Posts Tagged With: #redemption

Bereishit/ Bereishis (Part 1)

 

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Bereishit/Bereishis

Tishrei —In the Beginning

Gen. 1:1-6:8

 Is. 42:5-43:10   (Haftarah)

 

Hashem’s Torah is our treasure of Truth, Light, and Life.

As we open up our Holy Tanach to Genesis we are blessed to read: “In the beginning of G-d’s creating—the heavens and the earth.” [1]

 

One Day:

When G-d began to create heaven and earth— the earth being unformed and void, with darkness over the surface of the deep and a wind from G-d sweeping over the water— G-d said, “Let there be light”; and there was light. G-d saw that the light was good, and G-d separated the light from the darkness. G-d called the light Day, and the darkness He called Night. And there was evening and there was morning, a first day.” (Genesis 1:1-5) [2]

Hashem is Light. Wind is Spirit (Ruach) of  G-d Who hovered over the waters of Chaos. On Creation Day One, darkness was separated by light. Light was called  Day, and darkness was called Night. Hashem said it was Good, Tov.

Day Two:

“G-d said, “Let there be an expanse in the midst of the water, that it may separate water from water.” G-d made the expanse, and it separated the water which was below the expanse from the water which was above the expanse. And it was so. G-d called the expanse Sky. And there was evening and there was morning, a second day.”(Genesis 1:6-8)[3]

Day Two was the separation of the expanse (Rakiah) between the upper (heavenly/Shamayim), and the lower (earthly/Mayim) waters. The firmament was separated the upper and lower waters. The Heavens in Hebrew is “Schamiam.

Day Three:

 G-d said, “‘Let the water below the sky be gathered into one area, that the dry land may appear.” And it was so. G-d called the dry land Earth, and the gathering of waters He called Seas. And God saw that this was good. And G-d said, “Let the earth sprout vegetation: seed-bearing plants, fruit trees of every kind on earth that bear fruit with the seed in it.” And it was so. The earth brought forth vegetation: seed-bearing plants of every kind, and trees of every kind bearing fruit with the seed in it. And God saw that this was good. And there was evening and there was morning, a third day.’”(Genesis 1:10-14)[4]

Day Three was a gathering of the lower waters into one place so that dry land could appear. The gatherings of the waters were called Seas, and the land gathered was called earth. There was vegetation, seed-bearing plants, and fruit-bearing trees. G-d called it good.

Day Four:

G-d said, “Let there be lights in the expanse of the sky to separate day from night; they shall serve as signs for the set times—the days and the years; and they serve as lights in the expanse of the sky to shine upon the earth.” And it was so. G-d made the two great lights, the greater light to dominate the day and the lesser light to dominate the night, and the stars. And G-d set them in the expanse of the sky to shine upon the earth, to dominate the day and the night, and to separate light from darkness. And G-d saw that this was good. And there was evening and there was morning, a fourth day.” (Genesis 1:15-20)[5]

Day Four, Hashem gave us His set times, the Moedim. The sun, moon, and stars were created to be great lights: the sun to dominate day, while the moon to give lesser light at night. The day separates the darkness– Rulership. To Govern. And G-d said it was good. We, too, are to illuminate Hashem’s light, bringing Torah to others in kindness. Like the moon, our face should illuminate His Truth that shines down on us.

G-d is our King and Ruler. He is Sovereign Who created the heavens and the earth. He is our Shield and Protector. He is merciful, yet “Elohim” means judgment. Man cannot live under strict justice alone. Man needs a merciful G-d in order to have existence. Hashem’s righteousness is too powerful contrary to our sinful nature.

Our Father knew we needed Hashem’s mercy, a delicate balance of Mercy and Justice. “Reisheet t’vuato” is referred to the Children of Israel as the “First Fruits” of Hashem’s Harvest, according to Jeremiah 2:3. Israel is Holy to Hashem.

“Through the reishis Hashem created [the heavens and the earth],” and reishis means Torah, as in “Hashem made me [the Torah] the beginning (reishis) of His way” (Proverbs 8:22) [6]

Hashem created the world for the sake of Israel. Hashem made the Torah, and He created His Throne of Glory. Hashem is Light yet, be He can be concealed in darkness by restricting too much light into the world. The darkness cannot comprehend light. This reminds us when Moses returned down the mountain, the people couldn’t bear to look at the brightness of Moses’ face; therefore, he covered his face from the people.

Day Five:

“G-d said, “Let the waters bring forth swarms of living creatures, and birds that fly above the earth across the expanse of the sky.” G-d created the great sea monsters, and all the living creatures of every kind that creep, which the waters brought forth in swarms, and all the winged birds of every kind. And G-d saw that this was good. G-d blessed them, saying, “Be fertile and increase, fill the waters in the seas, and let the birds increase on the earth.” And there was evening and there was morning, a fifth day.” (Genesis 1: 21-24)[7]

Day Five was creation of birds of the sky and fish of the sea. Hashem blessed them to be fruitful and multiply (according to its kind). Hashem endowed the living creatures to reproduce,  to teem in swarms of currents in the wind, or through water; rapidly with Hashem’s might and power given. G-d said it was good.

