Lessons of Moshe 41

25:7 (Maftir) When Pinchas (פּינח) Ben ElAzar(אלעזר) Ben Aharon the Priest, saw it, he rose and left the congregation and took a spear in his hand.

25:8  and went after the man of Yisrael into the chamber and pierced both of them, the man of Yisrael and the woman through her belly. Thus the plague on the people of Yisrael was stopped.

25:9 And those that died in the plague weretwenty and four thousand. (1 corinthian 10)

Parashah 41: Pinchas 25:10-30 (29:40)

25:10 (i)

And ADONAI (יהוה) spoke to Moshe, saying:

25:11 Pinchas (פּינח), Ben El Azar (אלעזר), Ben Aharon Kohen, has turned My wrath away from benai Yisrael, while he was zealous for My sakeamong them, that I consumed not benai Yisrael inMy Jealousy.

25:12 לָכֵ֖ן אֱמֹ֑ר הִנְנִ֨י נֹתֵ֥ן לוֹ֛ אֶת-בְּרִיתִ֖י שָלוֹֽם׃

Laken  Emor Hinni Noten Lo Et-Beriti  Shalom

Wherefore say: Behold, I give to him My covenant of peace;

25:13 וְהָ֤יְתָה לּוֹ֙ וּלְזַרְעוֹ֣ אַחֲרָ֔יו בְּרִ֖ית כְּהֻנַּ֣תעוֹלָ֑ם תַּ֗חַת אֲשֶ֤ר קִנֵּא֙ לֵאלֹהָ֔יו וַיְכַפֵּ֖רעַל-בְּנֵ֥י יִשְׂרָאֵֽל׃

Vehaita Lo Ulezaro  Akharav Berit Kehunat Olam  takhat  Asher  Kine LeLohav Vayekhaper Al-Benei Yisrael.

and it shall be to him, and to his seed after him, the covenant of an everlasting priesthood; because he was jealous for his Elohim, and made atonement for the children of Yisrael.’

25:14  Now the name of the Yisraelite that was shachat (slaughtered), [even] that was shachat (slaughtered) with the Midyan woman, [was] Zimri Ben Salu, a Nasi a chief house among the Shimeonites.

25:15 And the name of the Midyan woman that was shachat (slaughtered) [was] Kozbi bat Zur; he [was] head over a people, [and] of a chief Bayit in Midyan.

25:16  And ADONAI (יהוה) spoke to Moshe, saying,

25:17 Vex the Midyanim, and smite them:

25:18 For they vex you with their wiles, wherewith they have beguiled you in the matter of Peor, and in the matter of Kozbi, bat a Nasi Midyan, their sister, which was shachat (slaughtered) in the day of the plague for Peor’s sake.

Beit Midrash Torah-Seeker

the sin of Ba’al Pe’or. First, וַיָּחֶל הָעָם, לִזְנוֹת אֶל-בְּנוֹת מוֹאָב – Israel began to commit harlotry with the daughters of Moav. וַתִּקְרֶאןָ לָעָם, לְזִבְחֵי אֱלֹהֵיהֶן – these women called Israel to sacrifice to their gods. And then, וַיֹּאכַל הָעָם, וַיִּשְׁתַּחֲווּ לֵאלֹהֵיהֶן. and the people ate, and bowed down to their gods.

“The broken ו (VAV)” in Numbers 25:12 is telling us that “the Man” has been broken for the sake of Covenant of Peace that brings atonement for Israel. This broken ו (VAV) is a clear picture of the Jewish Messiah, Yeshua. The word “שלום (SHALOM)” in Numbers 25:12, with broken ו (VAV) can be read as “שלים (COMPLETE).” Another explanation that His brokenness is the completion; the finality; the ultimate perfection.

promiscuity is taking sexual activity, which is meant to be a tool for a deep and loving relationship, and using it for selfish, superficial pleasure. And idolatry is about taking worship, also a tool for a deep and loving relationship – with God – and making the rituals meaningless, for selfish purposes, to curry favor gods. These are both ways of willingly destroying – or, at least, severely depreciating – the very concept of intimacy. And at the heart of both of these things is not just selfishness – it’s a lie we tell ourselves. The idolater, the adulterer, they deceive themselves into thinking that they can have our cake and eat it too. Sure, they’ll also use those tools to build intimate relationships, they’re not denying that. But why can’t they also separate them and just feel pleasure? Because when you remove the relationship part, you really do cheapen those tools… and you cheapen the concept of intimacy itself.

Lesson of Moshe 40

Balak sends for Bil’am

22:1 And benai Yisrael set forward, and pitched in the plains of Moav on this side Yardan [by] Yericho.

Haftarah Hukkat:Softim 11:1-33

Brit Hadshah : Yochanan 3:9-21; 4:3-30; 12:27-50

Parashah 40: Balak 22:2-25:9

(In regular years read with Parashah 39, in leap years read separately)

22:2 (i) And Balak (בּלק) Ben Tzippor saw all that Yisrael had done to the Emorites.

22:3 And Moav was sore afraid of the people, because they [were] many: and Moav was distressed because of benai Yisrael.

22:4 And Moav said to the Zakenei (elders) Midyan, Now shall this company lick up all [that are] round about us, as the ox licks up the grass of the field. And Balak (בּלק) Ben Tzippor [was] melekh the Moavites at that time.

22:5 sent messengers to Bil’am (בּלעם) Ben Beorat Petor, which is near the River in the land of children of his people (Amaw), to call him, saying, “Behold, a people has come out of Mitzrayim. They cover the face of the earth, and they are dwelling opposite me.

22:6 Therefore please come at once, curse this people for me, for they are too mighty for me. Perhaps I shall be able to defeat them and drive them out of the land, for I know that he whom you bless is blessed, and he whom you curse is cursed.”

22:7וַיֵּלְכוּ זִקְנֵי מוֹאָב וְזִקְנֵי מִדְיָן וּקְסָמִיםבְּיָדָם וַיָּבֹאוּ אֶל-בִּלְעָם וַיְדַבְּרוּ אֵלָיו דִּבְרֵיבָלָק׃

Vayelechu ziknei Mo’av veziknei Midyan ukesamim beyadam vayavo’u el-Bil’am vaydabberu elav divrei valak.

So the Ziknei (elders) of Moav and the Ziknei of Midyan departed with the rewards of divination in their hand, and they came to Bil’am (בּלעם) and spoke to him the words of Balak (בּלק).

22:8 And he said to them, “Lodge here tonight, and I will bring back word to you, as ADONAI(יהוה) speaks to me.” So the princes of Moav stayed with Bil’am (בּלעם).

22:9 And Elohim (אלהים) came to Bil’am (בּלעם), and said, “Who are these men with you?”

22:10 And Bil’am (בּלעם) said to Elohim (אלהים), Balak (בּלק) Ben Tzippor, melekh Moav, has sent to me, saying,

22:11 ‘behold, a people has come out of Mitzrayim, and they cover the face of the earth. Come now, curse them for me; perhaps I shall be able to overpower them and drive them out.’ “

22:12 And Elohim (אלהים) said to Bil’am (בּלעם), “You shall not go with them; you shall not curse the people, for they are blessed.”

22:13 (RY:v; LY:ii)

So Bil’am (בּלעם) rose in the morning and said to the princes of Balak (בּלק), “Go back to your land, for ADONAI (יהוה) has refused to give me permission to go with you.”

22:14 And the princes of Moav rose and went to Balak (בּלק), and said, “Bil’am (בּלעם) refuses to come with us.”

22:15 And Balak (בּלק) sent yet again princes, more, and more honorable than they.

22:16 And they came to Bil’am (בּלעם), and said to him, Thus says Balak (בּלק) Ben Tzippor, ‘Please let nothing hinder you from coming to me;

22:17 for I will certainly honor you greatly, and I will do whatever you say to me. Therefore please come, curse this people for me.’ “

22:18 And Bil’am (בּלעם) answered and said to the servants of Balak (בּלק), If Balak (בּלק) would give me his house full of silver and gold, I cannot go beyond Dvar ADONAI (יהוה) my Elohim (אלהים), to do less or more.

22:19 Now, therefore, please, you also stay here tonight, that I may know what more ADONAI(יהוה) will say to me.”

22:20 And Elohim (אלהים) came to Bil’am (בּלעם) at night, and said to him, If the men come to call you, rise up, [and] go with them; but yet the word which I shall say to you, that shall you do.

Bil’am Meets the messenger of ADONAI

22:21 (LY:iii) And Bil’am (בּלעם) rose up in the morning, and saddled his donkey, and went with the princes of Moav.

22:22 And Elohim (אלהים)’s anger was kindled because he went: and the messenger of ADONAI(יהוה) stood in the way for an adversary against him. Now he was riding upon his donkey, and histwo servants [were] with him.

