PARASHAH VAYERA STUDY NOTES Genesis 18:1-22:24) Week 4
VAYERA: “And He Appeared“, “And the Lord appeared to him…”
AKEDAH: “The binding of Isaac” Rabbinical commentary on the binding of Isaac below:
Isaac’s death was never a possibility in the mind and heart of Abraham. God’s commandment to Abraham was very specific that Isaac was to be “raised up as an offering“ (like a wave offering) and God would use the opportunity to teach humankind that human or child sacrifice is not acceptable. This is precisely how the sages of the Talmud understood The Akedah. Citing the Prophet Jeremiah’s exhortation against child sacrifice (Chapter 19), they state unequivocally that such behavior never crossed God’s mind, referring specifically to the sacrificial slaughter of Isaac. (God is the same yesterday, today, and forever!)
HINEINI: “Here I am Lord”! Abraham’s OPEN and OBEDIENT response to the Call of Adonai!
MORIAH / Mt. Moriah: The end of the word translates from YAH…YHVH (Yaweh); the beginning of the word, from Moreh meaning:
Early Rain; Teacher; Torah; to fear or revere!
Mt. Moriah is the same infamous land upon which Yeshua was crucified and upon which the Temple Mount exists today; and where Solomon’s Temple was built, then destroyed in 70 AD. The Dome of the Rock now sits upon the place where Christ was crucified!
BRIT MILAH: Covenant of Circumcision (Brit means “Covenant”)
CIRCUMCISION: To cut away the “Old Man” or what is un-necessary. (What does not produce life) This is a Hebrew understanding we will read about again throughout the Torah, where God uses the words “Circumcision of the HEART” to describe one whose heart has been MADE NEW by faith in God.
BRIT CHADASHAH: New Covenant (New Testament)
BRIS: The ceremonial Brit-Milah of a male child
CHUTZPAH: Shameless, Bold, Audacious speech…Abraham’s petitions of the Lord to save Sodom and Gomorrah by boldly petitioning God how many righteous might be found to save the cities…This was Chutzpah! Abraham walked with God, was intimate with God in prayer and conversation, and trusted God! He spoke with audacity! He was shameless in his dependence upon God’s instruction and shameless in his adoration of God’s GOODNESS!
SODOM: (To Burn) We See that Sodom and Gomorrah burned with sexual perversion and abuse of others. Sexual perversion is a form of spiritual “Slavery”. To be led in this lifestyle forcibly, so as to be held captive by it. The men of Sodom sinned greatly against Adonai! The progression of sin in both cities culminated in homosexual perversion, as stated in commentary in the CJB. Lot and his entire family “dallied while longing” for Sodom in the face of the command to pick up and leave! Compare the command of Lekh L’kha for Abraham and his immediate obedience because of his faith! All sin is a spiritual REBELLION.
Consider Abraham’s obedience and personal choice to live a nomadic life, pitching a tent where the Lord would lead him; building only one thing in the process, an Altar to the Lord. Abraham did not build a house, or a place of residence. He built nothing but altars to the Lord.
Consider the contrast between Abraham’s obedient lifestyle to that of Lot, who lived IN the city: In a house with a door, in the anarchy of the wicked society of that city. This was Lot’s choice. Contrast with Abraham’s choices.
Why would Lot, who was called by Adonai as ‘tzaddik or righteous”, have offered his virgin daughters to the anarchists at his door, in order to preserve the holiness of the visiting guests?
My own pondering led me to wonder: Did Lot know offering his virgin daughters might temporarily appease the homosexual crowd of men trying to break into his house, but also knowing they would not have been interested in the daughters of Lot, because they were only interested in men? (Sydney)
We may sit in judgment of the culture of that day, but protecting one’s guests required great SACRIFICE. Was Lot right to offer his own daughters in place of the men the Sodomites wanted? We can see in the story that the Lord’s angelic messengers protected Lot and his daughters in spite of Lot’s lack of character and worldly viewpoint.
Lot attempted to appease the men of Sodom so the hospitality of his house would not be damaged. He makes the wrong choice in offering his own daughters!
The heavenly messengers overruled him.
It is said that Lot sat at the GATE of Sodom daily, meaning he sat as a judge of that City, but he lived as part of the culture of the day immersed in the spiritual anarchists ruling sin in the city! He could have gotten himself and his family OUT, as Abraham did when commanded in Lekh L’kha. The angels had to PULL Lot and his wife and family OUT of the degradation that were part of their lives. Lot’s wife LOOKED back LONGINGLY as they were pulled out of Sodom…She burned for Sodom!
Abraham was resting in the opening to his tent on the 3rd and most painful day after his own circumcision when the Lord Appeared to him. He was 99 years old when he was circumcised along with son Ishmael, who was 13 years old at the time.
Sarah listened from inside the tent to Abraham’s conversation with the Angel of the Lord…sages say this was due to Sarah’s modesty.
Sarah was humble and modest, although she was exceedingly beautiful.
The scriptures say that Adonai was disguised as one of the three “guests”. It is amazing to read Adonai’s question about Sarah? “Why did Sarah laugh and say, ‘Shall I indeed bear a child now that I am old?’”
Is anything too wonderful for the Lord? … Adonai says of Himself!
