Archive for the ‘Hebrew Months’ Category

What we say reveal our heart.

What we say and how we say it is who we are. Angry, hurtful words define an angry, hurtful person. Kind, compassionate words define a kind, considerate person (Chofetz Chaim, page xxi) But more than anything, words are the sole medium through which the Jew fulfills the purpose for which he was created – to communicate Hashem’s greatness and presence in this world. (page xxii)

Today on the Hebraic calendar is Elul 23. Elul 25th is understood to be the first  day of Creation that God said “Light Be!”.  This brought the creating Spirit  presence back into the earth. We also are created to create with our words.

The Artscroll Series, Stone Edition of the Chumash comments on Genesis 2:7, “God made another ‘speaking spirit’ just like Himself.” We were created with God’s dominion and authority possessing the same ability to speak words of faith and life. Proverbs 18:21 instructs us that ‘death and life are in the power of the tongue’.

This 40 days of Turning Back to God (Teshuvah), the most important thing we can do is judge everything we say according to the royal law of love. I Cor 13:4-7, everything.  But don’t walk around not saying anything, speak praises unto God where ever you are, bringing light into this dark world.

Better yet, SING PRAISES!!!! He alone is worthy of all praise and honor and glory! If Paul and Silas would have spent their time in jail complaining and anxious they would never have had the miraculous encountered prison release, and they would not have been a testimony to the jailer and other prisoners.

Have you been doing things these past 23 days that cause you to “turn to” (shuv) God or to “turn away” from God?

I have been watching my mouth and love walk very carefully, getting rid of bad and doing good. One of the things that has really helped me is a book I bought on our 40th Wedding Anniversary. It is a daily devotional called “Choftez Chaim” which means ‘desirer of life’. It is  a compilation of  daily Hebraic lessons, translated into English, dealing with your tongue and speech.

It deal much with Loshon Hora, evil talk. In its general sense, the term referst to various forms of speech which is derogatory or harmful in nature. As God is dealing with me, I am amazed at how my ears pick up the negative people are speaking and it is hard to be silent, but since God is dealing with me for me I will trust Him to deal with those who need to clean their mouth.

Here is a statement in the book I have marked:The speaker of loshon hora is motivated by this very powerful human need to feel important. So, he sets himself up as the other person’s superior by standing in judgment. “The other person is bad. Therefore, I am better. Her children are rude, therefore mine are polite. His business is mismanaged, therefore mine is run well.” Instead of striving honestly to lift himself, the speaker of loshon hora attains his height by looking down upon those he has cast to the ground.”

Selah, pause and think about this. This is a time to judge ourselves.

Psalm 27:10 (NLT) “Even if my father and mother abandon me, the LORD will hold me close.”

When I received Jesus as my Lord and Savior July 4, 1982, this is the first scripture that He gave me and I have loved it ever since. Those who have been rejected understand the hurt and shame that is associated.

Our Father God, our Lord Jesus Christ and our Helper, Holy Spirit will never leave us or forsake us! This thing I have in full assurance. He loves us, no matter what, unconditionally.

Charles Frederick Weigle was born November 20, 1871 in LaFayette, Indiana, into the family of a God-fearing, German-Lutheran baker and his wife. One of twelve children, five boys and seven girls, young Charles was accustomed to hearing his father pray and every morning after breakfast, Bible reading was observed at the family worship time.

When Charles was twelve, the Methodist Church of LaFayette, where his parents attended, was having a series of revival meetings. A great number of his friends and playmates came under conviction and were going forward during the progress of the meeting. This made an quite an impression on young Charles. Even though he resisted longer than most of the others, one night a strong, overpowering realization that he was lost came over him and Charles was converted.

Charles Weigle’s most famous song, “No One Ever Cared for Me Like Jesus”, was the product of one of the darkest periods of his life. He spent most of his life as an itinerant evangelist and gospel songwriter. One day after returning home from an evangelistic crusade, he found a note left by his wife of many years. The note simply said she had had enough of an evangelist’s life and was leaving him.

He later said that he became so despondent during the next several years that there were times when he contemplated suicide. He even wondered if anyone really cared for him, but after a time, his faith was again restored and he became active for the Lord again. Soon he felt compelled to write a song that would be a summary of his past tragic experience.

From a heart that had been broken came these words that God gave to comfort him. (I have included the first verse and chorus)

CHORUS
No one ever cared for me like Jesus;
There’s no other friend so kind as He;
No one else could take the sin and darkness from me.
O how much He cared for me!
I would love to tell you what I think of Jesus
Since I found in Him a friend so strong and true;
I would tell you how He changed my life completely,
He did something that no other friend could do.

CHORUS
No one ever cared for me like Jesus;
There’s no other friend so kind as He;
No one else could take the sin and darkness from me.
O how much He cared for me!

  1. Psalm 27:6, “And now my head shall be lifted up above my enemies all around me; Therefore I will offer sacrifices of joy in His tabernacle; I will sing, yes, I will sing praises to the LORD.”

Praising God is a choice!!!

The first use of sing in this passage is the Hebrew word shiyr (sheer) and it is used to ‘sing to honor someone’.

The first usage of shiyr in the Bible is in Exodus 15 after Yahweh parted the Red Sea and their enemies were drowned. They sang in honor of their Protector and Defender God.

The second use of sing in this passage is the Hebrew word zamar and it is a primitive word that carries the meaning ‘to pluck with fingers’. This use of sing is from praises using instruments. It also means ‘to dance’.

The first instance that zamar is used in the Bible is Judges 5:3 with Deborah and Barak, “”Hear, O kings! Give ear, O princes! I, [even] I, will sing (shiyr) to the LORD; I will sing praise (zamar) to the LORD God of Israel.”

