly see that the following:.
TRUE SHEPHERD IS THE HEAD OF ALL,
AS SEEN THROUGH THE ‘EXALTED’ MAN!
BEHOLD OUR HEAD UPON WHOM WE FIX OUR EYES!.
Who is the One we are to fix our eyes upon?
Iḇ’rim tells us to throw off all sin and that which entangles and look attentively upon our Master:
Iḇ’rim/Hebrews 12:2 “looking to the Princely Leader and Perfecter of our belief, יהושע, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the stake, having despised the shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of Elohim.”.
We are told to be ‘looking’ to Messiah – and as we can see from the verse before this one, is that in order to be able to properly ‘look’ at Messiah, we need to throw off and lay aside every weight and sin that easily entangles us and run with endurance – looking intently at our King as we run faithfully as servants of the Most High Elohim!.
The Greek word for ‘looking’ is ἀφοράω – aphorao – Strong’s G872 which means ‘to look/ to turn eyes away from all other things and fix them on something’, and metaphorically speaking, it means ‘to fix the mind upon/ give full attention/ looking intently upon/ to take heed’, and it also means, ‘to consider carefully, attentively look at’ and comes from the two Greek words:
1) ἀπό apo – Strong’s G575 which is a preposition and participle that means, ‘from, away from, at, in, to’ and
2) the word ὁράω horaō – Strong’s G3708 which means, ‘to see, perceive, attend to, take heed, see with the mind, beware, to see as in becoming acquainted with by experience’..
We are to look to Messiah and careful consider our ways, and we are at the same time to ensure that our eyes are not looking elsewhere as we ‘take heed’ of the corrupt teachings of man-made dogmas and traditions that lead people astray..
In Hebrew, the word for ‘see’ is רָאָה ra’ah – Strong’s H7200 which means, ‘to see, look, observe, pay close attention, consider’, and has the similar phonetic sound as the word for ‘shepherd/feed’, yet this word contains a different letter!
Instead of an ‘עָ’ – ‘ayin’ it contains the letter ‘אָ’ – ‘aleph’, and so, in the ancient pictographic script, it would look like this:
Aleph – אָ
The ancient script has this letter as and is pictured as ‘the head of an ox’ representing strength and power..
This word, in itself, teaches us a great deal on who we are to keep our eyes attentively upon; and to see clearly and be functional in seeing as we should, can render the following meaning for us:
“The beginning of our strength is in the revelation of Messiah our Head, who we praise and serve with our all”.
So, in Hebrew, we have two similar sounding words:
1) רָעָה ra’ah for ‘shepherd, feed’ and
2) רָאָה ra’ah for ‘see, look attentively”.
What we are able to recognise, in the Hebrew text, is that the Shepherd unto whom we are to keep our eyes fixed on, in order that we are not be led astray by falsehood and lies, is יהושע Messiah, Our Good Shepherd – Our Strong Head that was lifted up and exalted on High and the One who dwells between the keruḇim..
The Psalmist asks יהוה to shine forth and reveal His power by coming to save His people!
The Hebrew root word that is translated as ‘shine forth’ is the primitive root verb יָפַע yapha – Strong’s H3313 which means, ‘to shine out or forth, to send out beams, cause to shine, look favourably upon’.
This was a call for their light to come! They had been wandering about in darkness, because of their own sin, and were now appealing to יהוה to bring the light of His presence from His Throne, and restore His lost sheep.
As we consider these words and what is being declared hear, we are able to identify the wonderful revelation of יהושע Messiah, The Good Shepherd, who came only for the lost sheep of Yisra’ěl! He came to reveal He is the Light of His presence, for He is the Light of the world and in doing so, He came to call a lost flock out of darkness!
Our Master shone forth the brilliance of His deliverance and called for those who have ears to return to obedience!.
The call of this psalmist is a call for יהוה to bring a lost sheep back.
