Thursday, March 23, 2017

Torah Parashah Vayakhel-Pekudei

Torah Parashah

Vayakhel-Pekudei (and he assembled-counting)  Exodus 35:1–40:38

Before starting - It interest me that in one book of the bible G-d explains the plans of the tabernacle (mishkan) twice, Exodus 25, 35 - the second time after Israel created another god to worship, Exodus 32.

I love how G-d desperately wants to commune with mankind!

"I think that the two descriptions speak of the two advents of the Mashiach Yeshua. In the first advent the Jews missed their opportunity for national atonement, but in the second advent they will be cleansed as a nation on the great Yom Kippur, when "all Israel shall be saved" by the One whom they rejected (as Joseph) but who is finally recognized as their true Deliverer."  - John J. Parsons

Perhaps it does!

Anyway, in this weeks Aliyah, the plans of the mishkan are given to Moses, who then gathers (Vayakhel) his people, shares the vision and commissions them. We then learn that the people brought offerings for the purpose of building the mishkan, as their hearts were willing.

Exodus 35:29 says; "The children of Israel brought a freewill offering to the LORD", also found in 35:21, 22, 26. Freewill offering is the Hebrew word, נְדָבָה nᵉdâbâh, and means readiness of mind or a spontaneous offering (BLB). Is this willing heart a result of the Spirit of G-d (Ruach Elohim) or was it simply the people deciding it was a good idea (what they should do) perhaps out of guilt or even spiritual conviction?, keeping in mind they were just worshiping a gold idol they made themselves.

I often wonder this about our Tithes and Offering in church these day - perhaps Elohim sees actions that will lead to conviction!

Elohim then not only chose two men, Bezalel (35:30) and Aholiab (35:34), to build and design according to Elohim's plan of the Tabernacle, but also gifted them with Ruach Elohim, as well as all wisdom, understanding and knowledge for the task at hand, (35:31).

I'm wondering - "What is so significant about these men that Elohim would call them by name for such a task," (35:30).

The name Bezalel (בצלאל) means "in the shadow (Protection) of G-d", and in Hebrew the bookends to this name are significant, starting with: 'ב' (be) which means; in, at, by, and finishes with: אל ('el) which is a common abbreviation of the word Elohim (a name for G-d).

The name Aholiab (אהליאב) means Father's Tent, and this Aholiab in the book of Exodus is the only Aholiab in the bible.

Together we get the amazing meaning of: "the Fathers Tent (mishkan) in the protection of G-d".

Exodus 38:22-23 suggest that Bezalel was in charge with Aholiab as his helper or assistant - So why Bezalel?

Midrash Tanhuma (Parashat Va-Yaqhel, par. 4) explains that the Lord wanted to reward his grandfather Hur who laid down his life to sanctify the name of the Lord rather than participate in the sin of the golden calf.   Such devotion was not unique to Hur and his descendants; Nashon son of Aminadab, who also showed devotion to the Lord in jumping first into the sea during the exodus from Egypt, came from the same tribe as Bezalel – the tribe of Judah (Sotah 37a) (John L. Rosove).

This reminds me of the story of King David and his sin with Bathsheba - Elohim spared Davids life however took the life of his first son to Bathsheba. In reverse, the works of Hur were rewarded two generations later to Bezalel. In a world where we most often think of ourselves, our reward and how quick can we get things, Elohim reminds us in such stories that our lives are extremely valuable for the generations to come, also that we are perhaps living in blessing or curse as a result of generations before us.

Thank You Elohim that through prayer in the Ruach, "all things work together for good to those who love Elohim, to those who are the called according to His purpose", Romans 8:28.

We know through today's torah parashah that Elohim wants to commune with us and He rewards a sacrificial heart and actions as seen in the examples of Bezalel grandfather Hur. Elohim tabernacle and worship requires the best, be skill and excellence in what we do and who we are, we should always give the best in every area of our lives in worship to Elohim.

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