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November 14, 2018 – The Ox and the Manger

Proverbs 14:4

“Where there are no oxen, the manger is empty, but from the strength of an ox come abundant harvests.”

In the Hebrew alphabet, the first letter alef coincides with the first commandment, Exodus 20:2-3:

“I am the LORD your God, who brought you out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery.  “You shall have no other gods before me.”

The Hebrew word picture for alef is an ‘ox’ symbolizing ‘first, strength’.

In this Proverb, the ‘ox’ is ‘the first’, the LORD your God.  Where there are no oxen, the manger is empty.

However,  from the ‘strength’ of the alef comes an abundant harvest. 

Elohim is plural for ‘God,’ but not in that there is a plurality of gods.  When it is used in Scripture, it is found with the singular article.  Yeshua, part of the essence of Elohim is the Word of God that became flesh.  He the ‘strength’ of Elohim and through a manger will come an abundant harvest.

©2018 Tentstake Ministries

Matthew 6:9-13 – The Hebrew Disciples’ Prayer

Tefillah Talmidim – The Disciples’ Prayer

Yeshua taught his followers to pray the well-known “Lord’s Prayer” found in Matthew 6:9-13.  This prayer, though often thought to be ‘new’, actually follows the traditional Jewish outline for tefillah (prayers).  Thus, our Jewish Savior gave his Jewish (and non-Jewish) followers a completely Jewish way to pray to his Father, our Abba, the Creator of the Universe.

:אבינו שבשמים ית1דש שמך

Avinu shebashamayim, yitkadash shemekha.

Our Father in heaven!  May your Name be kept holy.  

:תבא מלכותך יעשה רצונך בארץ כאשר נעשה בשמים

Tavo malkhutekha, ye’aseh r’tzonekha ba’aretz ka’asher na’asah vashamayim.

May your kingdom come, your will be done on earth as in heaven.

These first phrases resemble the kaddish, an ancient Jewish prayer.  Like all Jewish prayers, it begins with acknowledging the Creator of the Universe who is our Father in heaven followed by sanctifying His ‘set apart’ Name, the יהוה .  The coming Kingdom of God is the rule of God’s Spirit in, through, and over the hearts of men.  This is the ultimate fulfillment of the ‘new covenant’ found in Jeremiah 31:31 and will bring forth God’s will on earth as it is in the heavenly realm – obedience to His commands that are part of His Kingdom rule.

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:תן לנוּ היוֹם לחם חקנוּ

Ten-lanu hayom lechem chukeinu.

Give us the bread we need today.

The word ‘give’ at the beginning of this phrase is the imperative.  It presents the idea of a child completely dependent on their father for everything they need.  This day is a reference back to the manna – the bread of life –  in the wilderness which was provided each day in order to build faith in the One who Provides.  Lechem chukeinu is also used in Proverbs 30:8: keep falsehood and futility far from me, and give me neither poverty nor wealth. Yes, provide just the food I need today ….”  

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:וסלח לנוּ את אשמתנו כאשר סלחים אנחנו לאשר אשמו לנוּ

U’selach-lanu et-ashmateinu ka’asher solechim anachnu la’asher ashmulanu.

Forgive us our sins just as we are forgiving those who sin against us.

Yeshua taught in Luke 6:38 that we will receive the same measure that we measure out.  This not only includes how we use our gifts, but also includes forgiveness.   Yeshua also made it clear that unless we forgive others, God will not forgive us.  This part of the tefillah is a mirror to our hearts and is in the present progressive as the process of forgiving continues 70 x 7.

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:ואל–תויאנוּ לידי מסה כי אמ–הצילנוּ מן הרע

Ve’al-tevieinu lidei massah, ki im-hatzileinu min-hara.

And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one.  

Massa is translated as ‘test or temptation,’ but can also mean ‘despair’ as in the ‘melting of one’s heart.’   This phrase does not suggest that we be kept from trials, but that as we go through them our hearts are changed or melted and be delivered from  falling into despair and becoming bitter or angry. Hatzileinu min-hara is more than being drawn into evil inclination, but a deliverance from the Evil One who is the root of our evil inclinations and tries to steal all glory from God.

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:כי לך הממלכה וחגבוּרה  והתפארת לעולמי עולמים

Ke lakha, hamamlakha, vehageverah, veha tiferet l’olemei ‘olamim.

For kingship, power and glory are yours forever.

The conclusion of this prayer reflects the prayer and praise of King David in 1 Chronicles 29:11-13 when he dedicated the first Temple in Jerusalem.

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אמן ו אמן

Amein

Amen

The Jewish sages taught that Amen is an acronym for el melech ne’eman or “God is a faithful King.”

The Kedusha – קדושח

From the third section of the Amidah.

נְקַדֵּשׁ אֶת שִׁמְךָ בָּעוֹלָם, כְּשֵׁם שֶׁמַּקְדִּישִׁים אוֹתוֹ בִּשְׁמֵי מָרוֹם, כַּכָּתוּב עַל יַד נְבִיאֶֽךָ, וְקָרָא זֶה אֶל זֶה וְאָמַר:

Let us sanctify Your Name on earth, as it is sanctified in the heavens above. As it is written by Your prophet.

קָדוֹשׁ קָדוֹשׁ קָדוֹשׁ יְיָ צְבָאוֹת, מְלֹא כָל הָאָֽרֶץ כְּבוֹדוֹ.

