Tag Archives: pirkei avot

WHERE THERE IS NO MAN, BE A MAN –Part 4

“It is the Glory of GOD to conceal a thing, but the honor of Kings to search out a matter” —King Solomon (Proverbs 25:2)

Continued from Part 3……

“In a place where there are no men, strive to be a man” –Rabbi Hillel

We have invested 33 minutes into this teaching… keep going!

There are 12 different words in the Hebrew Language that GOD can use to say, ‘man’. Which one does He use, to call forth a man among men?  In which one do you see the attributes of, a mighty man of valor?

The Next 2 Hebrew Words for ‘Man’ that we will look at are: ish & nephesh)

Spreadsheets are available below containing the information that I want you to capture.

First let’s take a look at the word, ish

The Hebrew word ‘ish’ (eesh) can also be translated as ‘man’. The concordinal reference number for ‘ish’ is 396. Again, scan down the far right edge of the column in the Strong’s Concordance (Book Form), and you will see the various list of numbers all referenced under your search the word, man.

Continuing to look for patterns we will look at the 1st three appearances of ‘ish’ in the scriptures. The chart below provides an example of the information that we will make note of:

ish’ appears in Genesis 2:23, 24 and 4:1 (KJV).

Hebrew WordConcordanceRef#123# of times/ Scripture
ish (eesh) 376Gen 2:23Gen 2:24Gen 4:1 1097

Immediately, we observe that ‘ish’ (eesh), is used extensively in scripture, 1097 times. In the 1st 3 appearances of ish, we note:

  • that Adam has not only identified woman as isha (eesha), he has identified himself as ish (2:23).
  • Ish and isha are one flesh (2:24).
  • Adam and Eve, reproduced in their image, ish (4:1).

2:23 “And Adam said, This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh: she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man.” 

2:24 “Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh.”

4:1 “And Adam knew Eve his wife; and she conceived, and bare Cain, and said, I have gotten a man from the LORD.”

NOTE THE CONTRAST: Gen. 2:7 “The LORD GOD formed adam (man) from the dust.” Cain is a man not formed from the dust. Cain is not called adam.

Refer to Part 3 of this lesson. Compare ish to adam and zakar. What observations are of note? (In order to provide you ample time to think about this, I will not weigh in until part 5 of the teaching).

So far, we have the word ‘man’, translated a minimum of 9 times as 3 completely different words. These distinctions will never be seen from our English Bible. All we see is ‘man’ in each of the 9 verses we have reviewed, man, is man, is man. Reading from the English, we are blinded to any transitions at all. Clearly, something more is happening here, and there is more information packed into the Hebrew verses.

Let’s look further into the Hebrew Word, Nephesh.

Hebrew WordConcordance Ref#123# of times in/ scripture
nephesh5315Gen 2:7 Gen 12:13
Gen 17:14
Ex 12:16
2 Kings 12:4 Isa 49:7

Ex. 12:16 “And in the first day there shall be an holy convocation, and in the seventh day there shall be an holy convocation to you; no manner of work shall be done in them, save that which every man must eat, that only may be done of you.” —i.e., every soul, person must eat…

2 Kings 12:4 And Jehoash said to the priests, All the money of the dedicated things that is brought into the house of the LORD, even the money of every one that passeth the account, the money that every man is set at, and all the money that cometh into any man’s heart to bring into the house of the LORD,.” —i.e., The Redemption Price for every man’s soul.

(IMPORTANT NOTE: Every souls value is set at half a shekel of the sanctuary. Lest, some think that GOD only values man at a price of half a shekel,what is important to know, is that GOD Himself, made up the other half of the shekel. No son of Israel is complete without GOD. This gives us more insight into Phil 2:6, when Paul says, “Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus: Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: GOD thought it not robbery. In fact, it’s not the half shekel that we should focus on here, it is the realization that GOD adds Himself to us, to make us whole. (If he had made the price one full shekel, some might presumptuously assume, that they are whole without Him). Amen?

1sa. 49:7 Thus saith the LORD, the Redeemer of Israel, and his Holy One, to him whom man despiseth, to him whom the nation abhorreth, to a servant of rulers, Kings shall see and arise, princes also shall worship, because of the LORD that is faithful, and the Holy One of Israel, and he shall choose thee.” — i.e., to him whom the soul despiseth

Nephesh is translated as many different words, including the word, ‘man, soul’, and person’. Below, as an additional reference, nephesh is translated as “him” in the KJV. However, we are talking about the ‘man’, the person of Joseph. The soul of Joseph...

Gen 37:21 “And Reuben heard it, and he delivered him out of their hands; and said, Let us not kill him.” — i.e., “…let us not kill/strike down [his] soul.” or, “let us not kill/strike down the soul.” (~meaning Joseph’s soul).

If Judah had only considered his brother as any man, it’s possible he might have not considered this twice. However, Judah is a tzaddik, a righteous one. Taking of another soul is at stake here. The soul of another tzaddikim AND he is their brother, their father’s son.

This is just the beginning of exploring this verse. Together, we shall delve into it more deeply before we are done.

Contemplate the Meaning of the Words–

Review this above material. Remember, that we are in the initial stages of research and for now, I just want to introduce you to several methods of investigating scripture. For now, I think it is important to recognize that, we as Christians who don’t study from Hebrew, are glossing over details that are important. In English, when we speak of a man, a person, a soul, we separate these concepts out one from another.

When GOD uses the word nephesh, which is translated as “man” in the KJV (and many other bibles), we need to ask or self, Why? Why does He use nephesh, as opposed to ish, as opposed to adam,as opposed to zakar? Why are there so many different ways to say, “man”. What is GOD trying to tell me?