No matter what circumstance you find yourself in today, CHOOSE to sing praises to God in song, instrument and/or dance. He is so worthy of our praise!

I remember 2 weeks ago as 3 inches of water poured in from under all the doors from the 23 inches of rain that evening. I stood there and the song from Bethel began to rise in my heart, “It Is Well”.  “Through it all, through it all, my eyes are on You. Through it all, through it all it is well…………” When we really need it, what we have hidden in our heart will either deliver us or bring us down.

As for Ken and I in our house, we will serve the Lord. It is a choice we made long ago and have never regretted that decision.

 

Psalm 27:7, “Hear, O LORD, [when] I cry with my voice: have mercy also upon me, and answer me

History records Elul 17 to be a day to cry out for mercy.

Traditionally, it was the day that the 10 spies that returned from the Promised Land with an evil report died of a plague.  (Numbers 14:37)

In 1935 Nazi Germany passed the Nuremberg Laws, a set of racist policies directed primarily against Jews. The Nazis blamed the Jews for poverty, unemployment, and the loss of World War I. Jews were banned from any professional jobs and Jewish stores were boycotted. Anyone with even one Jewish grandparent was stripped of German citizenship, with no basic rights. Within 10 years, the Nazi genocidal machine had swept through eastern Europe, leaving 6 million Jews murdered.

Today the Jews are being blamed for many things, history is again repeating itself.

Psalm 83 reads like the daily newspaper: God, don’t keep silent. Don’t keep silent, And don’t be still, God. For, behold, your enemies are stirred up. Those who hate you have lifted up their heads. They conspire with cunning against your people. They plot against your cherished ones. “Come,” they say, “and let’s destroy them as a nation, That the name of Yisra’el may be remembered no more.”For they have conspired together with one mind. They form an alliance against you. (HNV)

The alliance listed are the “Arab Confederacy”.

  • Edom: Southern Jordan and Palestinian refugees
  • Ishmaelites: Saudi Arabia
  • Moab: Central Jordan and Palestinian refugees
  • Hagrites: Egypt
  • Gebal: Northern Lebanon
  • Ammon: Northern Jordan and Palestinian refugees
  • Amalek: The Negev and Sinai Peninsula areas
  • Philistia: The Gaza Strip and Hamas
  • Tyre: Southern Lebanon and Hezbollah
  • Assyria: Syria and Northern Iraq
Hold Your Head High – No Need To Be Embarrassed

Psalm 27:6,And now shall mine head be lifted up above mine enemies round about me:”

Our King is a conquering King! When a king would overthrow another king in battle, the back of his garment would be cut off and his back side would be exposed. The word ’embarrassed’ comes from this warfare tradition. The conquered king would be paraded through the streets with his ‘back-side bared’.

We can hold our head high because the battle has already been done and the enemy of God has been paraded the enemy of His in disgrace.

Colossians 2:15 tells us, “[And] having spoiled principalities and powers, he made a shew of them openly, triumphing over them in it.” In Greek ‘made a shew’ means to ‘expose in disgrace.’

I also love Isaiah 61:7 in the Amplified Version: “Instead of your [former] shame you will have a double portion; and instead of humiliation your people will shout for joy over their portion. Therefore in their land they will possess double [what they had forfeited]; everlasting joy will be theirs.”

In this Hurricane/TS Harvey in the south Texas area, there is so much hopelessness. I trust that the next phase in their recovery is double honor.

We are now 2 weeks into the 40 days. That may not mean time much to you, unless you are fasting something or some foods for these 40 days. I have found after 14 days that I don’t miss those things the same as I did in the first few days. I choose to stay with this for the next 16 days and then intensify the fast for the last 10 days, which are the Ten Days of Awe. More about that when we come to it. If you have not chosen to fast, you may ask God if there is a ‘time waster’ He would like you to put down as these next 26 days of Teshuvah continue, ending on Yom Kippur.

Psalm 27:5, “For in the time of trouble he shall hide me in his pavilion: in the secret of his tabernacle shall he hide me; he shall set me up upon a rock.”

Rocktsuwr (tsur) rock or cliff, rock of God

The first place we find tsuwr in the Bible is Exodus 17:6, where the Hebrew children were without water and thought they would die of thirst in the Wilderness. Water to satisfy the thirst of the entire nation was found in that rock. That rock actually ‘followed’ them and satisfied the nation’s thirst for 40 years!!! I Corinthians 10:3-4 reveals ‘they drank from a Spirit-sent Rock which followed them, and that Rock was the Messiah.’

The second place we find tsuwr in the Bible is Exodus 33:21-22. Moses was on Mt Sinai for the 2nd set of 40 days seeking atonement for the nation for the Golden Calf incident. Moses wanted to see God’s glory, but Yahweh showed Moses His goodness. He told Moses “And the LORD said, Behold, [there is] a place by me, and thou shalt stand upon a rock: And it shall come to pass, while my glory passes by, that I will put thee in a cleft of the rock, and will cover thee with my hand while I pass by:”

Deuteronomy 32:4 praises Yahweh, “[He is] the Rock, his work [is] perfect: for all his ways [are] judgment: a God of truth and without iniquity, just and right [is] he.”

A marvelous little book called His Names Are Wonderful by Elizabeth L Vander Meulen and Barbara D Malda shares on page 135 about The Rock, HaTzur. “The expression, ‘like the rock of Gibraltar’ has come to mean something or someone that is impressive, dependable, steady, or immovable. God is our rock-solid place. Firmly plant your feet on The Rock and you will not be moved, no matter what storms of life come crashing your way.”