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Wednesday, June 6, 2018

Your Daily Pesuk

Pesukim פסוקים are the "verses" of Scripture divided into Parashaot (Portions) read in the synagogue each week.  On Monday's & Thursdays there are 3 divisions of the week's Parasha read and on Shabbat all 6 are read including a Maftir (added), which makes up the final Pesukim (verses) of the Parasha totalling (7) Aliyot each week.  Rabbi Eric will give a short d'rash on each of the daily Pesukim that make up the week's Parasha for a good daily dose of Torah.  For more explanation on how the Torah is read and divided daily and weekly in the Synagogue see the following links:

The Daily Pesuk for WEDNESDAY June 6, 2018 / 23, Sivan 5778

 Sh'lach /  שלח־לך

Numbers 14:26-15:7 (27 p'sukim)

Tree of Life Version (TLV)
26 Adonai then said to Moses and Aaron saying, 27 “How long will this wicked community be grumbling against Me? I have heard the complaints of Bnei-Yisrael grumbling against Me. 28 So tell them, ‘As surely as I live,’ says Adonai, ‘I will do to you just as I heard you say in My ears. 29 In this very wilderness your bodies will drop—every one of you 20 years of age and older who was numbered in the census and grumbled against Me. 30 Not one of you will enter the land about which I lifted My hand to make home for you—except Caleb son of Jephunneh and Joshua son of Nun.

26 וַיְדַבֵּ֣ר יְהוָ֔ה אֶל־מֹשֶׁ֥ה וְאֶֽל־אַהֲרֹ֖ן לֵאמֹֽר׃

27 עַד־מָתַ֗י לָעֵדָ֤ה הָֽרָעָה֙ הַזֹּ֔את אֲשֶׁ֛ר הֵ֥מָּה מַלִּינִ֖ים עָלָ֑י אֶת־תְּלֻנּ֞וֹת בְּנֵ֣י יִשְׂרָאֵ֗ל אֲשֶׁ֨ר הֵ֧מָּה מַלִּינִ֛ים עָלַ֖י שָׁמָֽעְתִּי׃

28 אֱמֹ֣ר אֲלֵהֶ֗ם חַי־אָ֙נִי֙ נְאֻם־יְהוָ֔ה אִם־לֹ֕א כַּאֲשֶׁ֥ר דִּבַּרְתֶּ֖ם בְּאָזְנָ֑י כֵּ֖ן אֶֽעֱשֶׂ֥ה לָכֶֽם׃

29 בַּמִּדְבָּ֣ר הַ֠זֶּה יִפְּל֨וּ פִגְרֵיכֶ֜ם וְכָל־פְּקֻדֵיכֶם֙ לְכָל־מִסְפַּרְכֶ֔ם מִבֶּ֛ן עֶשְׂרִ֥ים שָׁנָ֖ה וָמָ֑עְלָה אֲשֶׁ֥ר הֲלִֽינֹתֶ֖ם עָלָֽי׃

30 אִם־אַתֶּם֙ תָּבֹ֣אוּ אֶל־הָאָ֔רֶץ אֲשֶׁ֤ר נָשָׂ֙אתִי֙ אֶת־יָדִ֔י לְשַׁכֵּ֥ן אֶתְכֶ֖ם בָּ֑הּ כִּ֚י אִם־כָּלֵ֣ב בֶּן־יְפֻנֶּ֔ה וִיהוֹשֻׁ֖עַ בִּן־נֽוּן׃

Who exactly is Adonai referring to when he says, "This wicked community"?  Rashi says it refers to the 10 wicked spies.  But the judgement Adonai renders is on the entire generation that left Egypt, save for Calev and Joshua.  The mysterious writer of the Sefer "Igrot Ha El Ivrim" The Book of Hebrews, written to Messianic Jews of the First Century tells us who this "wicked community" was:

Hebrew 3:16 Now which ones heard and rebelled? Indeed, was it not all who came out of Egypt with Moses? 17 And with whom was He provoked for forty years? Was it not with those who sinned, whose bodies fell in the wilderness? 18 And to whom did He swear that they would not enter His rest? Was it not to those who were disobedient? 19 So we see that they were not able to enter in because of lack of trust.  (THIS IS SOME PESUKIM FROM THE BRIT READING FOR THIS WEEK: PARASHA SHELACH LECHA).

