Torah Tidbit – May 31, 2014 – Nasso ( Num.4:21- 7:89)
This portion of the Torah deals with a myriad of subjects from the counting of the people, the laying out of the duties for the priestly orders, dealing with uncleanness in the camp (something of which we mostly fail to deem important), repentance, restoration and restitution, the ‘unfaithful wife’, the Aaronic blessing and the giving and receiving of offerings. Man, that’s a mouthful . . .
So what is the connection between all these seemingly mismatched subjects ? Do they, in fact, have anything in common? Let’s see what we can uncover . . .
The most important truth in these verses is that of God’s desire and passion for restoration and forgiveness based on our repentance and His unfailing grace. ‘If a person admits their guilt . . .’ And anytime you see ‘a fifth part’ mentioned in Scripture, it is a ‘redemption price’ . . . a picture of Salvation. The guidelines concerning the unfaithful wife should take us straight to the Gospel accounts of Yeshua in the garden praying fervently to the Father concerning the ‘Cup’. Again, a picture of grace, mercy, compassion and redemption.
The uncleanness ? This is a subject that can take pages to discuss. Let it suffice for now to say ‘uncleanness’ is a picture of that which can and does separate us from our heavenly Father, whether it be physical or spiritual, overt or unconscious,, unavoidable or intentional. God always makes a way for His people to come to Him, but it has to be His way, not ours.
The numbering of the people shows us God did not call just a mass of bodies. It tells us the God of creation is mindful of every creature fashioned by His Hand, from the greatest to the least. Not only is He mindful of each, but each has a task and purpose ordered by the Hand of creation. These verses also remind us there is order in Abba’s house, a way and purpose for everything He has directed and mandated, and these ways will always be for His glory and for our ultimate good, even if we don’t understand at first. There is a way that seems right unto man . . . but God’s ways are above ours and His thoughts beyond ours.
The giving and receiving ? In the truest spirit of these acts, there is a Presence of humility in the receiving and true compassion and charity (love in action) in the giving, a a picture of literally running to meet the need. Notice all the gifts were the same. No one gave more and no one gave less. This is the way Abba sees our giving. It is not necessarily the amount from the wallet,but the abundance of the heart He measures. (although one can a measure of the other) The widow’s mite, Yeshua says, was the greatest gift given that day.
And the ‘Blessing of the people by their Priest’ ? It is the culmination of God’s desire for those that are His. It is His desire that they would be blessed by His Presence and His shalom in their lives daily now, and in the Kingdom for eternity.
‘ . . . and in this way you shall invoke My Name upon the children of Israel, and I will bless them, says the LORD . . .’
Shabbat Shalom – J & R