Holy, holy, holy is Adonai Tz’vaot! God’s presence fills the whole earth.

אַדִּיר אַדִּירֵנוּ יְיָ אַדֹנֵינוּ מָה אַדִּיר שִׁמְךָ בְּכָל הָאָרֶץ!

Source of strength, Sovereign One, how majestic is Your presence in all the earth!

בָּרוּךְ כְּבוֹד יְיָ, מִמְּקוֹמוֹ.

Blessed is the presence of God, shining fourth from where God dwells.

אֶחָד הוּא אֱלֹהֵינוּ, הוּא אָבִינוּ, הוּא מַלכֵּנוּ, הוּא מוֹשִׁיעֵנוּ וְהוּא יַשְׁמִיעֵנוּ בְּרַחֲמָיו לְעֵינֵי כָּל חָי

God alone is our God and our Creator, our Ruler and our Helper; and in mercy, God is revealed in the sight of all the living:

אֲנִי יְיָ אֱלֹהֵיכֶם!

I am Elochim your God!

יִמְלֹךְ יְיָ לְעוֹלָם, אֱלֹהַֽיִךְ צִיּוֹן לְדֹר וָדֹר, הַלְלוּיָהּ.

Elocha  shall reign forever, your God, O Zion, from generation to generation, Hallelujah!

לְדוֹר וָדוֹר נַגִּיד גָּדְלֶֽךָ וּלְנֵֽצַח נְצָחִים קְדֻשָּׁתְךָ נַקְדִּישׁ, וְשִׁבְחֲךָ אֱלֹהֵֽינוּ מִפִּֽינוּ לֹא יָמוּשׁ לְעוֹלָם וָעֶד. בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה יְיָ, הָאֵל הַקָּדוֹשׁ.

To all generations we will declare Your greatness, and for all eternity proclaim Your holiness. Your praise, O God, shall never depart from our lips. Blessed are You, Adonai, the Holy God.

Nishmat Prayer (“The soul of …”)

The soul of every living being shall bless Your Name, Elohim our God, the spirit of all flesh shall always glorify and exalt Your remembrance, our King. From this world to the World to Come, You are God, and other than You we have no king, redeemer, or savior. He who liberates, rescues and sustains, answers and is merciful in every time of distress and anguish, we have no king, helper or supporter but You!

God of the first and the last, God of all creatures, Master of all Generations, Who is extolled through a multitude of praises, Who guides His world with kindness and His creatures with mercy. Elohim is truth; He neither slumbers nor sleeps. He Who rouses the sleepers and awakens the slumberers. Who raises the dead and heals the sick, causes the blind to see and straightens the bent. Who makes the mute speak and reveals what is hidden. To You alone we give thanks!

Were our mouth as full of song as the sea, and our tongue as full of joyous song as its multitude of waves, and our lips as full of praise as the breadth of the heavens, and our eyes as brilliant as the sun and the moon, and our hands as outspread as the eagles of the sky and our feet as swift as hinds — we still could not thank You sufficiently, Elohim our God and God of our forefathers, and to bless Your Name for even one of the thousand thousand, thousands of thousands and myriad myriads of favors, miracles and wonders that you performed for our ancestors and for us. At first You redeemed us from Egypt, Elohim our God, and liberated us from the house of bondage. In famine You nourished us, and in plenty you sustained us. From sword you saved us; from plague you let us escape; and from severe and enduring diseases you spared us. Until now Your mercy has helped us, and Your kindness has not forsaken us. Do not abandon us, Elohim our God, forever. Therefore the organs that you set within us and the spirit and soul that you breathed into our nostrils, and the tongue that you placed in our mouth – all of them shall thank and bless and praise and glorify, exalt and revere, be devoted, sanctify and declare the sovereignty of Your Name, our King. For every mouth shall offer thanks to You; every tongue shall vow allegiance to You; every knee shall bend to You; every erect spine shall prostrate itself before You; all hearts shall fear You; and all innermost feelings and thoughts shall sing praises to Your name, as it is written: “All my bones shall say, Elohim who is like You? You save the poor man from one who is stronger than he, the poor and destitute from the one who would rob him.”

The outcry of the poor You hear, the screams of the destitute You listen to, and You save. And it is written: “Sing joyfully, O righteous, before Elohim; for the upright praise is fitting.”

By the mouth of the upright You shall be exalted;
By the lips of the righteous shall You be blessed;
By the tongue of the devout shall You be sanctified;
And amid the holy shall You be lauded.

And in the assemblies of the myriads of Your people, the House of Israel, it is the duty of all creatures, before you Elohim, our God and God of our forefathers to thank, laud, praise, glorify, exalt, adore, render triumphant, bless, raise high, and sing praises – even beyond all expressions of the songs and praises of David, the son of Jesse, Your servant, Your anointed.

And thus may Your name be praised forever- our King, the God, the Great and holy King – in heaven and on earth. Because for you it is fitting – Elohim our God and God of our forefathers – song and praise, lauding and hymns, power and dominion, triumph, greatness and strength, praise and splendor, holiness and sovereignty, blessings and thanksgivings to Your Great and Holy Name; from this world to the World to Come You are God. Blessed are You elohim, God, King exalted through praises, God of thanksgivings, Master of Wonders, Creator of all souls, Master of all deeds, Who chooses the musical songs of praise – King, Unique One, God, Life-Giver of the world.

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