Likewise, with Torah, we are to take the Torah out to the Nations, rapidly, planting our Father’s seeds of Truth; bringing G-d’s Light to others.

“Come and see how powerful is the might of the Torah, and how high it rises above all! Because whoever conducts his life according to the Torah has no fear of those above or below, and mishaps or illnesses of this world do not concern him. Through the Torah, he is attached to the Tree of Life and learns from it every day.”(Zohar 1:11a, 3)[8]

Day Six:

G-d said, “Let the earth bring forth every kind of living creature: cattle, creeping things, and wild beasts of every kind.” And it was so. G-d made wild beasts of every kind and cattle of every kind, and all kinds of creeping things of the earth. And G-d saw that this was good. And G-d said, “Let us make man in our image, after our likeness. They shall rule the fish of the sea, the birds of the sky, the cattle, the whole earth, and all the creeping things that creep on earth.” And G-d created man in His image, in the image of G-d He created him; male and female He created them. G-d blessed them and G-d said to them, “Be fertile and increase, fill the earth and master it; and rule the fish of the sea, the birds of the sky, and all the living things that creep on earth.” G-d said, “See, I give you every seed-bearing plant that is upon all the earth, and every tree that has seed-bearing fruit; they shall be yours for food. And to all the animals on land, to all the birds of the sky, and to everything that creeps on earth, in which there is the breath of life, [I give] all the green plants for food.” And it was so. And G-d saw all that He had made, and found it very good. And there was evening and there was morning, the sixth day. “(Genesis 1:25-31)[9]

Day Six was the creation of Beast and Man. Hashem provided light, soil, water, seeds, plants, trees, and food for all living creatures, and Man. Beast needed to be created before Man so that Man (Human kind) could have domain over all things. Adam came from the dust. G-d blew in the Breath of Life, Ruach, into Adam’s nostrils. With the dust being formed into man, we can only imagine a little of the kneading and forming by making Challah, separating it with a blessings. Chavah (Eve) was designed from Adam’s rib. She didn’t come from his heel to be walked on, nor from Adam’s head to be above, but to be at his side, evenly, protected under his arm.

Day Seven:

“The heaven and the earth were finished, and all their array. On the seventh day G-d finished the work that He had been doing, and He ceased on the seventh day from all the work that He had done. And G-d blessed the seventh day and declared it holy, because on it G-d ceased from all the work of creation that He had done.” (Genesis 2:1-3)[10]

Day Seven was declared the Sabbath, G-d abstained from His work. It is to be a day of rest from the ordinary six days of work– to be set apart from what is ordinary. The Torah tells us that G-d blessed and sanctified the seventh day to be a Holy convocation unto Hashem. Our fourth commandment tells us to “Remember” the Sabbath and keep it holy. Adam and Eve were created just before Sabbath. Man was given the intelligence and wisdom to bring the holiness of the Sabbath (Shabbat/Shabbos) into their ordinary weekdays. Animals were created to perform like beasts, while Man was created imperfect so that we could continue to improve ourselves; having the ability to grow closer to Hashem– to learn how to surrender ourselves to G-d. The Torah is our lifeline back to the Father. The Torah is like our umbilical cord, life source, connecting us to Hashem. Our souls are like a newborn baby, crying out to our Father, waiting for Hashem’s comforting love and guidance.

The Torah is powerful! It was given to us (through Moses) by the Hand of G-d; written by His Almighty finger. Hashem brought forth the cure for the sickness (sin) of man that will draw us to our Redeemer through Teshuvah. When we have Emunah (Faith) in Hashem’s Truth, through His light given, Redemption comes with the might and power of Hashem—returning us back to the Garden.

Hashem will always protect Israel, without her, nothing would continue to exist. Israel is the Bride. She will be redeemed!

Let’s take a closer look at “Bereishit/ Bereshis.” It means “Beginning.” Hashem is the beginning and the end. Hashem is the first and last. There is no other G-d. The first letter of the Hebrew letter is “Aleph” which is silent. “Beit/ Beis” is the second letter which means “to build.”

“A house is built by wisdom, And is established by understanding.” (Proverbs 24:3)[11]

Wisdom (Chokmah) builds (Beis) her home with understanding (Binah). Binah is part of the sephira, below Keter (Head/crown) on the Tree of Life. Binah is discernment to foresee what belongs, and what doesn’t.  In the beginning, Elohim brought forth His Healing Power, with Chokmah. Binah builds the house with Emet (Truth) of G-d, as it is written in the Torah and lived through in the Oral Torah.

