B’ha’alotcha / In Your Setting Up
Numbers 8:1-12:16
HafTorah  Zechariah 2:10-4:7
 Brit Chadasha 1 Corinthians 10:6-14

      In the parsha B’ha’alotcha, ‘In Your Setting Up’ or ‘When You Kindle’, is the setting up of the lamps, the setting apart of the Levites, the second Passover, the two silver trumpets, the cloud that covered the Tabernacle, the Israelites leaving Sinai, fire from the Lord, the gift of quail, and in Numbers 12 Mirian and Aaron’s opposition of Moshe. 
      This parsha opens with the directions of the lampstand. ‘And the Lord spoke to Moses, saying: Speak to Aaron, and say to him, ‘When you arrange the lamps, the seven lamps shall give light in front of the lampstand.’ And Aaron did so; he arranged the lamps to face toward the front of the lampstand, as the Lord commanded Moses.’  Numbers 8:1-3.
    The importance of these directives was to arrange the lights so that the light shines in front of the menorah, not behind it, but in front of it. This is a huge metaphor for our lives.  The menorah is the main component and the seven lights shine from it. There is one light that we are to shine from outwardly, because the Main Light does not need our light, but rather we need The Light to shine the correct Light so our representation is true. 
     Psalm 119:105 ‘Your word is a lamp for my feet, a light on my path.
     Numbers 6:24-26 “The Lord bless you and keep you; the Lord make his face shine on you
and be gracious to you; the Lord turn his face toward you and give you peace.”
     Isaiah 60:1 ‘Arise, shine, for your light has come, and the glory of the Lord rises upon you.’ 
     John 8:12 ‘Then Yeshua spoke to them again, saying, “I am the light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life.”
     In Acts, we are specifically told who we are and the roles we are to play.  Acts 13:47 ‘For so the Lord has commanded us: ‘I have set you as a light to the Gentiles, that you should be for salvation to the ends of the earth.’
     We cannot shine His light without walking in the truth. The light of the menorah alludes to the Torah, which is the eternal flame, lighting the pathway for mankind. The whole truth of God’s instructions is to be the spiritual light to man.  King Solomon speaks of God’s grace in giving His Torah His people:  Proverbs 6:23 - “For the commandment is a lamp and the teaching a light, and the reproofs of discipline are the way of life.” God’s commandments are clear as they “enlighten the eyes” - Psalm 19:8.
     In Numbers 11:1-14 the people begin to murmur and complain.  Moshe troubled by the wailing and the complaining of the people, cries out to God, ‘Why have you brought this trouble on your servant? What have I done to displease you that you put the burden of all these people on me? 12 Did I conceive all these people? Did I give them birth? Why do you tell me to carry them in my arms, as a nurse carries an infant, to the land you promised on oath to their ancestors? 13 Where can I get meat for all these people? They keep wailing to me, ‘Give us meat to eat!’ 14 I cannot carry all these people by myself; the burden is too heavy for me. 15 If this is how you are going to treat me, please go ahead and kill me—if I have found favor in your eyes—and do not let me face my own ruin.” Numbers 11:11-15. Surprisingly, the man who brought God’s people out of Egypt now insists that God end his life. In Numbers 11:23 during the discussion God declares: ‘And the Lord said to Moses, “Has the Lord’s arm been shortened? Now you shall see whether what I say will happen to you or not.” 
     Some verses translate it: Is the LORDS arm too short?’ This can also be translated: ‘Is the LORD’S power limited?’
     וַיֹּ֤אמֶר יְהֹוָה֙ אֶל־מֹשֶׁ֔ה הֲיַ֥ד יְהֹוָ֖ה תִּקְצָ֑ר עַתָּ֥ה תִרְאֶ֛ה הֲיִקְרְךָ֥ דְבָרִ֖י אִם־לֹֽא׃    
      The arm of God is a mighty vision of His power.
     Isaiah 59:16 ‘He saw that there was no man, and wondered that there was no intercessor; therefore His own arm brought salvation for Him; and His own righteousness, it sustained Him.’
     Deuteronomy 4:34 ‘Has any god ever tried to take for himself one nation out of another nation, by testings, by signs and wonders, by war, by a mighty hand and an outstretched arm, or by great and awesome deeds, like all the things the Lord your God did for you in Egypt before your very eyes?’
        What power is revealed in the arm of God? Isaiah 53:1 asks: ‘Who has believed our report? And to whom has the arm of the Lord been revealed?’
