Come & See For Heaven’s Sake

Come and See

By

Rabbi Cliff Maynard

www.rockofisraelcongregation.org

Every time I look in the Mirror, I see a little clearer,

there is someone there standing, staring back at me!

I say how do you do, I think I know you, even with those wrinkles on my face.

Aging is a given, but we go on living, acting as if tomorrow will never come.

Isn’t it about time we take life a little more seriously?

I mean really, it seemed like yesterday I was only Three!

Life isn’t easy, I know this sounds cheesy,

but my how the years have flown by!

Isn’t it about time to cry?

Or maybe it is better just to try,

and live life with every beat of our heart!

Everyday brings a brand new start, a new beginning racing toward the never ending of eternity!

Where are you headed? To the place of the dreaded or The Heaven where I want to be?

The Choice is yours to make, Choose L’Chaim,

BELIEVE ON YESHUA

for Heaven’s sake!

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When he sent away

BESHALACH

By

Rabbi Cliff Maynard

Parshah Beshalach

Torah Reading for Week of Jan 5-11, 2014 – Shevat 4-10, 5774

Exodus 13:17-17:16

Brit Chadashah – Romans 1:16-32

Shabbat Shalom everyone! This weeks parsha for is Beshalach (when he sent away) . This parsha has so much more for us to learn from than just the usual, normal rendering we are used to reading. It is my intent for you to stop and think about what you are reading in this parsha.  There are some very deep meanings that should and, I believe are intended to make us stop and see very distinct parallels to the body of messiah, as well as our personal lives in relation to our walk with G-d.  I would be excited to hear back from you as to your thoughts on the subject matter and, the questions and answers you discovered as you navigate through this parsha.  So, lets begin!

 In the parsha this week we have the Jewish Exodus from the land of Egypt.  Foremost in this parsha, the Jews go through Yam Suf  (the “Red Sea” or “Sea of Reeds”) G-d splits the sea in front of them, they come out on dry land on the other side. The Egyptians don’t come out quite so well; they are swallowed up by the waves of the Red Sea as it engulfs them, drowning them, as they pursue G-d’s Chosen people.  The Jews are finally free from Egypt!  What a beginning for this parsha!  The Torah continues to tell us what happened between the time the Jews left Egypt and the forty-nine days in-between the Exodus and the receiving of the Torah, which will happen in next week’s Torah portion.

  bible-archeology-exodus-red-sea-crossing-drawing

WHERE ARE YOU G-D?

The Torah tells us a few different things that occurred and, we need to examine these things and try to understand why exactly did they occur at this point. What exactly do they represent and how are they the preparation for the receiving of the Torah at Mt. Sinai.  The first thing the Torah tells us is that on the 15th day of Iyar, which is exactly one month after the Jews left Egypt, all of their food was used up.  No bread, dough, no grain, no meat, nothing left to eat! We read that they came to Moshe and complained about the situation.  To quote my ancestors from Exodus 16:2-3 “Then the whole congregation of the children of Israel complained against Moses and Aaron in the wilderness.  And the children of Israel said to them, “Oh, that we had died by the hand of the L-RD in the land of Egypt, when we sat by the pots of meat and when we ate bread to the full! For you have brought us out into this wilderness to kill this whole assembly with hunger.”

According to the sages (great rabbis of old) the actual point being made in the midrash, that they were referring to, is that they wished they would have died in the 9th plague, the plague of darkness.  It is also interesting to note that the Sages tell us that 4/5 (do the math on that one!) of the Jewish people actually died during the plague of darkness.  Those 4/5 were so immersed in the ways of the Egyptians culture, that they didn’t want to leave and, died in the plague of darkness.  At this point of the Exodus, one month later, those who did leave, were actually saying they wished they would have died rather than be starving to death a month later in the wilderness!

This brings up some very interesting questions. Why did they refer to the plague of darkness? What did they mean by that?  We should also pay attention to the fact that it is exactly one month after the Exodus. G-d has been providing for them, helping them, protecting them. What is going on? Why all of a sudden do they loose their faith and, start complaining to Moshe.  After they complain, HaShem creates a miracle for them and provides their needs!  This brings up two very important questions:     

1.     Why are they complaining and not trusting in Adonai?

2.     Why did Adonai wait till they complained and had nothing before he provided for them?

WHAT ELSE CAN GO WRONG?

As we read forward, before they get to Mt. Sinai, we find our brethren at another crisis.  It is important to note that it is still the month of Iyar and, that within a short amount of time they run out of water.  This time they take their complaining to a new level as we read in Exodus 17:1-7…

1 Then all the congregation of the children of Israel set out on their journey from the Wilderness of Sin, according to the commandment of the L-RD, and camped in Refidim; but there was no water for the people to drink. 2 Therefore the people contended with Moses, and said, “Give us water, that we may drink.”

So Moses said to them, “Why do you contend with me? Why do you tempt the L-RD?”

3 And the people thirsted there for water, and the people complained against Moses, and said, “Why is it you have brought us up out of Egypt, to kill us and our children and our livestock with thirst?”

4 So Moses cried out to the LORD, saying, “What shall I do with this people? They are almost ready to stone me!”

5 And the LORD said to Moses, “Go on before the people, and take with you some of the elders of Israel. Also take in your hand your rod with which you struck the river, and go. 6 Behold, I will stand before you there on the rock in Horeb; and you shall strike the rock, and water will come out of it, that the people may drink.”

And Moses did so in the sight of the elders of Israel. 7 So he called the name of the place Massah and Meribah, because of the contention of the children of Israel, and because they tempted the L-RD, saying, “Is the L-RD among us or not?”

Are you noticing a patern here? Once again they complain. Once again G-d waits till they complain and meets their need by commanding Moshe to strike the rock for water.  On the surface this appears a little puzzling?  Hold on, we will get to the bottom of all this very shortly.

TAKE NOTE OF THE LOCATION

The Torah takes the time to make sure we know where this is taking place.  It is at a place called Refidim.  Could it be the Torah is offering up a clue for this event and the one to follow?

SO WHY?

·      Why did G-d wait till they complained before He gave them water?

·      Why did they question if G-d was with them?

·      Clearly it seemed that if they are dying of thirst that maybe G-d was not with them, or was he?

OK, TIME FOR SOME ANSWERS!

·      Refidim means “weakness”

·      It was a place that the Jewish people tested G-d! How?

·      By questioning whether or not G-d was with them, in doing so it revealed a problem in their walk with HaShem.  Sound familiar?  Havent we done the same thing?  How many times do we complain instead of worshiping G-d for what He has provided?  Did you notice they complained when the water and food ran out, instead of giving thanks while the had it.  They complained and tested G-d instead of worshiping Him and asking Him to provide more with a grateful heart.  This “weakness” of an ungrateful heart leads to immorality.

 

Romans Chapter 1:16-32 “For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Messiah, for it is the power of G-d to salvation for everyone who believes, for the Jew first and also for the Greek. 17 For in it the righteousness of G-d is revealed from faith to faith; as it is written, “The just shall live by faith.”

18 For the wrath of G-d is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who suppress the truth in unrighteousness, 19 because what may be known of G-d is manifest in them, for G-d has shown it to them. 20 For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and G-dhead, so that they are without excuse, 21 because, although they knew G-d, they did not glorify Him as G-d, nor were thankful, but became futile in their thoughts, and their foolish hearts were darkened. 22 Professing to be wise, they became fools, 23 and changed the glory of the incorruptible G-d into an image made like corruptible man—and birds and four-footed animals and creeping things.