When GOD calls a man zakar, what is He saying? Why use zakar, rather than ish? Why is the thought expressed so meticulously, that He would have 12 different ways to say, “man”? I believe there is something to be gleaned here that is significant to the way in which we understand the message, GOD’s word overall, even to the extent that we could gain some insight into the mind of Christ. Should we aspire to the height of heights?

If you were to rank the Hebrew words for man that we have examined so far, from the highest level of creation to a lower level of creation, how would you rank them? I do not mean this, in a derogatory sense of the word, to rank. Think in terms of kedusha (holiness before GOD).

I will provide you my insights that I have observed from the way GOD uses these distinct references to man, as ish and nephesh in the next blog in this series. In addition, we will take a look at 2 additional words for man in or next discussion. Until then, Shalom….

Be Blessed!

+++Vocabulary: Our elevated understanding of Gods terminology.

Adam ~ human being, the crowning achievement of God; mankind, man.

Zakar ~ male, man, belonging to and in covenant with the GOD of Heaven.

ish ~ (Make note of the patterns you see in how GOD uses this word in scripture)

nephesh ~ (Make note of the patters you see in how GOD uses this word in scripture)

All terms will be explained in detail as we continue this study. Stay tuned.

COPYRIGHT 2019, Rev. S. Madison, torahisteaching.blog

[[ NOTE: Should any changes or corrections need to be made after publication of this post, I will place them in brackets so that the reader will know that an amendment has been made.]]

WHERE THERE IS NO MAN, BE A MAN –Part 3

“In a place where there are no men, strive to be a man” –Rabbi Hillel

Continued from Part 2……

The question we are considering is:

There are 12 different words in the Hebrew Language that GOD can use to say, ‘man’. Which one does He use, to call forth a man among men?  In which one do you see the attributes of, a mighty man of valor?

Time in Teaching: We are 27 minutes into this teaching

Our 1st 2 Hebrew words for Man are: adam & zakar)

In our last conversation, I asked you to open your concordance to the word ‘‘man’. I created a spreadsheet below containing the information that I want you to focus on.

The first appearance in the concordance for the word, ”man’ that you will find, is adam. The concordinal reference number is 120. You can scan down the far right edge of the column and you will see the various list of numbers all referenced under the word, man. Your count should be the same as mine, for a total of 12.

The 11 verses that appear contain the Hebrew word, ‘adam‘ which is translated here as, ‘man’. In order to establish some consistency, we will look at the 1st three verses of all 12 Hebrew words that are translated ‘man’ and see if we detect any patterns. At times, we many need to peel back more layers, before patterns of use can be detected. For now, 3 appearances will suffice. The chart below provides an example of the information that you will collect from the concordance:

The word, ‘‘adam’ appears in Genesis 1;26, 27 and 2:5.


Hebrew WordConcordanceRef#123# of times/ Scripture
adam 120Gen 1:26Gen 1:27Gen 2:5338

In all 3 instances, scripture is speaking of man in his ‘maleness’, but more importantly, scripture of speaking in context of mankind, being a ‘human being’. For the sake of clarity, read each verse and exchange ‘mankind/human being’ for man.

1:26 “And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.” 

1:27 “So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.”

2:5. “And every plant of the field before it was in the earth, and every herb of the field before it grew: for the LORD God had not caused it to rain upon the earth, and there was not a man to till the ground.

1:26 “And God said, Let us make mankind in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.” 

In each of the following verses, Gen 2:7, 8, 15, 16, 17, 18, God is speaking of a human being first, not soley as an individual adam. In fact, it isnt until 2:19 that we can exchange ‘mankind’, for the proper name “Adam” in a clean and concise, indistinquishable way.

However, we are reading this from the KJV English translation. Let’s take a look at verse 19 and 20 in Genesis ch.2. We are still looking at the word, ‘adam’ being translated ‘man’.

2:19 And out of the ground the LORD God formed every beastof the field,and every fowl of the air; and brought [them] unto Adam to see what he would call them: and whatsoever Adam called every living creature, that [was] the name thereof.

2:20 And Adam gave names to all cattle, and to the fowl of the air,and to every beast of the field; but for Adam there was not found an help meet for him.

In verse 2:20 Our KJV translation tells us that scripture is now calling man, Adam. The man that was created and called Adam (adam means ‘man’ in Hebrew). In truth, that is not what is happening in the Hebrew. The word use is ha’adam, which is more accurate translated as, the human being, not Adam.

Verse 2:19 actually reads in Hebrew, “and brought them to the human being to see what he would call them”. In order to translate it to read, “and he brought them unto Adam…” you have to ignore the definite article, (the Hebrew letter hei) ‘ha’, which precedes the word adam.

We have the same situation with verse 20. The Hebrew letter hei, precedes the word adam, which means the word, ‘the’ precedes the word, adam. No one is addressed as ‘The Adam’ i.e., the adam gave names to all the cattle. Adam, is not a proper name here. adam, means human being in verse 19 and again in verse 20.

Again, the details matter. God is saying to us that he created a human being. We know, we are going to call him adam. But the primary work of creation in this instance, is to bring into existence the crowning acheivement of all of creation, mankind.

We understand because of the pronouns used in context with the verse, that the first human being created was male. That’s a given. But, the detail that we should not neglect here, is that the crowning acheivement of God is the creation of Human beings, “and He called their name adam”.

verse 1:27, “God created the human being, in His own image…” in part B of the verse, it reads, “male and female created He them”.

Watch closely, “male and female created He them”, the Hebrew word we are translating here as ‘male’, is the Hebrew word ‘zakar’. 58 of the 82 times that the Hebrew word zakar appears in scripture, it is translated as “man or male’. Approx, 47 times as ‘male’ and 11 times as man.

