Parashat 31 Portion 91 “Emor”: Vayikra 21:1-24 - Ezekiel 44:25-31- Luke 11:30-44

Blessing of Torah.

Hebrew: Baruch atah YHVH eloheinu melech ha-olam, asher kideshanu b'mitzvotav, v'tzivanu la'asok b'divrei Torah. V'ha'arev na YHVH eloheinu et divrei toratecha befinu uvfi amecha beit Yisrael. V'niyeh anachnu v'tze'etze'einu v'tze'etza'ei amecha beit Yisrael kullanu yodei sh'mecha v'lomdei toratecha lishmah. Baruch atah YHVH hamelamed Torah le'amo Yisrael. Baruch atah YHVH Eloheinu melech ha-olam, asher bachar banu mikol ha'amim venatan lanu et torato. Baruch atah YHVH, notein haTorah.

English translation: Blessed are You, YHVH our Elohim, King of the universe, who has made us set apart through His commandments and commanded us to actively study Torah. Please YHVH, our Elohim, sweeten the words of Your Torah in our mouths and in the mouths of all Your people Israel. May we and our offspring, and the offspring of Your people, the House of Israel, may we all, together, know Your Name and study Your Torah for the sake of fulfilling Your desire. Blessed are You, YHVH, Who teaches Torah to His people Israel. Blessed are You, YHVH our Elohim, King of the universe, Who chose us from all the nations and gave us the Torah. Blessed are You, YHVH, Giver of the Torah.

"The Truth is heavy, therefore few care to carry it" (Anon)

There seems to be an important continuity flowing from the previous two Torah portions (Acharei Mot and K’doshim) into this present Torah portion – “Emor.”
We conclude that if there is really going to be a redeemed set apart people there will be a set apart priesthood guiding and establishing YHVH’s Kingdom truth amongst His people 99- Yisrael.

     Lev 21:1  And יהוה said to Mosheh, “Speak to the priests, the sons of Aharon, and say to them: ‘No one is to be defiled for the dead among his people,

“Emor” or “speak!” to the priests. The focus is clearly on the priesthood. It is critical for the priesthood not to defile themselves with death. This would hinder their ministry to Yisrael as mediators. Here we can conclude that it is not only physical death but also the disobedient behavior that causes death.

Lev 21:2  except for his relatives who are nearest to him: for his mother, and for his father, and for his son, and for his daughter, and for his brother;
Lev 21:3  and for his maiden sister who is near to him, who has had no husband – for her he is defiled.

Why is an exception made of the priest’s direct family?

We see here the heart of an intercessor – one who is willing to lay down his life for those who are close to him or her. The priest would contaminate himself thus disqualifying himself from ministry for a while to attend to the needs of his family.

Shaul goes even further when he says:

Rom 5:7  For one shall hardly die for a righteous one, though possibly for a good one someone would even have the courage to die.
Rom 5:8  But Elohim proves His own love for us, in that while we were still sinners, Messiah died for us.

Shaul goes on to say:

2Co 4:11  For we, the living, are always delivered to death for the sake of יהושע, that the life of יהושע might also be manifested in our mortal flesh,
2Co 4:12  so that death indeed is working in us, but the life in you.

Lev 21:4  ‘A leader does not defile himself among his people, to profane himself;
Lev 21:5  they do not make any bald place on their heads, and they do not shave the corner of their beard, and they do not make a cutting in their flesh.

These were the practices of pagan priests -  like the Baal priests on Mount Carmel – 1 Kings 18.

Lev 21:6  ‘They are set-apart to their Elohim and do not profane the Name of their Elohim, for they bring the offerings of יהוה made by fire, and the bread of their Elohim, and shall be set-apart.
Lev 21:7  ‘They do not take a woman who is a whore or a defiled woman, and they do not take a woman put away from her husband, for he is set-apart to his Elohim.
Lev 21:8  ‘And you shall set him apart, for he brings the bread of your Elohim, he is set-apart to you. For I, יהוה, setting you apart, am set-apart.
Lev 21:9  ‘And when the daughter of any priest profanes herself by whoring, she profanes her father. She is burned with fire.

