All posts by Jeff

Genesis 28:10–32:2: Underestimating the strength of the ‘weak’

“Then Ya’akov departed from Beersheba and went toward Haran. He came to a certain place and spent the night there, because the sun had set; and he took one of the stones of the place and put it under his head, and lay down in that place.” (Genesis 28:10–11 NASB)

The rock Ya’akov put under his head at the beginning of the Torah section וַיֵּצֵא Vayetze (“he went out,” Genesis 28:10–32:2) reminds me of the rock Aharon and Khur provided for Moshe to sit on while Yehoshua was leading Yisrael in the battle against Amalek (Exodus 17:12).

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Genesis 23:1–25:18: Sarah’s ‘lives’ and our ‘new creation’

When we are pushed to our limits, God promises us that the ways of the Kingdom of God are far more profitable in the long term than trying to avoid pain. That’s what Abraham and Sarah learned over many years of their lives. It’s all the more relevant today for increasing social and physical pressure put on believers in the Holy One of Israel and the Anointed One of God. This lesson of faith is the backdrop of the Torah portion (parashah) חיי שרה Chayei Sarah (“life of Sarah,” Gen. 23:1–25:18).

Continue reading Genesis 23:1–25:18: Sarah’s ‘lives’ and our ‘new creation’

Genesis 12–17: From old self to ‘new creation’ in Abraham’s footsteps

Apostle Paul called Abraham the “father of us all,” those born in Israel and those who have faith like his (Rom. 4:16). In this week’s Torah passage, לֶךְ-לְךָ Lech Lecha (“go forth” or “get going,” Genesis 12-17), we see Abraham’s first move of faith in leaving his homeland for some unknown destination Heaven was leading him toward. His response is an inspiration to us all.

In this passage, we will see Abraham’s first move of faith in leaving his homeland for some unknown destination Heaven was leading him toward. His journey plus that of Israel from bondage in Egypt parallels our path on The Way from the person we used to be to the “new creation” God has started in us through Yeshua haMashiakh (Jesus the Christ).

Genesis 1:1–6:8: God commanded, but why should I listen?

These days, a Creator Who made the heavens, Earth, plants, creatures and people is scoffed at by many, including increasingly more in the Body of Messiah. But this week’s Torah portion, בְּרֵאשִׁית B’reisheet (“in the beginning,” Genesis 1:1-6:8), reminds us why Yeshua (Jesus) taught that this is important real history undergirding our faith.

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Leviticus 26-27: Get a Heavenly transplant before following your heart

As Leviticus ends with the Torah reading בחקותי Bechokotai (“in My statutes,” Leviticus 26-27), we should remember the point of this book seen at its beginning: The LORD wants Israel in His presence, but each must be transformed to make that journey. That’s the lesson of the Tabernacle, offerings, priesthood, appointed times and years, distinguishing between clean and unclean, etc.

As promised in the New Covenant prophecy (Jer. 31:31–34; Ezek. 36:25–26), the LORD will give us a “new heart,” written upon with His laws and empowered by His Spirit.

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Leviticus 21–24: What good is holiness?

“Be on guard for yourselves and for all the flock, among which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to shepherd the church of God which He purchased with His own blood.” (Acts 20:28; cf. vv. 29–35)

Patterned after Heaven, the Tabernacle of Israel was a mobile home for the Presence of the Creator, YHWH. The symbols and rituals associated with that place were to emphasize how different the ways of Heaven are, and the way the Creator originally started things here, from how they are on Earth at that time and today.

The Torah reading אמר Emor (“say,” Leviticus 21–24) calls YHWH’s servants to model a different way of life and keep anniversaries of important things Heaven has done, is doing and will do to make things right again, particularly the mission of Yeshua haMashiakh (Jesus the Christ).

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Leviticus 14–15: Yeshua, the Healer of our leprous lifestyle

Cleanliness is next to Godliness, so the saying goes. There are things that bring us closer to God and things that move us away from God. There are things that happen to us that are beyond our control that can make us unclean before God, but there are also things that we do to ourselves that make us unclean. That’s the underlying message of the Torah reading מצורע Metzora (“leper,” Leviticus 14–15).

Without Yeshua the Mashiakh (Jesus the Christ), we are basically “the walking dead.” Does God want us to “come as we are” and “stay as we are”? No, God wants to bring us up and if we claim to be the sons and daughters of Israel, we should be willing to follow God’s instructions to elevate us from our base selves to His higher self.

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