24 Therefore G-d also gave them up to uncleanness, in the lusts of their hearts, to dishonor their bodies among themselves, 25 who exchanged the truth of G-d for the lie, and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever. Amen.

26 For this reason G-d gave them up to vile passions. For even their women exchanged the natural use for what is against nature. 27 Likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust for one another, men with men committing what is shameful, and receiving in themselves the penalty of their error which was due.

28 And even as they did not like to retain G-d in their knowledge, G-d gave them over to a debased mind, to do those things which are not fitting; 29 being filled with all unrighteousness, sexual immorality, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, evil-mindedness; they are whisperers, 30 backbiters, haters of G-d, violent, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents, 31 undiscerning, untrustworthy, unloving, unforgiving, unmerciful; 32 who, knowing the righteous judgment of G-d, that those who practice such things are deserving of death, not only do the same but also approve of those who practice them.

SO WHY THE MONTH OF IYAR?

·      Why is all of this stuff happening to them in the month of Iyar?

·      What is the significance of the month of Iyar?

ANSWER:

·      Iyar means “Darkness or Covering up”

·      The sages seem to think that this represents the times in our life when G-d seems to be silent.  The times that cause us to seek His face at a great degree to find Him.  That in turn draws us closer to Him.

·      I believe it also is the way G-d has of showing us the stuff in our lives that needs to be uncovered.  The way He uses to get the hidden junk in our spiritual closets that keep us from intimacy with Him.  When we complain, and finally cry out to Adonai in desperation, He always comes through because He loves us.  Yet, He wants us to learn from our mistakes and go deeper in Him.  I am amazed sometimes at the stuff I could have avoided, if I would just take the time to thank Him, Trust Him and Obey Him.  Hang with me! There is more explanation to come and, some eye opening information from the Word that will help bring light to this parsha.

OY VEY! NOW THEY ARE ATTACKED BY AMALEK! WHAT IS GOING ON HERE? EXODUS 17:8-16

“8 Now Amalek came and fought with Israel in Rephidim. 9 And Moses said to Joshua, “Choose us some men and go out, fight with Amalek. Tomorrow I will stand on the top of the hill with the rod of G-d in my hand.” 10 So Joshua did as Moses said to him, and fought with Amalek. And Moses, Aaron, and Hur went up to the top of the hill. 11 And so it was, when Moses held up his hand, that Israel prevailed; and when he let down his hand, Amalek prevailed. 12 But Moses’ hands became heavy; so they took a stone and put it under him, and he sat on it. And Aaron and Hur supported his hands, one on one side, and the other on the other side; and his hands were steady until the going down of the sun. 13 So Joshua defeated Amalek and his people with the edge of the sword.

 

 

 

 

14 Then the L-RD said to Moses, “Write this for a memorial in the book and recount it in the hearing of Joshua, that I will utterly blot out the remembrance of Amalek from under heaven.” 15 And Moses built an altar and called its name, The-L-RD-Is-My-Banner; 16 for he said, “Because the L-RD has sworn: the L-RD will have war with Amalek from generation to generation.”

·      Why is it that this war also happened at Refidim?

The people of Amalek were the descendents of Esau.  They were known as people that questioned the existence of G-d. They had chosen the things of the flesh of this world over the spiritual things of the world to come.  This was a “weakness” of Esau.

·      Why is it that whenever Moshe’s hands were raised the Jewish people succeeded?

·      Why was it that whenever Moshe’s hands were lowered they suffered defeat?

Whenever they focused on the war, they lost sight of Who was in control.  When they focused on Moshe’s hands raised in praise, they focused their eyes on the G-d they served and it built their TRUST (faith).  Now, if that wont minister to you, nothing will!

MOSHE BUILDS AN ALTAR- SOME DEFINITIONS

·      ADONAI NISSI – THE L-RD IS MY BANNER OVER SEXUAL IMMORALITY (SEE ROMANS 1:16-32 ABOVE)

·      ADONAI NISSI – THE G-D WHO TESTS ME

·      ADONAI NISSI – THE G-D WHO LIFTS ME UP

It is important to note here that testing and lifting is the same concept, as a test is something that lifts up from one level to another.  That will bring us to the last couple of question that needs to be answered and, a few closing remarks.

·      Why did 4/5 of the Jewish people die in the 9th plague of darkness?

The sages believe it was the removal of the last outer layers of he Jewish people who as I mentioned earlier, loved the world more than the things of G-d.  Does that ring familiar?  The body of Messiah today is so polluted with the world.  Messiah Yeshua is returning for a Bride that is without spot and wrinkle.  How many will be left behind in the “plague of darkness” because they will not be willing to give up the evil they have come to know and love?  Are we who call ourselves leaders in the body in some manner or another fulfilling our calling and teaching the “Truth” of the Word? If not, we had better rectify the problem quickly.

·      What is the significance that all of the events in this parsha happened between the leaving of Egypt and the giving of the Torah on Mt. Sinai?

I believe the significance comes down to the counting of the Omer.  What Jewish people do for 49 days between Passover and Sha’vout  (Feast of Pentecost).  It was the cleaning up if you will, of the Nation of Israel that left Egypt as slaves and arrived as the Priests and Kings, a Holy Nation that would carry the Light of Torah and, be the progenitors of the Messiah for the world. 

Now for some closing remarks on the body of this parsha.  Time is a layer that relates to the month of Iyar.  It hides the deeper meanings of the Word revealed for these Last Days before the return of Yeshua.  There are also times in our lives that we all feel a distance from G-d.  Beshalach serves to remind us that He will never leave us or forsake us.  He continually works on us to form us into chosen the men and women of His, that we are designed by Him to be.   I have often told my students, G-d is the Hammer, adversity is the chisel, and we are the diamond in the rough.  We must strive to find G-d and serve G-d even in the hard times.  Adonai has made a way for us through Yeshua the Messiah.  May we seek Him first, praise Him while we do, and give Glory to His name as we walk through this wilderness towards the Promised Land.

IN Yeshua,

Rabbi Cliff Maynard

Senior Rabbi,

Rock Of Israel Congregation

Vice President,

National Jewish Fellowship of the AG

 

THE LION OF THE TRIBE OF JUDAH (DATE SHOULD READ 12-08-2013)

523856_373714936005115_545773433_nParshat HaShavua:

Vayechi (ויחי | He lived)

By

Rabbi Cliff Maynard

Senior Rabbi, The Rock Of Israel Congregation

www.rockofisraelcongregation.com

Vice President, National Jewish Fellowship Of The AG

TheTalmud states:

The righteous, even in death are called living…whereas the evil, even while alive, are called dead. (Brochos 18a)

So how does this apply to Parshat Vayechi, especially considering Vayechi means “He Lived,” in reference to Jacob? The statement from the Talmud and the name Parshat Vayechi seems even a little more off kilt, considering this parsha tells the story of the death of Jacob, then shortly followed by the death of Joseph. Nevertheless, The statement from the Talmud fits the patriarch Ya’akov, and his son Yo’sef very well, as they were both righteous men.  Their righteous lives still speak to us today, as the words jump off the pages of Torah and into our hearts.

