PARASHA: “Nasso” (Elevate)
NUMBERS 4:21-7:89……JUDGES 13:2-25…………LUKE 13:1-14:35
We will see various themes in this Parashah study. In Chapter 4, the duties of some of the important Levite families; “B’nei Kohat” “B’nei Gershon” “B’nei Merari” (sons of). Their jobs consisted of taking down, transporting, and the setting up of the Mishkan (Tabernacle) throughout the wilderness journeys. Each family member had an important task to do within the Tabernacle and its furnishings. Interesting note that all the furnishings had to be covered by a blue cloth. Blue symbolizes “HaShamayim” (The Heavenlies)
In the service to Adonai, we each have different jobs and ministries to perform. The Body of Messiah consists of many members, some preachers/pastors/rabbis, teachers of Torah, of Hebrew, Youth ministers, musicians, praise and worship members and leaders, finance personnel, maintenance personnel, prayer warriors, intercessors’, counselors, and the list could go on, HaShem has put his Ruach HaKodesh (Holy Spirit) on each and every born-again believer and has given each member different gifts and jobs to do in the body of Mashiach.
It is very interesting that in this Parashah, there are the repeated letters “Ayin and dalet” in this case the two letters are pronounced “ED” which in Hebrew means “witness’. The word for “congregation” is “Adat” which has the letters “Ayin and dalet” the other word “Avodah” which means “service” also has the letters “Ayin and Dalet”.
We can look at it in this way; When we “serve” or do “service” in our “congregations” we should be good “witnesses” to those who observe us, as also, there are “witnesses” in the heavenlies who observe our service to our LORD and God. Just as the different families of the Levites served in the tabernacle and later in the temple, so we also should serve in our congregations using our spiritual gifts and abilities.
There should be no laziness in the body. We were not appointed just to show up on the sabbath and/or on Sundays just to sit in the pews, listen to the message, drop some money in the box, and leave. It is much, much more than that, anyone can do just that, what are you doing with YOUR gifts of the spirit?
It is interesting to note that service in the Mishkan started at 30 years old and ended at 50. (4:29) Each Levite family member had a twenty-year commitment to serve. When did Yeshua begin his ministry? When he was 30 years old! Coincidence? Or obedience to Torah?
Chapter 5; Unclean persons isolated! Anyone who was physically unclean had to be put outside the camp until the uncleanliness had passed. When we sin, can we consider ourselves spiritually “outside the camp?” out of fellowship with YHVH? I would say yes, our spiritual condition is much more important than our physical condition, as Adonai looks upon the heart and not upon the flesh. But once we repent and get right again with our LORD, we are back in fellowship and in right standing. We could be physically inside the synagogue or church, going through the “praise” motions, yet spiritually miles away, yet through true confession and “Teshuvah” when we “Shoov” (return) to Adonai, He accepts us again. He never leaves us, we leave HIM!
(5:5) Confession and Restitution; Part of our lives is “confession and restitution” if we have wronged our brother or sister in Messiah, we must confess that “wrong” and if possible, make up the “wrong” if it is possible. If not, when all we can offer is a sincere “I am sorry for what I did” then, it is up to the person wronged to be mature enough to accept that and leave the event in the past, and not mention it at all, forevermore.
(5:11) Concerning unfaithful wives; in the days of old in Israel, if a wife was accused by her husband of adultery, she had to either confess or take an oath of “not guilty” a prayer was written with the name YHVH on it, and washed off into a bit of muddy water, if the woman told the truth, nothing would happen to her and the husband would have to accept her and HE would have to confess his “jealous spirit” BUT If the woman were guilty, then, her thigh would rot and her belly would s swell, that would be a horrible punishment, sounds like her womb would never again harbor a child. A lesson to all marriages to be faithful one to the other. Not that the same thing would happen, but where there is adultery, there is the spirit of jealousy, the spirit of HaSatan, and many times, broken marriages and lives, marriage is a covenant, and a broken covenant leads to the curse.
