"All the Torah learned in the present world will be vain compared to the Torah of Mashiach." - Kohelet Rabba 11:12
New Torah Portion - Ki Tetze – When (because) you will go out…. Perhaps the title of this new parashah contains a hidden prophetic message. There will come a time when true believers will “go out” from mainstream manmade religion and the thinking of this world and embrace all of YHVH’s Torah.
Parashat Ki Teitzei, contains 74 commandments, more mitzvoth(commandments) than any other Torah portion. Some of the commandments discussed: the law’s and instructions applicable when taking a second wife; the law of the rebellious son; the obligation to bury the dead without undue delay; the requirement to return a found object; the prohibition against causing pain to any living creature; the prohibition against prostitution; the laws of marriage and divorce; the procedure of the Levirate marriage; and the obligation to eradicate the memory of Amalek.
1Jn 2:3 And by this we know that we know Him, if we guard His commands.1 Footnote: 1See 3:6.
1Jn 2:4 The one who says, “I know Him,” and does not guard His commands, is a liar, and the truth is not in him.
1Jn 2:5 But whoever guards His Word, truly the love of Elohim has been perfected1 in him. By this we know that we are in Him.2 Footnotes: 1Gen. 17:1, Ps. 119:1, Mt. 5:48. 2See 3:24.
1Jn 5:3 For this is the love for Elohim, that we guard His commands,1 and His commands are not heavy, Footnote: 1See 5:2, 2 John v. 6, John 14:15.
This does not apply to selected commandments but all the commandments.
Parashat Ki Teitzei has much to say about love and kindness.
Our Torah Portion Begins:
Deu 21:10 “When you go out(Ki Teitzei) to fight against your enemies, and יהוה your Elohim shall give them into your hand, and you shall take them captive,
The Torah plainly tells us that before we can enter the Promised Land, the enemies of Israel will have to be destroyed and some taken captive.
Deu 21:11 and shall see among the captives a woman fair of form,(beautiful in shape) and shall delight( become attached) in her and take her for your wife,
Deu 21:12 then you shall bring her home to your house, and she shall shave her head and trim (Heb asah or prepare)her nails,
Deu 21:13 and(she) put aside(Heb -vehasira) the mantle of her captivity, and shall dwell in your house, and mourn her father and her mother a month of days. And after that you shall go in to her, and be her husband, and she shall be your wife.
husband, and she shall be your wife – (Heb and you shall possess her)
Note the use of the hyphil Hebrew verb “soor” “to set aside” the verb is followed by a feminine possessive pronoun indicating that it was the woman herself that was removing her garments. In the previous verse we see from the Hebrew that the woman herself shaved her head and prepared her nails. Perhaps this had something to do with the heathen custom of dying the nails. All these actions were her choice-to get rid of the heathen ways.
The “captor” would then observe her for 30 days to determine whether she truly desired to be his and his alone and was willing to change her ways and become an Israelite.
The thirty days reminds us of the 30 days of the month of “Elul” where we too will prepare ourselves for our Bridegroom and our Messiah will observe us to determine whether we truly desire to be his and his alone.
Deu 21:14 “And it shall be, if you are not pleased with her, then you shall let her go at her desire, but you do not sell her at all for silver. Do not treat her harshly, since you have humbled her.
“In these verses we see a beautiful picture of an Israeli man(Yahshua) finding a “goy”(gentile) wife and taking her as a bride bringing her into the fold of Israel.” This “Israeli man” fought a battle to be able to redeem this goy (gentile) from her pagan life and through this “Israeli man” this “isha” woman, or potential wife was able to be absorbed into the commonwealth of Israel and become a part of the faith and life of Israel.
Did not our Messiah once say to a “lost” gentile woman “salvation comes from the Jews”? (Yoh/John 4:22)
The Unloved Wife – Read the story of Elkanah and his two wives in the book of 1 Samuel chps 1-2
Deu 21:15 “When(“ki”) a man has two wives, one loved and the other unloved, and they have borne him children, both the loved and the unloved, and the first-born son is of her who is unloved,
Deu 21:16 then it shall be, on the day he makes his sons to inherit his possessions, he is not allowed to treat the son of the beloved wife as first-born in the face of the son of the unloved, who is truly the first-born.
Deu 21:17 “But he is to acknowledge the son of the unloved wife as the first-born by giving him a double portion of all that he has, for he is the beginning of his strength – the right of the first-born is his.
The issue of Polygyny (a man having more than one wife) is such an emotive and controversial issue, yet the Torah clearly mentions its existence and the laws governing such marital relationships.
Many great men of Elohim were polygynists. Our father Yakov had two wives and two concubines. YHVH never said it was a sin, in fact the 12 gates of the New Yerushalayim are named after the 12 sons of Yakov – Rev21:12
Western Christian civilization and the church has attempted to force monogamy(one man one wife) on all of society and has greatly succeeded in doing so. Most Christians oppose polygyny as YHVH’s loving way of restoring wholeness to a people, (providing it takes place within the structures of the Torah.) Many believers believe that monogamy is the only biblical option for marriage and that polygyny was and always will be sinful. This is not consistent with scripture.