I am enamored with the Messianic parallels of Joseph and Yeshua HaMashiach ben Elohim, as well as the foretelling of the promise of the Messiah to come in the blessing of Jacob over his son Judah.  The blessing of Judah is a good jumping point for us to consider.  As Jacob looked into the future to bless his sons regarding their tribal destinies, he was seeking the Messiah and the age of redemption, as he says, “For Your salvation [yeshua] I wait, O LORD” (Genesis 49:18). Though he pours out his most lavish blessing over his favored son, Joseph, he nevertheless is prophetically compelled to give the kingship to his son Judah. He declares, “The scepter shall not depart from Judah, nor the ruler’s staff from between his feet” (Genesis 49:10).

 

When reading this prophecy emanating from Jacob over Judah, one can miss several important points of interest if we do no slow down and pay close attention.

1.     A scepter is a rod or staff that represents Royal Authority, power held by a King, yet Jacobs prophecy over Judah of a “King” to rule in Israel comes long before Israel would be ruled by a King.  Even so the first King to rule over Israel would be King Saul, not from the tribe of Judah but Benjamin  (1 Samuel 9:1-10:1) This is NOT a mistake on Jacob’s part.  HaShem reveled to Jacob centuries ahead that Adonai would set a King over Israel.  We also know Saul’s Kingship ended, and that G-D would install “a man after His own heart.”  Who? This “man after God’s own heart” was David, the son of Jesse—of the tribe of Judah (1 Samuel 16:1-13).  Upon reflection of this, it appears that Jacob was speaking of the reign of Melech Dovid, but could this be it? We all know Melech Dovid began the Royal Lineage that Jacob’s prophecy pointed to, still, the King Jacob speaks of must also write Law.

2.     Now, at first glance we might even pass over one VERY important point….because Jacob’s words come before any recorded written law had been given. The “Lawgiver” of Israel would be the Levite, drawn out of the Nile—Moses (Exodus 2:1-10). Of him, Israel would declare, “Moses commanded a law for us, a heritage of the congregation of Jacob” (Deuteronomy 33:4).  Could it be another mistake in Jacob’s prophecy?  Not according to Psalms, “Judah is My Lawgiver” (Psalm 60:7; 109:8).  Yes, I realize all of Israel hold Moshe in High esteem, but that does not give us the right to overlook Jacob’s prophecy!  Isaiah understood that the true source of Divine Law not as Moshe, but – “the Lord is our Judge, the Lord is our Lawgiver, the Lord is our King; He will save us” (Isaiah 33:22).  When did a “Lawgiver” come from Judah? Does this speak merely of the administrative laws of Davidic kings? Or could it be Jacob is foretelling of a Divine Lawgiver, descended from Judah?  One might argue that the term “Lawgiver” is just another way of describing royal authority that mirrors the term—“Scepter.” But Jacob’s prophecy reveals that neither will depart from Judah “until” the coming of Shiloh.

3.     The Israelite territory of Ephraim played host to the Tabernacle through the time of Joshua and Samuel, but there is no mention of it in Bereshit (Genesis).  The Bible is very clear that royal authority does not start for Judah until after Melech Dovid (King David) comes to Shiloh.  If that is the case, then who or what is the “Shiloh” that Jacob’s prophetic blessing?

4.     The Hebrew word shylho found here may be a contracted form of shello, a compound of sh- the relative pronoun “whom,” with -l the preposition “to,” and  -o the third person singular pronominal suffix “he.” Altogether, that would mean, “he to whom it belongs.” If this is correct, although it would constitute an unusual and unique construction, Hamilton tells us it is supported by “the almost unanimous testimony of ancient versions” including the Septuagint and the Hebrew Targums.[*] This may parallel the wording of Ezekiel 21:27. In this text, God rebukes the “wicked prince of Israel, whose day has come” (21:25). After promising that the king of Babylon would come to punish him (21:18-24), the Lord declares of his power, “Overthrown, overthrown, I will make it overthrown! It shall be no longer, until He comes whose right it is, and I will give it to Him.”

5.     What light does that shed on Shilo? Jacob prophesied a King from the line of Judah, before a king was even imagined in Israel. Jacob prophesied a Lawgiver from Judah, before written law was revealed, using a title Scripture applies to the Divine “Lawgiver.” Finally, he prophesies that this authority will stand “until he comes to whom it belongs” (NIV). Does this mean that when this one comes, such authority will pass away? No, “to Him shall be the obedience of the people.” The Septuagint and the Vulgate both understood the Hebrew word here amyim—“people” to express the sense of “nations” (i.e. more than just Israel). Who would descend from Judah, be both a King and a Lawgiver, to whom the right of royal authority “belongs,” and to whom would be “the obedience of the nations” (NIV)? Hundreds of years before His birth Jacob prophesied the coming of Yeshua HaMashiach (Jesus The Messiah), of the tribe of Judah, King, Lawgiver, and Shiloh, “He to whom (the right to rule the nations) belongs.”

Finally, As Jacob continues to bless his son Judah, he prophesies, “He ties his foal to the vine, and his donkey’s colt to the choice vine.” From the messianic perspective, any mention of a donkey evokes the Zechariah 9:9 passage: Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion! Shout in triumph, O daughter of Jerusalem! Behold, your king is coming to you; he is just and endowed with salvation, humble, and mounted on a donkey, even on a colt, the foal of a donkey. On the strength of Zechariah 9:9, the Sages reckoned almost every reference to a donkey as a reference to Messiah. According to the Talmud, even if one merely dreams of a donkey, it is a sign that he may anticipate salvation. When Yeshua entered the city of Jerusalem riding on a donkey, everyone immediately associated it with the Zechariah 9:9 passage.

His entrance on a donkey was an open statement declaring, ‘I am He to whom the prophet referred.’ Thus the “foal” and “donkey’s colt” of the tribe of Judah is the messianic expectation—the steed that carries Messiah to Jerusalem. But what does it mean that he ties his donkey to a choice vine? Yeshua is also called “the Vine,” as He says in John 15:5, “I am the vine.” He is the choice vine to which the messianic expectation is tethered.

With the blessings of Jacob concluded, he dies.  Parsha Vayechi ends with  Genesis Chapter 50 and Joseph dying at 110 years old. Joseph’s last words brings hope for all of Israel…”G-d will surely remember you, and bring you up out of this land to the land of which he swore to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob.

G-d will surely remember you; and you shall carry up my bones from here.”

Mazel Tov!

THE END OF BERESHITH!

We now recite the traditional words upon completing a book of Torah

CHAZAK! CHAZAK! VE’NIT – CHAZEK!

BE STRONG! BE STRONG! AND MAY WE BE STRENGTHENED!


Chanukah, The Eight Day Festival Of Light, Why Celebrate It?

“Chanukah”

The Eight Day Festival of Light

By

Rabbi Cliff Maynard

Senior Rabbi – Rock of Israel Congregation

Vice President – National Jewish Fellowship

 

“And it was at Jerusalem the feast of the dedication, and it was winter. And Jesus walked in the temple in Solomon’s porch.”

