“As God is my witness, I will do that.” Such words can roll off our tongues easily, but we can forget that One is witnessing such a vow and watching to see whether we respect the Creator enough to follow through. That’s why Moshe (Moses), Yeshua haMashiakh (Jesus the Christ) and His apostle Ya’akob (James) warned us against dragging the LORD in to co-sign on our promises.
Yisrael’s promise to remain faithful to the One Who delivered the people out of bondage in Mitsraim (Egypt) eroded under the temptation of a flesh-friendly religion. So a former ally of 40 years ago became an existential enemy and had to be defeated. The wisdom of being very careful in making promises and seeking the strength to keep them is the subtext of the Torah reading מטות Matot (“tribes”), covering Numbers 30–32.
When life or our trust in the LORD seems to get too tough for too long, it’s tempting to give up. Yet we should look back on how far we have come in our new life in the Kingdom of Heaven through the mercy given us on the name of Yeshua. Our journey from our old life is much like Israel’s journey from bondage in Mitsraim to freedom at Sinai and rest in the Promised Land, a trek recounted for the second generation in the Torah passage (parashah) מסעי Massei (or Mase’y, “journeys of”), covering Numbers 33–36.
Note: Because of special Bible readings during God’s appointed times, the readings Massei and Matot are combined into one week this year.
Recent posts in Torah
- Parashat Ha'azinu (האזינו): Deuteronomy 32 - September 17th, 2017
- Deuteronomy 29:9–31:30: Hungry to get close to God? - September 16th, 2017
- Parashot Nitzavim (נצבים)/Vayelech (וילך): Deuteronomy 29:9–31:20 - September 10th, 2017
- Deuteronomy 26:1–29:8: Coveting thankfulness for the LORD's blessings - September 9th, 2017
- Parashat Ki Tavo (כי תבוא): Deuteronomy 26:1–29:8 - September 3rd, 2017
- Parashat Ki Tetze (כי תצא): Deuteronomy 21:10-25:19 - August 26th, 2017
- Deuteronomy 16:18–21:9: Learn to judge life & death righteously & mercifully - August 26th, 2017
- Parashat Shoftim (שפטים): Deuteronomy 16:18-21:9 - August 20th, 2017
- Deuteronomy 11:26–16:17: Learning to live a blessed life - August 19th, 2017
- Parashat Re'eh (ראה): Deuteronomy 11:26-16:17 - August 13th, 2017
- Deuteronomy 7:12-11:25: Stay with the One Who brought you this far - August 12th, 2017
- Parashat Eikev/Ekev (עקב): Deuteronomy 7:12–11:25 - August 6th, 2017
- Parashat Va'etchanan (ואתחנן): Deuteronomy 3:23-7:11 - July 29th, 2017
- Deuteronomy 1:1–3:22: Growing in grace by every word from God - July 29th, 2017
- Parashat Devarim (דברים): Deuteronomy 1:1–3:22 - July 22nd, 2017
- Numbers 30-36: We want Messiah to give us rest from our dumb oaths and vows - July 22nd, 2017
- Numbers 25:10-29:40: A 'snake' again becomes an icon of salvation - July 15th, 2017
- Parashat Pinchas (פינחס): Numbers 25:10-30:1 - July 9th, 2017
- Numbers 22:1-25:9: God sent emissaries to the Gentiles too - July 8th, 2017
- Parashat Balak (בלק): Numbers 22:2-25:9 - July 2nd, 2017