Wednesday, August 31, 2011

What does it mean to have your name “Written in the Earth”?

(This is an update of an older blog post from two years ago.  Several people have asked me about this subject this week, so I thought I would re-post it here for your enjoyment.)

John 8:2-11 tells the story of Jesus being confronted by the Pharisees and teachers of the law with a woman caught in adultery. When questioned about what He would do, Jesus stooped down and wrote in the earth. When they continued to question him, He stood and replied that the one without sin should throw the first stone. He then bent down and resumed writing in the earth. We can figure out what Jesus probably wrote by looking at the context of the incident.

John’s Gospel records that this incident occurred after the last day of the feast. The Feast itself is seven days long with the eighth day a special Sabbath day of rest added on the end.

John 7:37 On the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried out, saying, "If anyone thirsts, let him come to Me and drink. (NKJV)

John 8:2 Now early in the morning He came again into the temple, and all the people came to Him; and He sat down and taught them. (NKJV)

The theme of the Feast of Tabernacles is to rejoice.

Deut. 16:14 "And you shall rejoice in your feast, you and your son and your daughter, your male servant and your female servant and the Levite, the stranger and the fatherless and the widow, who are within your gates. (NKJV)

Jesus’ very name is also significant in the context of this ceremony. The name Jesus is really a transliteration of the Greek Iesous which is a transliteration of the Hebrew Yeshua. Jesus’ Hebrew name, the name He was born with is Yeshua. The closest English name to Yeshua is Joshua.

Yeshua: #3442 ישוע  yay-shoo'-ah, shortened version of Yehosua (3091); he will save

Joshua: #3091;יהושוע Yehoshua: the LORD saves

Matthew tells us that Yeshua received His name because He would save His people from their sins; He would be their salvation.

Matthew 1:21 NKJV 21 "And she will bring forth a Son, and you shall call His name JESUS (Yeshua), for He will save His people from their sins."

When we look at the word for salvation in Isaiah 12:3, we see that it is the same Hebrew word but in a different tense.

Salvation: #3444.  ישועה  yesh-oo'-aw something saved, salvation

Yeshua was declaring that He, whose very name means salvation, was the Messiah! The prophet Jeremiah refer to God’s salvation as a fountain living waters.

Jer 2:13 "For My people have committed two evils: They have forsaken Me, the fountain of living waters, And hewn themselves cisterns-broken cisterns that can hold no water. (NKJV)

Yeshua’s declaration was not lost on the teachers of the Law and the Pharisees. They sought to test Him so they could at the very least discredit Him with the people.  The incident with the woman caught in adultery occurred the very next day called Shemini Atzerat, the assembly of the eighth day observed as the Sabbath conclusion to the Feast of Tabernacles. The rejoicing on the 8th day takes the form of the Torah itself rejoicing in God’s salvation. It was a day for studying the scriptures, teaching one’s disciples, holding discussions among the Rabbis and dancing through the temple with the Torah scroll itself. The Pharisees and teachers of the Law came to Jesus on this day with the intent to trap him.  In doing so, they themselves were violating the Law on at least two points; (1) they only brought the woman for judgment (See Lev. 20:10) and (2) they didn’t bring the witnesses (See Deuteronomy 19:15.)

A third violation is that in Jewish civil law, only the Great Sanhedrin could try a capital case. Since the Sanhedrin was not meeting, no capital cases could be tried. Further, they violated the intent of the rejoicing of the Torah by breaking the Sabbath. On this day on which the Torah itself is said to be rejoicing, they grieved both the written Torah by breaking its commandments and the Living Torah of Yeshua by subverting the Torah to their own ends.

The Pharisees and teachers of the law were at that very moment sinning! When Yeshua says, "He who is without sin among you, let him throw a stone at her first." (John 8:7) and then stooped down and continued to write on the ground (v. 8), what could Jesus have written in the earth that would cause them to eventually acknowledge that they were sinning?

Jeremiah 17:13 speaks to all of these issues.

O LORD, the hope of Israel, All who forsake You shall be ashamed. "Those who depart from Me Shall be written in the earth, Because they have forsaken the LORD, The fountain of living waters." (NKJV)

Yeshua had just the previous day declared that He was the Messiah. All the people celebrated the ceremony of water pouring rejoicing in the “fountain of living waters” each day during the seven days of the Feast of Tabernacles so this verse in Jeremiah would be well known to the Pharisees and the teachers of the Law. Perhaps Yeshua was writing this very verse, or their names as he bent to write in the earth.

One of the themes for the feasts of Trumpets and Yom Kippur, the two feasts that lead up to the Feast of Tabernacles, was examining one’s life to ensure that one’s name is written in the Book of Life and not the Book of Death for coming year. The rejoicing at the Feast of Tabernacles is in God’s salvation; that is of being written in the Book of Life.  Being written in the earth was the opposite of being written in the Book of Life.

Once again, Yeshua proved Himself as the Messiah executing righteousness and judgment.
Yeshua Himself said that He came to call the sinners to repentance but when He comes again, it will be for salvation for those who love Him and judgment for those who don’t.