22:23 And the donkey saw the messenger of ADONAI (יהוה) standing in the way, and his sword drawn in his hand: and the donkey turned aside out of the way, and went into the field: and Bil’am (בּלעם) smote the donkey, to turn her into the way.

22:24 But the messenger of ADONAI (יהוה) stood in a path of the vineyards, a wall [being] on this side, and a wall on that side.

22:25 And when the donkey saw the messenger of Adonai (יהוה), she thrust herself to the wall, and crushed Bil’am (בּלעם)’s foot against the wall: and he smote her again.

22:26 And the messenger of ADONAI (יהוה) went further, and stood in a narrow place, where [was] no way to turn either to the right hand or to the left.

22:27 And when the donkey saw the messenger of Adonai (יהוה), she fell down under Bil’am (בּלעם): and Bil’am (בּלעם)’s anger was kindled, and he smote the donkey with a staff.

22:28 Then ADONAI (יהוה) opened the mouth of the donkey, and she said to Balaam, “What have I done to you, that you have struck me these three times?”

22:29 And Bil’am (בּלעם) said to the donkey, “Because you have made a fool of me. I wish I had a sword in my hand, for then I would kill you.”

22:30 “But I am the same donkey you have ridden all your life,” the donkey answered. “Have I ever done anything like this before?” “No,” Bil’am (בּלעם) admitted.

22:31 Then ADONAI (יהוה) opened the eyes of Bil’am (בּלעם), and he saw the messenger of Adonai (יהוה) standing in the way, and his sword drawn in his hand: and he bowed down his head, and fell flat on his face.

22:32 And the Messenger of ADONAI  (יהוה) said to him, “Why have you struck your donkey these three times? Behold, I have come out to stand against you, because your way is perverse before Me.

22:33 The donkey saw Me and turned aside from Me these three times. If she had not turned aside from Me, surely I would also have killed you by now, and let her live.”

22:34 And Bil’am (בּלעם) said to the Messenger of ADONAI (יהוה), “I have sinned, for I did not know You stood in the way against me. Now therefore, if it displeases You, I will turn back.”

22:35 And the messenger of ADONAI (יהוה) said to Bil’am (בּלעם), Go with the men: but only the word that I shall speak to you, that you shall speak. So Bil’am (בּלעם) went with the princes of Balak (בּלק).

22:36 Now when Balak (בּלק) heard that Bil’am (בּלעם) was coming, he went out to meet him at the city of Moav, which is on the border at the Arnon, the boundary of the territory.

22:37 Then Balak (בּלק) said to Bil’am (בּלעם), “Did I not earnestly send to you, calling for you? Why did you not come to me? Am I not able to honour you?”

22:38 And Bil’am (בּלעם) said to Balak (בּלק), behold, I am come to you: have I now any power at all to say any thing? the word that Elohim (אלהים) putteth in my mouth, that shall I speak.

22:39 (RY:vi, LY:iv)

And Bil’am (בּלעם) went with Balak (בּלק), and they came to Kiryat Huzot.

22:40 And Balak (בּלק) offered oxen and sheep, and sent to Bil’am (בּלעם), and to the princes that [were] with him.

Bila’am’s Oracles 22:41 – 24:25

22:41  So it was, the next day, that Balak (בּלק) took Bil’am (בּלעם) and brought him up to the high places of Baal, that from there he might observe the extent of the people.

Beit Midrash Torah-Seeker

Who was Bil’am בלעם? 
Bil’am the son of B’or was from Aram (ancient Mesopotamia / Syria), the place of Avraham’s extended family. According to Jewish Sages, may their memories be blessed, Yaakov’s wicked uncle Lavan had a son named B’or (בעור) who became the father of the Bil’am (בלעם). In other words, Bil’am was none other than the grandson of Lavan and a distant relative of the Jewish people.

Balak Ben Tzippor=  “devastator,” He was king of Moav named after the man who was a distant cousin to Israel through Lot, Avraham’s nephew

Bil’am = means “destruction of people.” The Hebrew word bela means “ destruction, confuse, confound.” The Hebrew word am means “people, tribe, nation.”

Another midrash identifies the “two servants” of Balaam as Jannes and Jambres (Numbers 22:22). According to the midrashim and other sources, Jannes and Jambres continued to exert a wicked influence on Yisrael until the time of Pinchas (Numbers 25). These stories are interesting, but they should not be taken as equivalent to inspired Scripture.

Also Read The Sefer Yashar Chapter 79:27 “And when they gone Paroh sent for Bil’am the magician and to Jannes and Jambres his sons, and to all the magicians and conjurors and counsellors which belonged to the king, and they all came and sat before the king.

also see 2 Timotheos 3:8

Arnon wnra= “rushing stream” a river and surrounding valley in south Palestine, forms the border between Moav and the Emorites

Moav – Moab – bawm Barasheet 19:37 And the firstborn bare a son, and called his name Moav: the same is the father of the Moavites to this day.Moab = “of his father” Semites; a son of Lot by his eldest daughter; the nation descended from the son of Lot; the land inhabited by the descendants of the son of Lot

There were seven oracles in all each is introduced with  the words the word Oracle means proverbs meaning prophetic speeches

23:7-10 – First Prophetic speech>- set a pace for the rest -who can count the dust of Yaakov

23:18-24 – Second Prophetic speech – addressed to Balak the unwilling listener – Hashem cannot renege on His promises of life for His People (Roman 8:31-39)

24:3-9 Third Prophetic speech – blessing on the tribe of Israel as they about to enter Kenaan, Hashem would empower them to destroy all enemies Yisrael is pictured as a lion, Bil’am quoted Barasheet 12:3

24:15-19 Fourth Messianic Prophetic speech – the pagan Bilam had a vision of the coming of the Hebrew Moshiach Adonay Yeshua Ha Moshiach was visible from afar, like a star, radiant and beautiful, He was like a Scepter, majestic and powerful. He is victor over His enemies. All nations who resisted Yisrael and Hashem’s redemptive work would come under the curse they unwittingly embraced.

Lesson 39

Parashah 39: Hukat (Regulation ) 19:1-22:1

(in regular years read with parashah 40, in leap years separately)

The Torah of Purification those in contact with dead – Paruh adumah (Red Heifer)

KEYWORD: Paruh, heifer, seven times, seven days, burn, blood, ceder wood, hyssop, sheni tola’at, scarlet, wash, cut off, tamei, tahor, until erev, touches the dead, mayim niddah (separation, sprinking), ashes, purify

I have decreed it; You have no right to challenge it.

19:1 (i) Statutes for Defilement

And ADONAI (יהוה) spoke to Moshe and to Aharon, saying:

19:2 This [is] the Chukah (ordinance) ha Torah which ADONAI (יהוה) has commanded, saying:

Speak to al- Benai Yisrael:

that they bring you a Paruh adumah (Red Heifer) without spot, wherein [is] no blemish, [and] upon which never came yoke:

19:3 And you shall give her to El Azar ha Kohen, that he may bring her forth without the camp, and [one] shall slay her before his face:

19:4 And El Azar ha Kohen shall take of her blood with his finger, and sprinkle of her blood directly before the Ohel Moed (tent of meeting) seven times:

19:5 And [one] shall burn the heifer in his sight; her skin, and her flesh, and her blood, with her dung, shall he burn:

19:6 (Kohen will ask aloud each of these 3 items 3 times ensure correct)

And the Kohen shall take

cedar wood, and

hyssop, and

sheni tola’at (scarlet, ), and

cast [it] into the midst of the burning of the heifer.

19:7 Then the Kohen shall wash his clothes, and he shall bathe his flesh in mayim, and afterward he shall come into the camp, and the Kohen shall be tamei (unclean) until the erev (evening).

19:8 And he that burns her shall wash his clothes in mayim, and bathe his flesh in mayim, and shall be tamei (unclean) until the erev (evening).

19:9 And a man [that is] tahor (clean) shall gather up the ashes of the heifer, and lay [them] up without the camp in a tahor (clean) place, [p108j] and it shall be kept for the congregation of the Benai Yisrael for a mayim niddah (separation, sprinking): it [is] a purification for sin.

19:10 And he that gathers the ashes of the heifer shall wash his clothes, and be tamei (unclean) until the erev (evening): and it shall be to the Benai Yisrael, and to the stranger that sojourns among them, for a statute forever.

19:11 He that touches the dead body of any man shall be tamei (unclean) seven days.

19:12 He shall purify himself with it on the third day, and on the seventh day he shall be tahor (clean): but if he purify not himself the third day, then the seventh day he shall not be tahor (clean).

