In this video, we will learn how the children of Israel’s deliverance from Egypt and trek to Mount Sinai where YHVH gave them his instructions in righteousness in preparation for entering the Promised Land contains the full gospel message. It is the story of our spiritual journey, and gives us inisghts into what lies ahead for us en route to the Promised Land of our spiritual and eternal inheritance through Yeshua the Messiah.
Exodus 20:1–17, An Overview of the Ten Words (Commandments)
The Ten Words or Ten Commandments by which they are more commonly known are but the mighty cornerstone of the 613 commandments of the Torah.
The Jewish sages teach that all 613 are implied in the Ten; or that the Ten can be expanded into 613. The Tanakh (Old Testament) and Jewish writings contain a number of phrases that express the quintessential essence of the Torah. One of these best-known passages naming several of these phrases is in the Jewish Talmud: “[R.] Simlai said, ‘613 commandments were given to Moses—365 negative mitzvot (commandments), the same as the number of days in the year, and 248 positive mitzvot, the same as the number of parts in a man’s body. David came and reduced them to eleven (Ps 15), Isaiah to six (Isa 33:15), Micah to three (Mic 6:8), Isaiah again to two—“Observe and do righteousness” (Isa 56:1). Then Amos came and reduced them to one, “Seek me and you shall live” (Amos 5:4)—as did Habakkuk, “The righteous one will attain life by his trusting [or by faith] faithfulness (Hab 2:4)”’ (Makkot 23b–24a, abridged, from the Jewish New Testament Commentary, by David Stern, p. 565).
We see some of these same Torah summation-type statements in the Testimony of Yeshua. For example, the phrase, “the just shall live by faith” is found in three passages of the Testimony of Yeshua (Rom 1:17; Gal 3:11; Heb 10:38); In Leviticus 19:18, we find the phrase, “you shall love your neighbor as yourself,” which is the summation of the last five of the famous Ten Commandments. This in itself is a summation of all of the 613 Torah commandments that relate to human relationships, which we see in Yeshua’s Continue reading
Exodus 19:10, Consecrate them today. How did Israel, as a bride-to-be, prepare herself to meet with YHVH? How are YHVH’s people now to be preparing themselves for their spiritual marriage with Yeshua? (Compare Exodus 19:10 with Revelation 19:7–9.) What is the righteousness of the saints (mentioned in Rev 19:8)? Righteousness is defined in Psalms 119:172 as, “… all thy [Torah] commandments are righteousness.” If what the Scriptures define as righteousness (i.e., the Torah) was “nailed to the cross,” as is popularly taught, then who is in error? The Scriptures or those who teach against YHVH’s Torah laws?
Discussion A. Why is it essential to study the example of the children of Israel preparing themselves to come into the presence of YHVH in Exodus 19? After all, if Yeshua did it all for us, we can just come boldly before the Father’s throne anytime, anyway we want, right (Heb 4:16)?
Let’s explore this concept a little to see what the Bible has to say about it.
Paul says in I Corinthians 10:11,
Now all these things happened to them [i.e., the children of Israel] as examples, and they were written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the ages have come. (See also Rom 15:4.)
The writer of Hebrews has something similar to say in his prefatory remarks to his statement in Hebrews 4:16 about coming boldly before the throne of YHVH through the merits of the sinless righteousness of Yeshua our High Priest. In the preceding several verses, the author draws upon the example of the children of Israel (Heb 4:1–10) as an example for us not to follow. They were a faithless and disobedient lot in that they rebelled against the Torah-word of Elohim.
Then in Hebrew 4:11, the author starts with the connecting word “therefore,” indicating Continue reading
Here’s question from Jim M.
I was wondering if you knew what the sages had to say about the 3 signs Moses was given by God to authenticate his ministry. God could have chosen rainbows, butterflies, and the Hallelujah chorus to send back with Moses. Instead He chooses a poisonous snake, leprosy, and water into blood. To me these signs all speak of rebellion, sin, and death.
Here are my thoughts:
Exodus 4:3, Serpent. A serpent can be a biblical metaphor for Satan or demonic powers (e.g., Gen 3:1; Luke 10:19 cp. 9:1 and Mark 16:18; Rev 12:9; 20:2). Pharaoh as ruler over Egypt (a metaphor for this world) was a type of Satan who is the ruler of this world. A rod or a staff can be a biblical metaphor for power, authority, rulership or judgment (Gen 38:18; Exod 4:17, 20; Ps 2:9; Rev 19:15). In this verse, it seems evident that YHVH was giving Moses authority over the powers of Satan and his forces. When Moses cast down his rod, it became a serpent, and Moses was immediately able to assume control over the serpent at will for the purposes of advancing YHVH’s spiritual kingdom. This seems to have been YHVH’s way of showing Moses that he was giving him supernatural authority over Pharaoh (Satan) in fulfilling his divine commission to liberate the children of Israel. The staff changing into a serpent reminds us of the authority Yeshua gave his disciples to cast out demons and to heal diseases (Luke 9:1; 10:19; Mark 16:15–18). Furthermore, YHVH instructed Moses to construct a bronze serpent and place it on a pole so that when the Israelites looked on it, they were healed of the bites of the fiery serpents (Num 21:8). The serpent represents sin, since it is Satan the serpent who introduced sin to man in the Garden of Eden, which brought upon man the curse of death. Yeshua took that curse on himself when he was lifted up on the cross of judgment as Moses lifted up the bronze serpent in the wilderness (John 3:14). Yeshua defeated Satan the serpent at the cross, even as Moses’ serpent defeated the serpents of the satanic Pharaoh’s magicians.
