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www.hearoisrael.orgSHEEPFOLD GLEANINGS WRITTEN BY JULIE PARKERwww.sheepfoldgleanings.comMESSIANIC ISRAEL ALLIANCEhttp://www.messianicisrael.comAZAMRA TORAH FOR OUR TIME – RABBI AVRAHAM GREENBAUMhttp://www.azamra.org



VA’ERA “I appeared”

TORAH: Exodus 6:2-9:35


Ezekiel 28:25

B’RIT CHADASHAH: Romans 9:14-33All references: The Scripture 1998+ unless otherwise noted3



And יהוה

said to


, “Now see what I do to Pharaoh, for with a strong hand he is going to let them go, and with a strong hand he is going to drive them out of his land.” And Elohim spoke to Mosheh and said to him, “I am יהוה. “And I appeared to Aḇraham, to Yitsḥaq, and to Yaʽaqoḇ, as Ěl Shaddai. And by My Name,


, was I not known to them?



This name is used over 6000 times in the Bible






Our parsha

this week opens with the balance of


’s reply. We read in And Elohim spoke to Mosheh and said to him, “I am יהוה. (Exodus 6:2 The Scriptures 1998+). Verse 3 reads in the Hebrew; “Va‟era el Avraham el Yitzaq



b‟ El Shaddai



le‟ah n‟adahtee la‟hem

.” There seems to be two basic translations for this verse. Most English speaking Christian or Messianic sources render this verse similar to the ISR Scriptures as;

And I appeared to

Avraham, to Yitzaq, and to Ya‟aqob, as El Shaddai. And by My Name, YHVH, was I not known to them?” The title of our parsha, “Va‟eira” (vav-aleph-reish-aleph) in the first part of the verse. “Va‟eira” means “and I appeared” or “and I revealed Myself”. The second half of this verse is often rendered by those who use or speak the four letter Name (YHVH) to be a question indicating that הוה. indeed made Himself known to the patriarchs as יהוה. However, the key word here is “n‟adahtee” (nun-vav-dalet-ayin-tav-yud), which is the Hebrew word for “unknown” or “not known”. “n‟adahtee”, is a negative form of the root “yadah” (to know).




“And I appeared to


, to

Yitsḥaq, and to Yaʽaqoḇ, as Ěl Shaddai. (Exodus 6:3 The Scriptures 1998+)“El Shaddai” literally translates as “El” (Elohim, Mighty One, The Almighty) “Shaddai” (His Shad, Breast or Nursing is Dai, Enough). El Shaddai (God the All Sufficient) reveals the maternal quality of God’s character as nurturer, comforter, and sustainer of life-giving nourishment, since it relates to the Hebrew word for a woman’s breast.  

You could say that in and by His Mightiness He sustains us.

In this revealing of Himself,


is showing the patriarchs, and us, that as Elohim, (the Name that denotes His Power, Severity and Judgment) He sustains us and meets our every need, even though He remains invisible. This revelation of Himself is evident in the creation and sustaining of all His creation throughout


. As Rabbi Hirsch puts it,

“Elohim works in and through Nature. He is the invisible cause of all that is observable and visible.” The miracles that El

Shaddai did for Avraham, Yitzaq and


were done in a secret or hidden way within nature.




יהוה will answer Moshe’s dilemma with a speech that is awesome in its literary structure.


Leibowitz points out that it takes the form of a chiastic structure (Next slide): Here are some of the extraordinary details of the Hebrew text:The first and second halves of the speech each contain exactly 50 Hebrew words(B) and (B1) are about the patriarchs(C) and (C1) are about the land(D) and (D1) are about Egypt and slaveryThe first half is about the past, the second half is about the futureThe first half refers to the Israelites in the third person (them)

The second half refers to the Israelites in the second person (you)

I am


– Beginning, centre, and the end of the speech




A:“I am


. (6:2)

B: appeared to Aḇraham, to Yitsḥaq, and to Yaʽaqoḇ, as Ěl Shaddai. And by My Name, יהוה, was I not known to them? (6:3)C: And I also established My covenant with them, to give them the land of Kenaʽan, in which they have sojourned. (6:4)D: And I have also heard the groaning of Yisra’ĕl whom the Mitsrites

are enslaving, and I have remembered My covenant. (6:5)

E: Therefore, to the children of


, ‘I am


, (6:6)

D1: and I shall bring you out from under the burdens of the Mitsrites, and shall deliver you from their enslaving, and shall redeem you with an outstretched arm, and with great judgments, and shall take you as My people, and I shall be your Elohim. And you shall know that I am יהוה your Elohim who is bringing you out from under the burdens of the