19:13 Whosoever touches the dead body of any man that is dead, and purifies not himself, defiles the tabernacle of ADONAI (יהוה); and that nefesh shall be cut off from Yisra’el: because the mayim niddah (separation) was not sprinkled upon him, he shall be tamei; his uncleaniness [is] yet upon him.


This [is] the Torah, when a man dies in a tent: all that come into the tent, and all that [is] in the tent, shall be tamei (unclean) seven days.

19:15 And every open vessel, which has no covering bound upon it, [is] tamei (unclean).

19:16 And whosoever touches one that is slain with a sword in the open fields, or a dead body, or a bone of a man, or a grave, shall be tamei (unclean) seven days.

19:17 And for a tamei (unclean) [person] they shall take of the ashes of the burnt heifer of purification for sin, and running mayim shall be put thereto in a vessel:

19:18(LY:ii) Sprinkle the Contaminated

And a tahor (clean) person shall take hyssop, and dip [it] in the mayim, and sprinkle [it] upon the tent, and upon all the vessels, and upon the persons that were there, and upon him that touched a bone, or one slain, or one dead, or a grave:

19:19 And the tahor (clean) [person] shall sprinkle upon the tamei (unclean) on the third day, and on the seventh day: and on the seventh day he shall purify himself, and wash his clothes, and bathe himself in mayim, and shall be tahor (clean) at erev (evening).

19:20 But the man that shall be tamei (unclean), and shall not purify himself, that nefesh shall be cut off from among the kahal (congregation), because he has defiled the Mikdash (sanctuary) ADONAI (יהוה): the mayim niddah (separation, sprinking) has not been sprinkled upon him; he [is] tamei (unclean).

19:21 And it shall be a perpetual statute to them, that he that sprinkleth the mayim niddah (separation) shall wash his clothes; and he that touches the mayim niddah (separation) shall be tamei (unclean) until erev (evening).

19:22 And whatsoever the tamei (unclean) [person] touches shall be tamei; and the nefesh that touches [it] shall be tamei (unclean) until erev (evening).

Beit Midrash Torah-Seeker

Why was the Zot Chukat ha Torah for Defilement neccessary?

The previous chapters judgment of Korach rebellion, the corpse contamination from the plague that killed 14,700 must be addressed. Adonay commands zot chukat ha Torah (this is the statute of the Torah) for decontaminating individuals who have came in contact with death.

mitzvah p 107j This mitzvah concern those who had physical contact with the decease makes a that person tamei (unclean) (unclean) whether the decease body is touched or whether a person comes under the same roof as the corpse body. The scripture teaches us that death is symbolic of sin and we must do all possible to separate ourselves from the ways of sinfulness and death. The household of family of decease must carry out the necessary purification as in verse 19:17

The Paruh adumah (Red Heifer) must be brought to the “Mount of Annointment,” a precise location on the Mount of Olives, opposite the eastern gate of the Temple Mount. There the heifer must be slaughtered and burned. Afterwards, its ashes are mixed together with natural spring water. It is this solution, called by the Bible “the waters of sanctification,” which is used to sprinkle on those who are impure.

Parashat Chukat / פרשת חקת

Note: The Shabbos Torah Reading is divided into 7 sections. Each section is called an Aliya [literally: Go up] since for each Aliya, one person “goes up” to make a bracha [blessing] on the Torah Reading.

1st Aliya: The laws of the Parah Adumah- the Red Heifer, are detailed.

 2nd Aliya: In Nissan of the 40th year, Miriam died. The well dried up and the nation gathered against Moshe and Aharon to complain. 

3rd Aliya: The “hitting of the rock” occurred and Moshe and Aharon were refused entry into Eretz Yisroel. 

4th Aliya: Moshe requested from Edom permission to travel through their land on the way to Eretz Yisroel. Edom refused. 

5th Aliya: Aharon died and Elazar succeeded his father as Kohain Gadol. They encountered the southern Canaanites (13 miles west of the Dead Sea) and bested them in battle. Following Aharon’s death, the protective clouds departed and the nation began to complain about the living conditions. Hashem sent poisonous snakes to attack the nation and Moshe was instructed to create the “copper snake on a stick” o miraculously save the bitten. 

6th & 7th Aliya: The nation traveled to Yeshimon – northeast of the Dead Sea. In the conclusion of Chukas, the nation was refused access to the lands of Sichon and Og and Moshe led them into victorious battle against them. 

Haftorah Rosh Chodesh 

This week’s Haftorah is from Yishayah Chap. 66 and reflects the fact that today is also Rosh Chodesh. Yishayah describes the ultimate downfall of all our enemies during the war of Gog and Magog. The Navi explains that this world is the manifestation of g-d’s presence and glory. Yet, we are incapable and sometimes unwilling to properly recognize G-d’s manifest presence. Even when the Bais Hamikdash stood the Bnai Yisroel did not appreciate their opportunity to be close to G-d and serve Him. The Navi forewarns that insincere expressions of devotion are tantamount to offering blemished sacrifices and G-d will punish those who lack sincerity and devotion. 

Nevertheless, the institution of the Bais Hamikdash and prayer are our only means for communication love and devotion. Therefore, those who truly mourn for the absence of the Bais Hamikdash and the Temple services will also merit to rejoice in her redemption and reconstruction. When the Bais Hamikdash will be rebuilt the nation will again be able to witness the Rosh Chodesh offering and service, and fully participate in expressing their commitment

Lesson 38

Parashah 38: Korach (baldness) 16:1-18:32

the Israelite people come dangerously close to splitting apart. A man named Korach leads a group of followers to challenge Moshe and Aharon’s leadership.

Yehudah 11 Woe to them, in that they have walked the road of Kayin, they have given themselves over for money to the error of Bil’am, they have been destroyed in the rebellion of Korach.

16:1(i) Korach Rebels

Vayikakh Korach Ben-Yitzhar Ben-Kehat Ben-Levi ve Datan va Aviram Benei EliAv ve On Ben-Pelet Benei Reuven :

And Korach Ben-Yitzhar Ben-Kehat Ben-Levi , and Datan and Aviram Benei EliAv, and On Ben-Pelet Benei Reuven, spoke;


Vayakumu lifnei Moshe vaanashim mibnei-Yisrael khamishim umatayim nesiei edah keriei moed anshei-shem:

And they rose up before Moshe, with a number of the people of Yisrael, 250 leaders of the congregation, chosen from the assembly, well-known men.

16:3 They gathered together against Moshe and Aharon, and said to them,

“You take too much upon yourselves, for Kol haEdah is set apart, every one of them, and ADONAI is among them.

Why then do you exalt yourselves above the assembly of ADONAI?”

Moshe settle the matter : take fire pans (censors)

16:4 וישׁמע משׁה ויפל על־פניו׃

Vayishma Moshe vayipol al-panav.

And when Moshe heard [it], he fell upon his face:

16:5 And he spoke to Korach and to all his company, saying: Even tomorrow ADONAI will show who [are] His, and [who is] set apart; and will cause [him] to come near to Him: That one whom HE chooses He will causes to come near to HIM

16:6 זאת עשׂו קחו־לכם מחתות קרח וכל־עדתו׃

Zot asu kechu-lachem machtot Korach vechol-adato.

Do this: take fire pans (censors), Korach and all his company;

16:7 put fire in them and put incense in them before ADONAI tomorrow, and it shall be that the man whom ADONAI chooses is the Set Apart one. You take too much upon yourselves, you benai Levi!”

16:8 And Moshe said to Korach, “Hear now, you benai Levi:

16:9 Is it a small thing to you that the Elohim (אלהים) of Yisra’el has separated you from the congregation of Yisra’el, to bring you near to Himself, to do the work of the mishkan ADONAI, and to stand before the congregation to serve them;

16:10 and that He has brought you near to Himself, you and all your brethren, Benai Levi, with you? And are you seeking the Kehunah also?

16:11 Therefore you and all your company are gathered together against ADONAI. And what is Aharon that you complain against him?”

16:12 וַיִּשְׁלַ֣ח מֹשֶׁ֔ה לִקְרֹ֛א לְדָתָ֥ן וְלַאֲבִירָ֖ם בְּנֵ֣י אֱלִיאָ֑ב וַיֹּאמְר֖וּ לֹ֥א נַעֲלֶֽה׃

Vayishlach Moshe likro leDatan ve laAviram benei Eliav vayomru “Lo naaleh!”:
And Moshe sent to call Datan and Aviram, sons of Eliav: which said, We will not come up:

16:13 Is it a small thing that you have brought us up out of a land flowing with milk and honey, to kill us in the wilderness, that you must also make yourself a prince over us?

16:14 (ii) Moshe accused :

Rebels approach Almighty with unauthorised fire

Moreover, you have not brought us into a land flowing with milk and honey, nor given us inheritance of fields and vineyards. Will you put out the eyes of these men? We will not come up.”

