Friday, December 28, 2012

Hebrew:  Yayigash
English: And He drew near
Torah: Genesis
Haftarah: Ezekiel 37:15-28
Brit Chadashah: Luke 6:9-16

Today’s Parasha speaks about the re-encounter of Joseph and his brothers.

God Always Has a Plan
My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?  These were some of the last words of Yeshua before His death.  He had been separated from whom He so much loved, His Father,  in order to save us.   Joseph had also been separated from His loving father, Jacob, so he could be used to save many people and all his family from famine.  God is always making a way for our salvation. God always has plans of peace to give us a good end.
Joseph manifested himself to his brothers as also did Yeshua.  Joseph’s brothers despised him but God allowed it for good.  Yeshua was despised and rejected, acquainted with grief, afflicted.  He was wounded and bruised for our transgressions and iniquities to give us peace and healing.
The Hardships
Joseph suffered much in the hands of his brothers.  He endured hardships. God was forming a leader out of him, a man fit for God’s plan and purpose.  But the separation from his father, his brother Benjamin and even the rest of his brothers, was extremely hard for him.  Separation hurts.  Divorce hurts.  Rejection hurts, to be mocked hurts, to be disliked hurts… very much.  But the wounds are healed with love.
The Re-encounter
Joseph’s brothers come to him from Canaan in order to buy food.  After a series of events, Joseph reveals his identity to them.  There was lots of forgiveness and consolation.  His brothers cried, asked for forgiveness and humbled themselves before their little brother who was now a great authority figure before their very eyes.  As the prophetic dream said, his brother’s sheaves bowed to Joseph's sheaf.
Strength in Unity
I come from a family of 9 children.  We had a large dining table, I remember at the table my father used to tell us that separated we were not strong, but as the fingers of a hand, if we stood together, we formed a fist that was very strong.  There is strength in unity and there is victory in unity. In oneness.
God multiplied Jacob’s descendants as He had promised and agreed with Abraham. He kept them together.  God made the re-encounter of Joseph and his brothers possible and orchestrated their reconciliation.
There is strength in unity.  When the disciples were united, 'all in one accord' and in fervent prayer, the Holy Spirit was sent down and God's powerful movement of announcing  salvation to the world through the Messiah was started.  Psalm 133 says that it is pleasant for the brethren to be together, the oil, meaning the Spirit is given us, the dew meaning the abundant blessing of God is given us, even more, God commands a blessing for us.
In this congregation, we are a mishpocha, a family. God wants us to be together, echad.  The New Testament/Brit Chadashah gives us rich instruction on unity, respect, honor, encouragement and love towards one another.  The fruit of the Spirit in Galatians 5 is very much related with how we treat each other.  The fruit of the Spirit is shown on how we treat each other.  God rejoices when we love one another.  The Spirit of God is grieved when we do not love one another.  Yeshua was one with the Father, and He prayed in John 17 that we would be one with Him as He was one with the Father.  This concept was given high importance by Yeshua.  He prayed for them then and for us now. We are a body.  We need each other. A body needs all its parts and when one hurts, the whole body hurts. When we do not obey God's will in His commandment to love each other, we are just making noise.  That means we are not being effective in God's work.
One New Man
We are jew and gentile together. God himself broke down the barrier that used to separate us.  The enmity has been abolished. We are one new man and God has given us His peace.
In Ezekiel 37 God speaks about how He will bring the kingdoms of Judah and Israel together under one pastor.  God is in the business of mending broken hearts, broken relationships.  He is in the business of healing, bringing together and unifying us.  One in the Messiah. 
Keeping the Unity in the Bond of Peace
There is much more to say about this theme, but for now I close with some verses of Ephesians 4.
 I, therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you to walk worthy of the calling with which you were called,  with all lowliness and gentleness, with long-suffering  bearing with one another in love, endeavoring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.  There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called in one hope of your calling;  one Lord, one faith, one baptism; one God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.

 Therefore, putting away lying, “Let each one of you speak truth with his neighbor,” for we are members of one another.  “Be angry, and do not sin”: do not let the sun go down on your wrath, nor give place to the devil. Let him who stole steal no longer, but rather let him labor, working with his hands what is good, that he may have something to give him who has need. Let no corrupt word proceed out of your mouth, but what is good for necessary edification, that it may impart grace to the hearers. And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. Let all bitterness, wrath, anger, clamor, and evil speaking be put away from you, with all malice. And be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God in Messiah forgave you.