Mitsrites. (6:6-7)C1: ‘And I shall bring you into the land which I swore to give (6:8)

B1: to


, to Yitsḥaq, and to Yaʽaqoḇ, to give it to you as an inheritance.A1: I am יהוה.’ ” (6:8)8



As Rabbi Yosef Kalatsky



“The Torah gives us examples of miracles which Hashem performed for Moshe's forefathers. Avraham was able to defeat the four kings by performing great miracles; however, these miracles were concealed within nature. Noach did not necessarily need to build an ark to survive the Great Flood because Hashem could have performed a miracle and suspended him and all the creatures above the waters. As the RaMBaN explains, the reason why Noach was instructed to build an ark was so that


could bring about the miracle of his survival through a concealed and natural way. If all of existence had survived through a revealed miracle, it would have been difficult to deny G-


existence and thus free choice would have been diminished. Therefore, in order to maintain free choice in a proper balance,


involvement with existence was in a concealed manner - prior to Moshe's revelation of YHVH.”




Rashi points out in his commentary, “

It does not mean that Abraham Isaac and Jacob, Sarah,


, Rachel and Leah did not know G-d by the name Hashem. To the contrary, G-d‟s first words to Abraham, “Leave your land, your birthplace and your father‟s house,” were said using the name Hashem.” The patriarchs used יהוה’s Name and further invoked, or called upon the Name יהוה, in





tells Moshe is substantiated in


. B’reshith 17:1-2; …YHVH appeared (va‟eira or revealed Himself) to

Avram and said to him, “I am El Shaddai

, ..”


Ya’aqob in B’reshith 35:11-12; And Elohim said to him, “I am El Shaddai. ..So, יהוה revealed Himself to the fathers as “El Shaddai” and made His covenant with them, to give the Land of Kena’an (Eretz Yisra’el), as verse 4 of Shemot states; “And I also established My covenant with them, to give them the land of Kenaʽan, the land of their sojournings, in which they have sojourned. (Exodus 6:4 The Scriptures 1998+)10



יהוה is saying that He is revealing Himself, through Moshe and great miracles that defy nature and turn it upside-down, as



Yud-Hey-Vav-Hey). This is a new revelation in Torah to the world and Pharaoh, in And afterwards Mosheh and Aharon went in and said to Pharaoh, “Thus said יהוה Elohim of Yisra’ĕl, ‘Let My people go, so that they keep a festival to Me in the wilderness.’ ” And Pharaoh said, “Who is יהוה, that I should obey His voice to let


go? I do not know


, nor am I going to let



(Exodus 5:1-2 The Scriptures 1998+)Well, Pharaoh is about to learn of and experience יהוה firsthand. The Name “יהוה” is His “

Memorial Name” and it is the יהוה He desires that all His creation remembers Him by.

The rabbis teach that


denotes His characteristics of “chesed” (loving-kindness) and “rachamim” (mercies). While יהוה delivers the Children of Yisra’el from Egypt (bondage and constriction) with great judgments against Pharaoh, Mitzrayim and their gods, He demonstrates openly His mercies, kindnesses and love for His chosen. In fact it is in the midst of this “furnace of affliction” that He chooses Yisra’el as His precious treasure and shows them the Truth of His Salvation, another attribute of the Name יהוה, “Eternal Truth”.11



"Therefore, say to the people of


: 'I am

Adonai. I will free you from the forced labor of the Egyptians, rescue you from their oppression, and redeem you with an outstretched arm and with great judgments. I will take you as my people, and I will be your God. Then you will know that I am Adonai your God, who freed you from the forced labor of the Egyptians.

I will bring you into the land which I swore to give to






— I will give it to you as your inheritance. I am Adonai.' " (Exodus 6:6-8 CJB)

The first four “I wills” of Exodus 6:6–7 are central to the Passover (Pesach) Seder. The four cups in the Passover Seder represent the four 

I wills

 that YHVH declares over Israel:

“I will bring you out” is represented in the Cup of Sanctification“I will rid you out of their bondage” is represented in the Cup of Deliverance“I will redeem you” is represented in the Cup of Redemption“I will take you to me” is represented in the Cup of Praise or Completion. This last cup is marriage language. He is taking Israel to be his bride. 12



יהוה is telling Moses (and us, too!!) to just believe him! Believe his Word; trust that he is who he says he is.

That is what his covenant name implies: I am who I am, or I will be what I will be; i.e., I will be your All Sufficient One and will meet your every need.