16:15 And Moshe was very angry, and said to ADONAI, “Do not respect their offering. I have not taken one donkey from them, and I have not harmed one of them.”

16:16 And Moshe said to Korach: Be you and all your company before ADONAI, you, and they, and Aharon, tomorrow:

16:17 And take every man his censer, and put incense in them, and bring you before ADONAI every man his censer, two hundred and fifty fire pans (censors); you also, and Aharon, each [of you] his censer.

16:18 And they took every man his censer, and put fire in them, and laid incense thereon, and stood in the entrance of the Oleh Moed with Moshe and Aharon.

16:19 And Korach gathered all the congregation against them to the entrance of the Oleh Moed: and the glory of ADONAI appeared to all the congregation.

16:20 (iii) Elohim Defends:

The earth devours the enemies of ADONAI

And Adonai spoke to Moshe and to Aharon, saying:


Hibadlu mitokh haeda hazot vaakhaleh otam keraga:

“Separate yourselves from among this congregation, that I may consume them in a moment.”
16:22 ויפלו על־פניהם ויאמרו אל אלהי הרוחת לכל־בשׂר האישׁ אחד יחטא ועל כל־העדה תקצף׃

Vayiplu al-pneihem vayomeru el Elohei haruchot lechol-basar ha’ish echad yecheta ve’al kol-ha’edah tiktsof.

And they fell upon their faces, and said, O Elohim (אלהים), the Elohim (אלהים) of the spirits of all flesh, shall one man sin, and You be angry with all the congregation?”

16:23 And Adonai spoke to Moshe, saying:

16:24 Speak to the congregation, saying,

Get you up from about the mishkan of Korach, Datan, and Aviram.

16:25 And Moshe rose up and went to Datan and Aviram; and the Zekenei (elders) Yisrael followed him.

16:26 And he spoke to the congregation, saying, Depart, I pray you, from the tents of these wicked men, and touch nothing of theirs, lest you be consumed in all their sins.

16:27 ויעלו מעל משׁכן־קרח דתן ואבירם מסביב ודתן ואבירם יצאו נצבים פתח אהליהם ונשׁיהם ובניהם וטפם׃

Vaye’alu me’al Mishkan-Korach Datan va’Aviram misaviv veDatan va’Aviram yatse’u nitsavim petach aholeyhem unesheyhem uvneyhem vetapam.

So they got away from around the tents of Korah, Datan, and Aviram; and Datan and Aviram came out and stood at the door of their tents, with their wives, their sons, and their little children.

16:28 And Moshe said, “Hereby you shall know that ADONAI has sent me to do all these works; for [I have] not [done them] of mine own mind.

16:29 אם־כמות כל־האדם ימתון אלה ופקדת כל־האדם יפקד עליהם לא יהוה שׁלחני׃

Im-kemot kol-ha’adam yemutun eleh ufkudat kol-ha’adam yipaked aleyhem lo ADONAI shlachani.

If these men die the common death of all men, or if they be visited after the visitation of all men; [then] ADONAI has not sent me.

16:30 But if ADONAI make a new thing, and the Land open her mouth, and swallow them up, with all that [appertain] to them, and they go down quick into the sheol; then you shall understand that these men have provoked ADONAI.

16:31 And it came to pass, as he had made an end of speaking all these Divrei, that the ground clave asunder that [was] under them:

16:32 And the Land opened her mouth, and swallowed them up, and their houses, and all the men that [appertained] to Korach, and all [their] goods.

16:33 They, and all that [appertained] to them, went down alive into the pit, and the Land closed upon them: and they perished from among the congregation.

16:34 And all Yisrael that [were] round about them fled at the cry of them: for they said, Lest the Land swallow us up [also].

16:35 ואשׁ יצאה מאת יהוה ותאכל את החמשׁים ומאתים אישׁ מקריבי הקטרת׃

Ve’esh yatse’ah me’et ADONAI vatochal et hachamishim umatayim ish makrivey haketoret.

And there came out a fire from ADONAI, and consumed the two hundred and fifty men that offered incense.

16:36 (17:01)

And ADONAI spoke to Moshe, saying:

16:37 (17:02) “Tell El Azar (אלעזר) Ben Aharon hakohen, to pick up the censers out of the blaze, for they are set apart, and scatter the fire some distance away.

16:38 (17:03) The fire pans (censors) of these sinners against their own nefeshs, let them make them broad plates [for] a covering of the mizbe’ach: for they offered them before ADONAI, therefore they are consecrated: and they shall be a sign to the benai Yisrael.

16:39 (17:04) And El Azar (אלעזר) ha kohen took the brasen fire pans (censors), wherewith they that were burnt had offered; and they were made broad [plates for] a covering of the mizbe’ach:

16:40 (17:05) [To be] a memorial to the benai Yisrael, that no stranger, which [is] not of the seed of Aharon, come near to offer incense before ADONAI; that he be not as Korach, and as his company: as ADONAI said to him by the hand of Moshe.

16:41 (17:06) On the next day all the congregation of benai Yisrael complained against Moshe and Aharon, saying, “You have killed the people of ADONAI.”

16:42 (17:07) And it came to pass, when the congregation was gathered against Moshe and against Aharon, that they looked toward the oleh Moed: and, Hinei, the cloud covered it, and the glory of ADONAI appeared.

16:43 (17:08) And Moshe and Aharon came before the oleh Moed.

16:44 (17:09)(iv) Counter-Attack

Korach’s Rebellion

And ADONAI spoke to Moshe, saying,

16:45 (17:10) הרמו מתוך העדה הזאת ואכלה אתם כרגע ויפלו על־פניהם׃

Heromu mitoch ha’edah hazot va’achaleh otam keraga vayiplu al-pneihem.

Get you up from among this congregation, that I may consume them as in a moment. And they fell upon their faces.

16:46 (17:11) And Moshe said to Aharon, Take a censer, and put fire therein from off the mizbe’ach, and put on incense, and go quickly to the congregation, and make an Kaporah (כּפר) for them: for there is wrath gone out from ADONAI; the negeph (נגף) is begun.

16:47 (17:12) And Aharon took as Moshe commanded, and ran into the midst of the congregation; and, Hinei, the negeph (נגף) was begun among the people: and he put on incense, and made an Kaporah (כּפר) for the people.

16:48(17:13) And he stood between the dead and the living; and the plague (נגף) was stayed.

16:49 (17:14) Now they that died in the plague (נגף) were fourteen thousand and seven hundred, beside them that died about the matter of Korach.

16:50 (17:15) And Aharon returned to Moshe to the entrance of the Oleh Moed: and the negeph (נגף) was stayed.

1 , 2 , 3 , 4 , 5 , 6 , 7 , 8 , 9 , 10 , 11 , 12 ,13 , 14 , 15 , 16 , 17 , 18 , 19 , 20 , 21 , 22 , 23 , 24 , 25 , 26 , 27 , 28 , 29 , 30 , 31 , 32 , 33 , 34 , 35 , 36

Go to Index page

The name Korach in Hebrew meaning intentionally tear the frontal hair bald, a type of Ancient Amorites way of expressing terrible grief – Dvarim 14:1 Yah prohibit such practice for His people :-“לא תתגדדו ולא־תשׂימו קרחה בין עיניכם למת ” You are not to cut yourselves or bald your forehead for the dead

Korach was the son of Izhar, grandson of Kohat, great grandson of Levi and leader of the rebellion of the Yisraelites against Moshe and Aharon while in the wilderness. He was also a cousin of Aharon (Shemot 6:18-21), was a Levite but not a Kohen. He apparently resented the fact that the family of Aharon should have exclusive right to the priesthood.

Tehillim 106:16 In the camp they were jealous of Moshe and Aharon, ADONAI’s set apart one.

Tehillim 106:17 The earth opened up and swallowed Datan and closed over Aviram’s allies.

Revision on the genealogy of Kohat

Datan, Abiram, and On were of the tribe of Reuven, and they resented Moshe’ leadership over them.

On is not mentioned after verse 1, and it is impossible to know if he shared the doom of the others.

Two hundred and fifty of the princes— leaders of Yisrael—joined in the rebellion against the priesthood and the civil authority (v. 2). They argued that all the people were set apart and should not be excluded from offering sacrifices (v. 3)

Both Moshe and Korach were descended from Kohat, but by different sons (Moshe through Amram [NBamidbar 26:58-59], and Korah through Izhar).
Plag, Plague (נגע, negha‛, מכּה, makkāh, מגּפה, maggēphāh; μάστιξ, mástix, πληγή, plēgḗ): This word which occurs more than 120 times is applied, like pestilence, to such sudden outbursts of disease as are regarded in the light of divine visitations. It is used in the description of leprosy about 60 times in Lev 13 and 14, as well as in Devarim 24:8. In the poetical, prophetic and eschatological books it occurs about 20 times in the general sense of a punitive disaster. The good news references (Markos 3:10; Markos 5:29, Mar_5:34; Loukas 7:21) use the word as a synonym for disease.