 “For the commandment is a lamp, The teaching is a light, And the way to life is the rebuke that disciplines.(Proverbs 6:23)[12]

“Mitzvah” is Hebrew for Commandments. Hashem’s Torah (Law/Instructions) is our Light! We are to keep Hashem’s mitzvoth daily. Can one remove the Torah from their life and believe they are truly living out their days that honor Hashem, our Creator? Removing the Torah would remove the Truth Hashem gave to us on Mount Sinai.  There would be no more light. No Truth. No Life. The Adversary is the Evil Inclination who lies, wandering “to and fro” on the earth seeking for someone to devour. Did he not question G-d’s authority back in the Garden of Eden when he asked Chavah what Elohim really said? Hasatan twisted the Torah for man to question G-d’s authority. It’s important not to take verses out of context. The Torah is our guidance, and way to have Life that is Eternal.

“[I swear] by the Torah and the teaching, that they will make this statement to you, that has no light of dawn.”(Isaiah8:20)[13]

We look to the G-d in Heaven, our Creator, Who is mighty with great power Who brings our redemption.

Let’s briefly recap:

Let there be light, and light came into the world. There was light, but man hated darkness. G-d created the light and said it was good, but wicked men hated the light, therefore, G-d separated the light from the darkness. Those who hate darkness do not seek what is light, and those who love truth, seek to walk in the light—TORAH!

Torah is the living truth and light. If we do not want to be corrected (to be teachable), then the alternative states we do not want Truth.

“And the LORD G-d said, “Now that the man has become like one of us, knowing good and bad, what if he should stretch out his hand and take also from the tree of life and eat, and live forever!” So the LORD God banished him from the garden of Eden, to till the soil from which he was taken. He drove the man out, and stationed east of the garden of Eden the cherubim and the fiery ever-turning sword, to guard the way to the tree of life.” (Genesis 3:22- 24)[14]

When Adam and Eve (Chavah) sinned, they became separated from G-d, and had to leave the Garden. The Tree of Life needed to be guarded by Angels (with swords) until Hashem brings Redemption for us to return to the Garden. Hashem’s love, mercy and grace protected man from the Tree of Life, not to be left in a sinful state [Eternally] that would leave man dead, spiritually.

You shall make a curtain of blue, purple, and crimson yarns, and fine twisted linen; it shall have a design of cherubim worked into it.” (Exodus 26:31)[15]

Just like the Cherubim’s that guarded the Tree of Life, we cannot just go through the Holy of Holies by ourselves as there is a sword.

“The LORD said to Moses: Tell your brother Aaron that he is not to come at will into the Shrine behind the curtain, in front of the cover that is upon the ark, lest he die; for I appear in the cloud over the cover.”(Leviticus 16:2)[16]

We cannot return to Gan Eden by ourselves, based on our own terms.  Hashem is an all- consuming fire. We cannot return to the Garden without His restoration through Hashem’s redemption—it is amazing to know that the Garden of Eden (Gan Eden) was not part of the Creation. He didn’t speak it into existence. He planted it HIMSELF. Hashem is the Gardener!

“HASHEM G-d planted a garden in Eden, to the east, and placed there the man whom He had formed.” (Genesis 2:8)[17]

When Elohim created Adam, he formed Adam outside of the garden, breathed-life (Ruach) into man, and placed him into the garden. Adam was the one who was given the commandment not to eat the fruit from the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil. Eve wasn’t designed yet. She was designed from Adam’s rib later on. It was Adam who forgot about G-d with his ego. Eve sinned when she desired to have more knowledge (pride). Sadly, Adam blamed G-d and Eve without taking any responsibility that he had forgotten G-d and listened to a different master–hasatan. OUCH!

“The LORD G-d formed man from the dust of the earth. He blew into his nostrils the breath of life, and man became a living being.” (Genesis 2:7)[18]

Also read:

The LORD G-d took the man and placed him in the garden of Eden, to till it and tend it. And the LORD G-d commanded the man, saying, “Of every tree of the garden you are free to eat; but as for the tree of knowledge of good and bad, you must not eat of it; for as soon as you eat of it, you shall die.” The LORD G-d said, “It is not good for man to be alone; I will make a fitting helper for him.” And the LORD G-d formed out of the earth all the wild beasts and all the birds of the sky, and brought them to the man to see what he would call them; and whatever the man called each living creature, that would be its name. And the man gave names to all the cattle and to the birds of the sky and to all the wild beasts; but for Adam no fitting helper was found. So the LORD G-d cast a deep sleep upon the man; and, while he slept, He took one of his ribs and closed up the flesh at that spot. And the LORD G-d fashioned the rib that He had taken from the man into a woman; and He brought her to the man. Then the man said, “This one at last Is bone of my bones And flesh of my flesh. This one shall be called Woman, For from man was she taken.” (Genesis2:15-23)[19]

G-d brought forth the woman to be Adam’s “protector.” We will talk more on that later on a different topic.