Monday, August 6, 2012

And I pleaded/sought

Ve'etchanan - And I pleaded/sought
Torah: Deut. 3:23-7:11
Haftorah: Isaiah 40:1-26
Brit Chadashah (New Testament): Mark: 12:28-34

This commentary is based on Deuteronomy Chapters 3 to 7.  Moses is re-telling his people the Ten Commandments and warning them not to forget Adonai and all His deeds for them.  One thing that stands out here is the Shemah, which is fundamental to our faith.  It is followed by the first commandment; to love God.  We repeat it every Shabbat in Hebrew and then in English here at TAK.  Such important words that speak about the oneness of Elohim.  Adonai Echad.

In Mark 12 Yeshua also mentions the first commandment: “Yeshua answered him, The first of all the commandments is, Hear, O Israel; the Lord our God is one Lord.  And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment.

And the second is like, namely this, Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself.  There is none other commandment greater than these”.  By practicing these two, we accomplish all the rest and certainly please God.  This means that God’s purpose for creating us was that we would walk in love.  If we are moved by what moves the heart of God, we are unequivocally moved first and foremost by His ahava, His love.

We can love Him because He first loved us.  He is LOVE.  He loved us so much that He GAVE us Yeshua, in order to bring us to Him.  The blood and sacrifice of Messiah are so that you will have an intimate relationship with God. Let go of your sin and your idols because they separate you from Him.  Prepare the way of the Lord in your heart. Guard your heart by sowing to the spirit.  Let the crooked be made straight and the rough places plain and the glory of the Lord shall be revealed to you.  Love not the world; let your affection be fixed on God.

Adonai so desires to be loved by us that He gives us this mitzvot to love Him with much emphasis; to keep His words in our hearts; to teach them diligently to our children; to talk about them when sitting in our house, when walking on the way; when we go to sleep and when we wake up; to bind them as a sign on our hand and as frontlets between our eyes; (Tefillin). He wants us to write his words on our doorposts and our gates; (Mezuzot).  He is serious.  He wants us to remember Him, to think of Him constantly.  He says: “Set me as a seal upon thine heart, as a seal upon thine arm: for love is strong as death; jealousy is cruel as the grave: the coals thereof are coals of fire, which hath a most vehement flame”.  He is so passionate about loving you.  He is jealous of your love.

Elohim, the powerful Creator, the King of the universe is pursuing you.  Remember him; run to Him.    O, the Father is seeking worshipers that will worship Him in Spirit and in Truth.  Come, seat down under His shadow and enjoy great delight; His fruit will be sweet to your taste.  He will bring you to His banqueting house and His banner over you will be love.

When we are immersed in the love for God, we can also love our brothers and sisters in Messiah.  Conversely, If we don’t love our brother who we can see, how can we love God who we do not see?  Yeshua gave us a new commandment, to love each other.   We are to wear love as a garment and walk humbly with each other.  Encourage one another, build each other up.  Help each other.  Love each other so truthfully as to be willing to give our lives, as a true friend, as Yeshua.  As the Father, Yeshua and the Spirit are echad,  one; Yeshua wants us all to be echad, one.  Love is the bond of perfectness, the more excellent way.  Prophecies, tongs and knowledge will cease, but love is eternal.  Faith, hope and love remain, but love is the greatest of these three.  Love shows your growth in Messiah. Maturity.

The world will know we are His disciples and will want of that love.  Unity and fervent prayer bring us the strong presence of God, the Ruach/His Spirit.  God commands a blessing upon us and we are anointed with power by His Spirit to be effective witnesses for Him.

We are also to love ourselves.  If God loves you so much, that means you are forever loveable to Him.  If He did not condemn you;  don’t you condemn yourself either.  Be also patient with yourself and love on yourself by instructing yourself to follow hard after God.  Accept love, allow yourself to be loved.  Receive your mishpocha’s (congregation/family) love and God’s love with humbleness.

Beloved, let us heed the call to love God, our neighbor and ourselves, because doing so we will give Him glory and honor and praise.  Hallelujah.