It is interesting to take note that Ephrayim and Menashsheh were the 2 sons of Yosĕph, and were born in Mitsrayim. Binyamin and Yosĕph were the two sons of Raḥel, whom Ya’aqoḇ loved.
Asaph, as mentioned earlier, means ‘gatherer’ and what we are able to recognise here, is a clear call for the Good Shepherd to come and gather His lost sheep – a call to come and gather His Beloved!
Ephrayim, as we know, is often used as a reference to the northern House of Yisra’ěl, and hence is a clear metaphor for the whole House of Yisra’ěl, who had been divorced and driven out by יהוה.
Now, the urgent call for a backslidden and cast out bride to return back to covenant, and be received, is made clear.
What is worth taking note of, is when we see the reference here being made to Ephrayim, Menashsheh and Binyamin, we are able to see a powerful call for deliverance being sought out, especially as we consider the meaning of their names..
The name of Ephrayim – אֶפְרַיִם – Strong’s H669 means, ‘doubly fruitful’, for Elohim had caused Yosĕph to be very fruitful in Mitsrayim!
The name of Ephrayim is often used to reference the remnant lost 10 tribes of Yisra’ĕl that are returning to the truth, and his name gives us great encouragement that shows us how we are able to bear much fruit under the severe pressures and trials of life..
The name of Menashsheh – מְנַשֶּׁה – Strong’s H4519 means, ‘causing to forget’, as Elohim had caused Yosĕph to forget all the toil and suffering he had endured, and his whole household!.
These two sons, Ya’aqoḇ took as his own and said that they were to him like Re’uḇĕn and Shim’on, who were his first and second born.
Even though these two sons of Yosĕph were born in Mitsrayim and had a Mitsrian mother, they were to Ya’aqoḇ as his 1st and 2nd born!!!
This gives us the joy of recognising that while we were born under slavery to the world’s traditions and dogmas of man, we are elevated to true sonship, becoming sons of Elohim by the Blood of Messiah, and as we stay in Him, we shall bear much fruit and not look back!
We who believe (which obviously entails proper obedience), become full blood sons of Yisra’ĕl!
This account of Menashsheh and Ephrayim being ‘grafted’ in to Ya’aqoḇ, is a powerful picture of the Besorah (Good News) for us who were once far off:
Eph’siyim/Ephesians 2:13 “But now in Messiah יהושע you who once were far off have been brought near by the blood of the Messiah.”.
The name of Binyamin – בִּנְיָמִין – Strong’s H1144 means, ‘son of the right hand’, and as mentioned, was the full brother of Yosĕph, therefore having a very close association with Yosĕph’s sons..
When looking at these three names and their meanings, we are able to see a wonderful declaration of the power of the deliverance of יהוה that was being called for.
For it is יהושע, our Good Shepherd and Light, that is the Son of the Right Hand, signifying the working power of Elohim, who causes us to forget our toil and makes us bear abundant fruit, as we stay in Him..
When Ya’aqoḇ blessed the 2 sons of Yosĕph, he said the following:
Berěshith/Genesis 48:20 “And he blessed them on that day, saying, “In you Yisra’ěl shall bless, saying, ‘Elohim make you as Ephrayim and as Menashsheh!’” Thus he put Ephrayim before Menashsheh.”
Elohim make you as Ephrayim and Menashsheh!!!
This is a huge blessing that is called upon us who have been grafted in to Yisra’ĕl by the blood of Messiah, and so, by recalling the meaning of the names of Ephrayim, meaning ‘doubly fruitful’ and Menashsheh meaning, ‘causes to forget’, we are able to see this blessing that is called upon us each day, as the children of promise – and that is this:
Elohim make you doubly fruitful and cause you to forget your enslavement to sin!
This blessing can only be lived out and understood by a people who have been grafted into, and continue to stay in, the Covenants of Promise, by hearing, guarding and doing the clear commands of Elohim and walking according to His Torah!.
This Psalm echoes the covenant call to be blessed as Ephrayim and Menashsheh, by the right Hand of Elohim, who comes to save by His power and might!.