Redemption involves three things:

The exchange of one thing (money or blood) for something else (the sins of Israel) must occur. This is expressed in the phrase, “I will redeem you.” Through the shed blood of the Passover lamb, YHVH redeemed Israel from the power and penalty of sin, which is death (Ezek 18:4; Rom 6:23, 1 Peter 1:18-19)Redemption involves the use of power to extricate that which is being redeemed (in this case, Israel) from that which is holding it captive or enslaved (i.e., the world, sin and the devil as pictured by Pharaoh and Egypt). This is expressed in the phrase, “with an outstretched arm.”  (Eph 1:19)Redemption involves judgment upon and or destruction of the captor. This is expressed in the phrase, “and with great judgments.” 




The concept of Redeemer is as follows:A redeemer is one who frees or delivers another from difficulty, danger, or bondage, usually by the payment of a ransom price. In the OT, the redeemer could function in several ways. He could buy back property (and even enslaved people) sold under duress (Lev 25:23–32). He (usually as owner, not as a relative) often redeemed from [


] dedicated property and firstborn livestock (Lev 27:1–33; also

Exod 21:28–30).Boaz’s function as redeemer for Ruth (Ruth 3:13–4:10) is well known, as is Job’s resurrection hope in [יהוה], his Redeemer (Job 19:25). [יהוה] himself is the Redeemer of Israel, a fact mentioned 18 times—especially by the prophet Isaiah (Ps 78:35; Isa 41:14).In the NT, [Messiah] is viewed as the ultimate Redeemer, although the Greek word for redeemer is not used. [Yeshua] gave his life "as a ransom for many" (Mark 10:45). Thus, the apostle Paul speaks of believers as having "redemption through his blood" (Eph 1:7) (Ibid.).




The Renewed Covenant has “I wills” from YHVH as well:

“See, the days are coming,” declares


, “when I shall make a new covenant with the house of Yisra’ĕl and with the house of Yehuḏah, not like the covenant I made with their fathers in the day when I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Mitsrayim, My covenant which they broke, though I was a husband to them,” declares יהוה. “For this is the covenant I shall make with the house of Yisra’ĕl after those days, declares יהוה

: I shall put My Torah in their inward parts, and write it on their hearts. And I shall be their Elohim, and they shall be My people. “And no longer shall they teach, each one his neighbour, and each one his brother, saying, ‘Know


,’ for they shall all know Me, from the least of them to the greatest of them,” declares


. “For I shall forgive their crookedness, and remember their sin no more.”

(Jeremiah 31:31-34 The Scriptures 1998+)

Please note that each successive covenant YHVH makes with his people is based on and is an expansion of the previous covenant/s.




“As in the days when you came out of the land of Mitsrayim

, I shall let him see wonders.”

(Micah 7:15 The Scriptures 1998+)

B’nei Yisra’el had lost their trust, or never really had it to begin with. They had stories, remembrances that were generations removed from conditions they found themselves in. Even with ourselves the stories have be adapted, changed, “tweaked” for over 2700 years. We lost the truth. Our forefathers ran from the truth when they went head-long into idolatry. Even the reason for Mashiach’s coming has been distorted, we have many more layers of confusion than B’nei Yisra’el. But YHVH remembers His Covenant with our fathers and He even includes the “mixed multitude” that Moshe added to the Father’s flock. As the prophets repeatedly remind us in Scripture, He will remember us. Just as the miracles which YHVH wrought in Mitzrayim surrounded the exodus, so too, will the miracles we will witness in the future be a part of the ultimate Redemption.






spoke thus to the children of

Yisra’ĕl, but they did not listen to Mosheh, because of shortness of spirit, and from hard slavery. (Exodus 6:9 The Scriptures 1998+)Shemot 6:9 actually reads the Children of Yisra’el did not “listen” to Moshe because of “shortness” of “spirit” and “hard” “slavery”. Other English translations say “anguish” of “spirit” and “hard” “bondage”. But, the Hebrew here is most interesting. They did not listen to Moshe, “Sh‟ma”, or “hear and do


Because of


(Strong’s #7115) meaning “

impatient”, from the root word katsar which means “to shorten”. The word used for “spirit” here is “Ruach

” (Strong’s #7307) meaning “spirit” or “breath”.

