HOME          TEMPLE SEDARIM      < PRIOR WEEK       NEXT WEEK >

 

Commentary - Year 2 Sabbath 38

Leviticus 17:1-16   -   [No Prophet]   -   Psalm 82  -   1 John 5:1-21
 

 

Kislev 25, 5763 / Nov 30, 2002

Kislev 23, 5766 / Dec 24, 2005

Kislev 23, 5769 / Dec 20, 2008

Kislev 21, 5772 / Dec 17, 2011

Kislev 21, 5775 / Dec 13, 2014

Kislev 21, 5778 / Dec   9, 2017 - Hanukkah begins Tuesday evening.

 

Asher Yishchat / Who Slaughters    SCRIPTURES (should be read first)

 

(V. 1-4) Previous to the Tabernacle, offerings were permitted in various places. With the establishment of the Tabernacle in the Wilderness, they were permitted be slaughtered only at the Tabernacle, or its successor – the Temple. It makes no difference how far away one might be from the Temple. Genesis 9:3 allows man to kill animals for food; but, slaughtering for an offering outside of the Temple brings bloodguiltiness.

 

Prior chapters dealt with tumah (spiritual impurity) from contaminated objects. This chapter deals with tumah from service to alien spirits and demons. (V.7) Sher (demon) comes from the word sh’arah (storm), because they cause turbulence and fear.

 

The Torah here says, “That ish (man) shall be karat (cut off)”, meaning he shall die prematurely. When the Torah says, “That nephesh (soul) shall be karat (cut off)” (as in Genesis 17:14), it means excision from the life to come; but the wording here means a lesser penalty. Genesis 9:11 says “all basar (flesh) shall never again be karat (cut off) by the water of the flood.” For the most serious offenses, the Torah prescribes a karat that means the sinner dies prematurely, his children die prematurely, and he is denied the world to come.

 

(V.5) Peace offerings are mentioned because they are eaten by the owner, in the company of others, in a festive manner: these must not be offered at other places.

 

(V.10-14) Atonement is based upon one life being offered for another – Yeshua’s life for ours. Since life is dependent upon blood, an animal’s life-blood on the Altar is representative of the ultimate atonement. It is a symbol of knowledge and faith in Messiah.

 

Since Noah’s day, God allows animals to be eaten as food. However, life is to be respected, and the life-blood is to be poured out and covered. One who slaughters to drink blood – which represents consuming life – brings upon himself God’s special attention to shorten his earthly life.

 

(V.15) Dead animals convey tumah by being touched, but dead birds of a kosher kind convey tumah only by being eaten (excepting kosher animals and birds killed for eating or offering).

 

The tumah (spiritual impurity) spoken of in this chapter is cleansed through repentance, which is shown by immersion in a mikvah – indicating that one is rising to a new, pure life.

 

Psalm 82 – God takes His stand

 

(V.1) God takes His stand in His own congregation; He judges in the midst of the rulers. God’s congregation is to become the judge of the whole earth: “Do you not know that the saints will judge the world?” – 1 Corinthians 6:2.

 

(V.6) “I said, ‘You are gods, and all of you are sons of the Most High’.” Righteous judges are referred to as elohim, because they perform God’s work. When certain Jews, doubtlessly from among the judges, sought to judge Yeshua, taking up stones to stone Him, He answered them, (John 10:34) “Has it not been written in your Law, 'I said, you are gods'?”

 

(V.2-4) How long will you judge unjustly, and show partiality to the wicked? Selah. Vindicate the weak and fatherless; do justice to the afflicted and destitute. Rescue the weak and needy; deliver them out of the hand of the wicked. We need righteous judges in our land. We need righteous judgment in the congregation. We need to learn righteous personal judgment by learning God’s Word.

 

1 John – Sin unto death

 

1 John 16-17 says, “If anyone sees his brother committing a sin not leading to death, he shall ask and God will for him give life to those who commit sin not leading to death. There is a sin leading to death; I do not say that he should make request for this. All unrighteousness is sin, and there is a sin not leading to death.” This may refer to karat of the soul: examples are Judas who betrayed Yeshua, and Korah who slandered Moses and God. They lost all opportunity for repentance that would allow them a part in the world to come. Or, it may refer to capital offenses, such as murder and Sabbath desecration, where an earthly court judgment of death is an absolute requirement.

 

The Torah portion is about offerings to Yahweh and offerings to idols, and the Psalm is about judges of God and judges that are idolatrous – such as those who put money ahead of justice. 1 John ends with “Guard yourselves from idols”, or, as the NLT reads, “Dear children, keep away from anything that might take God's place in your hearts.”

 

A we come to this Hanukkah, may God grant us His Holy Spirit, that we may display His righteousness as the light of the pure oil of the menorah.

 

Readings:

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

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

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

 

Reader 1Amen. 1 Then Yahweh spoke to Moses, saying, 2 "Speak to Aaron and to his sons and to all the sons of Israel and say to them, 'This is what Yahweh has commanded, saying, 3 "Any man from the house of Israel who slaughters an ox or a lamb or a goat in the camp, or who slaughters it outside the camp, 4 and has not brought it to the doorway of the tent of meeting to present it as an offering to Yahweh before the tabernacle of Yahweh, bloodguiltiness is to be reckoned to that man. He has shed blood and that man shall be cut off from among his people.

