Living Torah Commentary

Why am I reading like this?


August 8, 2020

Deuteronomy 7:12–11:25

Isaiah 49:14–51:3

2Kings 1–3


Ekev “Because”

Get That Out of Here!

"Get that out of my house!"  These are words every child from the beginning of time has heard, words that most of us just did not understand.  Many of us were deeply hurt by them.  We just could not understand why Mom was so against having our pet frog roaming around her house, wondering “What does she have against that cute little bug anyway?”  Didn't she understand that the mud pie was our contribution to the dinner table just like the fresh flowers she had picked from outside?

What would a house look like if children were in charge of what comes in the door?  It would certainly be a place most of us would not want to visit, much less live in.  Over time it would be a place of dead and dying creatures, germs and filth.  Given enough time, it would be a place which would breed disease and even death to those who entered.  And in the meantime, the children would go on playing, not understanding the consequences of their actions.

In Deuteronomy 7:26, the Hebrews are told not to bring something abhorrent into their house.  They are to detest it completely and not have anything to do with it.  Now consider for a moment that these people are called the “Children” of Israel.  We need to look a bit closer at this verse if we are to find its true meaning.

The Hebrews would first have to ask a very important question regarding this verse, "Abhorrent to whom?"  They certainly could not use their own standards as a judge.  If they were to be the judges of what was abhorrent and what was not, their very history would tell them their houses would shortly be pigpens not to be lived in.  We all know that would not be kosher.

In order for their houses to remain clean, they would have to hang a sign at the entrance which said, "FATHER KNOWS BEST!"  They would have to put Him in charge of telling them what should enter and what should not.  They would not be able to trust family, neighbors, friends or little voices from this point on.  They would have to live by "It is written" for what is good and bad to bring into a house. Are you thinking “Mezuzah?”

Times really have not changed much in a few thousand years.  We are still faced with the same questions.  The answers may be a bit more complicated in our day, but the basic question remains the same.  What do we allow in our house today?  By whose standard do we judge what enters and what does not?  Who has the final authority over the doorway of our house?  One thing is for sure.  If we do not take charge of what enters into our natural house, we will certainly not take charge of what enters into our spiritual house.  Remember that physical pigpens will, in time, lead to spiritual pigpens.

Why a weekly reading schedule?

On a weekly basis we hear the term unity in our churches and congregations. It is a subject spoken of, but is it truly lived out?

Going back to the time before Yeshua walked this earth, the Hebrews established a weekly Torah portion reading. Today this schedule goes from Genesis to Deuteronomy in one year. No matter where you travel in the world the same scriptures are being read and taught from. We understand the spiritual power of unity, which is why we join our faith with synagogues, congregations and churches that are choosing to follow this schedule. Our weekly readings include a reading from the prophets as well as the Renewed Covenant, (New Testament). Each week as you read, imagine that the same scriptures are being declared in most every country and time zone around the world.