Stir up Your might and come and save us!
The Hebrew word that is translated as ‘stir up’ comes from the root verb עוּר uwr/oor – Strong’s H5782 which means, ‘to rouse oneself, awake, arise, stirred’.
The call to ‘wake up’ is often used in the context of warfare and triumph, usually with an action associated with it, as in:
Yeshayahu/Isaiah 51:9 “Awake, awake, put on strength, O arm of יהוה! Awake as in days of old, everlasting generations. Was it not You who cut Rahaḇ apart, and pierced the Crocodile?” .
The Hebrew word that is translated as ‘might’ is גְּבוּרָה geḇurah – Strong’s H1369 which means, ‘strength, might, courage’ and comes from the root word גָּבַר gaḇar – Strong’s H1396, which means, ‘to be strong and mighty, prevail’.
In Mishlĕ/Proverbs 8:14 Shelomoh makes it clear to us that mightiness is יהוה’s:
Mishlĕ/Proverbs 8:14 “Counsel is mine, and sound wisdom; I am understanding, mightiness is mine.”
Our ability to be strong and courageous can only come from the One who is Mighty!.
We praise our Mighty Master who has shone forth the Light of His presence, bringing to us a deliverance from darkness, in order that we may praise Him and bear the fruit of righteousness, and this should cause us to be bold ambassadors that declare the True Light and Goof Shepherd, to a lost people who are groping in darkness!
Yeshayahu/Isaiah 60:1-2 “Arise, shine, for your light has come! And the esteem of יהוה has risen upon you. 2 For look, darkness covers the earth, and thick darkness the peoples. But יהוה arises over you, and His esteem is seen upon you.”.
The call for the mighty Shepherd to come and save is made loud and clear – come and save us!
The Hebrew word that is translated as ‘to save/ and save’ is לִישֻׁעָתָה – liyshuathah, which comes from the word יְשׁוּעָה yeshuah – Strong’s H3444 which means, ‘salvation, deliverance, victory, help, security, save’ and comes from the root verb יָשַׁע yasha – Strong’s H3467 which means, ‘to deliver, save, salvation’..
In this call for deliverance to come, the psalmist asks that יהוה causes us to turn back and cause His face to shine, so that we may be saved!
The phrase ‘cause us to turn back’ comes from the root word שׁוּב shuḇ – Strong’s H7725 which means, ‘to turn back, return, repent, recover’, and it is written in the hiphil active, which can render this as meaning, ‘cause to return’.
In Tehillah/Psalm 19:7 we are told that The Torah of יהוה is perfect, bringing back the being.
It is by His Word and His instructions that He ‘causes us’ to turn back to Him, after turning away from sin and wickedness!.
In the ancient pictographic script, the Hebrew word שׁוּב shuḇ – Strong’s H7725 is written as follows:.
Shin – שׁ:
As already discussed, this is the letter ‘shin’ which in the ancient script is pictured as, , which is ‘two front teeth’ and carries the meaning of ‘sharp or press, chew or devour’; which is what the teeth do, and also speaks of the sharpened word that comes forth from the mouth as the teeth ‘chew’ or ‘meditate’ on the Truth, making what comes forth pure and sharp! It also carries the understanding of consuming or destroying – as teeth do to food..
Waw/Vav – וּ:
This is the Hebrew letter ‘waw’ or ‘vav’ which in the ancient script is pictured as , 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’..
Beyt – ב:
The ancient script has this letter as , 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..
When we understand the combination of these pictures, as rendering ‘a returning or repentance’, we are able to recognise that the teeth, which speaks of a ‘pressing’, and the picture of the peg that ‘secures’, and the house, which speaks of ‘dwelling’, we are able to understand this representing the following:.
THE SECURE DWELLING PLACE THAT IS TO BE RETURNED TO.