Reader 2Amen. 5 "The reason is so that the sons of Israel may bring their sacrifices which they were sacrificing in the open field, that they may bring them in to Yahweh, at the doorway of the tent of meeting to the priest, and sacrifice them as sacrifices of peace offerings to Yahweh. 6 The priest shall sprinkle the blood on the altar of Yahweh at the doorway of the tent of meeting, and offer up the fat in smoke as a soothing aroma to Yahweh. 7 They shall no longer sacrifice their sacrifices to the goat demons with which they play the harlot. This shall be a permanent statute to them throughout their generations."' 8 Then you shall say to them, 'Any man from the house of Israel, or from the aliens who sojourn among them, who offers a burnt offering or sacrifice, 9 and does not bring it to the doorway of the tent of meeting to offer it to Yahweh, that man also shall be cut off from his people.

Reader 3Amen. 10 'And any man from the house of Israel, or from the aliens who sojourn among them, who eats any blood, I will set My face against that person who eats blood and will cut him off from among his people. 11 For the life of the flesh is in the blood, and I have given it to you on the altar to make atonement for your souls; for it is the blood by reason of the life that makes atonement.' 12 Therefore I said to the sons of Israel, 'No person among you may eat blood, nor may any alien who sojourns among you eat blood.'

Reader 4Amen. 13 "So when any man from the sons of Israel, or from the aliens who sojourn among them, in hunting catches a beast or a bird which may be eaten, he shall pour out its blood and cover it with earth. 14 For as for the life of all flesh, its blood is identified with its life. Therefore I said to the sons of Israel, 'You are not to eat the blood of any flesh, for the life of all flesh is its blood; whoever eats it shall be cut off.' 15 When any person eats an animal which dies or is torn by beasts, whether he is a native or an alien, he shall wash his clothes and bathe in water, and remain unclean until evening; then he will become clean. 16 But if he does not wash them or bathe his body, then he shall bear his guilt."

 

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

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

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

______________________

 

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

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

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

and the prophets of truth and righteousness."

 

Psalm 82    (To be sung)   A Psalm of Asaph.

1 God takes His stand in His own congregation; He judges in the midst of the rulers. 2 How long will you judge unjustly and show partiality to the wicked? Selah. 3 Vindicate the weak and fatherless; do justice to the afflicted and destitute. 4 Rescue the weak and needy; deliver them out of the hand of the wicked. 5 They do not know nor do they understand; they walk about in darkness; all the foundations of the earth are shaken. 6 I said, "You are gods, and all of you are sons of the Most High. 7 Nevertheless you will die like men and fall like any one of the princes." 8 Arise, O God, judge the earth! For it is You who possesses all the nations.

 

1 John 5:1-21

Reader 5Amen. 1 Whoever believes that Yeshua is the Messiah is born of God, and whoever loves the Father loves the child born of Him. 2 By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God and observe His commandments. 3 For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments; and His commandments are not burdensome. 4 For whatever is born of God overcomes the world; and this is the victory that has overcome the world-- our faith. 5 Who is the one who overcomes the world, but he who believes that Yeshua is the Son of God? 6 This is the One who came by water and blood, Yeshua the Messiah; not with the water only, but with the water and with the blood.
Reader 6Amen. It is the Spirit who testifies, because the Spirit is the truth. 7 For there are three that testify: 8 the Spirit and the water and the blood; and the three are in agreement. 9 If we receive the testimony of men, the testimony of God is greater; for the testimony of God is this, that He has testified concerning His Son. 10 The one who believes in the Son of God has the testimony in himself; the one who does not believe God has made Him a liar, because he has not believed in the testimony that God has given concerning His Son. 11 And the testimony is this, that God has given us eternal life, and this life is in His Son. 12 He who has the Son has the life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have the life.
Reader 7
Amen.
13 These things I have written to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, so that you may know that you have eternal life. 14 This is the confidence which we have before Him, that, if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. 15 And if we know that He hears us in whatever we ask, we know that we have the requests which we have asked from Him.
Reader 8Amen. 16 If anyone sees his brother committing a sin not leading to death, he shall ask and God will for him give life to those who commit sin not leading to death. There is a sin leading to death; I do not say that he should make request for this. 17 All unrighteousness is sin, and there is a sin not leading to death. 18 We know that no one who is born of God sins; but He who was born of God keeps him, and the evil one does not touch him. 19 We know that we are of God, and that the whole world lies in the power of the evil one. 20 And we know that the Son of God has come, and has given us understanding so that we may know Him who is true; and we are in Him who is true, in His Son Yeshua Messiah. This is the true God and eternal life. 21 Little children, guard yourselves from idols.

 

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

Rock of Ages, righteous throughout all generations.

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

for all Your words are true and righteous.

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

for no word of Yours shall remain unfulfilled;

You are a faithful and merciful God and King.

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


© 2005  Beikvot HaMashiach
(Followers of the Messiah)