Hebrew WordConcordance Ref#123# of times in/ scripture
zakar2145Gen 17:10Gen 17:12Gen 17:14 58/82

The 1st five appearance of ‘zakar’ in scripture, is in Gen 5:2, “…male and female created He them, and He blessed them and called their name adam”. This is a scripture that most have been curious about, because of the language stating, “He called them (their name) adam.” The common question to ask is, “Why would God call, both of them (male and female) Adam? It doesn’t sound correct, because it’s breaking the pattern the word established when we first were introduced to the word, ‘adam’ in Gen 1:26.

The scripture says, “He called them adam”. In this context, adam means human beings, mankind. When we first see the term adam in scripture, man is being called a human being. When God creates zakar’s helpmeet, the female that is appointed to him, (appointed = naqav) together, they are both being called, ‘human beings’.

The 1st three times we see the word zakar used in scripture, it is used in reference to the circumcision. Among the 58 times that ‘zakar’ is translated as ‘man’ instead of ‘male’, it is in reference to the circumcision, Aarons sons, the offerings of the priesthood, or the 5 schekel offering for the redemption of the first born sons of Israel. What common denominator are you seeing in relationship to how scripture applies the meaning of the word, zakar?

Answer: When God uses the term zakar, he applies it to man in relationship to the covenant, i.e. the circumcision, redemption, to man’s service and sacrificial offerings.

Zakar is rooted in the Hebrew word, zakar (Ref# 2142) which means, to remember. Zakar is only connected to remembering the covenant (Ex 2:4, 6:5, Gen 9:16, Lev 26:45), remembering the Name of God (Ex 20:24), the shabbath (Ex 13:3, 20:8), the Patriarchs and the people (Gen 8:1, 19:29, Ex 32:13, Lev 26:42) the blessing & the dreams (Num 10:9, Gen 42:9), remembering the land (Ex 26:42), remembering the supernatural seasons of God (the Moed). Zakar is about GOD remembering mankind, about remembering His people, kindness, etc. Note: Gen 30:22 scripture says GOD remembered Rachel. Gen 8:1, GOD remembered Noah and all his house…,

Let’s go back and look at this again, “…male and female created He them, and He blessed them and called their name adam.” God has 11 other ways He could address the human being as male. God is not limited by words. In English, man is man, is man, is man. We are limited with our words.

But here, in the language of GOD, He calls him zakar…which is connected to the covenant, the blessing, the shabbat, the supernatural seasons, the moedim… When God calls man, zakar, He is remembering you (man) for good. He is adorning man with love, an appelation of kindness, love affection. You are connected to His Covenant!

In Genesis 5:2, when GOD speaks of man in relation to the creation…man as the crowning achievement of creation, along with the female, He calls the male, zakar. Zakar is a term of endearment to the man of God.

Review this material. Make note of the information that I want you to key in on for now when searching the concordance. This is the initial stages of research and for now, I just want to introduce a few newbies to the 1st steps we can take to look into the scripture. We will take a look at 2 additional words for man in our next discussion in Part 5, ish and nephesh. Until then, Shalom….

Be Blessed!

+++Vocabulary: Our elevated understanding of Gods terminology.

Adam ~ human being, the crowning achievement of God; mankind, man.

Zakar ~ male, man, belonging to and in covenant with the GOD of Heaven.

All terms explained in detail above.

All terms will be explained in detail as we continue this study. Stay tuned.

COPYRIGHT 2019, Rev. S. Madison, torahisteaching.blog

[[ NOTE: Should any changes or corrections need to be made after publication of this post, I will place them in brackets so that the reader will know that an amendment has been made.]]

WHERE THERE IS NO MAN, BE A MAN… Part 2

Continued from Part 1…

“In a place where there are no men, strive to be a man”. —Rabbi Hillel

We are 11 minutes into this teaching.

The question we are considering is:

There are 12 different words in the Hebrew Language that GOD can use to say, ‘man’. Which one does He use, to call forth a man among men?  In which one do you see the attributes of, a mighty man of valor?

Before we begin, lets have a quick recap of a few key points:

  1. …strive to be a man“, those few words provoke our spirit to subdue our flesh.
  2. Today, There’s a growing trend of people who are referring to torah, as the entire Bible– Genesis to Revelation. However, since you are torah scholars in the making, just know the difference as outlined earlier for you, in Part 1. The most important thing is, to recognize that Jesus was teaching torah the entire time. Torah was being taught during the timeframe presented within the entire New Testament era.
  3. GOOD TO KNOW: Bible statistics reveal that there are a total of 260 chapters in the New Testament, containing approx. 300 quotes from the Hebrew Scriptures (a.k.a, Old Testament). What we may find as a shock to our system is to know that, when Jesus and the disciples are not quoting the Hebrew Scriptures, they are teaching, re-teaching, clarifying and expounding on both torah, oral torah and halacha which are simply about “walking out the torah teachings”. [A study of the Synoptic Gospels, demonstrates that Jesus was teaching the torah of Moses and that He was intricately familiar with the teachings of the rabbis that preceded Him and with those that lived during His time]. Jesus, ONLY taught torah. He did not go off in another direction, and do His own thing.
  4. Torah means teaching/instruction/direction. If we can unravel some faulty teaching, we can untangle some faulty mindsets that have been adopted over time, and we can release the anointing over our own lives. Christians are meant to walk in more power. Christ said, “…and greater works than these shall you do in My Name”. Can you imagine? He thought some pretty great thoughts about us! We cannot get to the “greater works” until we cast down some vain imaginations that exalt themselves above the knowledge of GOD. I know you feel it. We know we should be operating at a higher level, we can feel it. There is untapped potential in all of us.
  5. NO MORE BANNED BATTLES: Some are still trying to tell us that these are miscellaneous details. However, the devils is in the details, and it’s time to kick him out. Christians need to be like ferocious little torah pacman’s—Eating the scroll of torah. Consuming every bite. The history of the separation between Jews and Gentiles was born out of anti-Semitism and anti-Christianism, both sides are quilty. Both are accountable. 2000+ years of “They started it!”, is utter nonsense. Especially since the torah is trying to communicate the spiritual value and significance of forgiveness. We have the ability to chose not to be each other’s enemy. Teaching anything contrary to forgiveness is counter productive and dangerous. Can you imagine, “the power that is yet to be revealed“, if we focused on the real enemy? We have to master these so called, miscellaneous details. Our anointing is in the details.
  6. Become Masters of the Misc.
  7. Law is choqmah- decrees, statutes, doctrines. We are not bound by the law, that’s true. Were bound by something more lovely than that, we are bound by His teachings!
  8. I realize, that I asked you earlier to write in your bibles. To scratch out some words and write in a few corrections, so that you can begin to re-train yourself to speak a new language. Where I come from, writing in the bible was taboo. Now my son tells me, I have so many notes and worn out pages, that my bible looks like a worn out manifesto. I had to just laugh about that one. So Beloved, I am not telling you anything that I do not do. Obtain a bible that you are willing to write in and mark up and start writing your manifesto! Notebooks come and go, but your bible will contain the information that you need, when you need it. If you make a note somewhere on the page, you will have if there for the life off the bible.
  9. Remember Ex 12:49? “One teaching shall be to him that is home born, and unto the stranger that sojourneth with you?” Even then, GOD was making note that the Jew and the Gentile can be (should be), walking together in this. The GOD of Abraham never rejected the stranger. The strangers, reject GOD, choosing to remain a stranger. GOD’s instructions were to teach us, as we walk alongside. It is my personal mission to do as Paul, the Pharisee turned Apostle to Christ, said to do… “to provoke the Jew to jealousy!” –Do you realize that we would not even have a bible to fight over, if it was not for the Jews? The Jews kept the torah intact–for THOUSANDS OF YEARS. The torah remained intact in their meticulous care! How many fragments do we have of the New Testament? Exactly. Our Christian ancestors (who I refer to as, We), had to recover the messages left to us by the disciples. Bluntly stated, we just did not handle the WORD with the same level of care. Any nation, (a whole nation) that can carry a book for over 3000 years, is special indeed— Give GOD the praise. They did their job and delivered the book to the future. God chose the right people. As a Christian community, “We should give honor to whom honor is due!” There is no amount of replacement theology that can touch that. I want the Jewish people to look over at me in amazement and say, “is she really over there trying to love the torah more than me, really? “YES, Yes I am”.
  10. You Are the Answer God Sent Into the World. Answer the Calling on your life.
  11. After GOD took the Children of Israel out of the wilderness, He desired to teach them. His decrees and teachings would cover and protect them. A good portion of, the Children of Israel had forgotten who they were created to be. Life in Egypt had caused them to forget GOD. These children of Israel had adopted the ways of the Egyptians, the ways of the world. Egypt in Hebrew is mitzraim, a compound word that is formed from the noun masor, meaning siege or entrenchment. Masor is derived form the verb sur, which means to bind or to besiege. Mitzraim was a stronghold over the children of Israel, and can prophetically represent a stronghold over our lives, even today. Mitzraim, is a spiritual force that binds up the people of GOD, entangling them within the destructive powers of siege warfare. In order for the children of Israel to come out from under the influence of mitzraim and regain their destiny, GOD had to teach them how to accomplish that, and they needed His Word to fight with! If the children of Israel had not (a) remembered who they were called to be, and united with one another, (b) accepted GOD’s Word in unity and, (c) renewed their commitment to God, in one accord; they would have been sunk. –and so then, would we.
  12. Torah is not a Jewish-only concept, or Jewish only property. It is a GOD concept, God’s property, and God’s Gift to man. The mixed-multitude was right there alongside the children of Israel, in position to receive the teachings with them. Not everyone did. 

Finally, Torah is not a racist ideology. Man created racism. God created torah. Man embraced the idea of white and black and red and brown. God embraced the idea of Jew and Gentile.

When our ears hear, “Jew and Gentile”, we have learned to hear it in a way that tells us that, “Jews are one race of people, and Gentile’s are all the other races of people”. Torah is not a racist ideology. To be a ‘Jew’ in scripture, means to come out of the world system and to chose the ways of GOD; to cross over to the other side, GOD’s side. To be gentile, means to stay put… entrenched in world systems, i.e. worldly minded, to remain outside the covenant of GOD. Being, “Jew or Gentile” has to do with covenantal status. We should think of this concept more in terms of relationship with GOD, than in the way the world has trained us to think. We are being taught by somebody. We are going to be taught by the world, or we can choose to allow ourselves to be taught by GOD. Either way, we will be taught.

Allow me a minute with this: It’s important to the concept of…being a man.

The word ‘Jew’ in Hebrew is from the Hebrew word k‘ivri’ meaning, “from the other side”. Originally, Abraham was once ivri, from among those people that believed in or worshipped idols. The Chaldeans were people who had no knowledge of the One True God. They only had knowledge of the gods they created for themselves, with their own hands.

The word Gentile, is from the Latin, gentilis. It refers to someone belonging to a certain tribe or clan. Over time, the word ‘Gentile’ came to express the idea of anyone who was a non-Jew. Goyim (nations), is the plural of ‘goy‘ meaning ‘nation’. The goyim are strangers to God. Gentiles are known as the goyim, strangers to God. They represent the un-circumcised, who are outside of the covenant of God. This is important to us because, in God’s terms, we are either ‘in the covenant or outside the covenant.’ Its not about race. It’s about relationship. We are either for Him or Against Him.