This word, שׁוּב shuḇ – Strong’s H7725, in the ancient form, represents for us a:
RETURNING TO THE SECURE HOUSE WHERE WE ARE FED,
AS WE MEDITATE ON THE WORD OF THE HOUSE.
While this certainly represents for us a clear understanding of true repentance, which entails a proper return, by diligently meditating upon the Word of Elohim and being washed through His Word, we certainly recognise how many may claim to return, or repent, yet their disobedience and inability to submit, and obey, reveals that their repentance is merely a lip service, that is given in the hope of getting something favourable back in return..
The call being given here in this Tehillah/Psalm 90:3, is an earnest cry for deliverance and seeking the One who causes us to be, to cause us to return, so that your face can shine upon us and we be saved and not destroyed!.
These opening 3 verses are truly a magnificent example for us, of hearts that are earnestly seeking to walk in the light of the face of The Good Shepherd and no longer be handed over to the destruction of sin and lawlessness, hence the recognition that a proper returning the shepherd of our souls, entails a returning to proper obedience to His Torah, which is perfect and brings us back!.
Verses 4-7 – The Discipline
As a result of disobedience, יהוה had handed Yisra’ĕl over to their enemies, in order to discipline them and cause them to return.
This was a cry of a people defeated, to the Elohim of Hosts, who was the only one could cause them to have victory over their enemies. He is The One they could truly run to for help.
This is an acknowledgment of much-needed discipline.
We are told in the letter to the Hebrews that discipline is not always pleasant but it works, if we are trained by it, that is!
Iḇ’rim/Hebrews 12:11 “And indeed, no discipline seems pleasant at the time, but grievous, but afterward it yields the peaceable fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it.”.
Verses 8-14 – Removal of the Blessing
We know that The Torah of Elohim clearly reminds us that obedience brings blessing, disobedience brings a curse!
So many people today, want to claim all the wonderful blessings that are yes and aměn in Messiah, while they are ignorantly groping about in the dark, as they are unwilling to walk in Him who is Light, giving them the lamp for their path by His very Torah!.
In the Torah portions that we have been through on the plagues that came upon Mitsrayim, in Shemoth/Exodus 15 it says this:
Shemoth/Exodus 15:26 “And He said, “If you diligently obey the voice of יהוה your Elohim and do what is right in His eyes, and shall listen to His commands and shall guard all His laws, I shall bring on you none of the diseases I brought on the Mitsrites, for I am יהוה who heals you.”.
Now, when one looks a little deeper in Ḥazon/Revelation (especially chapter 16), it is very clear that these diseases or plagues of Mitsrayim are still very much in play, for those who do not diligently obey the voice of יהוה and who do not guard His commands!.
It is when recognising that His blessing is removed, that it can do one of two things: it can either cause you to repent and turn back to the Living El or become even more hardened and end up blaspheming Him, as we see that many shall do, as written in Ḥazon/Revelation, in their unwillingness to repent!.
Verses 14-19 – promise of obedience
The plea of this Psalm brings the Psalmist to the realisation of commitment that is required to the Word of Elohim, by those who earnestly seek to live ‘in’ the light of His presence.
It is when we are able to receive His discipline, that He brings for those He loves, that we can allow His word to instruct us in the way of set-apartness and be caused to stay on the narrow path of life.
In three wonderful pictures, of the need for walking in obedience, we see a clear pointing to יהושע Messiah, who is the Way, the Truth and the Life!
In the psalmist plea, we see him approaching יהוה and we see three clear revelation pictures that reveal that יהושע is יהוה our Saviour, as we see that he approaches the:
1 – The Shepherd of Yisra’ĕl:
Yoḥanan/John 10:11 “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down His life for the sheep.”
The Psalmist recognises the Only One True Redeemer and Saviour!
We have already looked at the Hebrew word for Shepherd..
2 – The Light
He that dwells between the Keruḇim ‘shine forth’
Yoḥanan/John 8:12 “Therefore יהושע spoke to them again, saying, “I am the light of the world. He who follows Me shall by no means walk in darkness, but possess the light of life.”