     God assures Moshe of His goodness and faith and tells him to take seventy elders who will bear the burden with him. God takes His Spirit that is upon Moses and extends it to the elders, relieving Moshe of the feeling of being alone against the people. Yet, two of them, Eldad and Medad, among the six chosen from each tribe but left out of the final call, begin prophesying within the camp. Joshua fears that this may lead to a challenge of Moses’ leadership and urges Moses to stop them. Moshe answers with a new and different type of certainty: “Are you jealous on my behalf? Would that all the Lord’s people were prophets, that He would rest His Spirit upon them all!” Numbers 11:29
    The final chapter of this parsha, flips once again to the attack on the leader, Moshe. His own sister complains and murmurs about his wife, the Kushite woman. He had been betrayed and slandered, by those closest to him. Yet Moses is unaffected. It is here that the Torah makes its great and famous statement: “Now the man Moses was very humble, more so than any other man on Earth.” Numbers 12:3. The idea that a leader’s highest virtue is humility must have seemed absurd, almost self-contradictory, in the ancient world. Leaders were kings, proud, magnificent warriors.  They built temples in their own selves.  Their role was not to serve but to be served. Everyone else was expected to be humble but not them. However, as we see once again that Moshe climbs up to humility.
     Under the stress of Israel’s continued obstinance, Moses turns inward.  He complains to God “Why have I found so little favor in Your sight? Where am I to get meat to give all these people? … I cannot bear all these people alone; the burden is too heavy for me.” The key words here are “I,” “me” and “myself.” Moses has lapsed into me, myself and I.  He sees the Israelites’ behavior as a challenge to himself, not God. God has to remind him, “Is the Lord’s arm too short”? It isn’t about Moshe, it is about what and whom Moses represents: God.  As with Samuel in 1 Samuel 8:6-8 ‘But when they said, “Give us a king to lead us,” this displeased Samuel; so he prayed to the Lord. And the Lord told him: “Listen to all that the people are saying to you; it is not you they have rejected, but they have rejected me as their king. As they have done from the day I brought them up out of Egypt until this day, forsaking me and serving other gods, so they are doing to you.’
      Over and over again, God’s people are shown His mercy, goodness, everlasting kindness and grace.  We are made aware of His testimonies, His boundaries, and His statutes.  We are shown His will, and over and over again, His people murmur, complain, feel the need to change His boundaries, disregard His statutes and ignore His character.
     Greatness is humility for God and for those who seek to walk in His ways. It is also the greatest single source of strength as we see in this parsha. 

B'ha'alotcha / In Your Setting Up
Numbers 8:1-12:16
Zechariah 2:10-4:7
1 Corinthians 10:6-13

      This Torah portion is rich with instructions that should preface our lives today.  Without studying the Scriptures in their entirety, we often negate the substance of the Torah and its directions. We form our own opinions regarding Scripture concerning the Brit Chadasha.  Picking and choosing becomes habit within denominations, and foundations are flimsy if any at all.  We choose our habits, and our habits become our future.
     In the beginning of chapter eight, there is the arrangement of the lamps, which are to be facing towards the lampstand. Not behind or next to, but towards: ‘the seven lamps shall give light in front of the lampstand.’ And Aaron did so; he arranged the lamps to face toward the front of the lampstand, as the Lord commanded Moses.’ Numbers 8:2-3. Notice this comparison regarding the lamps and burning before the throne in Revelation 4:5b ‘Seven lamps of fire were burning before the throne, which are the seven Spirits of God.’
     Numbers chapter nine contains the instructions for the second Passover. This is for a person that is unclean or away on a journey during the first Passover so  that he may still keep the Passover. God strictly states that if that person is able and does not keep the Passover, he shall be cut off.  Numbers 9:9-13. God again reiterates that there is one ordinance for all in Numbers 9:14.
    Matthew 28:19-20 ‘Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.’ Psalm 19:9 ‘The fear of the Lord is clean, enduring forever; the judgments of the Lord are true; they are righteous altogether.’ 2 Kings 17:37 ‘The statutes and the ordinances and the law and the commandment which He wrote for you, you shall observe to do forever; and you shall not fear other gods.’
