WHAT IS LAPID?
“For Zion sake I will not be silent, and for Jerusalem’s sake I will not be still, until her righteousness emanates like a bright light, and her salvation blazes like a torch (lapid).”
The word “Lapid” is a title of Messiah with many deep meanings. Concerning the “lapid” of salvation, Radak (Rabbi David Kamichi 12th century) wrote: “Just as light is visible at a great distance, so too, your righteousness and salvation will be recognized universally.” It is noteworthy to mention that the word for “salvation” in Hebrew is the same word used for the Name of our Divine Messiah – Yeshua HaMoshiach, Peace be upon Him! Therefore, Lapid represents the blazing light; the shining torch of Yeshua HaMoshiach which will be recognized by the whole world, may it be soon and in our time, amen.
Concerning the term Lapid, the Midrash Rabbah Bereishis 30:8 states, “Thus is it written, A torch (lapid) scorned by the complacent, hardened ones, who are destined to stumblings of the feet. (Job 12:5). This is the meaning of the verse: The Holy One, blessed be He, said, ‘A single herald arose for Me in the generation of the Flood, that being Noah.’ The word lapid is interpreted to mean “herald” because it is customary there that they say instead of ‘Call him,’ ‘Lapid him’.” The comment to this passage reads, “Therefore a herald, whose job is to call out important messages, is called a Lapid.” What is the message of these Lapidim (Lapids)? The previous verse in Job (12:4) refers to צדיק תמים a “perfectly righteous one”. The Sages who authored the midrash above applied the title to Noah who was perfectly righteous in his generation איש צדיק תמים היה בדרתיו. However, where Noah was perfectly righteous in “his generation” our verse simply says “a perfectly righteous one”. Yeshua HaMoshiach alone is perfectly righteous. He is the Lapid and we proclaim His besorah (good news) as His Lapidim!
The first use of Lapid is in Genesis 15:17: “When the sun set and it became dark, behold, there was a smoking oven and a fiery torch (lapid) that passed between these pieces.” The phrase “and a fiery torch” is ולפיד איש, literally “and a torch of fire”. Our Sages (Midrash Rabbah Yitro) say that this is an allusion to the Torah referencing Exodus 20:15 “All the people witnessed the thundering and the lightning, and the sound of the shofar, and the mountain smoking. When the people saw it, they trembled and stood far off.” The word translate “lightening” is lapidim, literally “torches”. To the ancient Sages, the torch and the Torah are synonymous. In another midrash, the Lapid is synonymous with the Divine Presence as Rabbi Elie Munk writes, “The Divine Majesty descended in a torch of flame…and passed between the pieces”. Thus another aspect of Lapid is the Divine Torah and the Divine presence. The Torah and the Torch are One!