The Psalmist affirms His recognition of the need for the Light and presence of Elohim.
The Hebrew word that is translated as ‘to shine’ comes from the primitive root verb אוֹר oor – Strong’s H215 which means, ‘to be or become light, give light’..
The Hebrew word that is translated as ‘light’ – אוֹר oor – Strong’s H215 is written in the ancient pictographic script as follows:
Aleph – א:
This is the letter ‘aleph’, in the ancient script is pictured as , ‘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 , 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’..
Resh – רִ:
The ancient script has this letter as 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!.
3 – The Vine
The Hebrew word that is translated as ‘vine’ is גֶּפֶן gephen – Strong’s H1612 and while meaning ‘a vine’ or ‘a vine tree’, it is also used figuratively, in Scripture, as a reference to the nation of Yisra’ĕl, as well as a symbol of prosperity and we also take note here, that the Greek word that is used in the LXX for this word ‘vine’ is ἄμπελος ampelos – Strong’s G288 which we find being used in the words of Messiah who called Himself the True Vine:
Yoḥanan/John 15:1 “I am the true vine, and My Father is the gardener.”
We are to stay in Him and He will stay in us, for without Him we can bear no fruit!
What we see from this verse, is that we recognise how Messiah calls Himself the True Vine, showing us that there is indeed a strange vine, which we must guard against falling for the drunkenness and maddening adulteries that comes forth from her grapes.
We must ‘stay in’ the True Vine and recognise the One to whom all praise is due!.
The Shepherd, The Light and The Vine!
This is who our Saviour is and when we acknowledge this and turn back to Him, bearing fruit worthy of repentance, he will cause His face to shine upon us..
Now, coming to the significant repetition and plea that is made, we see here, in this Tehillah/Psalm, a great encouragement.
Verses 3, 7 and 19 all repeat the same cry of repentance to obedience and a calling forth for the face of Elohim to shine upon them!
In recognising the urgency of this cry, for His face to shine upon us, we need to understand the true essence and realisation of our strong plea before the Light of The World, who has now called us to shine the Light of His Truth!
For as we stay in Him and in His good instructions, we are the light of the world..
We see this call for His face to shine upon us, being used several times in the Tehillim/Psalms, besides the 3 times that it is used here in this Tehillah/Psalm 80, as we also find it in the following:
Tehillah/Psalm 31:16 “Make Your face shine upon Your servant; save me in Your loving-commitment.”
Tehillah/Psalm 67:1 “Elohim does favour us and bless us, cause His face to shine upon us. Selah.”
Tehillah/Psalm 119:135 “Make Your face shine upon Your servant, and teach me Your laws.”.
When His face shines upon us, we can find His loving-commitment, salvation, favour, blessing and His good instructions that will keep us walking in the light of His face!
What is very interesting, in this Tehillah/Psalm 80, is the progression that we see:
In verse 3: The cry and appeal to cause us to turn back is unto Elohim.
In verse 7: It is unto Elohim of Hosts
In verse 19: It is unto יהוה, Elohim of Hosts!
From Elohim to Elohim of Hosts to יהוה, Elohim of Hosts!!!
There was recognition of who He is, as He is Elohim, He is El Shaddai, The Almighty El, and besides Him there is no other.
A recognition of the One True Elohim, who is the Shepherd of Yisra’ĕl and then, in a cry for deliverance from the enemy, He is recognised as Elohim of Hosts – The Commander of the Heavenly forces – the One who fights for us and in whom there is an assurance of victory..
By verse 19 He has now become a personal El, as His name is acknowledged, in an acknowledgment that The Great I AM is with us – He is the One who causes us to be!
He is not only the One True Elohim – but He has made Himself known to us as personal Saviour, Redeemer and King and it is when we come to this point, that we recognise our True identity and call, as children of light, and are equipped to be committed to Him in every way – for He is lovingly committed to us as a Covenant people in Messiah!.