Praise: When we breathe IN the breath of the Holy Spirit (Ruach HaKodesh) and receive the Spirit of God into our lives, we become fruitful!
Abraham means “Father of many!”
Promise: When we obediently submit to the Kingship of Adonai in our life, there will be blessings…testings…refinement…and more blessings!
This sacred order of the ‘sanctification of our lives’ may happen numerous times in a long lifetime of loving our Father in Heaven!
Abraham was said to have been tested 10 times in his journey with Adonai!
The Prophetic Parallels of Isaac and Yeshua:
- Isaac and Yeshua were conceived through the miracle of the Ruach Ha Kodesh!
- Both were “the only begotten sons” of their fathers
- Both were sacrificed BY THEIR FATHERS
- Both went to Mount Moriah to be Sacrificed
- Both were to be resurrected on the Third Day
- Both willingly bore their burden of wood as they traveled to Mount Moriah
- Both willingly laid down for their Fathers will
- Both demonstrated the “Life for Life” Principle of a Holy God
- The Ram in the Thicket, as substitute for Isaac’s life, foreshadowed Yeshua’s life as the substitute for our lives!
HAFTARAH READING: (Old Covenant) (2 Kings) 4:1-37 (The Two miracles!)
#1) Elisha’s question to the widow of one of the guild prophets, “What should I do for you? Tell me, what you have in the house?” The widow answers, “Your servant has nothing in the house but a flask of oil”. Elisha commands her to, “Go and borrow containers from all your neighbors, empty containers, and don’t borrow just a few! Then go in, shut the door, with you and your sons inside, and pour oil into all those containers, and as they are filled, put them aside.” The widow accomplished all that Elisha had commanded of her until there were no more empty containers to fill, and then the oil stopped flowing. She came and told the man of God, and he said, “Go, sell the oil and pay your debt, then you and your sons can live on that, that is left.”
#2) A wealthy woman in Shunem pressed Elisha to stay during his visit to the city and to eat a meal with their family. She told her husband sometime later, after other visits by Elisha to her home, “I can see that this is a holy man of God who keeps stopping at our place. Please let’s build him a little room on the roof. We’ll put a bed and a table in it for him, and a stool and a candlestick. Then, whenever he comes to visit he can stay there.”
Elisha inquires of her, what can I do for you to thank you for your great hospitality? She admits she does not have a son and her husband is old. Elisha prophecies over the woman that next year at this season, she will be holding a son! This prophecy came to pass and a son was born.
Upon the sudden death of her young son the woman saddles up a donkey and sets out for Elisha’s help. In a multiple sequence of events to bring the child back to life by use of Elisha’s staff laid upon the boy’s face by her servant, Elisha enters the scene of the house of the dead child.
Elisha “shuts the door” with the servant in the room, and lays prostrate upon the child…face to face…hands to hands…lips to lips until the flesh of the child grew warm from Elisha’s warmth. Elisha walked around the room for a while, and the child did not arise. Elisha performed the laying upon the child again, and this time the child sneezed 7 times and opened his eyes! The Shunamite mother was called to “Pick up your son”, by Elisha. She then fell, prostrate at Elisha’s feet, picked up her son and went out!
Both these miracles have Parallel Imagery regarding the SAVING of the SON(s) by the power of Adonai to save! Adonai has the POWER to create LIFE and SAVE LIFE! Just as with Abraham and Isaac, life was created by God, for Abraham and Sarai in their old age! Adonai brought forth the Sacrificial Ram in the thicket, for the UNBINDING of Isaac!
BRIT CHADASHAH READING: (New Covenant) Luke 1;26-38, 24:36-53 and 2 Peter 2:4-11
The verses in Luke 1 speak of the descriptive narrative of The Annunciation of the Virgin Mary as revelation of the work of the Holy Spirit in the Creation of LIFE!
“The Ruach Ha Kodesh will come over you, the power of Ha ‘Elyon will cover you. Therefore, the holy child born to you will be called the Son of God.”
The verses in Luke 24 describe the appearing of the risen Yeshua to His disciples:
“Startled and terrified they thought they were seeing a ghost, but he said to them, why are you so upset? Why are these doubts welling up inside you? Look at my hands and my feet, it is I, myself! And later Jesus said, ‘This is what I meant when I was still with you and told you that everything written about me in the Torah of Moshe, the Prophets and the Psalms had to be fulfilled’.
In 2 Peter we read about the holy, consistent righteousness of Adonai to judge!
“God did not spare the angels who sinned, he put them in gloomy dungeons lower than Sh’ol to be held for judgement. And he did not spare the ancient world, he preserved Noach, a herald of righteousness, with seven others, and brought the Flood upon the world of ungodly people. And he condemned the cities of S’dom and Amora reducing them to ashes and ruin as a warning to those in the future who would live ungodly lives…but he rescued Lot, a righteous man who was distressed by the debauchery of those unprincipled people for the wicked deeds which that righteous man saw and heard, as he lived among them, tormented his righteous heart day after day.”
The stories in the Torah are for our TRAINING!
May all go well with us, because of Torah!
“The TORAH of ADONAI is perfect, restoring the inner person”. Psalm 19:7