The Pesukim continues:

31 “As for your children—whom you said would be like plunder—I will bring them in and they will experience the land that you spurned. 32 But your bodies will drop in this wilderness. 33 Your children will be herdsmen in the wilderness for 40 years. They will suffer because of your unfaithfulness until your corpses are consumed in the wilderness. 34 For 40 years, corresponding to the number of the 40 days you explored the land—one year for each day—you will suffer for your iniquities and know My hostility. 35 I, Adonai, have spoken and certainly will I do this to all this wicked community banding together against Me. In this wilderness they will meet their end and there they will die!”

31 וְטַ֨פְּכֶ֔ם אֲשֶׁ֥ר אֲמַרְתֶּ֖ם לָבַ֣ז יִהְיֶ֑ה וְהֵבֵיאתִ֣י אֹתָ֔ם וְיָֽדְעוּ֙ אֶת־הָאָ֔רֶץ אֲשֶׁ֥ר מְאַסְתֶּ֖ם בָּֽהּ׃

32 וּפִגְרֵיכֶ֖ם אַתֶּ֑ם יִפְּל֖וּ בַּמִּדְבָּ֥ר הַזֶּֽה׃

33 וּ֠בְנֵיכֶם יִהְי֨וּ רֹעִ֤ים בַּמִּדְבָּר֙ אַרְבָּעִ֣ים שָׁנָ֔ה וְנָשְׂא֖וּ אֶת־זְנוּתֵיכֶ֑ם עַד־תֹּ֥ם פִּגְרֵיכֶ֖ם בַּמִּדְבָּֽר׃

34 בְּמִסְפַּ֨ר הַיָּמִ֜ים אֲשֶׁר־תַּרְתֶּ֣ם אֶת־הָאָרֶץ֮ אַרְבָּעִ֣ים יוֹם֒ י֣וֹם לַשָּׁנָ֞ה י֣וֹם לַשָּׁנָ֗ה תִּשְׂאוּ֙ אֶת־עֲוֺנֹ֣תֵיכֶ֔ם אַרְבָּעִ֖ים שָׁנָ֑ה וִֽידַעְתֶּ֖ם אֶת־תְּנוּאָתִֽי׃

35 אֲנִ֣י יְהוָה֮ דִּבַּרְתִּי֒ אִם־לֹ֣א׀ זֹ֣את אֶֽעֱשֶׂ֗ה לְכָל־הָעֵדָ֤ה הָֽרָעָה֙ הַזֹּ֔את הַנּוֹעָדִ֖ים עָלָ֑י בַּמִּדְבָּ֥ר הַזֶּ֛ה יִתַּ֖מּוּ וְשָׁ֥ם יָמֻֽתוּ׃

Our TLV version translates pesuk 33 as: "(your children) They will suffer because of your unfaithfulness...".  The Masoretic text translates it this way: "Your children shall wander in the desert for forty years and bear your defection.  And according to the Aramaic paraphrase of the Torah known as the Targum, it is translated: “They will endure your guilt.”.  What does this teach us about how consequences of sin are passed down generation to generation?

Think of our world today.  A young man or woman makes very bad choices as a young person and this affects their future, perhaps a lack of education, perhaps bearing children out of wedlock, poverty, drug abuse, these bad choices and their consequences end up affecting the innocent children who are born into these conditions.  We also know that G-d's 13 Atributes listed in Exodus 34 describes this fact:

6 Then Adonai passed before him, and proclaimed, “Adonai, Adonai, the compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, and abundant in lovingkindness and truth, 7 showing mercy to a thousand generations, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin, yet by no means leaving the guilty unpunished, but bringing the iniquity of the fathers upon the children, and upon the children’s children, to the third and fourth generation.”