hard bondage

”. The Hebrew word translated here as “hard” is “kasheh” (Strong’s #7186) meaning “hard” or “stiff-necked”. Describing the Children of Yisra’el in Shemot 32:9, 33:3, 33:5, 34:9, Debarim 9:6, 9:13, 31:27 and Shoftim 2:19. The word “slavery” “abodah” (Strong’s #5656) meaning “work”, “labor” or “service”. 17



The meanings of Shemot 6:9, reflect also on their attitudes. According to the DHV (Dyslexic Hebrew Version) it translates; “

And Moshe spoke these words to the Children of


, but they did not „hear and obey‟ Moshe, because they were „impatient‟ of „spirit‟ and „stiff-necked‟ in their „service‟.” This relates both ways. Yes, their service to the Egyptians was hard. But, they were stiff-necked about leaving it as they lived in their own homes, in their own community, Goshen (a land of plenty). Over time, these homes and their city had become their “prison”. Psychologists have written a lot about this phenomenon. It’s very common, also, in long-term hostage situations. The hostage, while wanting to go free, develops an attachment to the captor because they come to depend on them for their daily survival. 18



These are the names of the sons of Lĕwi

according to their generations:


, and Qehath, and Merari. And the years of the life of Lĕwi were one hundred and thirty-seven. ..And Amram took for himself Yoḵeḇeḏ, his father’s sister, as wife. And she bore him Aharon and Mosheh

. And the years of the life of


were one hundred and thirty-seven

. (Exodus 6:16-20 The Scriptures 1998+)

Levi (Strong’s #3878) means “

joined to” as in “at the heart”.

His sons Gereshon (#1648), meaning “exile”, Qehath (#6955) meaning “assembly” and

Merari (#4847) meaning “bitter herbs”.

Levi lived 137 years. The


of Levi’s lifespan matches that of the word “matseva” which means “monument”. Levi (137 years), his tribe is to be a monument for us and for all time. That he is “joined in heart” to the “exiled assembly” and eats the “bitter herbs” of our slavery with us. Here we see a picture of Levi’s destiny to teach Ephraim in these last days. 19




The sons of


(sons of exile). The first-born is “Libni” (#3845) meaning “white”. Then there’s “Shim‟i” (8096) meaning “renown” or “known”, from “sh‟ma” meaning “hear and obey”. The sons of Qehath (the assembly); “Amram” (#6019) meaning “exalted people”, “Yitshar” (#3323 & 3324) meaning “shining oil” or “anointed

”, “


(2275) meaning

“joining” or “conjunction

” and

Uzzi‟el” (#5816) meaning “my strength is Elohim”. .. Qehath lived 133 years. The numeric value of 133 matches the letters “Nun-Gimmel-Lamed” which, depending on how they are arranged mean “

to stumble” or “to smite”, “to hide” and “to come out” or “sprout”. The sons of Merari (bitter herbs), which are; “


(#4249) meaning “sick” and “Mushi” (#4187) meaning “yielding” as in “tested and surrendered” (Gesenius’ Hebrew-Chaldee Lexicon).



We see in the names of his sons that:

The “

sons of exile”

can (if willing) be made “white” and “known” by YHVH, if they “hear and obey” Him. The “sons of the assembly” are “exalted people”, “anointed” with “shining oil” or



, and are “


together in

“Elohim, their strength”.

That though they “stumbled” and were


” by

Elohim and were “hidden”, they will “come out” and in fact “sprout” as written in Hoshea 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!‟ Though the “sons of the bitter herbs” are “sick” from the sin and slavery, they will be “tried and surrendered” to YHVH and will be “yielded” vessels to Him.21



And Mosheh

said before


, “See, I am of uncircumcised lips, and why would Pharaoh listen to me?” (Exodus 6:30 The Scriptures 1998+)Twice in this chapter of Shemot, Moshe asks why would Pharaoh listen to him, seeing that he has “uncircumcised lips”. This phrase, “arel saphah” in the Hebrew, really has two meanings. First, “arel” means “uncircumcised” or “one who stammers as with a foreskin over his lips” or “one who has a foreskin on his ears and cannot receive divine instruction”. This is where the phrase “uncircumcised heart”

also comes from. Now, “


means “

speech” or “lip

”, as in the

“lip”, “rim” or “border” of a vessel. Yahshua’s words in Matthew: And calling the crowd near, He said to them, “Hear and understand: “Not that which goes into the mouth defiles the man, but that which comes out of the mouth, this defiles the man.” (Matthew 15:10-11 The Scriptures 1998+)

If we do not speak the right words we can also be seen a having an uncircumcised mouth.