John 3:18 "He who believes in Him is not condemned; but he who does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. (NKJV)

שלום ברוך
Shalom and Be Blessed
Dan & Brenda Cathcart

A more extensive lesson on this passage of scripture is available in Volume 1 of “Shadows of the Messiah in the Torah” Bible Study series available on our web site at

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Hear O Israel: Bear Witness to the LORD your God!

The Torah portion read this last Shabbat called Va’etchanan, contains the passage of scripture known as the Shema, Deuteronomy 6:4-9

Deuteronomy 6:4-9 NKJV 4 "Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God, the LORD is one! 5 "You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your strength. 6 "And these words which I command you today shall be in your heart. 7 "You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, when you walk by the way, when you lie down, and when you rise up. 8 "You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. 9 "You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.

This is the very scripture that Yeshua (Jesus) quotes when a Pharisee asks Him what the greatest commandment is.

Matthew 22:34-38 NKJV 34 But when the Pharisees heard that He had silenced the Sadducees, they gathered together. 35 Then one of them, a lawyer, asked Him a question, testing Him, and saying, 36 "Teacher, which is the great commandment in the law?" 37 Jesus said to him," 'You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.' 38 "This is the first and great commandment.

This passage of scripture in Deuteronomy contains one of those jots and tittles that Yeshua said would not pass from His word.  Jots and tittles are not translated or shown in our English translations of the Bible.  Jots and tittles are anomalies in the text.  They take the form of enlarged letters, shrunken letters, letters written backwards or missing or added letters as in deliberate misspellings of words, gaps in the text, etc.  Take a look at the greatest commandment as it appears in Hebrew in a Torah scroll with the jots and tittles intact.

שמע ישראל יהוה אלהינו יהוה אחד

This is the first part of Deuteronomy 6:4 which translated to English is:

Hear O Israel the LORD our God, the LORD is one!

You will notice the two enlarged letters in this verse.  They are the Ayin ע and the Dalet ד. (Hebrew is read right to left).  These two letters taken together spell another Hebrew word, eyd עד.  It is defined in the Strong’s Dictionary as:
#5707.  עד  `ed,  ayd  contracted from 5749 ; concretely, a witness; abstractly, testimony; specifically, a recorder, i.e. prince:--witness.

In the ancient Hebrew, the letters were represented by pictographs and form a picture of the meaning of words.

Hebrew word picture: Witness: ayd: עד (Hebrew reads right to left)
Ayin:  ע = eye, to see
Dalet: ד = Door, pathway

Witness means to see the door or pathway.

This word, עד shares a common primitive root word with:

#5712  עדה  `edah,  ay-daw' feminine of 5707 in the original sense of fixture; a stated assemblage (specifically, a concourse, or generally, a family or crowd):--assembly, company, congregation, multitude, people, swarm. Compare 5713.

#5713.  עדה  `edah,  ay-daw' feminine of 5707 in its technical sense; testimony:-- testimony, witness. Compare 5712.

Hebrew word picture for Testimony: עדה ay-daw:
Ayin: ע = eye, to see
Dalet:  ד = Door, pathway
Hey:  ה = Behold, reveal, to see

Testimony is what comes from seeing the pathway.

The root of these words is from #5749:

#5749.  עוד  `uwd,  ood  a primitive root; to duplicate or repeat; by implication, to protest, testify (as by reiteration); intensively, to encompass, restore (as a sort of reduplication):--admonish, charge, earnestly, lift up, protest, call (take) to record, relieve, rob, solemnly, stand upright, testify, give warning, (bear, call to, give, take to) witness.

Eyd עד, along with these other words, take on the meanings of the primitive root and gives added depth to the scriptures in which they appear.  The jot and tittle of the enlarged letters here in Deuteronomy 6:4, means that one is to take special note of them in relation to this scripture.  In continuing on in the Deuteronomy passage in chapter 6, it says:

Deuteronomy 6:6-9 NKJV 6 "And these words which I command you today shall be in your heart. 7 "You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, when you walk by the way, when you lie down, and when you rise up. 8 "You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. 9 "You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.

These words of the Shema are the heart and soul of daily Jewish life.  They comprise a prayer that is recited the very first thing when one awakes in the morning and is the last words when one retires for the night.  This is the first prayer and words of scripture that Jewish children are taught from the moment they can speak.  In verse 8 it says: "You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes.”  This is taken literally and a small box containing this very scripture is attached to one’s left hand and on one’s forehead, what is known as tefillin, when engaged in ritual prayers.

In verse 9 it says: "You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.”  A mezuzah, which literally means doorpost, is placed on the doorpost of one’s house and gates.  The mezuzah contains a tiny scroll with the words of the Shema written on it.  And when one is sitting in one’s home and traveling from place to place, one is to speak of these words to others whom we meet along the way.

The greatest commandment is to “love the LORD our God with all our heart, with all our soul, and with all our strength.”  And in doing so, we bear witness of the prince to the congregation, the multitude of people we meet along our way.  Peter said we are to speak these words as a testimony of the death and resurrection of Messiah Yeshua, as a way to lift up the Prince of Life.