– John 10:22-23

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Did you know Yeshua (Jesus) celebrated Chanukah? During His earthly ministry, Chanukah was known as the Feast of Dedication. In fact, it is still known as the Feast of Dedication today. Nevertheless, most followers of Yeshua (Jesus) think of Chanukah as only a Jewish holiday – not something they necessarily should celebrate. Many believers think Chanukah is an added festival – and not mentioned in the Bible. Next time you hear that, just point to the Scripture at the top of this article.  Chanukah is a beautiful Festival commemorating G-d’s love for, and the deliverance of His people.

 

This year, Chanukah, the eight-day festival of light is November 27th through December 5th and celebrates victory of light over darkness. The word Chanukah means “dedication”.

 

More than 21 centuries ago, the Israel was ruled by the Seleucids (Syrian-Greeks), who sought to force the people of Israel to worship pagan gods. Against all odds, a small band of faithful Jews defeated one of the mightiest armies on earth, drove them from the land, reclaimed the Holy Temple in Jerusalem, and rededicated it to G-d.

 

When they sought to light the Temple’s menorah, they found only a single cruse of olive oil that had escaped contamination by the Greeks; miraculously, the one-day supply burned for eight days, until new oil could be prepared under conditions of ritual purity.

 

To commemorate and publicize these miracles, the sages instituted the festival of Chanukah. At the heart of the festival is the nightly menorah lighting: a single flame on the first night, two on the second evening and so on until the eighth night of Chanukah, when all eight lights are kindled.

 

On the first night of Chanukah (Wednesday, November 27), recite all three blessings. On all subsequent nights, recite blessings number 1 and 2.

 

1. Blessed are You, L rd our G d, King of the universe, who has sanctified us with His commandments, and commanded us to kindle the Chanukah light.

1. Ba-ruch A-tah Ado-nai Eh-lo-hei-noo Meh-lech Ha-olam A-sher Ki-deh-sha-noo Beh-mitz-vo-tav Veh-tzi-va-noo Leh-had-lik Ner Cha-noo-kah.

 

2. Blessed are You, L rd our G d, King of the universe, who performed miracles for our forefathers in those days, at this time.

2. Ba-ruch A-tah Ado-nai Eh-lo-hei-nu Meh-lech Ha-olam Sheh-a-sa Nee-sim La-avo-tei-noo Ba-ya-mim Ha-hem Bee-z’man Ha-zeh.

3. Blessed are You, L rd our G d, King of the universe, who has granted us life, sustained us, and enabled us to reach this occasion.

3. Ba-ruch A-tah Ado-nai Eh-lo-hei-noo Me-lech Ha-olam Sheh-heh-cheh-ya-noo Veh-kee-yeh-ma-noo Veh-hee-gee-a-noo Liz-man Ha-zeh B’shem Yeshua HaMashiach.

 

 

On Chanukah, Hallel and the Al HaNissim prayer are recited to offer praise and thanksgiving to G-d for ” delivering the strong into the hands of the weak, the many into the hands of the few… the wicked into the hands of the righteous. “

 

Chanukah customs include eating foods fried in oil — latkes (potato pancakes) and sufganiot (doughnuts); playing with the dreidel (a spinning top on which are inscribed the Hebrew letters nun, gimmel, hei and shin, an acronym for Nes Gadol Hayah Sham, ” a great miracle happened there “); and the giving of Chanukah gelt, gifts of money, to children.

 

Chanukah is a beautiful celebration of Adonai once again delivering the Jewish people from the destructive hand of the enemy. It is a picture of the faith of the people of G-d in the midst of terrible persecution.

 

To me, Chanukah is also a picture of The Menorah…Yeshua the light of the world, who endured horrific persecution and death, only to be raised again to Life by the power of the Holy Spirit, who is often represented by pure Oil in the Word. Yeshua is the One who stands in the midst of the seven candlesticks of Revelation and the One who contains the fullness of the Seven Spirits of G-d (the seven characteristics of the Holy Spirit) found is Isaiah 11:1-2. Is it any wonder Yeshua celebrated this Festival, when it painted such a beautiful picture of Him!

 

May all Israel come to see the Light of the World that burns brightly still today, Yeshua HaMashiach (Jesus the Messiah), as we celebrate Chanukah this season.

Camping With Angels?

Parshat Vayishlach

 (And He Sent)

by

Rabbi Cliff Maynard

Senior Rabbi,

Rock Of Israel Congregation,

Vice President,

National Jewish Fellowship of the AG

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The name of this Parshat Vayishlach (and He sent), gives us insight to a dual message. The name implies that Jacob sent (and we will see he did), but I like to think it also implies Adonai sent. This is a very important point that needs mentioning. Finally, Jacob is free to go and live as he has dreamed of for the past twenty years. He has worked to gain his family and freedom and, to return to the land of his fathers; the Holy Land promised to Abraham and all Jewish people. As he finally packs up and heads out (I believe he has traveled and is getting ready to make camp), he has the first encounter on the road to“home” that must have set him back just a bit. We read in Genesis 32:1 So Jacob went on his way, and the angels of God met him. 2 When Jacob saw them, he said, “This is G-d’s camp.” And he called the name of that place Mahanaim. In the Hebrew makh·an·eh’ חָנָה (strongs #H2583) and it is used as (host/camp)

1. encampment, camp

A ) camp, place of encampment

B ) camp of armed host, army camp

C )  those who encamp, company, body of people).

LIttle Petra_321(BLR&C)

I believe Jacob camped there and received divine advice from G-d on what he was about to encounter. I love this verse as it gives us hope, knowing that even though trials may be waiting down the road ahead, an army may be coming towards us to destroy us, yet G-d will send his army of angels ahead of us to warn and assist us. The next verse proves this because we see Jacob is sending messengers’ out to meet with Esau. There is no mention of anyone else warning Jacob that Esau was on the way to meet with him. Let’s read on…3 Then Jacob sent messengers before him to Esau his brother in the land of Seir, the country of Edom. 4 And he commanded them, saying, “Speak thus to my lord Esau, ‘Thus your servant Jacob says: “I have dwelt with Laban and stayed there until now. 5 I have oxen, donkeys, flocks, and male and female servants; and I have sent to tell my lord, that I may find favor in your sight.”6 Then the messengers returned toJacob, saying, “We came to your brother Esau, and he also is coming to meet you, and four hundred men are with him.” 7 So Jacob was greatly afraid and distressed; and he divided the people that were with him, and the flocks and herds and camels, into two companies. 8 And he said, “If Esau comes to the one company and attacks it, then the other company which is left will escape.”

From the next few verses, we learn that G-d himself will speak to us, if we “camp” with Him, sit at his feet, pour out our heart to him and listen to His counsel. I like the fact that it mentions Jacob did not run back to the safety of his father–in-law, nor did he try to go around the problem, neither did he try and handle it on his own, but Jacob continued to “camp” right there with the Host of G-d. I believe G-d himself was in the camp, evidenced by the fact that we see that Jacob “said” not prayed, or cried out but “said.” Let this be a lesson to us, we should all learn to stay in the presence of G-d in the midst of trouble and allow Him to work it out for us, moving only when we are released to move.