Exodus 4:6, Put your hand in your bosom. This second sign was to demonstrate Moses’ authority over sickness, disease and sin. Leprosy is as biblical metaphor for sin and the fact that it’s highly contagious (Lev 13–14). Only the Yeshua’s death on the cross can heal men of this spiritual disease as the Torah’s cleansing ritual for leprosy metaphorically points to (Lev 14:4–7).
Exodus 4:9, Blood on the dry land. This was the third sign or witness that YHVH gave Moses as confirmation of his divine commission. The Scripture instructs us to confirm things in the mouth of two or three witnesses (2 Cor 13:1). The Nile River and god to the Egyptians and was the source of much of Egypt’s economic wealth, since it watered that country’s crops. Bringing the judgment of death upon the Nile’s waters was a judgment against one of Egypt’s gods and its economic might.
Exodus 4:3–9, A summary. The three signs that YHVH had Moses perform to Pharaoh were merely warning shots against a wicked and unrepentant nation instructing them to submit to YHVH’s will. YHVH was telling the Egyptians that if they refused to obey his prophet, he would unleash demonic spirits, plagues of sickness and economic destruction on that nation. These are YHVH’s judgments against a nation that refuses to repent. Of course, Egypt refused to obey YHVH, and so he not only brought these judgments against Egypt, but much more, such that Egypt was totally destroyed. The same fate befalls the Mystery Babylon the Great worldwide system of the end times as we read about in the Book of Revelation.
The “Angel” of YHVH In the Pillar of Fire
In Exodus 13:21 we read,
And YHVH went before them by day in a pillar of a cloud, to lead them the way; and by night in a pillar of fire, to give them light; to go by day and night.
Then in Exodus 14:19 it is written,
And the angel of Elohim, which went before the camp of Israel, removed and went behind them; and the pillar of the cloud went from before their face, and stood behind them.
Who is this “Angel” of Elohim (elsewhere he is called “the Angel” of YHVH)? Angel is an unfortunate translation. The Hebrew word for angel is malak and simply means “a heavenly or a human messenger.” Prophetically this word can refer to human messengers such as the one coming in the spirit of Elijah prior to Messiah’s coming, as well as to the Messiah himself (as in “the Messenger/Malak of the covenant” in Malachi 3:1). In Genesis 32:22–30 Jacob wrestles with a man Scripture identifies as the Malak of YHVH (Hosea 12:3–5) and whom Jacob called Elohim (verse 30). This same Individual redeemed Jacob (Gen 48:18) and is identified with the Malak of Elohim … the Elohim of Bethel (Gen 31:11 and 13) and appeared to Moses at the burning bush (Exod 3:2). Now he is leading Israel in the wilderness. Again who is he? Stephen in Acts 7:37–39 identifies the Messiah (i.e. “that Prophet” Moses mentioned in Deut 18:15) with the “Angel” or Heavenly Messenger which Continue reading
Exodus 2:22, Gershom. Gershom’s sons eventually became idol worshipers inspire of their illustrious and righteous grandfather (Judg 18:30–31).
Many of the children of righteous men in the Bible didn’t follow in the footsteps of their fathers in remaining faithful to Elohim. Examples include Isaac (Esau), Aaron (Nadab and Abihu), Samuel (1 Sam 8:1–3), and David and many of the other righteous kings of Judah. What’s more, the Bible tells us nothing about the spiritual status of the sons of any of the prophets or apostles. Whether they remained faithful to YHVH or not, we don’t know. If they had been notable in their service to YHVH, it seems that Scripture would have some record of it.
One things seems certain. Most of the high visibility servants of YHVH were solitary figures. Little if anything is mentioned about their spouses, families or children who seemed to play no major role in the key figure’s ministry activities.
Interestingly, there are also several examples of righteous sons coming from unrighteous fathers and vice versa. This is the case with several of the kings of Judah.
All this is to say that just because a child was raised well in a godly family doesn’t guarantee they will continue to serve Elohim and walk in righteousness.
Likewise, just because a child was raised in an ungodly, even wicked family, doesn’t mean they will be wicked and ungodly.
Salvation is an individual matter. YHVH calls and chooses whom he will, and it’s up to the individual to respond to that calling. So will respond, most will not. As Yeshua said, many are called, but few are chosen (Matt 22:14).