CANDLEGLOW LESSON PARASHAH MISHPATIM
(Exodus 21:1-24:18) Week 18
The instructions of the Lord were first spoken, before ever being recorded on scrolls. Adonai authenticated His Ten Words audibly, to ensure no one present would be able to question an ordained, written version of God’s instruction or its authenticity. Oral Law preceded Written Law.
As we begin the journey around Mount Sinai, we see Adonai’s mercy and grace pour forth from the top of the mountain with signs, wonders, and clouds of smoke which veiled His powerful, Divine Presence or Shekinah. The Lord’s majestic power was the backdrop to His call to holiness.
The Nation of Israel was trained in the instructions of Adonai, comparing how to live versus how not to live. They were called to observe the Holy Feasts of the Lord at specific times of the year, which were appointed by the Lord. These times the Lord set aside are called Mo’edim, or the determined times of the Lord.
On the other side of the Law stood three pillars of His command, to keep or Tishmor the three annual Pilgrimages, to be observed forever. The three pillars of Pilgrimage were to be scrupulously guarded by Israel. They stand like brilliant sapphire spires up to Adonai’s throne in heaven, as reminders that the Father created mankind for intimacy with Him! The three pilgrimages, drawing mankind into sacred pauses with the Father are: Passover or Pesach, Pentecost or Shavuot, and the Feast of Tabernacles or Sukkot.
In this comparison or the Mishlei, of either honoring or dishonoring the relationship with Adonai, it is as clear as the sapphire stone pavement gleamingly visible under Adonai’s feet during the heavenly Covenant meal recounted in this Parashah! Adonai’s Covenant Laws with Israel would pinpoint the direction of their relationship with God.
This is the Lesson of the Compass from Heaven. I see the compass in the hearts of each Hebrew family member as they were passed over on that fateful Passover (Pesach) night; the death of the first-born. As they journeyed toward the Mountain of the Sword, in the Sinai desert, as they heard from God’s lips, His promises and prophecy, as they saw with their own eyes, His power atop Mount Sinai, the compass of their hearts began to magnetically move toward Adonai and toward faith! However, faith untested is not faith at all.
This is the Lesson of the Compass from Heaven. God sees us from the inside out. He first sees our heart and the direction of the compass hidden deeply within it. Through His laws, or Mitzvot, the Compass from Heaven will be drawn magnetically toward His faithful love, or will repel in the opposite direction. His commandments have become our Compass from Heaven! The direction of the heart toward Adonai can be measured, and even forecasted!
This is the Lesson of the Compass from Heaven. The instruction or Mitzvot of Adonai holds within; life, light, love, and unity. In it there is no darkness; no not any! His instruction is as discerning as a compass!
By way of the compass of His Mitzvot, the Lord sees deeply into our reflections, and deeper still, into our hearts. Tonight, on this Shabbat of self-examination, may our reflections shine with His brilliant Sapphire Truth!
May we obediently journey with Him, from glory to glory! He promises our obedience will bring an ascent!
May we climb!