Congregation Beth Ha'Mashiach
(House of the Messiah) - Worshipping ADONAI & His Messiah, Yeshua Ha'Mashiach
Living & teaching as our Messiah taught us to Live
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Weekly Drash - Beha'alotcha

Compliments of First Fruits of Zion
reprinted by permission of FFOZ

Parashat Hashavuah

Beha’alotcha - בהעלתך : “When you set up”
Torah : Numbers 8:1–12:16
Haftarah : Zechariah 2:10–4:7
Gospel : John 5, 6


The Punishment of Abundance


Thought for the Week:

Rabbi Shimon bar Yochai’s disciples asked him, “Why did [God send the manna every day instead of ] once annually?” He replied, “I will tell you a parable. It can be compared to a mortal king who had an only son. The king gave his son an allotment once a year, but then the son only visited his father once a year. Thereupon the king started portioning out the allotment daily so that his son had to visit him every day. God did the same with Israel. A man who had four or five children would worry, saying, ‘Perhaps no manna will come down tomorrow, and all will die of starvation.’ Therefore the Israelites had to turn their hearts to their Father in Heaven every day.” (b.Yoma 76a)



There is a common proverb that says, “Be careful what you ask for; you might get it.” Such was certainly the case with Israel in the wilderness. Their disdain for manna and their longing for the familiar led them to cry out for meat. While in route to Mount Sinai, the Children of Israel cried out to the LORD for provision, and He answered them. He sent quail into their midst. In Exodus 16:13 we read, “So it came about at evening that the quails came up and covered the camp…” Immediately after Israel received the quail, the manna began to descend. One year later the Children of Israel had grown to despise the manna.

The LORD punished their malcontented nature by answering their prayer and sending an abundance of quail. He withheld the manna and gave the Israelites a month’s supply of quail.

“You shall eat, not one day, nor two days, nor five days, nor ten days, nor twenty days, but a whole month, until it comes out of your nostrils and becomes loathsome to you; because you have rejected the LORD.” (Numbers 11:19-20)

Of course, without any preservatives or refrigeration, a month’s supply of quail turned rancid quickly. Sickness and plague followed. After a few days of quail, the Israelites were longing for the manna they had rejected.

In our lives we often experience the same dynamic. We find ourselves punished with abundance. Abundance is not always a blessing. Avarice and greed are quick to follow. A culture with too much food eats too much and becomes overweight and insensitive. A family with too much income begins to spend foolishly and finds it increasingly difficult to give the same proportion to the work of the Kingdom. It is far easier to labor for the kingdom when things are lean. “It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.” (Matthew 19:24)

The daily provision of the manna reminds us to be dependent upon God day by day. If a man could store up manna, hoarding it like money, he could be confident of his sustenance for many days to come. But the manna could not be hoarded. It required a daily dependence upon God.

The Master tells us that instead of seeking to store up treasure on earth, (which inevitably steals our hearts away from heaven), we are to merely ask for our daily bread. That is to say, we should be asking that the LORD will provide for us according to His measure and good purpose, even as He provided daily bread from Heaven for Israel while they were in the wilderness.


Shavuah Tov! Have a Good Week!

Shadows of the Messiah
"things into which angels long to look." (1 Peter 1:12)

Are you ready for a fresh encounter with the living Messiah? Shadows of the Messiah is the completely revised and rewritten Torah Club 2, written by the author of TC 4 & 5. This new material lifts the veil and reveals the Messiah on every page of Torah. Start a new year of Torah study and encounter the living Yeshua. More info...

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FFOZ's Weekly e-Drash is based on our popular Torah Study Program,
Torah Club. For an introduction to Torah Club click here.

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