Sunday, April 15, 2012


Midrash 03-31-2012 - Hebrew: Tzav - English: Command
Torah: Leviticus 6:1-8:36
Haftora: Malachi 3:4-24
Brit Chadashah Hebrews 8:1-6

Because of His great love for us the Father gave Yeshua/Jesus to die for us and to be our High Priest, who at the same time was the sacrificed Lamb, the propitiation for our sins. For He loved us so much, He came to save us and not to condemn us. He is the one that now cleanses us and makes us holy and acceptable before the Father.
The very special way the priests were to dress represents the excellence that God desires to manifest in our lives as believers.  These garments reflect the high significance of a priest’s office and the highest respect toward God and the holiness and consecration of those who wear them.  Psalm 104 says that God is clothed with honor and majesty and that He covers Himself with light as with a garment. 
In his vision, Isaiah saw Adonai High and lifted up, seating on a high lofty throne, and His robes filled the temple.  Seraphim cried out to each other, holy, holy, holy is Adonai Tzva’ot, the whole earth is filled with His glory. 
In his vision in Revelation 1, John describes Yeshua/Jesus, wearing a robe down to His feet and a gold band around his chest.  His head and hair were as white as wool, his eyes like a fiery flame, his feet like the burnished brass refined in a furnace, and his voice like the sound of rushing waters.  In his right hand He held seven stars, out of his mouth went a sharp double-edged sword, and his face was like the sun shining in full strength.  We are to be his imitators.  He has made us kings and priests.  We are to be dressed in beautiful white linen.  We are to be ready for Him as a bride is for her bridegroom, with light, with sparkles and splendor.  We are to be covered with the garments of His Holiness.  As Moses’ face shed light when He had been with God, we are to shine forth His glory. We are the light of the world which shines in the darkness.  Do not hide this light.

Hasatan is attacking the minds of people, making them inadequate, uncomfortable in their own skin, desperate and confused. While some of us rest the enemy is busy stealing, killing and destroying those he can deceive.  So take up the call of Messiah to be an empowered Spirit filled believer.  Beloved, rejoice for God wants to share His nature with you, He says be holy for I am holy.Now every believer is called to be a minister of reconciliation.  We are called a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a peculiar people, so that we should show forth the praises of Him who has called us out of darkness into His marvelous light.  Beloved, we are called to execute His plans and to accomplish His purposes. The Spirit of Adonai/Elohim is upon Him, He is anointed to announce good news to the poor, to heal the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom to the captives, to let out into light those bound in the dark; to proclaim the year of the favor of Adonai and the day of vengeance of our God, to comfort all who mourn giving them a garland of joy instead of ashes, a cloak of praise instead of a heavy spirit.  He came to make us trees of righteousness, to rebuild, to restore, and to renew.  When John sent word to Yeshua to confirm if He was the Messiah, Yeshua sent word to him saying, the blind receive their sight, the lame walk, the lepers are cleaned, and the deaf hear, the dead are raised up and to the poor is announcedthe wonderful plan of salvation.  Before leaving, Yeshua/Jesus commissioned us to reconcile all nations to Him.  The signs to show forth in the believers are to cast out demons, to speak with new tongs, to take up serpents and that no deadly thing would harm us that we would lay hands on the sick and these would recover and be healed.  He gave us His Holy Spirit and empowered usto be the carriers of His mercy.  Now we can say, the Spirit of Adonai is upon me, for He has anointed me to love, to heal, to restore, to set free, to announce His Salvation, his freedom, his joy. So fear not little flock, for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom; go forth and heal the sick and broken hearted, deliver the captives and make the blind see.  And while doing it, rejoice in Him and give Him glory and honor and praise. Hallelujah!

This last part was not read at TAK but I don’t want to leave it out.
You see beloved, God wants not only to dress you as a priest; He has already said you are a priest.  You are not to live barely making it, troubled and in fear, but you are to take to completion that which He has called you for.  It just takes a little seed of your faith and you can already move mountains.  For the Spirit of God is also upon you.  You are anointed to announce the good news of Yesua/Jesus to the poor.  To heal the broken hearted. To preach deliverance to the captives and recovering of sight to the blind and to set at liberty those that are bruised.  Use your authority and scare the devils out of those He is oppressing.  Bring the souls close to God.  You are a priest, you are a warrior and you are a conqueror for Yeshua/Jesus.  Strengthen those feeble knees, stand firm for you are not under condemnation but under a great blessing to be as He is.  Say you are strong in Him, and take dominion for as a royal priesthood, you are called to reign.

