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Arizona, United States
I'm a work-at-home mom who enjoys the beautiful sunsets here in the high desert.

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For the free patterns for these afghan squares I designed for My Reading Afghan, click here.

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Ravelry CAL Afghan 1 in progress
Ravelry CAL Afghan 1

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Ravelry CAL Afghan 2

Ravelry CAL Afghan 3 in progress (squares 1-4)Ravelry CAL Afghan 3 in progress (squares 5-8)
Ravelry CAL Afghan 3

Ravelry CAL Afghan 4 in progress (squares 1-4)Ravelry CAL Afghan 4 in progress (squares 5-8)
Ravelry CAL Afghan 4

Ravelry CAL Afghan 5 in progress (squares 1-4)Ravelry CAL Afghan 5 in progress (squares 5-8)
Ravelry CAL Afghan 5

Ravelry CAL Afghan 6 in progress (squares 1-4)Ravelry CAL Afghan 6 in progress (squares 5-8)
Ravelry CAL Afghan 6

Ravelry CAL Afghan 7 in progress (squares 1-4)Ravelry CAL Afghan 7 in progress (squares 5-8)
Ravelry CAL Afghan--Flower Burst 7ARavelry CAL Afghan--Flower Burst 7B
Ravelry CAL Afghan 7

Ravelry CAL Afghan 8 in progress
Ravelry CAL Afghan 8

Ravelry CAL Afghan Blocks:
Dream Catcher
Cross My Heart
Cygnus
Chocolate Delight
Flower Burst

Friday, May 30, 2008

Bemidbar (In The Wilderness)

(This week's Torah portion is Bemidbar. I originally wrote and posted this to my previous blog on 05/24/2007.)

TORAH: Bemidbar (Numbers) 1:1-4:20
HAFTARAH: Hoshea (Hosea) 1:10-2:23
KETUVIM NETZARIM: Romans 9:22-33

Num 1:1 And יהוה spoke to Mosheh in the Wilderness of Sinai, in the Tent of Meeting, on the first day of the second month, in the second year after they had come out of the land of Mitsrayim, saying,
Num 1:2 "Take a census of all the congregation of the children of Yisra'el, by their clans, by their fathers' houses, according to the number of names, every male, head by head,
Num 1:3 from twenty years old and above, everyone going out to the army in Yisra'el. Number them by their divisions, you and Aharon.

YHWH directed Mosheh to take a census of Yisra'el, but only of the males 20 years old and older--those who were to serve in the army, and they numbered 603,550! Wow!

Num 1:45 And all those that were registered of the children of Yisra'el, by their fathers' houses, from twenty years old and above, everyone going out to the army in Yisra'el,
Num 1:46 all those that were registered were six hundred and three thousand five hundred and fifty.

This did not include males younger than 20, nor any of the females, nor the entire tribe of Levi--males and females, so you can imagine how many more people there were on top of that 603,550. They were like a huge city there in the wilderness!

With so many people, there had to be order, so YHWH instructed them in who was to camp where. The Levites were to camp around the Dwelling Place (Tabernacle) because YHWH had taken the Levites for Himself, so they were more set-apart than the rest of Yisra'el and were the caretakers and guardians of the Dwelling Place. The Levites acted as a buffer between YHWH and the people.

Num 1:52 "And the children of Yisra'el shall pitch their tents, everyone by his own camp, everyone by his own banner, according to their divisions,
Num 1:53 but let the Lewites camp around the Dwelling Place of the Witness, so that there be no wrath on the congregation of the children of Yisra'el. And the Lewites shall guard the duty of the Dwelling Place of the Witness."
On the east, the direction in which the Dwelling Place faced, was the camping place of Mosheh and Aharon and their sons. Behind them were the tribes of Yehudah, then Yissaskar, then Zebulun, with Yehudah the leading tribe of those three.

On the south side of the Dwelling Place were the sons of Qehath of the Levites. Behind them were the tribes of Re'uben, then Shim'on, then Gad, with Re'uben being the leading tribe of the three.

On the west side of the Dwelling Place was the camping place of the sons of Gereshon of the Levites. Behind them were the tribe of Ephrayim, then Menashsheh, then Binyamin, with Ephrayim being the lead tribe.

On the north side of the Dwelling Place were the sons of Merari of the Levites. Behind them were the tribes of Dan, then Asher, then Naphtali, with Dan in the lead.

Num 2:1 And יהוה spoke to Mosheh and to Aharon, saying,
Num 2:2 "The children of Yisra'el are to camp, each one by his own banner, beside the sign of his father's house. Let them camp around the Tent of Meeting at a distance."

It was important for the people to camp in the proper order so that they were not too close to the Dwelling Place without preparation and authorization because the manifest presence of YHWH was there, and no sin or abomination can live in His presence.

When it was time to depart, the people on the west departed first--Yehudah, Yissaskar and Zebulun. They were followed by those on the south--Re'uben, Shim'on and Gad. Then came Mosheh, Aharon and the Levites carrying all of the parts of the Dwelling Place and all of its furnishings. The Levites could not carry the set-apart things until after Aharon and his sons had prepared and covered them first, and they could not even look on while Aharon and his sons did so lest they die. The Levites really did carry the burdens of the people!

The Levites remained in the midst of the people while they were traveling. The rear guard was then taken up by those who camped on the west--Ephrayim, Menashsheh and Binyamin. After them came the northern camp--Dan, Asher and Naphtali.