So יהוה

said to


, “See, I have made you an elohim1 to Pharaoh, and Aharon your brother is your prophet. (Exodus 7:1 The Scriptures 1998+)Each person has his/her place or grade. In our story, Pharaoh, the recipient is on the bottom rung. He listens to Aaron, the prophet. Aaron, the expounder, is called to listen to Moses and speak forth that which has been given to him. Moses, the lawgiver, stand in the place of the Almighty, discern His divine will and words, and inform his brother what he is to say and do.And יהוה spoke to Mosheh

and to


, saying, “When Pharaoh speaks to you, saying, ‘Show a miracle for yourselves,’ then you shall say to


, ‘Take your rod and throw it before Pharaoh, and let it become a serpent.’ ”

(Exodus 7:8-9)

It would take ten plagues to convince the Pharaoh to send the Hebrews out of Egypt, which was a polytheistic culture that worshiped many false gods, including everything from bugs to Pharaoh himself. Each plague isolated and exposed a false deity as powerless to stop the work of יהוה

's judgment.




While the signs that Moshe was given to perform were a message to Pharaoh, they also provided the people of Israel with encouragement:

The sign of the rod – that they would come alive and “swallow up” Egypt! (

Egypt is called “

tanniyn” (serpent and crocodile) in Yeshayahu 51:9, Ezra 29:3 and Ezra 32:2.)The sign of the leprous hand – their Elohim could heal any diseaseThe sign of the Nile turning to blood – the Nile, also seen as a god, was the life of Egypt. When it turned to blood, the Egyptians would have seen it as the death of a god.24






Aharon went in to Pharaoh, and they did so, as יהוה commanded. And Aharon threw his rod before Pharaoh and before his servants, and it became a serpent. But Pharaoh also called the wise men and the practisers of witchcraft. And they, the magicians of Mitsrayim, also did so with their magic. And they, each one, threw down his rod, and they became serpents. But the rod of Aharon swallowed up their rods. (Exodus 7:10-12 The Scriptures 1998+)Two different words are used for “


in these verses. First we see the word


”, (Strong’s #8577) used in verses 9, 10 and 12.


is translated as “serpent” or “crocodile”. In verse 15 Torah uses the word “nachash”. Strong’s translates “nachash” as “serpent” or “snake”. “

Nachash” literally means “shining one” because it resembles burnished metal. “Nachash

is the root word in

“nekhoshet” (bronze or copper). The Hebrew sources point to the fact that “nachash” is “serpent” or “shining one” and not snake. Crocodiles were elohim (mighty ones) in Egypt and the deity of the Nile River. יהוה sent a clear message to Pharaoh, He would judge the elohim of Mitzrayim and consume them as Aharon’s rod would consume the false elohim (serpents) of Pharaoh’s magicians. 25



And Pharaoh’s heart was hardened, and he did not listen to them, as


had said.

..” And יהוה spoke to Mosheh, “Say to Aharon, ‘Take your rod and stretch out your hand over the waters of Mitsrayim, over their streams, over their rivers, over their ponds, and over all their pools of water, that they become blood. And there shall be blood in all the land of Mitsrayim, both in wooden and in stone containers.’ ..

(Exodus 7:13-25 The Scriptures 1998+)


 was the god of the Nile. All the water of the flowing Nile turned into blood for seven days! It was a supernatural miracle.


Messiah's first miracle was turning water into wine (John 2:1-11).

The waters turned to blood here included the streams and rivers (“

nahar” and “ye‟or” = flowing waters, living waters), the ponds (“agam

” = stagnant waters or “strongholds”) and their pools (“


” =

cleansing waters or “hope”). Reservoirs or “dam” (#1818) refers to “blood-guilt” for the blood of the Israelite male children shed by them, as they were thrown into the river (waters). 26



.. I am smiting all your border with frogs. “And the river shall swarm with frogs, which shall go up and shall come into your house, and into your bedroom, and on your bed, and into the houses of your servants, .. and the frogs shall come up on you and on your people and on all your servants.” ’ ..

(Exodus 8:2-5)

The attack of frogs was an attack on 

Heka (Heqt) the toad goddess, wife of Khnum who was goddess of the land. Hekawas also the goddess of resurrection and procreative power. Frogs were consecrated to Osiris and were the symbol of inspiration. Frogs and toads were very sacred to the Egyptians. If anyone killed a frog, even unintentionally, the sin was punishable by death. Frogs represent unclean or foul spirits, as in Revelation 17:13-14; And I saw coming out of the mouth of the dragon, and out of the mouth of the beast, and out of the mouth of the false prophet, three unclean spirits, as frogs, for they are spirits of demons, doing signs, which go out to the sovereigns of the entire world, to gather them to the battle of that great day of YHVH the Almighty.