The curses of sins of our father's and their consequences can be broken in our lives through Repentence!

Psalm 79:8 Tree of Life Version (TLV)
8 Do not hold against us the sins of our fathers.
May Your mercies come quickly to meet us,
for we are brought very low.

The pesukim continue:

36 Then the men whom Moses had sent to explore the land, who had returned and caused the whole community to grumble against him by spreading a bad report about the land, 37 these men, spreading the bad report about the land, died of the plague in Adonai’s presence. 38 Of those men who had gone to explore the land, only Joshua son of Nun and Caleb son of Jephunneh survived.

39 When Moses related these things to all of Bnei-Yisrael, the people mourned bitterly. 40 They rose the next morning and went up to the high mountains, saying, “Look! Let’s go up to the place which Adonai promised. For we have sinned.”

41 But Moses said, “Why are you disobeying the mouth of Adonai? That will never succeed. 42 You should not go up, because Adonai will not be among you and you will be defeated before your enemies! 43 For the Amalekites and Canaanites are there in front of you, and you will fall by the sword. Adonai will not be with you, because you turned away from following Adonai.”

44 But presumptuously they went up to the high mountain country, though neither the Ark of Adonai’s covenant nor Moses moved from within the camp. 45 The Amalekites and Canaanites living in the mountain country came down, attacked them, and beat them down all the way to Hormah.

36 וְהָ֣אֲנָשִׁ֔ים אֲשֶׁר־שָׁלַ֥ח מֹשֶׁ֖ה לָת֣וּר אֶת־הָאָ֑רֶץ וַיָּשֻׁ֗בוּ ׳וַיִּלּוֹנוּ׳ ״וַיַּלִּ֤ינוּ״ עָלָיו֙ אֶת־כָּל־הָ֣עֵדָ֔ה לְהוֹצִ֥יא דִבָּ֖ה עַל־הָאָֽרֶץ׃

37 וַיָּמֻ֙תוּ֙ הָֽאֲנָשִׁ֔ים מוֹצִאֵ֥י דִבַּת־הָאָ֖רֶץ רָעָ֑ה בַּמַּגֵּפָ֖ה לִפְנֵ֥י יְהוָֽה׃

38 וִיהוֹשֻׁ֣עַ בִּן־נ֔וּן וְכָלֵ֖ב בֶּן־יְפֻנֶּ֑ה חָיוּ֙ מִן־הָאֲנָשִׁ֣ים הָהֵ֔ם הַֽהֹלְכִ֖ים לָת֥וּר אֶת־הָאָֽרֶץ׃

39 וַיְדַבֵּ֤ר מֹשֶׁה֙ אֶת־הַדְּבָרִ֣ים הָאֵ֔לֶּה אֶֽל־כָּל־בְּנֵ֖י יִשְׂרָאֵ֑ל וַיִּֽתְאַבְּל֥וּ הָעָ֖ם מְאֹֽד׃

40 וַיַּשְׁכִּ֣מוּ בַבֹּ֔קֶר וַיַּֽעֲל֥וּ אֶל־רֹאשׁ־הָהָ֖ר לֵאמֹ֑ר הִנֶּ֗נּוּ וְעָלִ֛ינוּ אֶל־הַמָּק֛וֹם אֲשֶׁר־אָמַ֥ר יְהוָ֖ה כִּ֥י חָטָֽאנוּ׃

41 וַיֹּ֣אמֶר מֹשֶׁ֔ה לָ֥מָּה זֶּ֛ה אַתֶּ֥ם עֹבְרִ֖ים אֶת־פִּ֣י יְהוָ֑ה וְהִ֖וא לֹ֥א תִצְלָֽח׃