Num 1:54 And the children of Yisra'el did according to all that יהוה commanded Mosheh, so they did.

All of those in this huge number of people followed these intructions and protocols! It is difficult to imagine a city of that size of people of today behaving themselves in such an orderly fashion.

Num 3:10 "And appoint Aharon and his sons, and they shall guard their priesthood. And the stranger who comes near shall be put to death."

Only Aharon and his sons could serve as priests in the Dwelling Place. Anyone else was subject to death if they tried to go where only the priests were to enter. YHWH is set-apart, so only those set-apart can come near Him and that is because what is profane simply cannot exist in His presence.

Num 3:12 "Now look, I Myself have taken the Lewites from among the children of Yisra'el instead of every first-born who opens the womb among the children of Yisra'el. And the Lewites shall be Mine,
Num 3:13 because all the first-born are Mine. On the day that I struck all the first-born in the land of Mitsrayim, I set apart to Myself all the first-born in Yisra'el, both man and beast. They are Mine, I am יהוה."

The first-born among the children of Yisra'el were redeemed by the blood of the Passover lamb, so they belong to YHWH, but He chose to take the tribe of Levi for Himself in exchange.

Num 3:15 "Register the children of Lewi by their fathers' houses, by their clans. Register every male from a month old and above."

After numbering the other tribes of Yisra'el, YHWH instructs Mosheh to count every male 1 month old and older among the Levites.

Num 3:40 And יהוה said to Mosheh, "Register all the first-born males of the children of Yisra'el from a month old and above, and take the number of their names.

The first-born males of all the rest of the tribes 1 month old and older were also counted because the Levites were to be taken in exchange for them.

Num 3:41 "And you shall take the Lewites for Me – I am יהוה – instead of all the first-born among the children of Yisra'el, and the livestock of the Lewites instead of all the first-born among the livestock of the children of Yisra'el."

Num 3:44 And יהוה spoke to Mosheh, saying,
Num 3:45 "Take the Lewites instead of all the first-born among the children of Yisra'el, and the livestock of the Lewites instead of their livestock. And the Lewites shall be Mine, I am יהוה.

There was a discrepancy in the number of Levites compared to the number of the first-born of the rest of the tribes in that there were more first-borns than Levites, so this was resolved by paying a ransom for the 273 first-borns over the number of Levites. This silver went to the priesthood.

Num 3:46 "And for the ransom of the two hundred and seventy-three of the first-born of the children of Yisra'el, who are more than the number of the Lewites,
Num 3:47 you shall take five sheqels for each one, head by head – take it by the sheqel of the set-apart place, the sheqel of twenty gerahs.
Num 3:48 "And you shall give the silver, the ransom of those who are in excess among them, to Aharon and his sons."

Even though at this point in Yisra'el's history Mosheh was able to number them, it is prophesied in Hoshea that there will come a time when they will not be able to be counted.

Hos 1:10 "Yet the number of the children of Yisra'el shall be as the sand of the sea, which is not measured nor counted. And it shall be in the place where it was said to them, 'You are not My people,' they shall be called, 'You are the sons of the living El.'
Hos 1:11 "And the children of Yehudah and the children of Yisra'el shall be gathered together, and appoint for themselves one head, and shall come up out of the earth, for great is the day of Yizre'el!

This is because YHWH has so thoroughly sown the Yisra'elites among the nations of the earth that they have lost their identity.

Hos 2:23 "And I shall sow her for Myself in the earth, and I shall have compassion on her who had not obtained compassion. And I shall say to those who were not My people, 'You are My people,' while they say, 'My Elohim!' "

YHWH knows His people, and He calls them out so that they can prepare to be His bride.

Hos 2:19 "And I shall take you as a bride unto Me forever, and take you as a bride unto Me in righteousness, and in right-ruling, and kindness and compassion.
Hos 2:20 "And I shall take you as a bride unto Me in trustworthiness, and you shall know יהוה.

Sha'ul knew and understood the prophecies about the 'lost' tribes of Yisra'el, so he knew who the 'gentiles' were who were turning to YHWH and following Yeshua Messiah.

Rom 9:25 As He says in Hoshea too, "I shall call them My people, who were not My people, and her beloved, who was not beloved."
Rom 9:26 "And it shall be in the place where it was said to them, 'You are not My people,' there they shall be called sons of the living Elohim."
Rom 9:27 And Yeshayahu cries out on behalf of Yisra'el, "Though the number of the children of Yisra'el be as the sand of the sea, the remnant shall be saved.

Ya'acob (James) also knew to whom he was writing.

Jam 1:1 Ya'aqob, a servant of Elohim and of the Master Yeshua Messiah, to the twelve tribes who are in the dispersion: Greetings.

And so did Kepha (Peter).

1Pe 1:1 Kepha, an emissary of Yeshua Messiah, to the chosen, strangers of the dispersion in Pontos, Galatia, Kappadokia, Asia, and Bithunia,
1Pe 1:2 chosen according to the foreknowledge of Elohim the Father, set apart by the Spirit unto obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Yeshua Messiah: Favour and peace be increased to you.

The Greek word translated as "dispersion" means "to sow throughout", and that is exactly what YHWH said He would do:

Hos 2:23a "And I shall sow [Yisra'el] for Myself in the earth,

And if He has sown, He will also reap. This harvest is happening as more and more people are answering His call and coming out of the idolatry of false religious systems and turning back to the true worship of YHWH as reestablished by Yeshua Messiah and His apostles.

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