Again, Pharaoh’s magicians duplicated this plague but could not make it go away. This plague too lasted 7 days.




..‘Stretch out your rod, and strike the dust of the land, so that it becomes gnats in all the land of


.’ ” And they did so, and

Aharon stretched out his hand with his rod and struck the dust of the earth, and it became gnats on man and beast. ..The magicians then said to Pharaoh, “This is the finger of Elohim!” But the heart of Pharaoh was hardened, and he did not listen to them, as יהוה had said. (Exodus 8:16-19 The Scriptures 1998+)The plague of gnats was an attack on Geb, “the Great Cackler,” god of earth and vegetation. His representation was that of a goose that was said to have laid the egg that hatched the sun. The royal throne of Egypt was known as the “throne of Geb.” He was the father of Osiris and husband of 


. Egyptian priests shaved their heads to prevent lice which, if found, would render them unclean. The plague of gnats/lice/fleas stopped all priestly rituals.

The Hebrew word here for “

gnats” is “ken” (#3654)


“stinging gnats” or “pinching lice”

they actually “eat your face”. 28



The Children of Yisra’el went through the first three plagues along with the Mitzrites



was showing Yisra’el that the “Blood” was also important to them. The pictures they saw and experienced in the plagues of the frogs (evil spirits) and the stinging gnats were to show them that if they did not accept His gift of salvation and deliverance, their judgment and punishment would be as that of the nations. Note: Pharaoh’s magicians could not duplicate this plague of gnats, or lice. They declared this to be the “Finger of Elohim”. With that “Finger” יהוה wrote the two “tablets of the Testimony” in stone and as Yahshua said in “But if I cast out demons by the finger of Elohim, then the reign of Elohim has come upon you. (Luke 11:20 The Scriptures 1998+)




.. “Let My people go, so that they serve Me. .. I am sending swarms of flies on you and your servants, ..“And I shall put a distinction between My people and your people. Tomorrow this sign shall be.” ’ .. the land was ruined because of the swarms of flies.

(Exodus 8:20-24 The Scriptures 1998+)


יהוה made a distinction between clean and unclean, holy and unholy. A separation between what was Egypt (the world), with all its idolatry, and what was holy to God. The plague of flies was an attack on Khepfi, who was the god of insects. Included in the same plague was the beetle, a scarab, which was the emblem of Re (Ra), the sun god. Their sun god had now become detestable to them. In Hebrew we read that “arob” (#6157) are “swarms of flies” specifically “gad-flies” or “horse-flies” that suck blood. A “fly” singular which is “zebub”

(#2070) is used with




10 & 12 and Luke 11 referring to


as “the lord of the flies”. 30



..“Let My people go, so that they serve Me.. the hand of


is on your livestock in the field, on the horses, on the donkeys, on the camels, on the cattle, and on the sheep – a very grievous pestilence. ..And

יהוה did this word on the next day, and all the livestock of Mitsrayim died, but of the livestock of the children of Yisra’ĕl, not one died. (Exodus 9:1-6 The Scriptures 1998+)This fifth plague struck Apis who was the bull god. His counterpart was Hathor, the cow goddess. We’re told in the Hebrew that this was a “ma‟od



”, or an “

exceedingly great plague”

. The word used here for plague, “

deber” (Strong’s #1698) is from the root word “debar” (#1696) meaning “the word” or “that which is spoken”. This plague, that was spoken by יהוה , devastated

Mitzrayim’s economy. It killed their food, their oxen and brought their ability to sustain themselves to a standstill.




And יהוה

said to


and Aharon, “Fill your hands with ashes from a furnace and let Mosheh scatter it toward the heavens before the eyes of Pharaoh. “And it shall become fine dust in all the land of Mitsrayim, and it shall cause boils that break out in sores on man and beast in all the land of Mitsrayim.” ..(Exodus 9:8-12 The Scriptures 1998+)With no warning to Pharaoh festering boils [broke] out on men and animals throughout the land. This plague was an attack on Thoth (



,who was the god of medicine, intelligence and wisdom. The Egyptians had several medical deities to whom, on special occasions, they sacrificed humans. They were burnt alive on a high altar, and their ashes were cast into the air, that with every scattered ash a blessing might descend upon the people.

In the Hebrew, this is described as boils with blisters (“


” –

inflamed boil with “ababu‟ah” – blisters or pustules). This sounds a little like what will happen to those who accept the “mark of the beast” in Revelation.