We are either on the LORD’s side or we are not. The Jews were in covenant with God, all the other nations were not. Unless someone from the nations chose to come over to the other side, to become, ivri, they remained a stranger to GOD.

Abraham was called to the nations.  Abraham taught the torah to the nations. 

Abraham was from a different side, until he crossed over to the other side.  It was torah (truth) that made Abram, Abraham.  Abram had a revelation, which drew him over to the other side.

Moses was drawn out from the other side, raised on a different side, until he crossed back over to the other side- reclaiming his Hebrew Heritage.

Jesse was from a different side, until he crossed over to the other side.

Schechem and his kingdom, were from a different side, until they crossed over to the other side.

Ruth was from a completely banned side, until she crossed over to the other side.

Urriah the Hittite was from a different side, until he crossed over to the other side.

Job was from a different side, until he crossed over to the other side.

Even the mixed multitude were from a different side until they crossed over to the other side, (until they crossed back over to the different side, again…(they were a little mixed up!)

My point is, that God has always been in the midst of the nations giving the torah.  Just as the mixed multitudes were present at Mt. Sinai, at the giving of the torah, we can be present today — crossing over to the other side with God and staying put.

God was already giving and sending His Word to the Nations, WAY BEFORE Christ arrived.  Christ was only doing, what His Father in Heaven had already been doing. He came to the House of Israel, but He never denied anyone who believed on GOD’s Name. Their faith made them whole.

Obedience put in action, is better than saying you understand–DO.

Some of you at this early stage, may not fully understand what I am talking about.  I realize it sounds like a tirade.  I assure you, it is not.  There are others who are reading this right now, alongside you and they do understand.  They heard every word, and they have to go back and think about some things, that they have been taught.  The bottom-line is, every person has to decide if they are for GOD or against GOD? This has been the only real question, since the beginning of time. Each person decides for himself, what he or she is prepared to do.

FIRST DO, THEN HEAR

All of the people I named above, were once strangers to the covenant of God, until they became, ivri. Until they crossed over to the other side, they were gentiles – goyim, strangers. Being Hebrew (ivri) is the spiritual designation for crossing over–“come out from among them and be ye separate”. It wasn’t until they crossed over, that they truly began to understand. Understanding comes from being in covenant with GOD. Here is something I do whenever I am in a debate of sorts with Christians that feel that they just don’t understand what GOD is talking about in scripture. I ask them a rhetorical question, being sure to ask that they not answer out loud. It’s a question that they do not owe me an answer to and one that I do not need to know for the purposes of the discussion. This is the question, “If you were to sit back, take some time, and reflect on all the things that you do understand about the covenant GOD set in place between Himself and mankind. Consider, all the do’s and don’ts that you have basic knowledge of right now, by your own analysis, would you say that you are in covenant with GOD? If your answer (to yourself) is, “No, I am not”, then consider that this (those things you are aware that you fall short in) may be impeding your ability to understand spiritual matters. Sometimes, we just get in our own way and we have to move over.

If your answer is, “Yes, I am completely in covenant with GOD”, then let’s pray and fast for greater understanding, because something is off. It could be something that cannot be detected without prayer. (Someone has to come in agreement with them for understanding, so we set a consecration to pray).

I believe that understanding comes from accepting the covenant first. In our carnality, we want to understand first, and then do… if we agree and approve. With God, the evening and the morning were the first day. First obey (do), and then understanding will come.

“We will do and we will hear” (nah-ah-say  vuh-neesh-mah), Ex 24:7.  Literally, this is Hebrew for, “I will do it, whether I understand it now or not.  Understanding will come.”  This attitude contains greater access to the anointing than saying you understand something that you do not, and remaining stubborn and stiff-necked, because you really just don’t understand.  First, accept and be obedient to the covenant. First things, first.

You can’t teach torah and not circle back to this concept over and over again. This is a recurring theme in the torah. We will come back this way again, I assure you. Torah study requires it. Do first – then hear, i.e. (Do first, then get understanding). 

It was GOD’s heart to send His Word out into the Nations.  This was, is, and will be, ALL GOD’s idea.  The Jewish nation is not fighting with us over torah.  (OK, some are, but that is not the point). The point is, we should not be fighting with them.

Torah is not taboo for Christians. 

God is not just the author and finisher of our faith, He is the author of history. The Covenant is available to anyone who is willing to come boldly before the Throne of God to claim it.

We are operating within the design of His Plan.  Some efficiently and some inefficiently. Everybody does not cooperate with their part of the plan.  We know this.  But the torah, is behind ALL of creation.  We need God’s Word. Some choose not to submit to God’s Word. We want it both ways. Pull out GOD if and when it is convenient and put Him and His Word away, when it does not suit our purposes. Understanding will never come in this way either. –This is the epitome of Double Mindedness–

Perhaps some of us, (“us” being Christians) want to hear that we don’t need to delve into the depths of torah to understand our faith. In Proverbs 9:10, GODs Word would disagree. He says, “Knowledge of the Holy One is understanding.” Without torah, there is no “Knowledge of the Holy One.” If knowledge of GOD could be acquired without torah, everybody in the world would know GOD by now. If torah were not required to know GOD, we could at least be exonerate from responsibility to learn it. Torah is a little more homework. But, the students in the Master’s Class, don’t mind.

Christ embraced His Jewishness, he did not pretend to be gentile to [make it easier for us to accept Him.] We misrepresent His life [and limit our ability to increase in understanding], if we strip Him of His Jewishness, which is our heritage and our birthright.

We are in love with the Son of the living God. Christ, is the Son of the Living God, of the Jews.  No matter which side we examine this from, The Word, the torah, the teachings and God, are ONE. 