One of the latest prophetic mentions of plague is Hos_13:14, where the plague (debher, Septuagint díkē) of death and the destruction (ḳāṭābh, Septuagint kéntron) of the grave are mentioned. From this passage Paul quotes his apostrophe at the end of 1Co_15:55, but the apostle correlates the sting (kéntron) with death, and changes the díkē into níkos.

Yehudah 1:11 Woe to them, in that they have walked the road of Kayin, they have given themselves over for money to the error of Bil’am, they have been destroyed in the rebellion of Korach.

16:48The man they rebelled against is the very man who saved them. He stood between them and Elohim. Likewise, the very ONE whom the human family impale on the tree of suffering is the ONE who saves us. He stands between Elohim and the sinner.

Num 16:4 And when Moshe heard it, he fell upon his face;


Moshe did not immediately defensive or angry with the assembled crowd, nor does he assert his authority.
Moshe humbles himself, and asks the rebels about their motivation.
Moshe comes to Aharon’s defense before defending himself.
to ask himself if Korah has a valid point:
Second incident they all fell on their face

16:45 And Elohim spoke to Moshe, saying, “Get up, get away from the midst of this assembly, and I will consume them in an instant.”

And they fell on their faces.

vayiplu = and they fell, and they threw themselves down

penayhem = their faces, their fronts, their surfaces

fire pans censors – ( Shemot 27:3 ; 38:3 ), one of the vessels of the temple service (rendered “snuff-dish” Shemot 25:38 ; 37:23 ; and “censer” Leviticus 10:1 ; 16:12 ). It was probably a metallic cinder-basin used for the purpose of carrying live coal for burning incense, and of carrying away the snuff in trimming the lamps.

Lesson 37

Parashah 37 Shalach L’kha שׁלח־לך 13:1-15:41

Rashi comments : Send for yourself: According to your own understanding. I am not commanding you, but if you wish, you may send. Since the Israelites had come [to Moses] and said, “Let us send men ahead of us,” as it says, “All of you approached me…” (Deut. 1:22),

send for yourself, send forth men, if you please, suit yourself

ADONAI (יהוה) Suggests That Moshe Send Spies to the Promised Land

13:1(i) And ADONAI (יהוה) spoke to Moshe, saying,

13:2 שׁלח־לך אנשׁים ויתרו את־ארץ כנען אשׁר־אני נתן לבני ישׂראל אישׁ אחד אישׁ אחד למטה אבתיו תשׁלחו כל נשׂיא בהם׃

Shelakh-lekha anashim veyaturu et-eretz Kenaan asher-ani noten livnei Yisrael ish echad ish echad lemateh avotav tishlakhu kol nasi vahem:

Send for yourself men, that they may search the Eretz Kenaan, which I give to benai Yisrael: of every tribe of their avot shall you send a man, every one a ruler among them.

13:3 And Moshe by the commandment of ADONAI (יהוה) sent them from the wilderness of Paran: all those men [were] heads of benai Yisrael.

13:4 Lemateh…… (למטה)

And these [were] their names:

from the tribe of Reuven (ראוּבן), Shamua Ben Zakur.

13:5 From the tribe of Shimon: Shafat Ben Hori.

13:6 From the tribe of Yehudah: Kalev (כּלב) Ben Yefuneh.

13:7 From the tribe of Yissakhar: Yigal Ben Yosef.

13:8 From the tribe of Efrayim: Hoshea (הושׁע) Ben Nun.

13:9 From the tribe of BenYamin: Palti Ben Rafu.

13:10 From the tribe of Zevulun: Gadi’el Ben Sodi.

13:11 From the tribe of Yosef, [namely], of the tribe of Menasheh, Gadi Ben Susi.

13:12 From the tribe of Dan: Ammi’el Ben Gemalli.

13:13 From the tribe of Asher: Setur Ben Mikha’el.

13:14 From the tribe of Naftali: Nachvi Ben Vofsi.

13:15 From the tribe of Gad: Ge’u’el Ben Makhi.

Moshe Gives Instructions to the Spies

13:16 These [are] the names of the men which Moshe sent to spyout the land.

And Moshe called Hoshea (הושׁע salvation) Ben Nun Yehoshua.

13:17 And Moshe sent them to spy out the Eretz Kenaan, and said to them, Get you up this [way] southward, and go up into the mountain:

13:18 and see what the land is like: whether the people who dwell in it are strong or weak, few or many;

13:19 And what the land [is] that they dwell in, whether it [be] good or bad; and what cities [they be] that they dwell in, whether in tents, or in strong holds;

13:20 And what the land [is], whether it [be] fat or lean, whether there be wood therein, or not. And be you of good courage, and bring of the fruit of the land. Now the time [was] the time of the firstripe grapes.


So they went up, and searched the land from the wilderness of Zin to Rehov, as men come to Hamat.

13:22 And they ascended by the south, and came to Hevron; where Ahiman, Sheshai, and Talmai, the descendants of Anak, [were]. (Now Hevron was built seven years before Zoan in Mitzrayim.)

13:23 And they came to the brook of Eshkol, and cut down from thence a branch with one cluster of grapes, and they bare it between two upon a staff; and [they brought] of the pomegranates, and of the figs.

13:24 The place was called the brook Eshkol, because of the cluster of grapes which benai Yisrael cut down from thence.

13:25 And they returned from searching of the land after forty days.

13:26 And they went and came to Moshe, and to Aharon, and to all the congregation of benai Yisrael, to the wilderness of Paran, to Kadesh; and brought back word to them, and to all the congregation, and shewed them the fruit of the land.

The Spies Give Their negative Report

13:27 Then they told him, and said: “We went to the land where you sent us. It truly flows with milk and honey, and this is its fruit.

13:28 But the inhabitants are strong, and the cities are fortified and very large. Moreover we saw the descendants of Anak there.

13:29 The Amalekites dwell in the eretz negev (south): and the Hittites, and the Yevusites, and the Emorites, dwell in the mountains: and the Kena’ani dwell by the sea, and by the coast of Yardan.

Kalev gave positive report

13:30 And Kalev (כּלב) stilled the people before Moshe, and said, Let us go up at once, and possess it; for we are well able to overcome it.

13:31 But the men that went up with him said, We be not able to go up against the people; for they [are] stronger than we.

13:32 And they brought up an evil report of the land which they had searched to benai Yisrael, saying, The land, through which we have gone to search it, [is] a land that eats up the inhabitants thereof; and all the people that we saw in it [are] men of a great stature.

13:33 And there we saw the giants, sons of Anak, [which come] of the giants: and we were in our own sight as grasshoppers, and so we were in their sight.

Kalev is first introduced when Mosheh sent a group of twelve men to spy out the land of Kenaan prior to their going in to take it from the resident tribes:

13:2 Send for yourself men, that they may search the Eretz Kenaan, which I give to benai Yisrael: of every tribe of their avot shall you send a man, every one a ruler among them.

The Genealogy of Kalev can be confirm trace link to following verse:

Bamidbar 32:12 except Kalev Ben Yefuneh haKenizi and Yehoshua Ben Nun, because they have followed ADONAI unreservedly.

Yehoshua 14:6 The descendants of Yehudah approached Yehoshua in Gilgal, and Kalev Ben Yefuneh the Kenizi said to him, “You know what ADONAI told Moshe the man of Elohim about me and you in Kadesh-Barnea.

Yehoshua 14:13 Yehoshua blessed him and gave Hevron to Kalev Ben Yefuneh as his inheritance.

1 Chronicles 4:15 ובני כלב בן־יפנה עירו אלה ונעם ובני אלה וקנז׃

Uvenei Kalev Ben-Yefuneh ‘Iru, Elah va Na’am uvenei Elah u Kenaz:
Banim Kalev Ben Yefuneh: Iru, Elah and Naam. Benai Elah: Kenaz.

a Kenizzite or descendant of Kenaz: – Kenezite, Kenizzites.

There were three Kenaz not of the same person

A. Grandson of Esav (Beresheet 36:11, Beresheet 36:15, Beresheet 36:42; 1Chron 1:36, 1 Chron 1:53).

B. The father of Otni’el (Yehoshua 15:17; Softim 1:13; Softim 3:9, Softim 3:11; 1 Chron 4:13).

C. Grandson of Kalev (1 Chron 4:15).

Grandson of Esav

Beresheet 36:11 The sons of Elifaz were Teman, Omar, Tzefo, Ga`tam and K’naz.