9 Then Jacob said, “O G-d of my father Abraham and G-d of my father Isaac, the L-RD who said to me, ‘Return to your country and to your family, and I will deal well with you’: 10 I am not worthy of the least of all the mercies and of all the truth which You have shown Your servant; for I crossed over this Jordan with my staff, and now I have become two companies. 11 Deliver me, I  pray, from the hand of my brother, from the hand of Esau; for I fear him, lest he come and attack me and the mother with the children. 12 For You said, ‘I will surely treat you well, and make your descendants as the sand of the sea, which cannot be numbered for multitude.’13 So he lodged there that same night, and took what came to his hand as a present for Esau his brother: 14 two hundred female goats and twenty male goats, two hundred ewes and twenty rams, 15 thirty milk camels with their colts, forty cows and ten bulls, twenty female donkeys and ten foals. 16 Then he delivered them to the hand of his servants, every drove by itself, and said to his servants, “Pass over before me, and put some distance between successive droves.” 17 And he commanded the first one, saying, “When Esau my brother meets you and asks you, saying, ‘To whom do you belong, and where are you going? Whose are these in front of you?’ 18 then you shall say, ‘They are your servant Jacob’s. It is a present sent to my lord Esau; and behold, he also is behind us.’19 So he commanded the second, the third, and all who followed the droves, saying, “In this manner you shall speak to Esau when you find him; 20 and also say, ‘Behold, your servant Jacob is behind us.’” For he said, “I will appease him with the present that goes before me, and afterward I will see his face; perhaps he will accept me.” 21 So the present went on over before him, but he himself lodged that night in the camp.

May we all “lodge in the camp” of The L-RD!

As we end this parshat we learn that Jacob’s trouble is not just as a result of some bad blood between him and Esau. Yes, G-d could fix that, and we see that he does, yet that would not have fixed the “problem” for the problem was not found in an angry brother, but within Jacob himself. I have often discovered that when I have encountered G-d in times of trouble, it has brought to the surface things within myself that He wanted to correct. Many times, those things were a stumbling block to my becoming who He wanted me to be in Him, and even what He needed to accomplish through me.

HELLO MY NAME AS BEEN CHANGED

The rest of the parshat deals with Jacob wrestling with G-d. The wrestling match definitely has a dual purpose, of which the outcome of his immediate life and future life would depend. Jacob goes into the wrestling match the “old Jacob”, then comes out of the contest with G-d blessing him to the life changing, New Name of Israel. It ends with the restoration of relationship with his brother and the establishment of “Israel.” What do we learn from this? No matter how bleak a situation may seem, G-d can change it!

Let me end with a few words of encouragement….ISAIAH 26:4 Trust in the L-RD forever, for the L-RD, the L-RD is the Rock eternal.

Psalm 9:9-12 The LORD also will be a refuge for the oppressed, A refuge in times of trouble. And those who know Your name will put their trust in You; For You, LORD, have not forsaken those who seek You. Sing praises to the LORD, who dwells in Zion! Declare His deeds among the people. When He avenges blood, He remembers them; He does not forget the cry of the humble.

Friends, May you find the angels of Adonai encamped around you….May you take lodging in the camp of The G-d of Hosts…. May you find peace in His presence and may the desire of your heart be for more of Him.

 IN Yeshua,

Rabbi Cliff Maynard

http://www.rabbicliff.org

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Parshat Vayeitzei (And He Went Out)

Parshat Vayeitzei

(“And he went out”)

Genesis (Bereshit) 28:10-32:3

Brit Chadashah John 1:43-51

By

Rabbi Cliff Maynard

Senior Rabbi,

Rock Of Israel Congregation

www.rockofisraelcongregation.org

Vice President,

National Jewish Fellowship of the AG

www.njfag.org

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My teaching of this week’s Parshat Vayeitzei will not focus on the usual obvious course followed by most Rabbis’; no, I choose to look at this through Messianic eyes! Eyes that can see the wonderful tapestry of Scripture woven through the Old Covenant that point to Yeshua as Messiah, and the dilemma, we as believers face today.

What a wonderful parshat! Vayeitzei starts us off with a BANG! Yaakov (Jacob) is about to make the biggest transition of his life! He is leaving the Holy land and the Tents of learning that have occupied his life for 14 years day and night (Psalms1:2), and is about to make his entrance into the worldly land of his mothers family…Genesis 28:10 “ ” And Jacob went out from Be’er-Sheva and he went toward Charan. “

Talk about black and white! Be’er-Sheva and Charan were total opposites; as much as the 14 years of learning Jacob had just finished would be from the 20 years he was about to spend serving the evil Laban! Still Adonai was in it, and would give Jacob a dream to give him something to hang on to in the days to come. What am I referring to? The story of Jacobs’s ladder of course! This story has been told for generations without real understanding.

Jacob heads out for Charan, and walks until he comes upon “The Place” as the torah refers to it.  It is important that we pay close attention to Scripture here; as there are special things happening that are hidden in plain sight! We will also ask a few questions, and find the answers! Suddenly, the sun goes down, Jacob gathers rocks and makes with them a pillow for his head.

Genesis 28:10,11 And Jacob went out from Beer-sheba, and went toward Haran. 11 And he lighted upon the place, and tarried there all night, because the sun was set; and he took one of the stones of the place, and put it under his head, and lay down in that place to sleep.

So, what is “The Place” as this is certainly giving us a clue to something special that Adonai wants us to dig for!  If we search the word we will find the answer in

Genesis 22:4 On the third day Abraham lifted up his eyes, and saw the place afar off.  

“The Place” was Mount Moriah!  The great Rabbi Rashi agrees with this as do most of the sages.  Rashi mentions it as if everyone commonly knows it. I agree with with Rashi. I believe the verses following give credence to it as well.

Genesis 28:12,13 And he dreamed, and behold a ladder set up on the earth, and the top of it reached to heaven; and behold the angels of God ascending and descending on it. 13 And, behold, the L-RD stood beside him, and said: ‘I am the L-RD, the G-d of Abraham thy father, and the G-d of Isaac.

My friends, this is no ordinary place! This was definitely a place where the presence of G-d (bless His Holy Name) dwelt, and I believe Jacob knew it! I will add poetic license here and put on paper what is in my minds eye. I can just see and hear Isaac telling Jacob, “before you venture out into the world my son, go to Mount Moriah and seek the face of Adonai, maybe He will meet you there as He did me and your grandfather. It is the place where the world first came into existence, where your grandfather took me as an offering, where we were tested and found faithful. It was the place where Adonai provided the Ram and showed us the shadow of things to come. Stop there my son, and see HaShem’s face. Maybe He will speak to you and give you guidance for your life.” We know that Jacob did, and we know that Adonai did as well. We read the account of that in the following verses:

Genesis 28:12-15 And he dreamed, and behold a ladder set up on the earth, and the top of it reached to heaven; and behold the angels of God ascending and descending on it. 13 And, behold, the LORD stood beside him, and said: ‘I am the L-RD, the G-d of Abraham thy father, and the G-d of Isaac. The land whereon thou liest, to thee will I give it, and to thy seed. 14 And thy seed shall be as the dust of the earth, and thou shalt spread abroad to the west, and to the east, and to the north, and to the south. And in thee and in thy seed shall all the families of the earth be blessed.

Baruch HaShem! In those verses there is hidden the Truth of the Ages!  That Truth has been hidden from the eyes of men blinded by tradition and human learning.  That Truth has been hidden for over 3000 years of peer pressure, yet has been right under the noses of the great sages, and great men even still today!  What is this Truth you ask?  Let us venture on and find this great treasure hidden from the eyes of so many chosen, yet found by so many who were not. We will find it just under the surface, shining, gleaming, it is worth all the riches of the world, and it contains the wisdom of the ages and the hope of the universe!  Enough already! Lets get to it!