And יהוה

said to


, .. for at this time I am sending all My plagues unto your heart, and on your servants and on your people, so that you know that there is no one like Me in all the earth. “Now if I had stretched out My hand and struck you and your people with pestilence, then you would have been cut off from the earth. “And for this reason I have raised you up, in order to show you My power, and in order to declare My Name in all the earth. (Exodus 9:13-16 The Scriptures 1998+)Here יהוה has Moshe say that these plagues were sent to change Pharaoh’s heart and to show all Egypt that יהוה is Supreme in all the earth. He also tells Pharaoh that יהוה did this through Moshe because, had He done it by His own Hand, all Mitzrayim would have perished. Elohim further tells Pharaoh that he was given authority by יהוה over Egypt for the sole purpose of showing His power and to declare His Name in all the earth. So much for Pharaoh’s ego.




“See, tomorrow about this time I am causing very heavy hail to rain down, such as has not been in


, from the day of its founding until now. “And now send, bring your livestock to safety, and all that you have in the field, for the hail shall come down on every man and every beast which is found in the field and is not brought home, and they shall die.” ’ .....

(Exodus 9:18-33 The Scriptures 1998+)This was an attack on Nut, who was the sky goddess and the mother of Osiris. The Hebrew word used here is “halak” which indicates that the fire (or “aish”) “walked” along the ground, as with severe lightning. The time of year is confirmed, as we are told that the flax and the barley were smitten as they were in the head, being early crops. The barley and flax were “abib” and it was the beginning of the first month. Pesach would be very soon. And, the wheat and the spelt were spared, as they are late crops.




There was a divine order to how this would happen. We will see that the first nine plagues are divided into three groups of three. The first plague in each group describes a time “in the morning” (



when Moshe should “stand” (yatzav) before Pharaoh with his warning:Plague One (blood) - “Go to Pharaoh in the morning, .. you shall stand by the river’s bank to meet him. ... (Exodus 7:15 The Scriptures 1998+)Plague Four (gnats) - And יהוה said to Mosheh, “Rise early in the morning and stand before Pharaoh as he comes out to the water, ... (Exodus 8:20 The Scriptures 1998+)

Plague Seven (hail) -



said to


, “Rise early in the morning and stand before Pharaoh, ..

(Exodus 9:13 The Scriptures 1998+)35



In the second plague of each of the three sets, there is no mention of when (in the morning) or of “standing” before Pharaoh. Instead, we see a different set of common phrases:

Plague Two (frogs) -


יהוה spoke to Mosheh, “Go to Pharaoh and say to him, ... if you refuse to let them go, see, I am smiting all your border with frogs. (Exodus 8:1-2 The Scriptures 1998+)Plague Five (cattle) And יהוה said to Mosheh, “Go in to Pharaoh and speak to him, ....if you refuse to let them go, and still hold them, see, the hand of יהוה is on your livestock in the field, on the horses, on the donkeys, on the camels, on the cattle, and on the sheep – a very grievous pestilence.

(Exodus 9:1-3 The Scriptures 1998+)

Plague Eight (locusts) -



said to


, “Go in to Pharaoh, .....if you refuse to let My people go, see, tomorrow I am bringing locusts within your borders. (Exodus 10:1-4 The Scriptures 1998+)




Each of the third plagues in the three sets occurs without any prior warning:

Plague Three (lice):


יהוה said to Mosheh, “Say to Aharon, ‘Stretch out your rod, and strike the dust of the land, so that it becomes gnats in all the land of Mitsrayim.’ ” (Exodus 8:16 The Scriptures 1998+)Plague Six (boils): And יהוה said to




, “Fill your hands with ashes from a furnace and let


scatter it toward the heavens before the eyes of Pharaoh. “And it shall become fine dust in all the land of

Mitsrayim, and it shall cause boils that break out in sores on man and beast in all the land of Mitsrayim

.” (Exodus 9:8-9 The Scriptures 1998+)

Plague Nine (darkness);


יהוה said to Mosheh, “Stretch out your hand toward the heavens, and let there be darkness over the land of Mitsrayim, even a darkness which is felt.” (Exodus 10:21 The Scriptures 1998+)37



Rav Bazak

teaches that each group brings the Egyptians one step closer in coming to know the Hebrew’s Elohim.