Beresheet 36:15 The chieftains of the sons of Esav were the sons of Elifaz the firstborn ofEsav and the chieftains of Teman, Omar, Tzefo, K’naz,

Beresheet 36:42 Kenaz, Teman, Mivtzar,

1 Chron 1:36 The sons of Elifaz: Teman, Omar, Tzefi, Gatam, K'naz, Timna andAmalek.

1 Chron 1:53 Kenaz, Teman, Mivtzar,

The father of Otni’el

Yehoshua 15:17 Otni'el Ben Kenaz, Kalev's brother, captured it; so he gave himAkhsah his daughter as his wife.

Softim 1:13 Otni'el Ben Kenaz, Kalev's younger brother, captured it; so he gave himAkhsah his daughter as his wife.

Softim 3:9 But when the people of Yisra’el cried out to ADONAI, ADONAI raised up a savior for the people of Isra’el; and he rescued them; this was `Otni’el, Ben Kalev’s younger brother K’enaz.

Judge 3:11 So the land had rest for forty years, until `Otni’el the son of K’naz died.

1 Chron 4:13 Benei K’naz: Otni'el and S'rayah. The son ofOtni’el: Hatat.


1 Chron 4:15 Benei Kalev Ben Yefuneh: Iru, Elah and Naam. Benei Elah: K’naz.

The genealogies of two descendants of Yehudah are developed more fully—Kalev: 1 Chron 2:18-20, 1 Chron 2:42-55 (this is not the Kalev of Num. 13; see 4:15), and David: 1 Chron 3:1-24.

Kalev = “dog”

1) the godly son of Yefuneh and the faithful spy who reported the Promised Land favourably and urged its capture

2) son of Hezron and grandson of Pharez and great grandson of Yehudah and the father of Hur and grandfather of Kalev the spy

Anak = both ענק and as הענק A race of giants called the Anakim traced their ancestry to Anak, the son of the Kenaanite Arba, founder of Kiriat-Arba), lit. “Town of the Four(the city later known as Hebron). *Hevron, the land Kalev received for his inheritance, is the focus of contemporary land conflict between Palestinians and Yehudim, and is much in the news Anak’s descendants were conquered and displaced by Kalev, one of the scouts whom Moshe had sent decades earlier to spy out the land of Kenaan. Giants like the Anakim were also known as Nephilim, thought to be superhuman progeny of benei Elohim and the daughters on men cited in Beresheet 6:4

Zoan = “place of departure” an ancient city of lower Egypt called Tanis by the Greeks; located on the eastern bank of the Tanitic branch of the Nile; the capital of the Shepherd dynasty, built 7 years after Hebron and existing before Abraham and the dwelling place of the Pharaoh at the time of the exodus .

Numbers 13:22 says that it was built seven years after Hevron was built. Tehillim 78:12,43 identifies the “field of Zoan” as where Moshe performed miracles before Pharaoh to persuade him to release Yisrael from his service. The fields of Zoan are thus considered to be another name for the Land of Goshen גושן ארץ. The city is also mentioned in Yeshayahu 19:11, 13, Yeshayahu 30:4 and Ezekiel 30:14.
Zoan appear 7 time in scripture

Numbers 22 And they ascended by the south, and came unto Hebron; where Ahiman, Sheshai, and Talmai, the children of Anak, were. (Now Hebron was built seven years before Zoan in Egypt.)
Tehillim 78:12 Marvellous things did he in the sight of their fathers, in the land of Egypt, in the field of Zoan.
Tehillim 78:43 How he had wrought his signs in Egypt, and his wonders in the field of Zoan:
Yeshayahu 19:11 Surely the princes of Zoan are fools, the counsel of the wise counsellors of Pharaoh is become brutish : how say ye unto Pharaoh, I am the son of the wise, the son of ancient kings?
19:13 The princes of Zoan are become fools , the princes of Noph are deceived ; they have also seduced Egypt, even they that are the stay of the tribes thereof.
30:4 For his princes were at Zoan, and his ambassadors came to Hanes.
Ezekiel 30:14 And I will make Pathros desolate , and will set fire in Zoan, and will execute judgments in No.

Parashat Sh’lach / פרשת שלח־לך

Parsha Summary for Parshas Shlach

Note: The Shabbos Torah Reading is divided into 7 sections. Each section is called an Aliya [literally: Go up] since for each Aliya, one person “goes up” to make a bracha [blessing] on the Torah Reading.

1st Aliya: Moshe sends the Spies on their mission.

2nd Aliya: The Spies return carrying the massive fruits of the land. They deliver their negative report and the nation loses its faith in G-d and Moshe.

3rd Aliya: Moshe successfully argues for the life of the nation, and Hashem issues the 40 year decree of wandering and dying.

4th Aliya: The Spies die, and the nation is informed of their own punishment.

5th Aliya: The laws of the Mincha – meal offering are stated.

6th Aliya: The laws of separating Challah – the dough offering, and the communal sin offering are stated.

7th Aliya: The individual sin offering; the incident with the man who transgressed Shabbos by gathering sticks; his punishment; and the Mitzvah of Tzitzit, conclude the Parsha.


NUMBERS 13 (ONKELOS) — 1 And the Lord spake with Mosheh, saying: 2 Send thou men, that they may explore the land of Kenaan, which I will give to the children of Israel: one man for each tribe of their fathers shall you send, each one a ruler among them. 3 And Mosheh sent them from the wilderness of Pharan, according to the Word of the Lord. All those men were heads of the children of Israel; 4 and these are their names: Tor the tribe of Reuben, Shamua bar Zakur; 5 for the tribe of Shemeon, Shaphat bar Hori; 6 for the tribe of Jehudah, Kaleb bar Jephuneh; 7 for the tribe of Issakar, Igal bar Joseph; 8 for the tribe of Ephraim, Hoshea bar Nun; 9 for the tribe of Benyamin, Phalti bar Raphu; 10 for the tribe of Zebulon, Gediel bar Sodi; 11 for the tribe of Joseph, the tribe of Menasheh, Gaddi bar Susi; 12 for the tribe of Dan, Ammiel bar Gemali; 13 for the tribe of Asher, Sethor bar Mikael; 14 for the tribe of Naphtali, Nachbi bar Yapsi; 15 for the tribe of Gad, Geuel bar Machi: 16 These are the names of the men whom Mosheh sent to explore the land.

17 And Mosheh called Hoshea bar Nun Jehoshua. And Mosheh sent them away to explore the land of Kenaan. And he said to them, Go up hither by the south, and ascend to the mountain, 18 and see the country what it is, and the people who dwell upon it, whether they be strong or weak, few or many; 19 and what the land is in which they dwell, whether good or bad; and what the cities they inhabit, whether open, or walled in; 20 and whether the land is rich or poor; whether it hath trees or not: and you, be of good courage, and bring of the fruits of the land. And the days were the days of the first grapes.

21 And they went up, and explored the country, from the wilderness of Zin unto Rechob, to come unto Hamath. 22 And they went up by the south, and came to Hebron; and there were Achiman, Sheshai, and Talmai, sons of the giants; (and Hebron was built seven years before Tanis of Mizraim). 23 And they came to the Stream of Grapes, and cut down there a branch, with one cluster of grapes, and carried it on a staff between two; and (they took also) of the pomegranates, and of the figs. 24 That place was called the Stream of Grapes, on account of the grapes (athkela) which the sons of Israel cut down from thence. 25 And they returned from the exploration of the country at the end of forty days.

26 And they went and came to Mosheh, and to Aharon, and to all the congregation of the children of Israel at the wilderness of Pharan, at Rekam,and returned the word to them, and to all the congregation, and showed them the fruit of the land. 27 And they recounted to him, and said: We came to the land whither thou didst send us,and truly it doth produce milk and honey, and this is the fruit of it. 28 But very mighty are the people who inhabit the land, and the cities are fortified and very great; and we saw, also, the sons of the giants there. 29 The Amalkaah dwell in the land of the south, and the Hittaah and Jebusaah and Amoraah dwell in the mountain, and the Kenaanaah dwell by the sea, and upon the bank of the Jordan.

30 And Kaleb quieted the people for Mosheh, and said: Going, let us go up and possess it, for we are able to (do) it: 31 but the men who had gone up with him said, We are not able to go up against the people, for they are stronger than we. 32 And they gave forth an evil report (name) about the land which they had explored to the children of Israel, saying: The country which we have passed through to search it, is a land that killeth its inhabitants; and all the people whom we saw in it are men of stature; 33 and there we saw the giants, the sons of Anak, which are of the giants; and we looked, in our own sight, as locusts, and so were we in their eyes.