Perhaps the true state of any society can be measured by how woman and other vulnerable people are treated – this includes widows and orphans and those who are part of both monogamous and polygynous marriages.
This Torah portion (49) commands polygyny in certain circumstances.
Deu 25:5 “When brothers dwell together, and one of them has died, and has no son, the widow of the dead man shall not become a stranger’s outside. Her husband’s brother does go in to her, and shall take her as his wife, and perform the duty of a husband’s brother to her.
Deu 25:6 “And it shall be that the first-born son which she bears does rise up for the name of his dead brother, so that his name is not blotted out of Yisra’ĕl.
Deu 25:7 “But if the man does not desire to take his brother’s wife, then let his brother’s wife go up to the gate to the elders, and say, ‘My husband’s brother refuses to raise up a name to his brother in Yisra’ĕl, he does not agree to perform the duty of my husband’s brother.’
Deu 25:8 “The elders of his city shall then call him and speak to him, and he shall stand and say, ‘I have no desire to take her,’
Deu 25:9 then his brother’s wife shall come to him in the presence of the elders, and remove his sandal from his foot, and shall spit in his face, and answer and say, ‘Thus it is done to the man who does not build up his brother’s house.’
Deu 25:10 “And in Yisra’ĕl his name shall be called, ‘The house of him who had his sandal removed.’
If you are not a Hebrew Torah observant man or don’t fully wish to be, then you don’t have to bother about this commandment.
The sad reality is that this commandment has very seldom been obeyed in the history of YHVH’s people.
Jas 2:10 For whoever shall guard all the Torah, and yet stumble in one point, he is guilty of all.
Deu 28:15 “And it shall be, if you do not obey the voice of יהוה your Elohim, to guard to do all His commands and His laws which I command you today, that all these curses shall come upon you and overtake you:
It is clear that we cannot pick and choose what commandments we wish to obey. We either obey them all or not at all.
Mat 15:3 But He(Yahshua) answering, said to them, “Why do you also transgress the command of Elohim1 because of your tradition? Footnote: 1See Mat. 5:20.
The situation concerning widows and fatherless children today
“The Loomba Foundation released its 274-page-long Global Widows Report 2015, which provides an overview of the deprivation faced by widows and their children worldwide, primary causes of widowhood in developed and developing countries, challenges and proposed practical solutions. The report estimates that the number of widows in the world has gone up by 9% since 2010, and today there are nearly 258.5 million widows around the world, out of which nearly 100 million live in poverty and 81 million have had to face some sort of abuse. During 2010-2015, Middle East & North Africa are estimated to have seen the highest percentage increase of over 24% in the number of widows. In absolute terms, India, with its 46.45 million widows, has become the country with the largest number of widows, displacing China to the #2 spot (44.59 million). Over 38 million, or 14.8%, of widows still live in extreme poverty worldwide where even their basic needs go unmet, though this number has gone down by 22% since 2010. The number of children of widows has gone up by 5.7% in the last five years and today stands at more than half a billion (584.5 million), out of which 1.5 million children die before their fifth birthday.”
What about South Africa?
“According to UNICEF, there are currently 3.9 million orphans in South Africa. Of these, approximately 2 million have been orphaned as a direct result of AIDS, and countless others have been orphaned as an indirect result. Children are the most vulnerable members of society. Without the support of parents, this orphan generation is subject to extreme stigma, exploitation, neglect, disease and a host of other circumstances unseen by any previous generation”
How many Torah observant men or women have reached out to these kinds of people and have made a long term difference to any of their lives?
What does YHVH’s Word say? Sadly religious men tamper with His word and so hinder its full impact.
Jas 1:27 Clean and undefiled religion(Gk -those who ritually clean and undefiled) before the Elohim and Father is this: to visit orphans and widows in their affliction, and to keep oneself unstained from the world.
Gk word “visit” can also mean to “relieve” this is more than visiting (“Visit” here is the proactive Greek word episkeptomai: to go to see, look out for, relieve). The word “religion” is added and does not appear in the original text.
Note “and to keep oneself..” “and” is not part of the original text. This implies that those who take care of widows and orphans are those that keep themselves spiritually undefiled in this world. The Torah teaches that defiled people were not allowed to bring offerings or worship to the temple.
Deu 27:19 ‘Cursed is he who twists the right-ruling of the stranger, the fatherless, and widow.’ And all the people shall say, ‘Amĕn!’
Mal 3:5 “And I shall draw near to you for right-ruling. And I shall be a swift witness against the practisers of witchcraft, and against adulterers, and against them that swear to falsehood, and against those who oppress the wage earner in his wages and widows and the fatherless, and those who turn away a sojourner and do not fear Me,” said יהוה of hosts.