Ref: Deut 6:4

Torah is a GOD-Concept

John 10:30   “I and my father are one.”

John 10:34  Jesus answered them, “Is it not written in your teachings, I said, Ye are gods?”

John 10:35  “If he called them gods, unto whom the word of God came, and the scripture cannot be broken.”

We have to untangle our message.  EVERYTHING about the Word of GOD matters.  If it was important enough for GOD to put in the message, it must be important enough for us to learn, and get it right. The details matter. 

Hebrew is a very meticulous language.  Hebrew is God’s Love Language to His People.  Every jot and tittle still matters to Him. (Matt 5:18). 

“In a place where there is no man, strive to be a man” –Rabbi Hillel

In Hebrew, there are 12 different words for ‘man’—

If we pick up an English dictionary and look up the word, “man”. We are going to find one entry. The definition will read something like this; (a) an adult human male, (b) a human being of either sex, i.e. person, individual, mortal, soul. 

Because we understand the definition, when we hear the word “man”, we then place it’s use into the proper context based upon our conversation, whether in written or oral form.

In English we have one word, in this case “man” and how we use that word in a sentence/conversation will determine the context of our message.  In Hebrew, what GOD is saying about the “man”, will determine which of the 12 words we select in context to our message.

Hebrew is a very meticulous language.  English is not.

Nearly every word in Hebrew has many levels of understanding.

You cannot take it for granted that an apple, is an apple, is an apple.  Especially, not in the same sense that we define a word, or use a particular word in English.

Examining the scriptures from the Hebrew Perspective is like peeling an onion. You have to peel back a layer at a time, to increase your understanding. 

A literal-only reading of the Word, can lead you to make erroneous assumptions.

Again, Hebrew is a very meticulous language.  English is not. In addition, Hebrew is a foreign language for us. For this reason alone, we need to be very meticulous in learning more about it.

You will see the application of these principles over and over again, as we continue to study from the Hebrew perspective.

LESSON NO. 2

Open your concordance to the word man.  There are 3,323 occurrences of the word, man. When I turn to page #916 in my 1995, The New Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible, I find approx. 11 pages (2 columns per pages) of what appears to be 12pt font, listing every single appearance of the word “man” that is found in the scriptures. 

(Note: The Strong’s I am using is based on the KJV).

Vocabulary:

oral torah~ The oral tradition of the torah, transmitted from father to son and Rabbi to student. It is called the oral torah because it is transferred ‘by mouth’.

halachah ~ literally means, ‘the way’. Halachah are religious laws that everyone must follow.

See Part 3, that will be posted by 9AM PST May 3, 2019.

+++Vocabulary:

halachah ~ a collection of Jewish religious laws that are comprised of both the written and the oral torah.  Halachah are based on mitzvoth (commandments), customs and traditions.  You will find that halachah is often translated to mean law, (just as torah is translated typically as ‘law’), but the word ‘halach, literally means, “the way to walk, or behave”.  Halach, means to go, or to walk. How do you carry yourself, in obedience to the torah, the customs, and traditions of GOD?

Oral torah ~ the oral torah is based on the teachings that were handed down verbally, by memory from father to son, or Rabbi to student.  In Hebrew it is called, ‘torah she-bay-al-peh’. torah that is on the mouth. The oral torah is comprised of laws, statutes and legal interpretations, not recorded in the written torah of Moses, (torah she-bi-kh’tav).

All terms will be explained in detail as we continue this study. Stay tuned.

  • Quick Links to Review Previous Teachings: Where There Is No Man...
  • Part 1 – 11 minutes Intro: Researching the 12 ways in Hebrew to say Man.

[When I find typo’s that I did not see before I published and/or I re-read and know that I could have stated something better for clarity, I will make corrections and place brackets around the changes, like so.  I want your final product to be as pristine as possible.  Also, you have noticed that I do not include the scripture reference when I am quoting or paraphrasing something from the New Testament.  I do that intentionally.  We know this material and I believe it is already a part of our regular dialogue.  We may have the impulse to look them up and that’s good.  I want to provoke us to do that.  It’s good for the soul 🙂  Your a good student!  God Bless You].

Copyright 2019, Rev. S. Madison, torahisteaching.blog

WHERE THERE IS NO MAN, BE A MAN…Part 1

Shalom!

In our first Blog-Style Bible Study, I present Part 1 of a subject that will undergird virtually every other torah topic we will discuss and investigate in our studies.

When I first heard this unforgettable expression in the study of torah, it truly resonated with me, and I’ve been intrigued with it ever since.

Being that this is our inaugural lesson, I am compelled to share a message dearest to my heart.

“In a place where there are no men, strive to be a man.”

-Rabbi Hillel, (110 B.C.E. – 10 C.E)

This is really what we want, isn’t it? When little girls hear that, I’m sure they think of their fathers. When married women hear this, they reflect on the character of their fathers, husbands or brothers. When unmarried women hear this, I expect that they too, reflect on their fathers, brothers, friends and consider the characteristics and qualities they desire in the man of their future. When a nation hears this, do they hear a longing for the resurgence of the soul of a most excellent man?

When I hear this, I feel like a critical moment of decision is at hand. Hillel cries out with a sense of urgency. This is a call to action. Something wicked has reared its head and the circumstances thrust a man forward who will challenge evil. In a place where there are no men, is there a mighty man of valor? A man of courage? Someone who will arise, and do more than it is his duty to do?

The word picture evokes the image of a hero, someone with character, integrity, courage, bravery, fearlessness. Hillel makes the observation that, though we may be in the presence of 20, 50 or even 100 men, none of them measure up to the stature and majesty of one man.