Friday, February 3, 2012

When He sent / Let go

Midrash 02-04-2012 - Hebrew: Beshalach - English: When He sent / Let go
Torah: Exodus 13:17-17:16
Haftora: Judges 4:4-5:31
Brit Chadashah John 6:22-40

This commentary is based on Exodus 14 and 15 where we read about the Children of Israel crossing the Red Sea, leaving their slavery and misery behind them, in Egypt.
In this story of the Exodus, the Egyptians are a symbol of your sins that used to keep you in bondage.  Pharaoh is a symbol of hasatan, who does not want to let go of you, much less to worship God.  In fact he comes back at you to attack you full force.

Exodus 15 we read: “The enemy said, I will pursue, I will overtake, I will divide the spoil; my lust shall be satisfied upon them; I will draw my sword, my hand shall destroy them”.   This shows his hatred.
In Exodus 14 we read that Pharaoh got ready by preparing his army which included all his chariots, his best men of war, captains, horses, and weapons;  then he went after the children of Israel. But the children of Israel went out with a high hand, a powerful hand, El Gibor, God almighty who conquered the Egyptians. In Isaiah we read. “For when the enemy shall come in like a flood, the Spirit of the LORD shall lift up a standard against him”. The word for lift up a standard in Hebrew is “noos”, nun, vav, samech, it means to flit (depart or die), as in to vanish away, to subside, to cause to escape, chase, impel, abate, be displayed, to make to flee away, put to flight, to hide.  Clearly, the LORD of hosts is our defender.

There is a brutal war between light and darkness, and you are in it; and you can only have victory if you understand the greatness of God’s love for you.
The Red Sea is a symbol of the blood of Messiah Yeshua.  The children of Israel were crossing it, this reminds me of the cross of Messiah.  The enemy was drowned in the Red Sea just as our sins were cast into the depths of the sea to be forgotten for ever.  The crossing took place during the night, it was dark.  The angel of God and the pillar of cloud were situated between the Egyptians and the children of Israel.  This meant darkness and trouble to the enemy but light and assistance to Israel.  In Psalm 23 we read “though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me”.  By morning they had crossed the sea and the enemy had been conquered.  "for weeping (and chaos), may endure for a night, but joy comes in the morning”.  Israel rejoiced and danced.

When Yeshua died at the cross it became dark, there was lightning and thundering.  The veil of the temple was torn in two, giving us access to the Holy of Holies. The Red Sea parted in two, to give the children of Israel access to continue their journey to the Promised Land.  For God is pursuing you to have intimacy with Him.  He has loved you with an everlasting love.  He indeed loves us with furious love.  Cry out to Him, He is your helper.

For your light affliction, beloved, is but for a moment, and it works for you a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory.  He will sing over you with songs of deliverance and rejoice over you with love.  As Yeshua was glorified, we will also be glorified.  So anguish and tribulation are really opportunities for Adonai to show you his love and delivering power.  Trust Him.  When Yeshua died on the cross, the enemy thought he had conquered, but that was really the moment when the enemy himself was conquered.  Haman was hanged in the very gallows he prepared to hang Mordecai, Pharaoh and his great army were drowned in the same place they thought they had trapped Israel.  The enemy was overtaken, conquered, killed.  All of them.  O beloved, this great victory is ours today, now.  Put your hope in God and cheer up, for you have yet to praise Him.

You have to pass through the darkness to be able to experience the light in its fullness. The Spirit himself took Yeshua to the desert to be tempted of the devil, but Yeshua conquered and so will you.
So, hold on a little while longer.  Be strengthened with the power of the Ruach, (the Wind, the Spirit) for Meshiach lives in your heart; and gives you wisdom and revelation as He anoints you in your desire to get to know Him more and more.  Let your roots grow deep into His love as you stand strong, so that the width, length, depth and height of His great love for you is revealed to you; as you are filled with all of His fullness. He is able to do exceedingly and abundantly beyond your comprehension and experience.  His strong life-giving and resurrection power works in you.  Nothing can separate you from His great love, so give Him glory and honor and praise.  Halleluyah!