Note those who oppress widows and orphans are categorized with those who practice witchcraft and adultery.
Deu 24:19 “When you reap your harvest in your field, and have forgotten a sheaf in the field, do not go back to get it. Let it be for the stranger, for the fatherless, and for the widow, so that יהוה your Elohim might bless you in all the work of your hands. (The story of Ruth)
Exo 22:22 “Do not afflict any widow or fatherless child.
Exo 22:23 “If you do afflict them at all – if they cry out to Me at all, I shall certainly hear their cry,
Exo 22:24 and My wrath shall burn and I shall slay you with the sword, your wives shall be widows and your children fatherless.
Sadly most believers have all kinds of excuses why they do not help widows, fatherless children and orphans.
One of the popular excuses is that our responsibility is first towards the household of YHVH. This is true, however the captive woman mentioned in this portion is not even an Israelite. This captive woman was given a choice to become part of Israel. How many widows in the world today would be eternally grateful if a kind Hebrew man gave them an opportunity to forsake their pagan ways and to become part of the commonwealth of Israel?
Another excuse many use in the matter of a Levirate marriage (Deut 25:5-10) is that it is not necessary if there are sons, because the sons can grow up and take care of their mother. Who then will teach the sons and prepare them for their future if they no longer have a father?
“A father's responsibilities to his son are outlined in the Talmud, Kiddushin 29a. According to the text, a father is obligated to circumcise his son; to redeem him if he is the firstborn; to teach him Torah; to find him a wife; and to teach him a trade. Talmudic scholars added that a father must also teach his son to swim.”
What will we say to Yahshua one day when we stand before him to be judged?
2Co 5:10 For we all have to appear before the judgment seat of Messiah, in order for each one to receive according to what he has done in the body, whether good or evil.1 Footnote: 1See Mt. 16:27, John 5:29.
Mat 25:34 “Then the Sovereign shall say to those on His right hand, ‘Come, you blessed of My Father, inherit the reign prepared for you from the foundation of the world –
Mat 25:35 for I was hungry and you gave Me food, I was thirsty and you gave Me drink, I was a stranger and you took Me in,
Mat 25:36 was naked and you clothed Me, I was sick and you visited Me, I was in prison and you came to Me.’
Mat 25:37 “Then the righteous shall answer Him, saying, ‘Master, when did we see You hungry and we fed You, or thirsty and gave You to drink?
Mat 25:38 ‘And when did we see You a stranger and took You in, or naked and clothed You?
Mat 25:39 ‘And when did we see You sick, or in prison, and we came to You?’
Mat 25:40 “And the Sovereign shall answer and say to them, ‘Truly, I say to you, in so far as you did it to one of the least of these My brothers, you did it to Me.’
Mat 25:41 “He shall then also say to those on the left hand, ‘Go away from Me, accursed ones, into the everlasting fire prepared for the devil and his messengers –
Mat 25:42 for I was hungry and you gave Me no food, I was thirsty and you gave Me no drink,
Mat 25:43 ‘I was a stranger and you did not take Me in, was naked and you did not clothe Me, sick and in prison and you did not visit Me.’
Mat 25:44 “Then they also shall answer Him, saying, ‘Master, when did we see You hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and did not serve You?’
Mat 25:45 “Then He shall answer them, saying, ‘Truly, I say to you, in so far as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to Me.’
Mat 25:46 “And these shall go away into everlasting punishment, but the righteous into everlasting life.”
Was Yahshua only talking about those who were of the household of faith? Are not Israel called to be a blessing to all nations? In Gal 6:10 we see that we should strife to do good to all, but yes it doesn't help to do good to others and your own people in the household of the belief are suffering. We should do especially good to them of the household of the belief but not let it stop there.
Gen 22:18 “And in your seed all the nations of the earth shall be blessed, because you have obeyed My voice.”
Gal 3:8 And the Scripture, having foreseen that Elohim would declare right the nations by belief,(noun) announced the Good News to Aḇraham beforehand, saying, “All the nations shall be blessed in you,”
How many of us will be able to stand before Yahshua one day and declare that we are worthy to be part of the bride of Messiah and that we have done all that was expected of us, that we were obedient and generous and that we took care of widows and orphans and that we have not failed in our financial obligations towards YHVH and to those in need?
You say but there is no condemnation for those who are in Messiah. This is true. However there are serious consequences for our ongoing disobedience.
Yahshua came to redeem us from the curse of the Torah. He did not redeem us from continual and persistent unrepentant rebellion against His Word. (Mat 7:23)
I am not pointing my finger at anyone because I myself stand guilty before YHVH.
If any of us make it, it’s a miracle because it never was or ever will be acceptable to YHVH to disobey any of His commandments.
Mark 10:26 …….“Who then is able to be saved?”
Mar 10:27 And looking at them, יהושע said, “With men it is impossible, but not with Elohim, for