Yosef (Joseph) a betrayed brother turned slave turned prime minister in Mitzraim (Egypt). Daniel a war captive turned wise man turned second to an emperor in Babylon. יהודה המכבי Yehudah ha-Makabi (Judas Maccabeus) a priest of Yisrael turned leader of a successful insurrection against the Seleucid empire’s campaign of forced conversion. Yeshua ha-Mashiakh (Jesus the Christ) in the Temple during the Festival of Dedication. These four accounts may seem to quite disjointed, but the conjunction of the Torah reading מקצ Miketz/Miqetz (Genesis 41:1-44:14, “from the end”) and the celebration of Chanukah/Hannukah helps underscore that ongoing lessons from both help us understand what Yeshua meant by “the one who endures to the end, he will be saved.” (Matthew 24:13 NASB).
Yom Teruah (Day of Blowing [Trumpets]) has a number of nicknames, such as Rosh haShanah (New Year). Regardless of what you call it, Yom Teruah has a special purpose in God’s calendar. It’s a day of remembrance, a day of gathering, a day of awakening and a day of offerings. But mostly, it’s the Judgment Day. It’s a day when the wicked are judged and the righteous are vindicated by the Mashiakh (Messiah).
Apostles Paul and Yokhanan wrote a lot about this day, as did the prophets. May your Judgment Day end on a sweet note!
Our sins affect other people, including our children and grandchildren. God said the northern kingdom, the House of Israel, were so far gone, so utterly unrepentant that God’s only recourse was to send 90 percent of them to the grave and the other 10 percent into exile.
The culture and economy of Israel’s royals, nobles and judges were so entrenched in the oppression of the poor, the righteous and the just that God couldn’t do anything with them except wipe them out. Their exile has endured for millennia and is still in force to this day.
The exile of the House of Israel will only end when Messiah Yeshua returns to the earth.
“He had a dream, and behold, a ladder was set on the earth with its top reaching to heaven; and behold, the angels of God were ascending and descending on it.” (Genesis 28:12 NASB)
Ya’akov returns to Bethel, called Luz at this time. Jewish tradition says this is the same place as Mt. Moriah but the Torah does not say that. Yerushalayim, where Mt. Moriah is located, was never called Luz. There is only one Bethel in the Promised Land.
Where we came from and who our parents are doesn’t necessarily define who we are or who we will become. We need to recognize the good around us and become wise to the frequent folly of “following your heart.” This is what we can learn from the life of Esau, the brother of Ya’akov and son of Yitzkhak, detailed in the Torah section תּוֹלְדֹת Toldot or Toledot, covering Gen. 25:19-28:9.
Why did Abraham the nomadic “father of faith” pay so much for a tomb for his wife Sarah? What’s the connection between Abraham’s and King David’s picking a certain son as the successor over other, older sons? Are does the symbol of a well in the account of Yitzkhak marrying Rivkah and in Yeshua’s encounter with the Samaritan woman teach us about the Mashiakh’s work of bringing new life out of death? These are questions tackled in this discussion of the Torah portion חיי שרה Chayei Sarah (“life of Sarah”), covering Genesis 23-25.
Have you ever wondered what the “Wormwood” mentioned in Rev. 8:11 is all about? There is an ongoing lesson in Scripture about the herb wormwood that helps explain what it has to do with God’s actions on the Day of the LORD (Dt. 29:18; Prov. 5:4; Jer. 9:15; 23:15; Lam. 3:15, 19; Amos 5:7; 6:12-13).