This Torah Portion is about the Creation of the heavens and the earth. Man was nothing until Elohim breathed life into him. The Haftorah is about the creation of the Nation of Israel.

Thus said G-d the LORD, Who created the heavens and stretched them out, Who spread out the earth and what it brings forth, Who gave breath to the people upon it And life to those who walk thereon: the LORD, in My grace, have summoned you, And I have grasped you by the hand. I created you, and appointed you A covenant people, a light of nations— Opening eyes deprived of light, Rescuing prisoners from confinement, From the dungeon those who sit in darkness. I am the LORD, that is My name; I will not yield My glory to another, Nor My renown to idols.” (Isaiah 42:5-8)[20]

Just as Elohim gave light on the fourth day of Creation (before the sun, moon and stars were created), Hashem is a going to build up and restore Israel! Hashem separated light from the darkness in Creation; Hashem also separated Israel from the Nations with His covenant to be SET APART. Hashem will bring our Messiah to come. G-d will bring the restoration of One Accord (Echad), One Belief, and One G-d.

The LORD desires His [servant’s] vindication, That he may magnify and glorify [His] Teaching. Yet it is a people plundered and despoiled: All of them are trapped in holes, Imprisoned in dungeons. They are given over to plunder, with none to rescue them; To despoilment, with none to say “Give back!” If only you would listen to this, Attend and give heed from now on!” (Isaiah 42:21-23)[21]

Hashem will restore all matters. He will bring us all home to Israel for His ingathering:

Fear not, for I am with you: I will bring your folk from the East, Will gather you out of the West; I will say to the North, “Give back!” And to the South, “Do not withhold! Bring My sons from afar, And My daughters from the end of the earth— All who are linked to My name, Whom I have created, Formed, and made for My glory—“(Isaiah 43:5-7)[22]

Hashem will call His Witnesses:

My witnesses are you —declares the LORD— My servant, whom I have chosen. To the end that you may take thought, And believe in Me, And understand that I am He: Before Me no g-d was formed, And after Me none shall exist— None but me, the LORD; Beside Me, none can grant triumph. I alone foretold the triumph And I brought it to pass; I announced it, And no strange god was among you. So you are My witnesses —declares the LORD— And I am G-d.”  (Isaiah 43:10-12)[23]

Hashem separated Israel and became scattered. But He will bring an ingathering; calling back His Sheep (people) to Israel when there is a restoration of Israel. You can read more about Hashem’s Sheep in “Our Shephard’s Voice.”

After reading through these verses, we can verify the truth of the Torah, given to us by Hashem. Hashem is our G-d, Creator, and will make all things right.

The (4) Rivers will flow out from His inmost being. Just like in the beginning, in the Garden of Eden, the (4) Rivers flowed.

A river issues from Eden to water the garden, and it then divides and becomes four branches. The name of the first is Pishon, the one that winds through the whole land of Havilah, where the gold is. (The gold of that land is good; bdellium is there, and lapis lazuli.) The name of the second river is Gihon, the one that winds through the whole land of Cush. The name of the third river is Tigris, the one that flows east of Asshur. And the fourth river is the Euphrates.” (Genesis 2:10-14)[24]

 

Stay-tuned to Bereishit Part 2 . We will look for the connections of the four rivers to the Creation Story.

 

[1] Genesis 1:1, The Stone Edition, Tanach

[2] Genesis 1:1-5,  Sefaria

[3] Genesis 1:6-8. Sefaria

[4] Genesis 1: 10-14, Sefaria

[5] Genesis 15-20, Sefaria

[6] Bereishit Rabbah 1:1

[7] Genesis 1: 21-24, Sefaria

[8] Zohar 1:11a,3

[9] Genesis 1:25-31, Sefaria

[10] Genesis 2:1-3, Sefaria

[11] Proverbs 24:3, Sefaria

[12] Proverbs 6:23, Sefaria

[13] Isaiah 8:20, The Stone Edition

[14]Genesis 3:22-24, Sefaria

[15] Exodus 26:31, Sefaria

[16] Leviticus 16: 2, Sefaria

[17] Genesis 2:8, The Stone Edition

[18] Genesis 2:7, Sefaria

[19] Genesis 2: 15-23, Sefaria

[20] Isaiah 42: 5-8, Sefaria

[21] Isaiah 42: 21-23, Sefaria

[22] Isaiah 43:5-7, Sefaria

[23] Isaiah 43:10-12, Sefaria

[24] Genesis 2:10-14, Sefaria

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