Lev 21:10  ‘And the high priest among his brothers, on whose head the anointing oil was poured and who is ordained to wear the garments, does not unbind his head nor tear his garments,
Lev 21:11  nor come near any dead body, nor defile himself for his father or his mother,
Lev 21:12  nor go out of the set-apart place, nor profane the set-apart place of his Elohim, for the sign of dedication of the anointing oil of his Elohim is upon him. I am יהוה.
Lev 21:13  ‘And let him take a wife in her maidenhood.
Lev 21:14  ‘A widow or one put away or a defiled woman or a whore – these he does not take. But a maiden of his own people he does take as a wife. (Sages say High priest was commanded to take a wife)
Lev 21:15  ‘And he does not profane his offspring among his people, for I am יהוה, who sets him apart.’ ”
Lev 21:16  And יהוה spoke to Mosheh, saying,
Lev 21:17  “Speak to Aharon, saying, ‘No man of your offspring throughout their generations, who has any defect, is to draw near to bring the bread of his Elohim.
Lev 21:18  ‘For any man who has a defect is not to draw near: a man blind or one lame or disfigured or deformed,
Lev 21:19  a man who has a broken foot or broken hand,
Lev 21:20  or is a hunchback or a dwarf, or a man who has a defect in his eye, or eczema or scab, or is a eunuch.
Lev 21:21  ‘No man among the offspring of Aharon the priest, who has a defect, is to come near to bring the offerings made by fire to יהוה – he has a defect, he does not come near to bring the bread of his Elohim.
Lev 21:22  ‘He does eat the bread of his Elohim, both the most set-apart and the set-apart,
Lev 21:23  only, he does not go near the veil or approach the altar, because he has a defect, lest he profanes My set-apart places. For I am יהוה, who sets them apart.’ ”
Lev 21:24  Thus Mosheh spoke to Aharon and his sons, and to all the children of Yisra’ĕl.


The primary purpose and goal of the Levitical priesthood was to establish without any doubt that Yahshua was the only mediator who was able to reconcile man to YHVH.

This Torah portion may have hidden insights we may need to consider.

Maybe these instructions are pointing to a time when the priests would have such a deep and profound impact on Yisrael resulting in those living under their influence being protected against all harm sickness and even death.
Is this possible?
There seems to be evidence that during the Messianic age the bride of Messiah will have immortal bodies. This Bride or priesthood would have the “spark of eternal life” dwelling within them. Those who have righteous associations with these priests could also be “ignited” by these priests to live in the same state of immortality.
It seems to be a fact that our bodies should renew themselves and were designed to live for 1000 years.

Let’s look at the life of Messiah. We don’t know much about his relatives, but let us consider from historical sources the life of his half-brother Yaakov. Yahshua had a profound effect on Yakov his half-brother.

“The Torah wants us to make a connection between the high priest and Nazarite. Both High Priest and Nazarite enjoy a status of separation called "nezer" which is theirs by virtue of a ritual marking on their heads. For the High Priest it is the anointing oil poured out on his head that grants him the nezer status. For the Nazarite it is the hair on his head that grants him the nezer status.

Concerning Ya'akov (Hebrew) the Hebrew equivalent of Jacob/James who was called Ya’akov HaTzaddik, Ya’akov the righteous, the Brother of  Yahshua: Eusebius quotes Hegesippus in his Ecclesiastical History regarding the martyrdom of Ya’akov. He writes, "James drank no wine or intoxicating liquor and ate no animal food; no razor came near his head; he did not smear himself with oil, and took no baths. He alone was permitted to enter the Set apart Place, for his garments were not of wool but of linen. He used to enter the Set apart place alone, and was often found on his knees beseeching forgiveness for the people..." This text raises an intriguing problem. We find here a very strong and early tradition about James that places him inside the Temple Sanctuary. The Sanctuary is forbidden to all except for the priesthood. How is it that James, a man descended from the House of David and the tribe of Judah has access to the Sanctuary where only priests are allowed? How is it that we find James clothed in linen garments? that is, priestly garments? praying inside the Temple proper? Is it because James was a Nazarite, and as a Nazarite, he obtained some kind of quasi-priestly status? We must either accept it as so or reject the tradition of Hegesippus all- together.”

Jewish Commentary:

“Death is thus an aberration, unnatural to a world intrinsically one with its Creator. Indeed, death became part of our reality only after man distanced himself from G-d with his transgression of the divine will. By the same token, the annihilation of evil and the restoration of perfect harmony between G-d and His creation in the era of Moschiach will bring the cessation of death from our experience.

In the same vein, the prophet Isaiah describes G-d's descent into the impurities of galut ("exile") to redeem His people: "Who is this, coming from Edom? Of soured and reddened clothes, from Bozrah? ... I [replies G-d], who speaks in righteousness, mighty to save... all My garments, I have soiled" (Isaiah 63:1-3). What about the law that forbids a Kohen to contaminate himself? The Zohar explains: Israel is G-d's "virgin sister, who has not married a man"--who has resisted all the alien masters and influences she has been subject to throughout her exile. For her, G-d "contaminates" Himself entering the morgue of galut to raise her from the dust.

Isa 63:1  Who is this coming from Eḏom, with garments of glowing colours from Botsrah, who is robed in splendour, striding forward in the greatness of His strength? “It is I who speak in righteousness, mighty to save.”
Isa 63:2  Why is there red on Your raiment, and Your garments like one who treads in the winepress?
Isa 63:3  “I have trodden the winepress alone, and from the peoples no one was with Me. And I trod them down in My displeasure, and I trampled them in My wrath. Their blood is sprinkled upon My garments, and I have defiled all My raiment.