42 אַֽל־תַּעֲל֔וּ כִּ֛י אֵ֥ין יְהוָ֖ה בְּקִרְבְּכֶ֑ם וְלֹא֙ תִּנָּ֣גְפ֔וּ לִפְנֵ֖י אֹיְבֵיכֶֽם׃

43 כִּי֩ הָעֲמָלֵקִ֨י וְהַכְּנַעֲנִ֥י שָׁם֙ לִפְנֵיכֶ֔ם וּנְפַלְתֶּ֖ם בֶּחָ֑רֶב כִּֽי־עַל־כֵּ֤ן שַׁבְתֶּם֙ מֵאַחֲרֵ֣י יְהוָ֔ה וְלֹא־יִהְיֶ֥ה יְהוָ֖ה עִמָּכֶֽם׃

44 וַיַּעְפִּ֕לוּ לַעֲל֖וֹת אֶל־רֹ֣אשׁ הָהָ֑ר וַאֲר֤וֹן בְּרִית־יְהוָה֙ וּמֹשֶׁ֔ה לֹא־מָ֖שׁוּ מִקֶּ֥רֶב הַֽמַּחֲנֶֽה׃

Notice vs. 44, the TLV says they went up "presumptuously", what does this mean?  It means they did not really "Repent".  They went up even after being judged in "Defiance" of what G-d had told them.  This is not the way to win the favor of G-d.  Rabbi Rashi said the following: "They defiantly ascended: Heb. וַיַעְפִּלוּ, a term connoting insolence; similarly (Hab. 2:4),“behold, it is insolent (עֻפְּלָה) ,” in old French, engres, a term denoting arrogant boldness. Similarly,“the tower (עֹפֶל) of the daughter of Zion” (Mic. 4:8);“rampart (עֹפֶל) and tower” (Isa. 32:14). The Midrash Tanchuma (Buber Shelach addendum 19) interprets it as a term denoting darkness (אֹפֶל); they [the Israelites] went in darkness, without permission."

Certainly, when we are in rebellion we are in "Darkness"; and before we repented and softened our hearts to G-d through Messiah, we were all in this same Darkness.  But, for us, there is a "silver lining"... we see what is described next in our Pesukim as the Torah for today ends:

15:1 Again Adonai spoke to Moses saying, 2 “Speak to Bnei-Yisrael and say to them: When you enter the land that I am giving you where you will make your homes, 3 and you are presenting a fire offering to Adonai—a burnt offering or a sacrifice to mark fulfilling a vow, a freewill offering, or during moadim[a]—to present a pleasing aroma to Adonai, from the herd or from the flock, 4 the one bringing the offering is to present a grain offering of a tenth of an ephah of fine flour mixed with a fourth of a hin of oil.

5 “Now with each lamb for the burnt offering or sacrifice, you are to prepare a fourth of a hin of wine as a drink offering. 6 With a ram, you are to prepare two tenths of an ephah of fine flour mixed with a third of a hin of oil, 7 and a third of a hin of wine as a drink offering. You are to offer it as a pleasing aroma to Adonai.

15 וַיְדַבֵּ֥ר יְהוָ֖ה אֶל־מֹשֶׁ֥ה לֵּאמֹֽר׃

2 דַּבֵּר֙ אֶל־בְּנֵ֣י יִשְׂרָאֵ֔ל וְאָמַרְתָּ֖ אֲלֵהֶ֑ם כִּ֣י תָבֹ֗אוּ אֶל־אֶ֙רֶץ֙ מוֹשְׁבֹ֣תֵיכֶ֔ם אֲשֶׁ֥ר אֲנִ֖י נֹתֵ֥ן לָכֶֽם׃

3 וַעֲשִׂיתֶ֨ם אִשֶּׁ֤ה לַֽיהוָה֙ עֹלָ֣ה אוֹ־זֶ֔בַח לְפַלֵּא־נֶ֙דֶר֙ א֣וֹ בִנְדָבָ֔ה א֖וֹ בְּמֹעֲדֵיכֶ֑ם לַעֲשׂ֞וֹת רֵ֤יחַ נִיחֹ֙חַ֙ לַֽיהוָ֔ה מִן־הַבָּקָ֖ר א֥וֹ מִן־הַצֹּֽאן׃