Now, this is where I make my appeal, as the Scriptures instruct us: let us too call for Him to make His face shine upon us, each and every day, and in doing so, be lovingly-committed to walking in Him, walking in His light and free from all the wickedness and corruption of darkness..
When Aḏam and Ḥawwah had sinned what did they do?
They hid themselves from the presence or face of Elohim!
Berěshith/Genesis 3:8 “And they heard the sound of יהוה Elohim walking about in the garden in the cool of the day, and Aḏam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of יהוה Elohim among the trees of the garden.”
The Hebrew root word that is translated as ‘the presence’, here in Berěshith/Genesis 3:8, is the same root word that is used in Tehillah/Psalm 80 for the phrase ‘cause your face’.
Their sin caused them to hide themselves from His presence – from the very light of His face upon them.
When Ya’aqoḇ wrestled with Elohim and overcame he said:
Berěshith/Genesis 32:30 “And Yaʽaqoḇ called the name of the place Peni’ĕl, “For I have seen Elohim face to face, and my life is preserved.”
The word used here for ‘face’ is once again the same used in Tehillim/Psalm 80 and in the account of the Garden of Eden, which is the root word פָּנֶה paneh or פָּנִים paniym – Strong’s H6440 which means, ‘face, faces’.
When יהושע was transfigured before Kěpha, Yaʽaqoḇ, and Yoḥanan His face shone like the sun and His garments became as white as the light (Mattithyahu/Matthew 17:2)!
Can you imagine this moment – the very face of Elohim shining upon them!!!
They had followed Him, believed Him, was taught by Him, saw Him do many miracles and now, they say the ‘Light of His Face’!.
In this urgent call to true repentance, what the Psalmist was showing us here, was that, in the calling of Elohim to cause them to turn back, was the recognition of who the true Redeemer was and the pleading for His face to shine upon them, was their response to His redemptive work, in delivering them from bondage and sin, and the end result of that which they sought, so that they might be saved..
We too, who have acknowledged the redemptive work of Messiah, who died for our sin and was raised to life, so that His resurrection power may cause us to be raised to new life in Him, respond by walking in obedience to Him, working out our deliverance with fear and trembling, by OBEYING!!!.
In this Tehillah, we see an echo of the song of Mosheh that was sung after the deliverance of Yisra’ĕl from Mitsrayim, by the Mighty Right Hand of Elohim, of which we too will hear the song of deliverance being sung by a people who overcome the beast and his image, his mark and the number of his name! (Ḥazon/Revelation 15:2-3).
What has struck me, once again, when in looking at this awesome Tehillah, is the need for us to be seeking the face of יהוה, that He may shine His Good presence upon us and cause us to walk upright and stand firm and secure in Him.
Tehillah/Psalm 89:14 “Righteousness and right-ruling are the foundation of Your throne; loving-commitment and truth go before Your face.”
Loving-commitment and Truth go before His face!
For His face to shine upon us, we must be willing to walk wholeheartedly in His Truth.
Look at what is says further in this Psalm:
Tehillah/Psalm 89:15-16 “Blessed are the people who know the festal trumpet-call! They walk, O יהוה, in the light of Your face. 16 In Your Name they rejoice all day long, and they are exalted in Your righteousness.”
Walking in the light of His face, is a clear reference to obedience as we also take note of Dawiḏ’s appeal to יהוה to not turn His face away in displeasure:
Tehillah/Psalm 27:9 “Do not hide Your face from me; do not turn Your servant away in displeasure; You have been my help; do not leave me nor forsake me, O Elohim of my deliverance.”.
In Yeshayahu we see the clear call to walk in the light of יהוה:
Yeshayahu/Isaiah 2:5 “O house of Yaʽaqoḇ, come and let us walk in the light of יהוה.”
When Yeshayahu was describing the coming reign of our King, he urged all to be urgent in their walking in the Truth and Light of the Torah of יהוה.