NUMBERS 14 (ONKELOS) — 1 And all the congregation lifted up and gave (forth) their voice; and all the people wept that night. 2 And all the children of Israel murmured against Mosheh and Aharon; and the whole congregation said to them, that we had died in the land of Mizraim, or that we had died in this wilderness! 3 And why is the Lord bringing us to this land, that we may fall by the sword, and our wives and our children become a prey? Would it not be better for us to return into Mizraim? 4 And they said, a man to his brother, Let us appoint a chieftain, and go back into Mizraim.

5 And Mosheh and Aharon fell upon their faces before all the assembly of the sons of Israel. 6 And Jehoshua bar Nun, and Kaleb bar Jephuneh, who were of the explorers of the land, rent their clothes. 7 And they spake to all the congregation of the sons of Israel, saying: The land, which we passed through to explore it, is a good land, most exceedingly. 8 If the Lord hath pleasure in us, even He will bring us into this land, and give us the land which produceth milk and honey. 9 Only be not rebellious against the Word of the Lord, nor be afraid of the people of the land, for they are delivered into our hand; their strength is departed from them, and the Word of the Lord is our helper: fear them not. 10 But all the congregation said that they would stone them with stones.

And the Glory of the Lord was revealed at the tabernacle of ordinance, unto ail the children of Israel. 11 And the Lord said to Mosheh, How long will this people provoke Me, and how long will they disbelieve in My Word, for all the signs which I have wrought among them? 12 I will smite them with the pestilence and consume them; and will make of thee a people greater and stronger than they. 13 But Mosheh said before the Lord, And the Mizraee will hear of it;—for Thou didst bring up by Thy power this people from among them, 14 and they will tell unto the inhabitants of this land; for they have heard that Thou, Lord, dost dwell in Thy Shekinah among this people, whose eyes behold the glorious Shekinah of the Lord, and that Thy Cloud overshadoweth them, and that in the pillar of the Cloud Thou conductest them in the day, and in the pillar of Fire by night. 15 Now if Thou shalt kill this people as one man, the nations who have heard the fame of Thy power will speak, saying: 16 Because there was not strength (enough) before the Lord to bring this people into the land which He covenanted to them, He hath killed them in the desert. 17 And now I beseech, let power be magnified from before the Lord, as Thou hast thus spoken, saying: 18 The Lord is far from anger, and great in performing goodness and truth: forgiving iniquity and rebellion and sins, pardoning them who return unto His law: but acquitting not them who will not turn, (but) visiting the sins of the fathers upon the rebellious children unto the third and unto the fourth generation. 19 Pardon, I beseech, the sins of this people according to the amplitude of Thy goodness, and as Thou hast forgiven this people from Mizraim until now.

20 And the Lord said, I have pardoned according to thy word. 21 Yet, as I live, with the glory of the Lord shall all the earth be filled. 22 Because all these men who have seen My glory, and the signs I wrought in Mizraim and in the desert, but have tempted before Me these ten times, and have not been obedient to My Word,—23 if they shall see the land which I covenanted to their fathers, nor shall any see it who have provoked before Me. 24 But My servant Kaleb, for that there was in him another spirit, and that he hath wholly followed (in) My fear, him will I bring into the land whither he went, and his children shall possess it.—25 Now the Amalkaah and the Kenaanaah dwelt in the valley.—Tomorrow, turn you and get you to the wilderness by the way of the Sea of Suph.

26 And the Lord spake with Mosheh and unto Aharon, saving: 27 How long shall this evil congregation be murmuring against Me? The murmuring of the sons of Israel which they murmur against Me is heard before Me. 28 Say to them, As I live, saith the Lord, even as ye have spoken before Me, so will I do to you. 29 In this wilderness shall your carcases fall, and all who are numbered of you, of all your numbers, from one of twenty years and upward who have murmured against me—30 if you shall come into the land in which I covenanted in My Word to cause you to dwell, except Kaleb bar Jephuneh, and Jehoshua bar Nun. 31 But your children, of whom you said they were for a prey, will I bring in, and they shall know the land which you have abhorred. 32 But your carcases shall fall in this wilderness; 33 and your children shall go about in the wilderness forty years, and shall bear your iniquities until your carcases be laid in the wilderness. 34 According to the number of the days in which you explored the land, forty days, a day for a year, a day for a year, you shall receive for your sins, even forty years, and you shall know (the consequence of) your murmuring against me.  35 I, the Lord, have made the decree in My Word,—if I will not do unto all this evil congregation who have gathered together against Me; in this wilderness shall they find their end, and here shall they die.

36 And the men whom Mosheh sent to search the land, and who returned to make all the congregation murmur against him, by bringing forth an evil name upon the land; 37 those men who brought out the evil name upon the land died by the plague before the Lord. 38 But Jehoshua bar Nun and Kaleb bar Jephuneh lived, of those men who went to explore the land. 39 And Mosheh told these words to all the children of Israel, and the people bewailed greatly. 40 And they arose in the morning to go up to the top of the mountain, saying: Behold, we will go up to the place of which the Lord hath spoken; for we have sinned. 41 But Mosheh said, Wherefore do you transgress against the decree of the Word of the Lord? But it will not prosper. 42 Go not up, for the Shekinah of the Lord is not among you, and be not broken before your enemies. 43 For the Amalkaah and the Kenaanaah are there before you, and you will fall by the sword; for, because you have turned away from the service of the Lord, the Word of the Lord will not be your helper. 44 Yet they would commit the wickedness of going up to the summit of the mountain, though the ark of the Lord’s covenant, and Mosheh, removed not from the midst of the camp. 45 And the Amalkaah and the Kenaanaah who dwelt in the mountain came down and smote them, and pursued them unto Hormah.

NUMBERS 15 (ONKELOS) — 1 And the Lord spake with Mosheh, saying: 2 Speak with the children of Israel, and say to them: When you shall (at last) have come into the land which I will give you, 3 and you will make an oblation before the Lord, a burnt offering, or a consecrated sacrifice for the release of a vow, or in a free will offering, or in your solemnities to render an acceptable service before the Lord, from the herd or from the flock; 4 let him who offereth his oblation before the Lord bring for a mincha a tenth of flour sprinkled with the fourth of a hina of oil. 5 And wine for a libation the fourth of a hina shall he make upon the burnt offering, or hallowed sacrifice, for one lamb: 6 or for a ram he shall make a mincha of two tenths of flour sprinkled with the third of a hina of oil; 7 and wine for the libation thou shalt bring the third of a hina, to be received with acceptance before the Lord. 8 And when thou makest a bullock a burnt offering, or a hallowed sacrifice for the release of a vow, or hallowed sacrifices before the Lord, 9 let him bring with the bullock a mincha of three tenths of flour sprinkled with a half hina of oil; 10 and wine shalt thou bring for the libation the half of a hina, an oblation to be received with acceptance before the Lord. 11 So shalt thou do for one bullock, or one ram, or one lamb from the lambs, or from the kids. 12 According to the number that you perform so shall you do with each, according to their number. 13 All native born (Hebrews) shall do these things to offer an oblation to be received with favour before the Lord. 14 And if a sojourner who sojourneth with you, or whoever among you in your generations will make an oblation to be received with favour before the Lord, as you do, so shall he do. 15 One congregation and one rite shall be for you and for the sojourners who sojourn; it is an everlasting statute; as you are, so shall the sojourner be before the Lord: 16 one law and one judgment shall be for you and for the sojourners who dwell with you.

17 And the Lord spake with Mosheh, saying: 18 Speak with the sons of Israel, and say to them, When you have come into the land into which I will bring you, 19 and when you eat of the bread of the land, you shall set apart a separation before the Lord. 20 Of the first of your food you shall set apart a cake for a separation; as the separation of the threshing-floor, so shall you set it apart; 21 of the first of your bread (dough) you shall give the separation before the Lord in your generations.

22 And should you be in ignorance, and not do all these commandments of which the Lord hath spoken with Mosheh, 23 even all which the Lord commanded you by the hand of Mosheh from the day that the Lord commanded and thenceforward in your generations, 24 it shall be that if anything be hid from the eyes of the congregation and you do ignorantly, then all the congregation shall make a burnt offering of one young bullock, to be received with acceptance before the Lord, with his mincha and his libation, according to the proper manner, and one kid of the goats for a sin offering: 25 and the priest shall make atonement for all the congregation of the sons of Israel, and it shall be forgiven them, for it was ignorance; but they shall bring their oblation before the Lord on account of their ignorance. 26 And it shall be forgiven to all the congregation of the children of Israel, and to the sojourners who sojourn among them; for all the people (were) in ignorance. 27 And if one sin ignorantly, he shall bring a female kid of the year for a sin offering; 28 and the priest shall make atonement for the man who hath erred in his sin through ignorance before the Lord, to atone for him, and it shall be forgiven him. 29 For the native born of the sons of Israel, and for the sojourner who sojourneth among you, one law shall there be for you, for him who acteth in ignorance. 30 But the man who doeth presumptuously, whether of the native born, or of the sojourners, he provoketh the Lord to anger, and that man shall perish from among his people: 31 because he hath despised the word of the Lord, and hath made His commandment vain, that man shall be utterly destroyed, his sin is upon him.