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1.     Vs.15 And he dreamed, and behold a ladder set up on the earth, and the top of it reached to heaven; and behold the angels of G-d ascending and descending on it.

(A)This verse is a prophetic vision of things to come!  It is a prophetic piece to the puzzle that would not be solvable until the time of Yeshua, but there are clues within it that will give us a shadow of the answer to come.  The ladder accomplished three things we must pay close attention to. The ladder was sent from Heaven and set up on Earth.  The ladder reached Heaven.  The Angels of G-d were traveling up and down on it; from Earth to Heaven and from Heaven to Earth.   What does it mean?  Why would HaShem show Jacob such a vision?

(B)The answer is in the ladder!  The ladder is a picture of Moshiach.  Moses  and future prophets will tell us about Moshiach, and that He would be sent from Heaven to earth and back to Heaven and back to earth in their prophecies.

BEFORE you begin reading further down, I will give you the answer to this prophetic puzzle’s location, it is found in the Brit Chadashah (New Covenant), in Yochanan (John) 1:43-51….43 The next day, having decided to leave for the Galil, Yeshua found Philip and said, “Follow me!” 44 Philip was from Beit-Tzaidah, the town where Andrew and Kefa lived. 45 Philip found Natan’el and told him, “We’ve found the one that Moshe wrote about in the Torah, also the Prophets — it’s Yeshua Ben-Yosef from Natzeret!” 46 Natan’el answered him, “Natzeret? Can anything good come from there?” “Come and see,” Philip said to him. 47 Yeshua saw Natan’el coming toward him and remarked about him, “Here’s a true son of Isra’el — nothing false in him!” 48 Natan’el said to him, “How do you know me?” Yeshua answered him, “Before Philip called you, when you were under the fig tree, I saw you.” 49 Natan’el said, “Rabbi, you are the Son of G-d! You are the King of Isra’el!” 50 Yeshua answered him, “you believe all this just because I told you I saw you under the fig tree? You will see greater things than that!” 51 Then he said to him, “Yes indeed! I tell you that you will see heaven opened and the angels of God going up and coming down on the Son of Man!” CJB

Do you see it? There it is! The answer to Jacob’s ladder right before your eyes! Yeshua (Jesus) is the ladder! He was sent to Earth to atone for our sins as the perfect Lamb of G-d, G-d raised Him from the dead through the power of the Ruach HaKodesh, Yeshua went up to Heaven to serve as our King, Priest and Prophet. Moshiach is soon to Return! Oh mishpachah, can you see it? Yeshua is the Son of G-d, our Messiah! We pray through the Name of Yeshua and our prayers go up to HaShem in Heaven, and the answer is sent down to earth through Yeshua’s Name!

This is just ONE prophecy. I would understand why you would want to continue to believe tradition and the sages if there was only one, but there many, many more! Although some Bible Scholars attribute over 300 Old Covenant prophecies, I have only included 44 messianic predictions for your eyes to see for themselves.

DECIDE FOR YOURSELF! DO NOT TAKE ANYONE’S WORD FOR IT!

 Come and See

COME AND SEE! READ FOR YOURSELF!

YOUR ETERNITY DEPENDS ON IT!

NOTE:I have provided each Scripture verse as a link you can click on that will take you to the Scripture from the Complete Jewish Bible for your convenience.

44 Prophecies Yeshua Ha-Mashiach Fulfilled

 

Prophecies About Jesus

Old Testament
Scripture

New Testament
Fulfillment

1

Messiah would be born of a woman.

Genesis 3:15

Matthew 1:20
Galatians 4:4

2

Messiah would be born in Bethlehem.

Micah 5:2

Matthew 2:1
Luke 2:4-6

3

Messiah would be born of a virgin.

Isaiah 7:14

Matthew 1:22-23
Luke 1:26-31

4

Messiah would come from the line of Abraham

Genesis 12:3
Genesis 22:18

Matthew 1:1
Romans 9:5

5

Messiah would be a descendant of Issac

Genesis 17:19
Genesis 21:12

Luke 3:34

6

Messiah would be a descendant of Jacob.

Numbers 24:17

Matthew 1:2

7

Messiah would come from the tribe of Judah.

Genesis 49:10

Luke 3:33
Hebrews 7:14

8

Messiah would be heir to King David’s throne.

2 Samuel 7:12-13
Isaiah 9:7

Luke 1:32-33
Romans 1:3

9

Messiah’s throne will be anointed and eternal.

Psalm 45:6-7
Daniel 2:44

Luke 1:33
Hebrews 1:8-12

10

Messiah would be called Immanuel.

Isaiah 7:14

Matthew 1:23

11

Messiah would spend a season in Egypt.

Hosea 11:1

Matthew 2:14-15

12

A massacre of children would happen at Messiah’s birthplace.

Jeremiah 31:15

Matthew 2:16-18

13

A messenger would prepare the way for Messiah

Isaiah 40:3-5

Luke 3:3-6

14

Messiah would be rejected by his own people.

Psalm 69:8
Isaiah 53:3

John 1:11
John 7:5

15

Messiah would be a prophet.

Deuteronomy 18:15

Acts 3:20-22

16

Messiah would be preceded by Elijah.

Malachi 4:5-6

Matthew 11:13-14

17

Messiah would be declared the Son of G-d.

Psalm 2:7

Matthew 3:16-17

18

Messiah would be called a Nazarene.

Isaiah 11:1

Matthew 2:23

19

Messiah would bring light to Galilee.

Isaiah 9:1-2

Matthew 4:13-16

20

Messiah would speak in parables.

Psalm 78:2-4
Isaiah 6:9-10

Matthew 13:10-15, 34-35

21

Messiah would be sent to heal the brokenhearted.

Isaiah 61:1-2

Luke 4:18-19

22

Messiah would be a priest after the order of Melchizedek.

Psalm 110:4

Hebrews 5:5-6

23

Messiah would be called King.

Psalm 2:6
Zechariah 9:9

Matthew 27:37
Mark 11:7-11

24

Messiah would be praised by little children.

Psalm 8:2

Matthew 21:16

25

Messiah would be betrayed.

Psalm 41:9
Zechariah 11:12-13

Luke 22:47-48
Matthew 26:14-16

26

Messiah’s price money would be used to buy a potter’s field.

Zechariah 11:12-13

Matthew 27:9-10

27

Messiah would be falsely accused.

Psalm 35:11

Mark 14:57-58

28

Messiah would be silent before his accusers.

Isaiah 53:7

Mark 15:4-5

29

Messiah would be spat upon and struck.

Isaiah 50:6

Matthew 26:67

30

Messiah would be hated without cause.

Psalm 35:19
Psalm 69:4

John 15:24-25

31

Messiah would be crucified with criminals.

Isaiah 53:12

Matthew 27:38
Mark 15:27-28

32

Messiah would be given vinegar to drink.

Psalm 69:21

Matthew 27:34
John 19:28-30

33

Messiah’s hands and feet would be pierced.

Psalm 22:16
Zechariah 12:10

John 20:25-27

34

Messiah would be mocked and ridiculed.

Psalm 22:7-8

Luke 23:35

35

Soldiers would gamble for Messiah’s garments.