Chap 6. The Law of the Nazarite. After reading this chapter, we ask ourselves, are there Nazarites today? Is there any prohibition of undergoing a Nazarite vow? Torah does not prohibit it, if a person feels compelled to take a Nazarite vow, then, that person should honor that vow and stay away from raisins and grape juice, and grape wine. If one could remember the 1960s, in the “hippie era” one could think; “a lot of Nazarites, everyone has long hair” but not so, I don’t think that hippies had long hair because they were Nazarites. One can take an “oath” to serve HaShem completely for “X” amount of years, perhaps on the mission field, without undertaking a Nazarite vow, remember it is the heart that matters, not so much the “hair”
The Priestly Blessing; a very important blessing that says a lot: MAY YHVH BLESS YOU AND KEEP YOU; This is written in the Hebrew “singular” YOU, not the plural YOU, because Israel and all believers today are as ONE (Echad) in unity and ONE in fellowship, Adonai KEEPS us by “guarding us against curses and calamity, against sickness, poverty, He delivered our souls from the curse of sin, through Yeshua HaMashiach. HOWEVER, we can, through rebellion, bring on to ourselves these curses! MAY YHVH MAKE HIS FACE SHINE UPON YOU AND BE GRACIOUS UNTO YOU.
The idea of “shine” is happiness, purity, and friendship so, May “P’nei Adonai” bring happiness to you and keep you pure “tahor” and bring to you many friends, also GRACIOUS is from the Hebrew “Chen” (grace) something that is not merited, by GRACE we are saved, not by our own merit, He showed us the “Face of Grace” in YESHUA HaMASHIACH who is our YESHUAH (salvation)
LIFT UP HIS COUNTENANCE UPON YOU AND GIVE YOU PEACE. May YHVH give his “attention” to you and directed to you, and may you rest in HIS SHALOM! When we have Yeshua as Mashiach, we have that internal shalom, in spite of the world around us being in a lot of “unrest” So THEY SHALL PUT MY NAME ON THE CHILDREN OF ISRAEL AND I WILL BLESS THEM. We can see that one of the names of God which is EL, is part of the name “YisraEL” and the most sacred name; YHVH is part of “Y’HUdaH (Judah)
Chap 7 “The offerings of the leaders” The leaders of the Tribes of Israel brought offerings to the Mishkan, great offerings of silver, gold, and other items, for the maintenance of the Tabernacle. Today, we bring tithes, and offerings, yet our offerings can also be the offering up of our Time and Talent as well as our finances, it all goes back to using our spiritual gifts to edify the body of Messiah.
The story of Shimshon (Samson) starts here, it is full of promise, but Samson chooses the flesh and not the spirit. He was a Nazarite who broke all the Nazarite vows, in the end, lost his sight and his physical strength, yet, He was still used by Adonai to take vengeance upon the Philistines, which cost him his life. We see a God of mercy who showed mercy again unto this wayward judge, returned to him his strength, punished the Philistines, then took him home to glory. Perhaps he would have lived many more years had he honored his Nazarite vows, and had honored God. When we look at our own lives, are we bent more toward the flesh or toward the Spirit?
Among the themes in this chapter, the parable of the fig tree is enlightening, A fig tree is supposed to bear fruit in the right season. In the month of May, June, and July, are the months that fig trees bear fruit, at least here in South East Texas. there is one right across the fence line where we live, on the property of an African church, and we have been blessed by so much fruit. Did you know that boiling fig leaves into tea lowers blood sugar? Among other health benefits?
Yet the fig tree in this story had been planted three years ago, and still no fruit! Yet the keeper of the vineyard told the owner, “let’s use some fertilizer, then see what happens” All believers in a way are like fruit trees, we must bear fruit, by sharing, teaching God’s word to others, using our spiritual gifts, yet at times, we might need some “fertilizer” perhaps some more individual study in the WORD, a “pep” talk through a counselor or a pastor/rabbi, or just an encouraging word by another brother or sister in Messiah Yeshua.
Shalom Ben Avraham
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