Thursday, February 22, 2018

Parashah 20: Tetzaveh (You are to order) Exodus 27:20 through 30:10

Time to get serious about this week’s Torah portion again, as another Shabbat is just around the corner!  As always, a synopsis of this week’s Torah portion can be found on our website right here.  '

This parashah takes place while Moshe (Moses) is up on Mt. Sinai receiving instructions from YHWH Himself! (See Exodus 24:18 and 32:1.)

In this particular lesson we get yet another inkling about how adamant YHWH (Yahweh/The Creator) was concerning obedience to His holy Commands. He did not allow any "half heartedness" and certainly no reinventing of His instructions. Any veering from the Truth and instructions could lead to death - and that is reinforced throughout the Bible.

We are to be dedicated to Him in every area of our lives. Note, for instance, the command to keep "the lamp burning continually....before ADONAI" which is a permanent regulation through all the generations of the people of Israel" (Exodus 27:20-21). This command cannot be kept today because there is no temple (although it seems that this could be done in the world's synagogues, as a token to demonstrate a willingness to obey).

In reading the next chapters, we get a sense that the there is "something divine" about the role of the cohanim (priests) that goes way above and beyond the roles of today's priests and pastors for whom their chosen profession is basically "just a job." Please read the following very powerful passages:

Exodus 28: 1 "You are to summon your brother Aharon and his sons to come from among the people of Isra'el to you, so that they can serve me as cohanim - Aharon and his sons Nadav, Avihu, El'azar and Itamar. 2 You are to make for your brother Aharon garments set apart for serving God, expressing dignity and splendor. 3 Speak to all the craftsmen to whom I have given the spirit of wisdom, and have them make Aharon's garments to set him apart for me, so that he can serve me in the office of cohen. 4 "The garments they are to make are these: a breastplate, a ritual vest, a robe, a checkered tunic, a turban and a sash. They are to make holy garments for your brother Aharon and his sons, so that he can serve me in the office of cohen. 5 They are to use gold; blue, purple and scarlet yarn; and fine linen.

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