Psalm 22:18

Luke 23:34
Matthew 27:35-36

36

Messiah’s bones would not be broken.

Exodus 12:46
Psalm 34:20

John 19:33-36

37

Messiah would be forsaken by G-d.

Psalm 22:1

Matthew 27:46

38

Messiah would pray for his enemies.

Psalm 109:4

Luke 23:34

39

Soldiers would pierce Messiah’s side.

Zechariah 12:10

John 19:34

40

Messiah would be buried with the rich.

Isaiah 53:9

Matthew 27:57-60

41

Messiah would resurrect from the dead.

Psalm 16:10
Psalm 49:15

Matthew 28:2-7
Acts 2:22-32

42

Messiah would ascend to heaven.

Psalm 24:7-10

Mark 16:19
Luke 24:51

43

Messiah would be seated at G-d’s right hand.

Psalm 68:18
Psalm 110:1

Mark 16:19
Matthew 22:44

44

Messiah would be a sacrifice for sin.

Isaiah 53:5-12

Romans 5:6-8

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If you have read for yourself, and have decided Yeshua is The Messiah, pray this prayer:

“Yeshua, I believe you are the Messiah!  I believe you are the Son of G-d, that you died for my sins, was buried and raised from the dead so that I might have eternal life. Father G-D, wash away all my sins with the blood of Yeshua, and apply the atonement You provided on the execution stake to my life.  Thank you for saving me, Amen.”

If you prayed that prayer, please contact me and let me know. You can contact me easily at www.rabbcliff.org

I will be glad to hear from you, and will be sure to include you in my daily prayers.

There is a whole lot more to say, but enough for now.  Join us this Shabbat at the Rock of Israel Congregation near Charlotte, NC to learn more.  Shabbat Service begins every Saturday at 10am; I hope to see you there.  Just click the link below for directions.

https://maps.google.com/maps?q=1163+Highway+274+Clover,+S.C.+29710+&hl=en&sll=35.435696,-80.614093&sspn=0.016137,0.016994&hnear=1163+S+Carolina+274,+Clover,+South+Carolina+29710&t=m&z=17

We will be starting a Mid Week Midrash group in Hickory, NC on November 14th, 2013 Watch for details and directions coming soon!

May Adonai give you the desires of your heart, and may all your desires be found in Him!

IN Yeshua, Rabbi Cliff

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Parsha Lech Lecha (Go, Leave) Learn About The Who, What, When, Where and Why Avram (Abraham) found Adonai.

Parsha Lech – Lecha

Bereishit (Genesis 12:1 – 17:27

Brit Chadashah  John (Yochanan) 8:12-59

By

Rabbi Cliff Maynard

Senior Rabbi – Rock of Israel Congregation

Vice President – National Jewish Fellowship of the AG

1390628_402240849898396_1079870103_nThis week our parsha (Torah Portion) focuses on our “father” (avInu) Avram (Abraham).  G-d tells him to “Go,” “Leave” …G-d said to Avram, “Go from your land, your birth­place, and your father’s house, to the land which I will show you. I will make you into a great nation; I will bless you and I will make your name great. You will be a blessing, [and] I will bless those who bless you; the one who curses you, I will curse. All the families of the earth will be blessed through you.” (Bereishis) Genesis 12:1-3)

 

It would be enough If I just focused on those three verses, yet I would be remiss if I did not give the background of how and why Avram Avinu (Abraham our father) got to this point with the Almighty.  After all, you already have the Who, What and Where encapsulated within verses 1-3, but what about (as Paul Harvey used to say) “The Rest Of The Story”?

THE HOW AND WHY?

To bring insight, we will take into account the Midrash, which is the body of Jewish ancestral stories passed down by the rabbinical Sages to help “fill in the gaps” of events and personalities in a narrative form. It was considered a part of the “Oral” instruction that was given on Mt. Sinai to explain and give meaning to the 613 instructions.  I should interject here, that there is much discussion on the subject of the “Oral Law”, and that it is not my intention in this article to add or detract to it’s validity by using the following story.  I will however tell you that the Jewish women to teach the children Torah used the Midrash.  The following story has been passed down from my ancestors for generations.

So, to bring us back into focus of what I wanted to bring to light from Genesis 12:1-3, we must ask how and why?

1.     How was it that Avram got to this point of “knowing” that Adonai was THE Creator of the universe?

As the story is told in the Midrash,  Avram’s father made Idols for a living.  Avram was 12 years old now and had been contemplating for some time if the gods his father sold in his store were real or not.  Avram would stop and consider the incredible beauty of the creation around him and wonder who had made it?  Could it be one of the many idols in his fathers shop?  Were they real or just a scam?  Avram had to know!

One day his father left him in charge of the shop, while he ran some errands.  After his father had left, a woman came in with a gift of food for the Biggest Idol in the shop as a peace offering.  She was only a poor woman, so before she left she purchased one of the smaller idols to take home with her for luck.   Avram watched the food left in front of the Big Idol for the longest time, waiting to see if it would eat the food, but nothing!  The Idol didn’t move, and the food just sat there! “I bet these Idols aren’t real” Avram said out loud.  That’s when he got and idea to find out once and for all.  Avram ran outside, got the biggest stick he could find, ran back inside his fathers shop, and proceeded to break all the Idols.  He broke all the idols except the Big Idol the woman had left the food for.  He took the stick and placed it in the Big Idol’s hand, and waited for his father to return.   When Avram’s father finally did return, what a sight!  Idols smashed everywhere!  “Oy Vey! Avram! What happened here?  Why are all the Idols smashed, his father asked?  Avram turned and pointed to the Big Idol with the stick in his hand, “He did it,” Avram replied.   “He couldn’t have” Avram’s farther said, “that would be impossible, these are all just false Idols that we make in the back room, they have no life or power!”  Avram replied “Then why do we worship them?”

From that day forward, Avram began to search and call out for the One True G-d, The Creator of heaven and earth, which brings us to the next part of our parsha…

2. WHY did G-d choose Avram?

 Why did The Holy One (blessed be He) choose Avram? Is the story from the Midrash true? I do not know, however it makes some sense and gives some insight as to the why Adonai chose Avram.  Was Avram the only person two thousand years after Adam that was seeking the True Creator of the universe? I believe he was the only one seeking Adonai with ALL his heart.  Why do I do believe Avram was seeking Adonai with all of his heart.  How do I know this?  Because Avram found Him!  The Word teaches us…Jeremiah 29:13 And you will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart.  The part that I find is most important is “when you search for me with all of your heart,” The Hebrew for this is lā·väv’ it means the following:

1.     inner man, mind, will, heart, soul, understanding

1.     inner part, midst

1.     midst (of things)

2.     heart (of man)

3.     soul, heart (of man)

4.     mind, knowledge, thinking, reflection, memory

5.     inclination, resolution, determination (of will)

6.     conscience

7.     heart (of moral character)

8.     as seat of appetites

9.     as seat of emotions and passions

10.   as seat of courage

I love the definitions of the word Lavav!  What clarity it brings to the heart of this young boy who had decided to believe in the G-D of Creation! To believe in his heart to TRUST IN HIM, to not to be a part of the immoral, Idol worshiping world he was living in!