But one thing remains unresolved: surely G-d is no ordinary Kohen, but a Kohen Gadol, whose greater holiness proscribes any exposure to impurity, even for the sake of his closest relatives. How, then, could G-d "contaminate" Himself, even for His "children" or His "sister"?

Put another way: if, in His relationship with us, G-d assumes the role of an ordinary Kohen, whose lesser holiness allows him contact with impurity for the sake of "Israel, His kin," G-d certainly transcends this role, possessing also the inviolable sanctity of the Kohen Gadol. Does this mean that only the Kohen in G-d buried Moses? Or that G-d's involvement in our redemption is limited to a lesser expression of His holinesss, while the height of His "priesthood" remains aloof from the mortality of our galut-state?

Based on the teachings of the Lubavitcher Rebbe, Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson; adapted by Yanki Tauber.
In the light of these sayings listen to the wisest of Hebrew Rabbi’s:

Col 2:8  See to it that no one makes a prey of you through philosophy and empty deceit, according to the tradition of men, according to the elementary matters of the world,1 and not according to Messiah. Footnote: 1See v. 20, and Gal. 4:3 & 9.
Col 2:9  Because in Him dwells all the completeness of the Mightiness bodily,
Col 2:10  and you have been made complete in Him, who is the Head of all principality and authority.

Now finally listen to the words of Paul describing the position of the Bride of Messiah and a restored Levitical priesthood.

2Co 5:1  For we know that if the tent of our earthly house, is destroyed, we have a building from Elohim, a house not made with hands, everlasting in the heavens.
2Co 5:2  For indeed in this we groan, longing to put on our dwelling which is from heaven,
2Co 5:3  so that, having put it on, we shall not be found naked.
2Co 5:4  For indeed, we who are in this tent groan, being burdened, not because we wish to put it off, but to put on the other, so that what is to die might be swallowed up by life.
2Co 5:5  Now He who has prepared us for this same purpose is Elohim, who has given us the Spirit as a pledge of what is to come.
2Co 5:6  Therefore, being always of good courage, and knowing that while we are at home in the body we are absent from the Master –

     2Co 5:7  for we walk by belief, not by sight –1 Footnote: 1See 4:18, and 1 Cor. 2:14.
      2Co 5:8  we are of good courage, and are well pleased rather to be absent from the body and to be present with the Master.
     2Co 5:9  So we also make it our aim to be well-pleasing to Him, whether being at home, or being away from home.
     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.
2Co 5:11  Knowing, therefore, the fear of יהוה, we persuade men, but we have been made manifest to Elohim, and I also trust in your consciences to have been manifested.
2Co 5:12  For we do not again commend ourselves to you, but give you an occasion to boast on our behalf, in order that you have an answer for those who take pride in appearance and not in heart.
2Co 5:13  For whether we are beside ourselves, it was for Elohim, or whether we are of sound mind, it is for you.
2Co 5:14  For the love of Messiah compels us, having judged this: that if One died for all, then all died;
2Co 5:15  and He died for all, that those who live should no longer live for themselves,1 but for Him who died for them, and was raised. Footnote: 1Rom 14:7-8, Gal. 2:20.
2Co 5:16  So from now onwards we know no one according to the flesh. And if we have known Messiah according to the flesh, yet now we no longer know Him thus.
2Co 5:17  Therefore, if anyone is in Messiah, he is a renewed creature – the old matters have passed away, see, all matters have become renewed!1 Footnote: 1Rom. 6:2-22, Gal. 2:20, Eph. 4:22-24, Col. 3:10, 1 John 3:9-10.
2Co 5:18  And all matters are from Elohim, who has restored us to favour with Himself through יהושע Messiah, and has given us the service of restoration to favour,
2Co 5:19  that is, that Elohim was in Messiah restoring the world to favour unto Himself, not reckoning their trespasses to them, and has committed to us the word of restoration to favour.
2Co 5:20  Therefore we are envoys on behalf of Messiah, as though Elohim were pleading through us. We beg, on behalf of Messiah: Be restored to favour with Elohim.
2Co 5:21  For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, so that in Him we might become the righteousness of Elohim.

Baruch atah YHVH, Eloheynu, Melech ha-‘Olam, asher natan lanu Toraht-emet, v’chay-yeh o’lam nata-b’tochenu. Baruch atah YHVH, noteyn ha-Torah. Ameyn.”
(Blessed are you Yahweh, our Elohim, King of the Universe, you have given us your Torah of truth, and have planted everlasting life within our midst. Blessed are you, YHVH giver of the Torah – Ameyn

Please note these notes are under construction and are subject to correction and are in no way a final authority on any subject.