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June 15, 2024: Parashah Torah Portion Naso - "Lift Up"

Shabbat: June 14th, 2024 at sunset until June 15th, 2024 at sunset.


Scriptures:

Torah Portion: Numbers 4:21 - 7:89

Haftarah: Judges 13:2-25

Brit Hadashah: Acts 21:17-26

Parashah Torah Portion Naso - "Lift Up"

Restore Israel Team: Elihana Elia, Dr. Hadassah Elia & Devorah Silva


Parashat Naso is the longest Torah portion. Its length comes from the list of gifts and sacrifices offered by the tribal leaders, which is repeated twelve times.


In this Torah portion, we learn the blessing used by so many, called Birkat Kohanim (The Priestly Blessing) found in Numbers 6:24-26:


"May YHWH bless you and keep you.

May YHWH make HIS Face shine on you and be gracious to you.

May YHWH lift up HIS Countenance upon you and give you Shalom."


Notice that the Hebrew text of the blessing (see below) begins with three words, and is comprised of three parts, invokes the divine Name three times, and is therefore appropriately called "the three-in-one blessing" (אחת בברכה שלוש) Notice also that the words are spoken in the grammatical singular rather than plural because they are meant to have personal application, not to be a general benediction over a crowd of people. The phrase, "the LORD lift up his face upon you..."  pictures the beaming face of a parent lifting up his beloved child in joy...The repetitive construction of God "lifting up His face" (יהוה פניו אליך) indicates that he gazes upon you in love and blessing. Undoubtedly Yeshua recited this very blessing over his disciples when he ascended back to heaven, though He would have spoken it in the grammatical first person: "I bless you and keep you; I shine upon you and am full of grace toward you; I lift up my face toward you and give you my shalom" (see Luke 24:50-51)


יברכך יהוה וישמרך

יאר יהוה פניו אליך ויחנך

ישא יהוה פניו אליך וישם לך שׁלום


Amidst our longest parashah, nestled between laws of the Nazirites and final preparations for how to use the Tabernacle, our holy space; the Bible teaches us that we can use words and actions to bless one another, all while noting that our blessings come from The Holy One of Israel.


Indeed, our words are very powerful. We can use our words to bring blessings and life or curses and death. Therefore, let us purpose to continue to speak life and blessings to lift up the people and the situation around us. HalleluYAH!


"The tongue has the power of life and death, and those who love it will eat its fruit." Proverbs 18:21


“For, the one who loves life, wanting to see good days, must keep his tongue from evil and his lips from speaking deceit.” 1 Peter‬ ‭3‬:‭10‬ ‭TLV‬‬


The word “Shavuot” literally means “weeks”. It marks the seven-week Omer count from First Fruits. Shavuot is the only feast that YHWH did not specify a date but commanded us to count 50 days from the Feast of First Fruits, according to Lev 23:15-16:


“Then you are to count from the morrow after the Shabbat, from the day that you brought the omer of the wave offering, seven complete Shabbatot. Until the morrow after the seventh Shabbat you are to count fifty days, and then present a new grain offering to ADONAI.” Leviticus‬ ‭23‬:‭15‬-‭16‬ ‭TLV‬‬


Note that the Bible clearly says to start counting on the morrow after the (weekly) Shabbat and after we have counted seven complete Sabbaths, the next day, which is the 50th day, will be Shavuot (Pentecost). It cannot fall on any other day BUT the morrow after the seventh (weekly) Shabbat. Only then does it completely align with the Word of ELOHIM and with what YESHUA came to fulfil, for we know all of the Feasts of YHWH are a foreshadowing of what YESHUA comes to fulfil.


Shavuot is a very special day — it is the day we commemorate the giving of Torah and The Holy Spirit.


Shavuot marks the time when YHWH entered into covenant with the Jewish nation. On the same day, as Jews from around the world converged in Jerusalem to reaffirm their commitment to the covenant of Moses, the Holy Spirit descended upon Israel to offer the promise of the New Covenant to all who will believe (see Acts 2:1-42). This new covenant makes Torah a matter of the heart, written by ELOHIM’s Spirit, that yields a life fruitful in the praises of YHWH.


Jewish tradition teaches be'chol dor v'dor (every generation) - that in every generation, each person should consider him or herself as having personally received the Torah at Mount Sinai.

The climax of the Shavuot morning service, in traditional synagogues all around the world, is the recitation of the famous Akdamut poem followed by the reading of the Ten Commandments, when all the congregation stands to "relive" the experience at Mount Sinai. A second Torah scroll is then taken out of the ark and the portion is read (Num. 28:26-31) that describes the sacrificial offerings made at the Temple during Shavuot, and the Haftarah (Ezek. 1:1-28; 3:12) concerns the amazing revelation of God in the form of the Throne/Chariot.


The Scroll of Ruth (מגילת רות) - a beautiful story about God's redemptive love - is traditionally read on the second day of Shavuot. As the Goel (kinsman-redeemer), Boaz was a wealthy man of the tribe of Judah (Bethlehem) who married a Gentile bride. Boaz's name means "in Him is strength," a picture of Yeshua the Messiah, his greater Descendant, who also redeemed for himself a bride from among the nations. Among traditional Jews, the Book of Ruth is read since the events recounted took place during the time of the spring harvest (linking it to the agricultural aspect of Shavuot), and Ruth is a picture of willing acceptance of a Jewish lifestyle (linking it to the events of Sinai).


The holiday of Shavuot is one of the shelosh regalim (three major "pilgrimage festivals") commanded in the Torah (Exod. 23:14-17; Deut. 16:16) and therefore it reveals profound spiritual truth for followers of Yeshua (Luke 24:44; 2 Tim. 3:16).


Just as the resurrection of YESHUA represents the First Fruits of those who have died (1 Cor 15:20) and fulfils the prophetic ritual of the waving of the Omer on the Feast of First Fruits, so the giving of The Holy Spirit to us as followers of Yeshua, fulfils the wave offering of the wheat loaves on the day of Shavuot.


Passover is indeed incomplete without the Shavuot celebration!


God did not want us to miss the significance of this holiday, since it expresses the freedom and truth of the New Covenant of Zion!


From our family to you: Chag Shavuot Sameach - "Happy Shavuot!"  May this be a time of renewal and of great joy in your lives!!



2 Comments


This portion and study enlightened my heart deeply. Thanks. From India.


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Darling EliHana Elia,


"May YHWH bless you and keep you.

May YHWH make HIS Face shine on you and be gracious to you.

May YHWH lift up HIS Countenance upon you and give you Shalom." Numbers 6:24-26

Be’ahavah leOlam, John Bosco🌳🌻♥️

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