Hillel says, “strive to be a man.” Who is this man who will press his way through? This man, must be able to summon all his strength, all of his potential. He has to arise, into the image and likeness of his better self.

Clearly, all of the above are suitable, when we think of a man who stands head and shoulders above the rest.

Why did Hillel call out so eloquently for men, to be a man? What are the qualities of a good man?

We could slap some verses together, hold ’em, pin ’em down, and grab some sticky stuff and squeeze them all together…and call it a day.

Not so fast! This is torah study. We have to throw in some due diligence. There’s some lesson plans and homework required.

We will apply a meticulous 5 step approach as follows:

You are all at different levels of torah study. For the benefit of the newbies, I will walk you through the terminology in detail, so that you will own this knowledge once were done.

#1. What is Torah?

# 2. We will do and we will hear. Summary: Torah is Obedience in Action.

#3. Hebrew is a very meticulous language.

#4. Concordance Research on the Hebrew Definition of –Man.

#5. Conclusion

The question we are considering is:

There are 12 different words in the Hebrew Language that GOD can use to say, ‘man’. Which one does He use, to call forth a man among men? In which one do you see the attributes of, a mighty man of valor?

Lets set aside the question of “man” for moment, and first be sure we understand what torah means…

LESSON NO. 1
Studying torah is a completely different matter than studying scripture. Torah and scripture are two different subject matters from the perspective of our Christian roots. (If you feel differently, I understand why. However, allow me to work this out for a few other students who are new to these concepts).

Basic Definition of torah:

Traditionally speaking, when we say torah- we are speaking of the 5 Books of Moses, Genesis through Deuteronomy.

Today, what we understand as torah has gravitated to include ALL the Books of the Hebrew Scriptures, Genesis through Malachi. (Notice: I deliberately did not say Old Testament).

Torah means teaching/instruction. Teaching, is the most accurate interpretation of the word. Our ancient Christian ancestors, trained up the body of Christ in a tradition that taught us to translate the word, torah, as the word, law (and we have diligently done so, for at least the last 400 years, minimum). Our ancestral translators, and the majority of some of our translators of this present age, still persist in translating torah as law. Despite the fact that, we have more accurate information than we had in past decades.

When your going in the wrong direction, do you just keep going?, Forever?

Or Do You Course Correct?

A rough guess would put us at approx. 95% of the times that we see the word law in scripture, it is due to translating the Hebrew word, torah into the English word, law. In reality, the word torah means teaching.

This is an essential, foundational part of understanding torah. Hillel was a Rabbi, a Hebrew Scholar. In order to establish a connection with a Hebraic mindset, we need a fundamental understanding of terms.

Let’s continue working to untangle this:

If you go back into your bibles and locate the word– law, scratch it out and write in the word –teaching. Already you will have gained for yourself, valuable insight into the original conversations in scripture.

See the example below:

In Christian Bible studies, we have learned to study scripture in a completely different manner. We will begin to make a few adjustments to that process in this class.

For now, go to biblegateway.com and enter the word “law” into the search box. Hit enter. 529 hits will be returned on your query. The first 9 are not applicable. (they include either, daughter-in-law or father in-law – completely different topic). Next you will see the following:

Gen 47:26 and Joseph made it a law (choqmah) over the land of Egypt unto this day.
H2706 choqmah in Hebrew means statute or law. [the best approximation of the pronunciation of, “choqmah” that I can give you is ‘hoke-mah’].

Gen 49:10 the scepter shall not depart from Judah, nor a lawgiver (chaqaq) from between his feet,
H2710 – chaqaq to decree or inscribe, to cut in. chaqaq is more of a law than torah. Notice that choqmah and chaqaq are based in the same root word—they are related. The lawgiver decrees the word of God – The lawgiver will be from the seed of Judah.

Ex 12:49 One law shall be to him that is home born, and unto the stranger that sojourneth with you.
H8451 torah – teaching, direction, instruction. (cross out the word, law)
One teaching shall be to him that is home born, and unto the stranger that sojourneth with you. [—note that God said, that those who take this journey with you are entitled to the same teachings].

Ex 13:9. …that the LORD’s law may be in thy mouth
H8451. torah – teaching, direction, instruction. (cross out the word, law)
…that the LORD’s teaching may be in thy mouth

Ex 16:4 …that I may prove them, whether they will walk in my law, or no.
H8451. torah – teaching, direction, instruction. (cross out the word, law)
…that I may prove them, whether they will walk in my teaching, or no.

Ex 16:28 …And the LORD said unto Moses, How long refuse ye to keep my commandments and my laws?
H8451. torah – teaching, direction, instruction. (cross out the word, law)
…And the LORD said unto Moses, How long refuse ye to keep my commandments and my teachings?

…And the LORD said unto Moses, How long refuse ye to keep my commandments and my directions?

…And the LORD said unto Moses, How long refuse ye to keep my commandments and my instructions?

Ex 24:12. …and I will give the tables of stone, and a law, and commandments which I have written, that thou mayest teach them.
H8451. torah – teaching, direction, instruction. (cross out the word, law)
…and I will give the tables of stone, and a teaching, and commandments which I have written, that thou mayest teach them.

Of the remaining of 513 verses, the majority are interpreting torah as law, incorrectly.

Go back and review the verses thoroughly before continuing. Email me any questions you may have. Thank you.

Some have said, these are insignificant tiny little word-smith-ing issues, what’s the big deal?

Look Carefully:

We took the 1st 7 occurrences of the word– law in the Hebrew Scriptures and peeled back the onion, just a bit. We saw for ourselves that 5 of the 7 don’t mean law at all.

What proof do we have other than my word, that torah should not be translated as law?, other than my word for it?