The aim of the first group of plagues

– “in order that you will know that I am God” has been achieved. It should be added that it was specifically the Egyptians who first needed to be taught about the existence of a transcendental Divine Cause, for – as opposed to other ancient Middle Eastern religions.The second group is meant to prove that not only does God exist, but He is involved in “the land” – in worldly, human affairs, and that He watches over those who fear Him. How can God’s involvement in “the midst of the land,” in worldly affairs, be proven? This set of plagues highlights the distinction – as yet unmentioned – between the Egyptians and the sons of Israel.The third group of plagues gives special expression to the idea that God is the only God, for His actions are without precedent in anything that has ever happened in the world. 38



And Pharaoh saw that the rain, and the hail, and the thunder had ceased, yet he sinned again and he hardened his heart, he and his servants. And the heart of Pharaoh was hardened, and he did not let the children of


go, as

יהוה had said through Mosheh. (Exodus 9:34-35 The Scriptures 1998+)Altogether there are three different Hebrew verbs which our translators have rendered by 'harden' or 'hardened' - ka bad, gashah, and khazag. The first of these, which occurs in Exodus 7:14; 8:15, 32; 9:7 and 34, is the weakest of the three, and means to be 'dull' or 'heavy', rather than

'to be hard


The second, which appears in Exodus 7:3 and 13:15, is the stronger term, and means

'to be hard',

or, in the 


[a form of Hebrew verbs], 'to make hard.‘ The third has the most intensive sense, implying fixed and stubborn resolution. It occurs in Exodus 4:21; 7:22; 8:19; 9:35; and elsewhere. 




Rabbi Ralph Messer of Simchat Torah


Midrash teaches that we are in the 7000 year today. The 7000 year in scripture is termed: today, “His rest, a Sabbath rest (Hebrews chapter 3-4 etc) the day of the Lord and in that day”. In God’s plan for mankind the Age of Law, the years 2000 to 4000, is when the great Hebrew Torah Sages taught the Torah (God’s teaching and instruction) but did not specifically teach the Messiah. In the Church Age, from the years 4000 to 6000, is when the early Church fathers taught Jesus/Messiah and the Holy Spirit but not the Torah (or the Law/Moses). Today on the Biblical Hebrew calendar we are in the year 5771/2011. There are approximately 271 known missing years, which brings us to the year 6011. In Hebrew understanding, any years passed the 6000 are counted as having entering into the 7000 year. Thus today, we are in the end times, the 

Age of the Messiah

, where Torah and Messiah join together to become one in His people. Since Mount Sinai, there has never been a time like this where the people of


, who are believers in Jesus the Messiah, desire to walk in Torah.




Paul/Rabbi Shaul

, who exhorts us to choose between clean and unclean, holy and unholy, said,

Do not be unequally yoked together with unbelievers (a believer who is not faithful to, or

dis-believes Yahweh’s plan). For what fellowship has righteousness (a believer who is faithful to Yahweh) with lawlessness (a believer who chooses to violate (by unbelief) God’s laws and teach against them)? And what communion has light with darkness? And what accord has Christ/Messiah with Belial (worthless or wicked)? Or what part has a believer with an unbeliever? And what agreement has the temple of God with idols? For you are the temple of the living God. As God has said: ‘I will dwell in them and walk among them. I will be their God, and they shall be My people.’ (Paul quotes Leviticus 26:12; Jeremiah 32:38; Ezekiel 37:27.) Therefore ‘Come out from among them and be separate, says the Lord. Do not touch what is unclean, and I will receive you. (Paul quotes Isaiah 52:11; Ezekiel 20:34, 41.) I will be a Father to you, and you shall be My sons and daughters, Says the LORD Almighty.’ (Paul quotes 2 Samuel 7:14.) Therefore, having these promises, beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness (sinful nature) of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.




Isaiah 66: ‘Heaven is My throne, and the earth is My footstool. Where then is a house you could build for Me? And where is a place that I may rest? For My hand made all these things, thus all these things came into being,’ declares Yahweh. ‘But to this one I will look, to him who is humble and contrite of spirit, and who trembles at My


word.’… ‘But those who sanctify and purify themselves to go to the gardens, following one in the center (man’s ways), who eat swine's flesh (pig), detestable things, and mice, shall come to an end altogether,’ declares Yahweh.”

Many desire the righteous ways that honor יהוה , but at the same time may be walking, living and eating in ways that defile His Temple (in us), the place He desires to dwell. May we heed the following words of יהוה "For just as the new heavens and the new earth which I make will endure before Me, so your offspring and your name will endure. And it shall be from new moon to new moon and from Sabbath to Sabbath, all mankind will come to bow down before Me" (Isaiah 66:23).


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