Before sharing a couple (Ki Tavo, Deut. 26:1-29:8) nuggets from last week’s Parsha, I wanted to give a quick update and prayer request fro friends and family who read my blog.
Several weeks ago the house we were renting was sold and we were given a 20 day notice to be out. Due to our having livestock (dairy goats) and MAJOR construction project in the area sucking most all rentals off the market, we have been ‘homeless.’ One family from our fellowship has taken us in while we hunt housing, however, an approaching major surgery for one of them will cause us to move to stay with another dear family. The situation has radically challenged all of us in terms of space, harmony, etc. But, stretching is good, even if uncomfortable for the moment.
While we search for a house, we are praying several things: Buy? Rent? Go mobile? Honestly, we are open to anything, but need Abba to give us some clear direction as to HIS will. This has been a good time of ‘soul searching’ and surrender. Please pray with us for HIS clear direction and answer to one of several ‘fleeces.’
One of the negatives of this whole situation is that I am staying considerably farther from work for my twice a day commute, and my eldest is farther from college, meaning we both spend a lot more time in the road as well as my wife and I house searching, etc… Therefore, I have not had time to write and at time not even had the focus to read or write, but the passion is still very much there! My desire is to regain stability so I can better focus and rededicate to the passion of studying and sharing what I am learning. Thanks for your prayers.
On to the parsha.
While I plan to share more deeply in another post, this first thought, here is a basic sketch that jumped off the page at me… On several occasions in the past I have read an interesting phrase in Scripture that recently has taken a turn in meaning. Here is a verse with the phrase,
Deu. 26:14 I have not eaten of it [a]while mourning, nor have I removed any of it while I was unclean, nor offered any of it to the dead. I have listened to the voice of the Lord my God; I have done according to all that You have commanded me.
While the phrase ‘the voice of the Lord my God’ may seem somewhat benign, it is since studying ‘the Angel of Yehovah’ passages as well as the uses of ‘the Word of the Lord’ in the Targumim that I have begun to consider that maybe there is something much more significant going on with this phrase. Based on my limited research, it only appears to be used about 30 times in the Tanach with 10 of those uses between Deuteronomy 26:14 and 30:10. Each of those uses, as best I can tell, seem to be more of a title than referring to a sound.
Here are a few previous articles as background:
- ‘the word of the Lord came to me’…
- What did Moses see in the ‘Burning Bush?’
- ‘from the midst of the fire…’
- Jesus on Mt. Sinai?
So, I want to explore this phrase further as soon as I have time, but want to lay out the thought for input, particularly as it involves this week’s portion as well. Here are the references where I see this phrase (not counting the ‘mouth of the Lord’ or simply ‘My voice’):
- Gen. 3:8 (KJ)
- Ex. 15:26
- Deu. 5:25; 8:20; 13:18; 15:5; 18:16; 26:14; 27:10; 28:1, 2, 15, 45, 62; 30:2,8,10
- 2 Ki 18:12
- Jer 3:25; 7:28; 26:13; 42:6,13,21
- Dan 9:10
- Hag 1:12
- Zech 6:15
Other places the phrase is similarly used, but maybe a slight variant:
- Deu 9:23; 13:4; 26:17; 30:2,20
- Josh 24:24
- Jud 6:10
- 1 Sam 12:14
- Ps 29!
As I have time, I want to dig more deeply into this phrase.
On another note, as I began to cover this in the home Shabbat midrash we attended, I had to go back and lay the ‘Angel of the Lord’ foundation for some participants who were not here a year ago when we first tackled that subject. In the conversation, we discussed the very important Judges 13 passage concerning the Angel of the Lord. Jonathan, a dear new friend who was in attendance, made an astute observation.
He asked, ‘Was Manoah’s wife a Gentile?’
We discussed and debated, but the text does mention not eating unclean on two occasions (vs 4, 14), further she is never named and, Samson marries a Gentile… Like father, like son? Along those lines, it then is interesting to think that Samson, a type of Messianic figure, might have been regarded ‘unclean,’ not unlike Yeshua.
At the end, we concluded that we can’t know for sure, but there is an interesting case to be considered…
The third item to lay before you is Deuteronomy 27:1-4 and the stones upon which the commandments were to be written. We have talked before about the Hebrew word for ‘stone’ and its connection with the Messiah. Here in this passage we see stones that have the Torah engraved on them and they are coated with lime.
I postulated that this is a picture of Messiah who is THE Stone and reveals the Torah perfectly. Jonathan added that lime is used to cover ‘death,’ possibly pointing to Messiah’s death. Interesting… Now as I further ponder, there may be another picture as well. One day our hearts will have the Torah written on them (See the New Covenant) and they will no longer be stones…. Further, we have to pass through the veil of death to reach that point until Messiah comes… Ponder. Thoughts?
All together, it was a most interesting and eventful midrash we had I expect this week to be similar as we further delve into ‘the voice of the Lord God.’
Thanks for your prayers.
Blessings and shalom!