The urgency of this command is clear, in saying ‘come and let us walk’ and we see the repetition of the root word to walk, in the intensive form, literally commanding the following, ‘walk, let us walk!’, as we see the Hebrew text being written as follows:
בֵּ֖ית יַעֲקֹ֑ב לְכ֥וּ וְנֵלְכָ֖ה בְּא֥וֹר יְהוָֽה׃.
The phrase that is translated as ‘come and let us walk’ is לְכ֥וּ וְנֵלְכָ֖ה – leḵu veneleḵah – where we see the repetition of the root verb יָלַךְ yalaḵ – Strong’s H3212 being used
This call to ‘come and walk in the light of יהוה’ identifies that there is no time to be sitting still and waiting for The Day to come – we are to be about walking in Him right now!.
This urgency in commanding and calling for an active walk was due to the current circumstances that had plagued Yehuḏah. Yehuḏah had grown comfortable in their circumstances and, as a result, were being filled with all the wrong stuff! Yeshayahu was calling the people to walk in the light and as he looked around, he saw what could be described as ‘dark living’ by a people who claimed to follow יהוה!.
Are you walking in the light of His face?
This is the heart of this message, as a question to you today, or, is there still darkness at work in you?
Let us look at some vital instructions from Scripture:
Yoḥanan Aleph/1 John 1:6 “If we say that we have fellowship with Him, and walk in darkness, we lie and are not doing the truth.”.
Yoḥanan Aleph/1 John 2:9-11 “The 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.”.
Tas’loniqim Aleph/1 Thessalonians 5:4-8 “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. 6 So, then, we should not sleep, as others do, but we should watch and be sober. 7 For those who sleep, sleep at night, and those who get drunk are drunk at night. 8 But we who are of the day should be sober, putting on the breastplate of belief and love, and as a helmet the expectation of deliverance.”.
Eph’siyim/Ephesians 5:8-11 “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.”.
Pilipiyim/Philippians 2:14-15 “Do all matters without grumblings and disputings, 15 in order that you be blameless and faultless, children of Elohim without blemish in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world.”.
Our loving-commitment and obedience to His commands, will cause us to shine and we shall be blessed, in having His face shine upon us, giving us favour and shalom..
So, when you hear the blessing spoken over your life and you too ask Him to cause His face to shine upon you, let me ask you: are you shining?
Or, is His Word and His presence been somehow removed from your life and you find that you are, at times, struggling to simply hear and obey?.
In other words, when looking intently into the mirror of the Word, you find that, at times you are not shining but sinning – walking in lawlessness?
If so, then hear this call to repentance and a call to a walk of righteousness:
Eph’siyim/Ephesians 5:14 “That is why He says, “Wake up, you who sleep, and arise from the dead, and Messiah shall shine on you.”
Wake up and He will shine upon you!
May we never be found to be wasting the time, as the days are wicked.
Let us all makes sure that we are redeeming the time in righteousness and truth and in doing so, intercede for the rest of the Bride, in crying out to יהוה Elohim of Hosts, for His face to shine upon us..
Perhaps you have found yourself in a dark place or have been walking in darkness!
Draw near to Him and He will draw near to you.
Cleanse hands and purify hearts, so that the One who dwells between the Keruḇim, who called you out of darkness, into His marvellous light, might shine His face upon you and bless you with His wondrous Light that lights our path!.
Declare your proper response to this call, by living as one who is not asleep, but is watchful and awake to the times, shining the Truth in all you do, so that His magnificent face continues to shine upon you and give you the blessing of His loving-commitment and truth, so that you keep shining brighter and brighter, unto the perfect day!
Mishlĕ/Proverbs 4:18 “But the path of the righteous is like the light of dawn, that shines ever brighter unto the perfect day.”
WILL YOU SHINE?.
יהוה bless you and guard you, יהוה make His face shine upon you, and show favour to you, יהוה lift up His face upon and give you shalom!.