Take a look at #7, read ALL of the definition, and it reveals the innermost being of Avram.  This also sheds light as to Bereishit  15:6 And he believed in the LORD, and He accounted it to him for righteousness.  Eventually, the one true Creator that Avram had worshiped called to him, and made him an offer: if Avram would leave his home and his family, then G-d would make him a great nation and bless him. Avram accepted this offer, and the b’rit (covenant) between G-d and the Jewish people was established. (Gen. 12).

Friends, are you searching for Him with all your heart? Are you searching for the Messiah that Avram believed in by Faith (Trust)?  The Word teaches us of the Messiah Yeshua as the SURE promise that Abraham believed in, not only Abraham but also Moshe and all the prophets!  The following scripture comes from a conversation between Yeshua the Messiah and two men who were walking home after being in Jerusalem for Passover, The feast of unleavened bread, and the feast of First Fruits.

It is taken from the Brit Chadashah (New Covenant) in Luke chapter 24.

If you have never read it out of fear of what your family or rabbi might think…think for yourself!  Read it and decided if Yeshua (Jesus) is whom He said is.  He is, and was VERY JEWISH, as you will see. I realize this will make this a little long, yet I believe it is necessary, so I have provided the scripture for you below:

From the Complete Jewish Bible, Luke 24: 1-531 but the next day, while it was still very early, they took the spices they had prepared, went to the tomb, 2 and found the stone rolled away from the tomb! 3 On entering, they discovered that the body of the Lord Yeshua was gone! They were 4 standing there, not knowing what to think about it, when suddenly two men in daz zlingly bright clothing stood next to them. 5 Terror-stricken, they bowed down with their faces to the ground. The two men said to them, “Why are you looking for the living among the dead? 6 He is not here; he has been raised. Remember how he told you while he was still in the Galil, 7 `The Son of Man must be delivered into the hands of sinful men and be executed on a stake as a criminal, but on the third day be raised again’?” 8 Then they remembered his words; 9 and, returning from the tomb, they told everything to the Eleven and to all the rest. 10 The women who told the emissaries these things were Miryam of Magdala, Yochanah, Miryam the mother of Ya`akov, and the others in their circle. 11 But the emissaries didn’t believe them; in fact, they thought that what they said was utter nonsense! 12 However, Kefa got up and ran to the tomb. Stooping down, he saw only the burial cloths and went home wondering what had happened. 13 That same day, two of them were going toward a village about seven miles from Yerushalayim called Amma’us, 14 and they were talking with each other about all the things that had happened. 15 As they talked and discussed, Yeshua himself came up and walked along with them, 16 but something kept them from recognizing him. 17 He asked them, “What are you talking about with each other as you walk along?” They stopped short, their faces downcast; 18 and one of them, named Cleopas, answered him, “Are you the only person staying in Yerushalayim that doesn’t know the things that have been going on there the last few days?” 19 “What things?” he asked them. They said to him, “The things about Yeshua from Natzeret. He was a prophet and proved it by the things he did and said before God and all the people. 20 Our head cohanim and our leaders handed him over, so that he could be sentenced to death and executed on a stake as a criminal. 21 And we had hoped that he would be the one to liberate Isra’el! Besides all that, today is the third day since these things happened; 22 and this morning, some of the women astounded us. They were at the tomb early 23 and couldn’t find his body, so they came back; but they also reported that they had seen a vision of angels who say he’s alive! 24 Some of our friends went to the tomb and found it exactly as the women had said, but they didn’t see him.” 25 He said to them, “Foolish people! So unwilling to put your trust in everything the prophets spoke! 26 Didn’t the Messiah have to die like this before entering his glory?” 27 Then, starting with Moshe and all the prophets, he explained to them the things that can be found throughout the Tanakh concerning himself. 28 They approached the village where they were going. He made as if he were going on farther; 29 but they held him back, saying, “Stay with us, for it’s almost evening, and it’s getting dark.” So he went in to stay with them. 30 As he was reclining with them at the table, he took the matzah, made the b’rakhah, broke it and handed it to them. 31 Then their eyes were opened, and they recognized him. But he became invisible to them. 32 They said to each other, “Didn’t our hearts burn inside us as he spoke to us on the road, opening up the Tanakh to us?” 33 They got up at once, returned to Yerushalayim and found the Eleven gathered together with their friends, 34 saying, “It’s true! The Lord has risen! Shim`on saw him!” 35 Then the two told what had happened on the road and how he had become known to them in the breaking of the matzah. 36 They were still talking about it when — there he was, standing among them! 37 Startled and terrified, they thought they were seeing a ghost. 38 But he said to them, “Why are you so upset? Why are these doubts welling up inside you? 39 Look at my hands and my feet — it is I, myself! Touch me and see — a ghost doesn’t have flesh and bones, as you can see I do.” 40 As he said this, he showed them his hands and feet. 41 While they were still unable to believe it for joy and stood there dumb founded, he said to them, “Have you something here to eat?” 42 They gave him a piece of broiled fish, 43 which he took and ate in their presence. 44 Yeshua said to them, “This is what I meant when I was still with you and told you that everything written about me in the Torah of Moshe, the Prophets and the Psalms had to be fulfilled.” 45 Then he opened their minds, so that they could understand the Tanakh, 46 telling them, “Here is what it says: the Messiah is to suffer and to rise from the dead on the third day; 47 and in his name repentance leading to forgiveness of sins is to be proclaimed to people from all nations, starting with Yerushalayim. 48 You are witnesses of these things. 49 Now I am sending forth upon you what my Father promised, so stay here in the city until you have been equipped with power from above.” 50 He led them out toward Beit-Anyah; then, raising his hands, he said a b’rakhah over them; 51 and as he was blessing them, he withdrew from them and was carried up into heaven. 52 They bowed in worship to him, then returned to Yerushalayim, overflowing with joy. 53 And they spent all their time in the Temple courts, praising G-d.

 

Can you believe like Avram Avinu? Can you Trust in the One True G-D of Israel? Can you believe in your heart that Yeshua (Jesus) is Messiah?  Are you seeking Him will all your Heart?  If so you have found the One, that Moshe and the prophet’s spoke of, He is Yeshua HaMashiach Ben Elohim!  (Jesus The Meissiah, The Son of G-D)

Pray with me now, repeat these words, Yeshua, I believe you are the One that Moshe and the prophets spoke of.  Yeshua, I believe you are the Son of G-D, I believe you are the Lamb that was slain for my sins, and that Adonai raised you from the dead.  I ask you now to look upon my heart and see a heart that believes in You, like Avram Avinu did.   Adonai please apply the Atonement you provide for my sins, through the sacrifice of Yeshua on the execution stake, and wash me clean IN Yeshua.  Amein.

If you prayed that prayer in sincerity, your name is now written down in Heaven (Shamayim) (שמים), in the Book of Life!  There is so much more for you to know.  Please contact us at www.rabbicliff.org. Go the contact section and click on my name under the email icon.  I also encourage you to go the the National Jewish Fellowship website at www.njfag.org .  We want to pray for you, send you some information, and connect you with a Messianic Rabbi in your area to help you in your walk with Yeshua.

May we all have the Heart of Avram (Abraham) and seek the L-RD while He may be found.

IN Yeshua,

Rabbi Cliff

Senior Rabbi,

Rock of Israel Congregation

www.rabbicliff.org

Vice President,

National Jewish Fellowship of the AG

www.njfag.org