    Chapter nine continues with the cloud and fire, which we can remez to the Brit Chadasha. 2 Thessalonians 1:7 ‘…and give relief to you who are troubled, and to us as well. This will happen when the Lord Jesus is revealed from heaven in blazing fire with his powerful angels.’ Matthew 3:11-12: ‘I baptize you with water for repentance. But after me comes one who is more powerful than I, whose sandals I am not worthy to carry. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire. 12 His winnowing fork is in his hand, and he will clear his threshing floor, gathering his wheat into the barn and burning up the chaff with unquenchable fire.’ Matthew 26:64 ‘Jesus said to him, “You have said so. But I tell you, from now on you will see the Son of Man seated at the right hand of Power and coming on the clouds of heaven.
     In chapter ten there is an interesting dialog between Moshe and Hobab where he explains the goodness, grace and mercy of Adonai according to the promises to Israel.  Numbers 10:31-36 So Moses said, “Please do not leave, inasmuch as you know how we are to camp in the wilderness, and you can be our eyes. 32 And it shall be, if you go with us—indeed it shall be—that whatever good the Lord will do to us, the same we will do to you. So they departed from the mountain of the Lord on a journey of three days; and the ark of the covenant of the Lord went before them for the three days’ journey, to search out a resting place for them. 34 And the cloud of the Lord was above them by day when they went out from the camp.  So it was, whenever the ark set out, that Moses said: “Rise up, O Lord! Let Your enemies be scattered, and let those who hate You flee before You.” 36 And when it rested, he said: “Return, O Lord, to the many thousands of Israel.”
     Israel He loves, Psalm 47:4 ‘He chooses our inheritance for us, the glory of Jacob whom He loves. Selah.’ Romans 11:1 ‘I ask, then, has God rejected his people? By no means! For I myself am an Israelite, a descendant of Abraham, a member of the tribe of Benjamin. God has not rejected his people whom he foreknew.’ Isaiah 11:12 ‘He will raise a signal for the nations and will assemble the banished of Israel, and gather the dispersed of Judah from the four corners of the earth.’
    Chapter 11 contains the gift of manna, the seventy elders and the provision of quail. We see references to this in: John 6:31 ‘Our fathers ate the manna in the wilderness; as it is written, ‘He gave them bread out of heaven to eat.’ John 6:50-51 ‘This is the bread which comes down out of heaven, so that one may eat of it and not die. I am the living bread that came down out of heaven; if anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever; and the bread also which I will give for the life of the world is My flesh.’ Revelation 2:17 ‘He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To him who overcomes, to him I will give some of the hidden manna, and I will give him a white stone, and a new name written on the stone which no one knows but he who receives it.’
    In Luke 10:1 Yeshua make a connection to seventy elders, ‘After these things the Lord appointed seventy others also, and sent them two by two before His face into every city and place where He Himself was about to go…’
     B’ha’alotcha closes with the infliction of skin disease upon Miriam. We see cases of Yeshua cleansing the person inflicted with a skin disease in Luke 17, Mark 1, Matthew 8 and more.  However, Yeshua never deviated from the Torah as He instructed the cleansed person to show themselves to the Priests.
    What is the foundation that we build on?  It must start from the beginning.
     Luke 6:46-48 ‘Why do you call me ‘Lord, Lord,’ and not do what I tell you? Everyone who comes to me and hears my words and does them, I will show you what he is like: he is like a man building a house, who dug deep and laid the foundation on the rock. And when a flood arose, the stream broke against that house and could not shake it, because it had been well built.’
     Ephesians 2:10 ‘For we are his workmanship, created in Yeshua for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them. Ephesians 2:20 ‘Built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Yeshua Himself being the cornerstone…’
    The conversation between Yeshua and the woman at the well also shows us the importance of studying and living by ALL of God’s Word. The Samaritan woman asks Yeshua how it is that He can ask for a drink of water from her. Rightly so, He says in John 4:13 that He is the Living Water, and then He questions her marital status. He lets her know that she used to be married to five husbands, the Torah, then went astray, as Hosea prophesied about God’s people leaving Torah and committing adultery with other gods.  Profoundly, He answers: John 4:21-24 ‘Yeshua said to her, “Woman, believe Me, the hour is coming when you will neither on this mountain, nor in Jerusalem, worship the Father. 22 You worship what you do not know; we know what we worship, for salvation is of the Jews. 23 But the hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth; for the Father is seeking such to worship Him. 24 God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.”
     What is truth? John 17:14-17 ‘I have given them Your word; and the world has hated them because they are not of the world, just as I am not of the world. 15 I do not pray that You should take them out of the world, but that You should keep them from the evil one. 16 They are not of the world, just as I am not of the world. 17 Sanctify them by Your truth. Your word is truth.’