4 וְהִקְרִ֛יב הַמַּקְרִ֥יב קָרְבָּנ֖וֹ לַֽיהוָ֑ה מִנְחָה֙ סֹ֣לֶת עִשָּׂר֔וֹן בָּל֕וּל בִּרְבִעִ֥ית הַהִ֖ין שָֽׁמֶן׃

5 וְיַ֤יִן לַנֶּ֙סֶךְ֙ רְבִיעִ֣ית הַהִ֔ין תַּעֲשֶׂ֥ה עַל־הָעֹלָ֖ה א֣וֹ לַזָּ֑בַח לַכֶּ֖בֶשׂ הָאֶחָֽד׃

6 א֤וֹ לָאַ֙יִל֙ תַּעֲשֶׂ֣ה מִנְחָ֔ה סֹ֖לֶת שְׁנֵ֣י עֶשְׂרֹנִ֑ים בְּלוּלָ֥ה בַשֶּׁ֖מֶן שְׁלִשִׁ֥ית הַהִֽין׃

7 וְיַ֥יִן לַנֶּ֖סֶךְ שְׁלִשִׁ֣ית הַהִ֑ין תַּקְרִ֥יב רֵֽיחַ־נִיחֹ֖חַ לַיהוָֽה׃

Notice how this next passage is juxtaposed to the preceding pesukim.  First, there's judgement and rebellion, and immediately next Hashem gives orders regarding freewill offerings and wine libations and olah offerings (burnt offerings), and NO LESS THAN 2 TIMES DO WE SEE THIS PHRASE REPEATED... רֵֽיחַ־נִיחֹ֖חַ לַיהוָֽה riach nichoch l'adonai...  "A fragrant aroma to Adonai".  (i.e. a "Pleasing Fragrance".  The generation that succeeded their fathers who entered the Land became a pleasing fragrance just as we who trust in Adonai and His Son, Yeshua become a pleasing aroma to Adonai...

2 Corinthians 2:14 But thanks be to God, who in Messiah always leads us in triumphal procession, and through us reveals everywhere the aroma of the knowledge of Himself. 15 For we are the aroma of Messiah to God, among those who are being saved and those who are perishing— 16 to the one an aroma from death to death, to the other an aroma from life to life. Who is competent for these things? 17 For we are not like many, peddling the word of God. Rather, in Messiah we speak in the sight of God with sincerity, as persons sent from God.

2 Corinthians 2:14-17 - אֲבָל תּוֹדוֹת לֵאלֹהִים הַנֹּתֵן לָנוּ תְּשׁוּעָה בַמָּשִׁיחַ בְּכָל־עֵת וּמֵפִיץ עַל־יָדֵינוּ אֶת־רֵיחַ דַּעְתּוֹ בְּכָל־מָקוֹם׃[15] כִּי־רֵיחַ נִיחֹחַ שֶׁל־הַמָּשִׁיחַ אֲנַחְנוּ לֵאלֹהִים בְּתוֹךְ הַנּוֹשָׁעִים וּבְתוֹךְ הָאֹבְדִים׃[16] לָאֵלֶּה רֵיחַ מָוֶת לַמָּוֶת וְלָאֵלֶּה רֵיחַ חַיִּים לַחַיִּים וּמִי־זֶה רָאוּי לְכָךְ׃[17] כִּי אֵין מִדָּתֵנוּ כְּמִדַּת הָרַבִּים הָעֹשִׂים דְּבַר הָאֱלֹהִים סְחוֹרָה כִּי אִם־מִתּוֹךְ ישֶׁר הַלֵּב וּמֵאֱלֹהִים לִפְנֵי אֱלֹהִים נְדַבֵּר בַּמָּשִׁיחַ׃

Until tomorrow, Erev Tov,

R' Eric 

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