Hebrew is the native language of the Jewish nation. We have to respect them as the authority on record with their native language. If the Rabbi’s tell us that Torah means teaching, that settles the dispute! It’s their language, they ought to know.

Here, in our native language, GOD has been accused of being brutal, heavy handed, legalistic, ritualistic… and everything else in the book, [because we lack even a modicum of torah centered knowledge and perspectives].

We put the word ‘law’ in His mouth when He is actually referring to His teachings, His instructions, His directions. We are the ones creating the confusion. It’s our western mindset. We have a fondness of expressing things in terms of laws, commandments, decrees, statutes, doctrines, etc., etc. It’s possible the early translators of the bible felt, “teachings”, was too soft of a word to use. Perhaps they underestimated the masses, and assumed we could not accept God’s Word without a little more Fire of God authority? …perhaps they did.

We have the opportunity to repair the portrait that we painted. We created this picture of an overbearing GOD that people don’t know how to relate to, and we as laity, continue to inadequately explain His teachings. Did you notice what I did right there? I did not blame the pastors, priest or any leadership from any denomination?

This is because I see those three little fingers pointing back at us (the people) when we put the blame on any one else. As the people of God, we can’t just sit in the pew forever and act like we bear no responsibility for the outcomes. If we love God like we say we do, then we have to take accountability for our own behavior, i.e. our own lack of knowledge, and our inability or trepidation to answer questions about our own faith. I’m not speaking of course of every single Christian being this way. My generalizations are specific to the Christians that know they lack understanding about the GOD they love, and they know they need to be snatched out of their sleep. [More on this subject in part 2 of this blog].

God wants to teach you something and I have the heart for teaching that He can use to communicate through. You are the YOU that knows… that He is talking to YOU. –Not everybody, YOU. Why You? It’s like I said in the very first blog. You Are An Answer God Sent Into The World and He is coming for YOU!

“In a place where there is no man, strive to be a man.” Before we can [ever] get to the heart of that matter, we have to get a lot of other stuff out of the way. Stuff, that is blocking you from progress. Not progress in the world system… this is more important than that. There is all this stuff, that is blocking you from making progress in the anointing! God wants you taught! And for some reason, He believes this blog is going to have a part in doing that.

The First Thing God wanted to do, when He brought His People out of Egypt…

In Ex 12:49, 13:9, 16:4, 16:28, God wanted to teach His people. Ex 24:12, states the sum of the matter beautifully. God provided us with His teachings on tablets of stone, His decrees also, that we should be taught. He could have legislated mankind to the hilt, we certainly have, but He did not. He desired that we be taught.

We have impressively rehearsed the 10 commandments and neglected the 10 teachings.

God did not come with a sword. He came to the House of Israel and stretched out His hand in love, and for peace. Doesn’t that remind you of Jesus?

Do we have the patience to be teachable?

Can we be taught? Can we endure His teachings? Can we bear His instruction? Will we receive His instructions?

Additionally, contrary to some opinions, studying torah is not about converting to Judaism. [[There is no attempt being made here to convert anyone to Judaism]. The Jewish culture has so much beauty within it, and I must say, we could definitely benefit from several of their “best practices“. However, our primary goal before us today, is to perfect those things pertaining to the body of Christ. Every culture has something magnificent to contribute to the world, and knowing each other enriches our spirit. The development of our spirit is our greatest weapon, an essential prerequisite, which enables us to address our character flaws. Together, we are better people as a whole].

The Bible is a book of teachings and instructions. Embracing the Jewishness of Jesus, His Hebrew Heritage, Culture and teachings, only makes us stronger, never weaker. We have to accept ALL of Him, not pick the part we want and disavow the rest. If we would do that with the King of Kings, of course we will do it to others. In fact, we do it to others. When we disrespect others, we disrespect GOD. If our behavior in anyway disrespects the Son of the Living GOD, (accepting only what we deem appropriate, then we disrespect the anointing).

I hope I am making this clear. Anyone who marries a man or a woman and tells them to sever all ties with their heritage, culture and teachings, really doesn’t love the person. Would you agree with that? Am I wrong? Am I missing something? Either we take the complete package with Christ or we don’t. There is no lukewarm offering on this. Hot or cold, hot or cold.

It’s time to fully cross over to the other side. No more refusing the good instructions, because we think we are betraying our Christian heritage by learning torah. We oppose our own selves if we don’t.

[“And the Lord’s servant must not strive, but be gentle towards all, apt to teach, forbearing, in meekness correcting them that oppose themselves; if peradventure God may give them repentance unto the knowledge of the truth, and they may recover themselves out of the snare of the devil, having been taken captive by him unto his will”]

[Betray the enemy who is trying to prevent us from obtaining the fire that the torah, will ignite in us. Betray that].

Part 2 of this post will settle the dispute regarding torah, as we continue to put all the pieces in place, for greater insight into Rabbi Hillel’s teachings in Pirkei Avot 1:15 [The sayings of our Fathers] Stay Ready!

SPECIAL NOTE: I put together a handout for Part 2 of this Bible Study. I believe it will help you follow the scripture details that I will present in Part 2 of this message. If you would like to a copy sent to you, send me your email address by subscribing to the blog. I’m a teacher, I can’t help creating handouts!

[When I find typo’s that I did not see before I published and/or I re-read and know that I could have stated something better for clarity, I will make corrections and place brackets around the changes, like so. I want your final product to be as pristine as possible. Also, you have noticed that I do not include the scripture reference when I am quoting or paraphrasing something from the New Testament. I do that intentionally. We know this material and I believe it is already a part of our regular dialogue. We may have the impulse to look them up and that’s good. I want to provoke us to do that. It’s good for the soul 🙂 Your a good student! God Bless You].

Copyright 2019, Rev. S. Madison, torahisteaching.blog