TMT 095: Exodus 31:12 – 14 (with Review and Passover Talk)

Exodus 31:12 – 31:14

12Then the Lord said to Moses, 13“Say to the Israelites, ‘You must observe my Sabbaths. This will be a sign between me and you for the generations to come, so you may know that I am the Lord, who makes you holy.

14“ ‘Observe the Sabbath, because it is holy to you. Anyone who desecrates it is to be put to death; those who do any work on that day must be cut off from their people.

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  1. Herbert Kosterlitz thinks:

    i REALLY ENJOYED MEETING YOU SHABBAT MORNING, AND after listening to your blog will follow it regularly.

    What occurred to me, while listening, was how the difference in emphasis guides our lives. I am referring to those who prioritize the torah mandated ritual observance and those who emphasize the psalms and and prayer. Let me explain.

    Torah in biblical times was all about korban, defined as a means of bringing one closer to his Creator, recognition there is an Ultimate power. The “Adon Olam” says it as well as anything. He is king and will always be king, and we are subjects. Genesis says He created us in His image.

    Torah was given to us as a blueprint for living. The holy days, the mitzvos observance are not just how we live, but elevating that God is directing the right way to prioritize our days and the way we expend our energies. He, being complete, has no need for our prayers, but they are for us to get real with life, acknowledging Our Source, Our Creator, Our Sustainor, Our Mentor. He is infinite, as the psalm says, His wisdom is infinite, but everything about Him is infinite. His consciousness, His Love, Compassion and Mercy, His power, His Faithfulness, His Presence are all infinite.. He is everywhere, always.

    Genesis makes clear that everything was created for us. Surely, our consciousness has to be grateful for all we enjoy every moment, from the time we arise, that we did not create, and life is about being grateful/appreciative. Torah teaching that is to be done through observing mitzvot. Psalms says what is required is only to do justly, love mercy and walk humbly with God.

    I believe torah is to teach the acts of the immutable and infinite God, raising each one to seek awareness of the biblical God in the presence of daily existence, thereby elevating emunah and bitachon. As God was the “shield of Abraham”, so too is He my shield. I even say in prayer, “shield of Abrahamj, shield of Tzvi”. As He told Moses, “I am whatever I need to be”. “I will be, who I will be”.Whatever we learn He has done is something He is always prepared to do.

    Our only responsibility in life is to so conduct ourselves as to help to hasten the day when every knee will bend and every tongue acknowledge Him. Joseph told hid brothers all that had occurred was God’s will, David said before the assembly the same. All is to make God real in our individual lives in recognition that many are the plans in a man’s heart, but it is God’s will that will prevail. Torah provides an understanding of His will, so we can make His will, our will, and as He is our blessing, we can make our lives a blessing, honoring our awareness that we are indeed made in His image, a chip off the old block.

    So, the difference in approach is the emphasis on Torah teaching a communal God or a personal. He is obviously both. But stressing ritual observance is elevating “Yiddishkeit”, while elevating the personal relationship, the love and ever-presence of God is providing the strength to cope with life’s challenges. The awareness we are never alone, we never need to feel alone/

    One last thesis. Life is all about a balancing act. There are five spheres:physical, intellectual, emotional, psychological and spiritual. They must be kept in balance if we are to perform/function at our maximum. If we become overly emotional, we lose some of our physical power, etc. We are born Jacob and our individual goal is to become Israel, and that is accomplished by integrating the five spheres into smoothly meshing gears wherein each recognizes it’s potential as well as limitations in working and honoring that the whole is the sum of its parts. Each sphere needs the other. It is how we can balance the spiritual with the mundane bringing the joy and peace of Shabbat into everyday life.

    • Nahum Roman Footnick thinks:

      Wow! Thank you for your thoughtful and well written commentary. Hope to see you again soon. Kol Tuv!

  2. William thinks:

    I enjoy your class and am learning much from your efforts. God bless you!

    • Nahum Roman Footnick thinks:

      Thank you for listening and commenting. It is a credit to you that you are eager to learn and willing to search. All the best!

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