Category Archives: Torah
Most are familiar with the Aaronic blessing (also known as the Aaron Benediction):
May YHVH bless you and keep you.
May YHVH make his face shine on you and show you his favor.
May YHVH lift up his face toward you and give you peace.(Numbers 6:24).
We often read or say these words without really knowing what they mean. As is often the case with the whole Bible, unfortunately. Investing one-on-one time with our Creator’s Word is the only way to break from being spoon-fed when we come out of a system of religion. Recognizing the Greek mindset is vastly different from a Hebrew mind set; where concepts are less abstract and more literal and picturesque.
We’ll preface this study with a disclaimer: Our goal is to share our studies on this topic so that it edifies and unites the body of Messiah. Our intention is lifting any perceived burdens one might put on themselves by following previous understandings and/or traditions. We pray that this teaching will bless you and your family.
“Do not kindle a fire in any of your dwellings on the Sabbath day.”
לֹא־תְבַעֲרוּ אֵשׁ בְּכֹל מֹשְׁבֹֽתֵיכֶם בְּיֹום הַשַּׁבָּֽת – Lo t’va’aru esh b’khol moshvotekhem b’yom hashabbat.
Literal: Not you burn fire in all of ones being seated (assembly) of you on day of the sabbath.
Sunday actually made very little headway as a Christian day of rest until the time of Constantine in the fourth century. Constantine was emperor of Rome from AD 306 to 337. He was a sun worshiper during the first years of his reign. Later, he professed conversion to Christianity, but at heart remained a devotee of the sun. Edward Gibbon says, “The Sun was universally celebrated as the invincible guide and protector of Constantine.”
On the venerable Day of the sun let the magistrates and people residing in cities rest, and let all workshops be closed. In the country, however, persons engaged in agriculture may freely and lawfully continue their pursuits: because it often happens that another Day is not so suitable for grain sowing or for vine planting: lest by neglecting the proper moment for such operations the bounty of heaven should be lost.
Chamber’s Encyclopedia says this:
Unquestionably the first law, either ecclesiastical or civil, by which the Sabbatical observance of that Day is known to have been ordained, is the edict of Constantine, 321 A.D.
For anyone who has been in this walk of T’shuva – returning to YHVH’s Word, it seems like a pretty simple question. However, while discussing our beliefs with family members and/or friends this is a common question that sometimes leaves me stunned. Then we must not forget everyone starts this walk by crawling. Baby steps. So, we’re introducing a “Back to Basics” series that will do just that; take us back to the basics for those who are new to Torah observance or are simply looking for answers – simple answers.
Early in our walk we continued to hear the theme of there being around or up to 613 commandments in the Torah. Often times, when in a debate, we could point to the “New” Testament and say, “You think 613 is hard, there’s over 1000 commandments in the New Testament!!” (See: New2Torah 1000 Commandments). It became a numbers game and took the focus off the point.
Nehemia Gordon* brings up a great point on this topic in an episode of the Toral Pearls. Why look for 613 commandments? Putting a number on the commandments diminishes their purpose; for them to be followed and obeyed. One person could say there’s 613 and another person says there’s only 604, etc. It’s a matter of interpretation.
First of all, understand this: no prophecy of Scripture is to be interpreted by an individual on his own; for never has a prophecy come as a result of human willing — on the contrary, people moved by the Ruach HaKodesh spoke a message from God. ~ 2 Peter 1:20,21
I recently received a comment on Facebook about my postings related to Torah.
Here’s an excerpt from my friend’s reply:
“My Savior was Jewish, I am not. My Savior taught that the most important thing to do was to love the Lord your God with all of your heart, and love your neighbor as yourself. I’m concerned I don’t see any mention of this type of love in your postings. I would encourage you to take time to carefully read the book of Galatians. If you choose to be live by the law you will be judged by it…”
This is a reasonable and understandable response. – I get it, and I know where they are coming from…
It’s my hope that the response below will help all those seeking truth in these confusing matters:
Man certainly has put their own interpretations on the Word of YHVH. Lets take a look at how scripture defines His Torah (instructions/Law).
1. The Law blesses (obey) and curses (disobey)
D’varim (Deuteronomy 11:26-27) ~ See, I am setting before you today a blessing and a curse — 27 the blessing, if you listen to the mitzvot of YHVH your Elohim that I am giving you today;
Psalm 112:1 ~ How happy is anyone who fears YHVH, who greatly delights in his mitzvot.
Psalm 119:1-2 ~ How happy are those whose way of life is blameless, who live by the Torah of YHVH! How happy are those who observe his instruction, who seek him wholeheartedly!
Psalm 128:1 ~ How happy is everyone who fears YHVH, who lives by his ways.