32 And while the children of Israel were in the wilderness, they found a man stealing wood on the day of the Sabbath; 33 and they who had found him stealing wood brought him to Mosheh and Aharon, and to all the congregation. 34 And they bound him in the house of custody; for it had not been explained to them what they should do to him. 35 And the Lord said unto Mosheh, The man shall be surely put to death; all the congregation shall stone him with stones without the camp. 36 And all the congregation brought him forth without the camp, and stoned him with stones, and he died; as the Lord commanded Mosheh.

37 And the Lord spake to Mosheh, saying: 38 Speak with the children of Israel, and bid them that they make them fringes upon the borders of their garments throughout their generations, and that upon the fringes on the borders they put a ribbon of hyacinth. 39 And they shall be to you for fringes, that you may look upon it, and remember all the commandments of the Lord, and do them, and not wander after the imagination of your heart, or after the sight of your eyes, after which you have gone astray. 40 That you may remember and do all My precepts, and be saints before your God. 41 I am the Lord your God who brought you forth from the land of Mizraim to be to you Eloha: I am the Lord your God.

Matiytyahu It Is a Didactic or Teaching Gospel. While giving the account of a number of miracles, the book is marked by several discourses of considerable length, as The sermon on the Mount, chapters 3-7, the denunciation of the *Pharisees not the school of Hillel, chapter 23, the prophecy of the destruction of Jerusalem and the end of the world, chapters 24-25, the address to the apostles, chapter 10; and the doctrines of the kingdom, 17:24-20:16. These portions and the parables noted above will indicate how large a portion of the book is taken up in discourses. The student can make lists of other and shorter sections of teaching.

* On one occasion an expert in the law stood up to test Yeshua. “ Teacher,” he asked, “what must I do to inherit eternal life?”

“What is written in the Law?” he replied. “How do you read it?”

He answered: ” ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind’; and, ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’”

“You have answered correctly,” Yeshua replied. “Do this and you will live.”

But he wanted to justify himself, so he asked Yeshua, “And who is my neighbor?”

Yeshua as Rabbi:

Part 1: What is a Rabbi?

Part 2: Was Yeshua a Rabbi?

Part 3: Yeshua’ Miracles

Yeshua, as an integral member of the culture he lived in, was not only a rabbi with s’mikah, but he also took part in the rabbinic culture of his day, interacting with others in that culture. As such, he was called on to answer a number of questions and to weigh in with his opinions on issues of import to that culture.

The Schools

Within his culture of early first-century Israel, there were seven primary rabbinic ’schools’ of thought, with followers – talmidim – in each school. These schools were named after the founding rabbi, even if that rabbi was no longer alive. Much like the discussion that goes on in these schools of thought within Judaism would debate key questions of theology and practice, often quite heatedly.

At the poles of thought within these schools, the most lenient (or liberal, though not in a modern sense) of the rabbinical schools was the School of Hillel. One of Hillel’s key teachings, recorded in the Talmud, is this:

That which is hateful to you, do not do to your fellow. That is the whole Torah; the rest is the explanation; go and learn.

About ten years after Hillel’s death, Yeshua took this concept, building onto it in a positive fashion:

So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets.

At the other end of the spectrum, the School of Shammai was the most strict in its interpretations. The remaining five schools of rabbinic thought ranged between these two, Hillel and Shammai, with key nuances – emphases or de-emphases – from the other schools. When Yeshua began his ministry near the age of 30, he entered into this context, and as one might expect, he was asked to weigh in on the great debates of the day.

Question and Answer

Within the rabbinic schools, the primary means of debate was ask-assertive conversation rather than the highly expository method in Western/Greek culture. The reason for this is based on the theory that ‘if I tell you what you should believe, the answer you have is my answer. If, however, I ask you questions that lead to the answer, when you arrive at it, the answer will be your answer. As such, if you come into contact with alternative alternative answers, you will be much less likely to abandon the one I taught you.’

I saw this type of ˜questioning  in action in Sefat, Israel in 2006 in a small photography shop run by an elderly Rabbi. The artwork in this shop was literally amazing, and one of the men in our group asked the rabbi which of the pieces was his favorite. The conversation then went like this:

Rabbi: May I ask you a question?

Jon: Yes

Rabbi: Are you married?

Jon: Yes, why?

Rabbi: Do you have children?

Jon: Yes. (pause) Why?

Rabbi: Which of them is your favorite?

And thus, he had his answer. To a westerner like me, it seems that it would have been simpler to say ‘I can’t pick one, because each has something I love’ (or something similar), but that answer would not have been nearly as personal as the one given by the elderly rabbi.

In a similar fashion, much of Yeshua’ teaching was in the form of questions and stories rather than simple exposition. On the occasions when we see him interacting with students/adherents to other schools, he uses this technique to point to an answer before giving exposition on the subject, as the answer to his questions often contain the answer he is giving. Also, in many cases where Yeshua is being questioned, it is out of an honest attempt to learn his teaching on a subject, not always to trap him.

The Debates

When Hillel died in 10 A.D., the Shammites took over the Pharisee role within the Sanhedrin and became the primary religious influence in Judea, whereas in the Galilee region, where Yeshua lived and was raised, the teachings of Hillel held sway. With this in mind, the pharisees that opposed Yeshua we often identified as Judeans (or were located in Jerusalem in Judea), whereas the ones sympathetic to Yeshua or his followers (like Gamaliel, Hillel’s grandson) were Gallilean.

According to Josephus and other Jewish records, there were a number of key debates being waged between the rabbinical schools. These included divorce, who is my neighbor, hand-washing, marriage in the afterlife, the greatest commandment, healing on the Sabbath (Shammai taught you shouldn’t even pray for the sick on the Sabbath, let alone heal them!), the purpose of the Sabbath and whether Gentiles could be saved. The animosity shown between the Shammites and the Hillelites are hard to understate, with comparisons to the classic Calvinist/Arminian debate holding similarities, with the Shammites holding to a strict fundamentalist view of scripture and practice and the Hillelites holding to a much more lenient, contextual view which emphasized the balance between love for God and love for your neighbor.

As such, it is interesting that in the eight key debates that Yeshua entered, he sided with the School of Hillel – or went even farther than Hillel – in seven and only sided with Shammai in one case (that of when divorce is acceptable).

For instance, in the debate of “who is my neighbor?”, Shammai taught that only God-fearing, observant Jews were ‘neighbors’ (thus, the only ones worthy of love). Hillel, on the other hand, taught that everyone – including one’s enemies – were ‘neighbors’, with the exception of the hated, apostate Samaritans. And so, when Yeshua was asked (in the scripture above), “Who is my neighbor?” he entered this debate:

In reply Yeshua said: “A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, when he fell into the hands of robbers. They stripped him of his clothes, beat him and went away, leaving him half dead. A priest happened to be going down the same road, and when he saw the man, he passed by on the other side. So too, a Levite, when he came to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side.”

It should be noted that the priest and the Levite were both obeying Torah by not touching a dead or nearly-dead body and becoming unclean, so they were following the law, as interpreted by Shammai and other strict rabbinic schools of thought. According to Pharisee teaching, though, all life was sacred and the proper thing to do would have been to stop and help the man or bury him (thus becoming unclean for a time) if he died. A number of commentators suggest that the expert in the Torah was likely expecting Yeshua to make the “good guy” a pharisee, thus siding with Hillel on the issue of the importance of life above ritual cleanliness.

Instead, though, Yeshua said:

“But a Samaritan, as he traveled, came where the man was; and when he saw him, he took pity on him. He went to him and bandaged his wounds, pouring on oil and wine. Then he put the man on his own donkey, took him to an inn and took care of him. The next day he took out two silver coins and gave them to the innkeeper. ‘Look after him,’ he said, ‘and when I return, I will reimburse you for any extra expense you may have.’

“Which of these three do you think was a neighbor to the man who fell into the hands of robbers?”

The expert in the law replied, “The one who had mercy on him.” [Note: he couldn’t even SAY the word ‘Samaritan’]

Yeshua told him, “Go and do likewise.”

And so, Yeshua’ answer to the question “Who is my neighbor?” was everybody, including the most despised apostate you can think of, going further to the ‘left’ of Hillel.

So, when viewed within the context of his world, this is just one more example where we can get a view into why Yeshua was asked certain questions, how he interacted with his world, and some of the political/religious backdrop that ultimately led to his death, burial and resurrection.


What’s in a Name_ הושע becomes יהושע _ Sefaria Source Sheet Builder