Acts 3:15 NKJV And killed the Prince of life, whom God raised from the dead, of which we are witnesses.

שלום ברוך
Shalom and be blessed
Dan & Brenda Cathcart

Visit our web site at

Thursday, August 11, 2011

The Hebrew Letter ג Gimel

The 3rd letter of the Hebrew Alphabet is the Gimel ג. The name of this letter גמל is also a word that describes one of its meanings, camel.  And as a number, the ג gimel represents the number three and means to lift up or to benefit.  Like many Hebrew words and letters גמל can have a number of meanings depending on the context in which it is used.  In the Torah scrolls and other ancient Hebrew documents from antiquity, there were no vowel markings to indicate the varying pronunciations, and therefore, meanings of words.  Meanings are implied by context.

As an example, take the English words “boat” and “bat”.  If we were to write both of these words without the vowels, we would get “bt” in both cases.  How is a reader to know which of these two words is intended by the author if a sentence in which they are used contains no or limited vowels as in these examples?

“I wnt fr a crz n mi bt tda” (I went for a cruise in my boat today)

“I swng the bt wll in the gm” (I swung the bat well in the game)

The answer is context, context, context!  It is fairly easy to read these sentences without vowels.  We just put the missing vowels in as we read them because we understand not only the immediate context of the intended word where the “bt” is used, but also we have a cultural context that we consider in making our choice.  Someone from 18th century America may not understand the cultural context of the reference to baseball in the example using “bat” and may be prone to misinterpret what “bt” means.  In these examples, the pronunciation of the two words, spelled identically as “bt” are different based on these types of contextual considerations.  The same thing is true of the Hebrew text when no vowel markings are present.  This is one of the major difficulties in translating Hebrew to English.  We not only have linguistic challenges, but we are faced with historic and cultural factors as well.

Getting back to our letter ג.  Here are two examples of different words all spelled the same but pronounced differently and having different meanings:

גמל pronounced “Gimel” is the name of the third letter of the Hebrew Alphabet.
גמל pronounced “Gamal” is a “Camel”, the “horse” of the desert.

These two words are spelled exactly the same way גמל in ancient texts.  We have to be able to understand these ancient documents in their historic and cultural context in order to properly interpret and translate the intentions of the author.  Let me give you a classic example.  We are all familiar with the story of the young, rich man who asks Yeshua what he must do to enter the Kingdom of God.

Matthew 19:21-24 NKJV 21 Jesus said to him, "If you want to be perfect, go, sell what you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow Me." 22 But when the young man heard that saying, he went away sorrowful, for he had great possessions. 23 Then Jesus said to His disciples, "Assuredly, I say to you that it is hard for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven. 24 "And again I say to you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God."

The word translated as “camel” here is from the Greek manuscripts “kamelos” kam'-ay-los which is of Hebrew origin.  In other words, it is a transliteration of a Hebrew or Aramaic word that is spelled using Greek letters, and as such did not exist in the Greek language of that time. 

#2574.  kamelos,  kam'-ay-los of Hebrew origin (1581); a "camel":--camel.

#1581. גמל gamal,  gaw-mawl'  from 1580 (in the sense of labor or burden-bearing); a camel:--camel.

#1580. גמל  gamal,  gaw-mal'  a primitive root; to treat a person (well or ill), i.e. benefit or requite; by implication (of toil), to ripen, i.e. (specifically) to wean:--bestow on, deal bountifully, do (good), recompense, requite, reward, ripen, + serve, mean, yield.

We see many different definitions of the word גמל as “gamal”.  Which definition, and therefore which translation, is correct depends on the context of the passage of scripture being read or translated.  This word is used in Psalms 119:17 and translated as “bountifully."

Psalms 119:17 NKJV Deal bountifully (גמל) with Your servant, That I may live and keep Your word.

In other places in scripture גמל (gamal) is translated as “weaned” as in a child being weaned.  As “Recompense”, “requite”, to “yield”, to render “punishment” and to “benefit”.  But most often it is used in the context of direct reference to camel or camels (ie beasts of burden).

But what is this phrase about a camel going through the eye of a needle as in the Matthew passage above?  It really doesn’t make much sense in the overall context.  I have heard many explanations for this odd passage, the most common is that the “eye of a needle” refers to a small gate at the entrance to a city where a traveler would have to “unload” his camel in order to get himself and his stuff through the small opening. There is a major problem with this explanation.  There is no verifiable historic evidence that such a small gate was ever called the “eye of a needle” at the time of the writing of this gospel account!  Secondly, the implication of this common English translation is that the rich man could keep his possessions in the Kingdom of God.  That he doesn’t really loose, or need to “sell” his riches, he just has to get them through the gate.  This is a contradiction with Yeshua’s very words in verse 21 where the rich man is told to sell his possessions and give the money to the poor and not keep them.

The key to understanding this verse is to look at the Aramaic word that is spelled exactly the same as the Hebrew word for camel.

גמל pronounced “Gamala” is of Aramaic origin and means “heavy rope” (Aramaic is a closely related language to Hebrew and shares the same alphabet with Hebrew.  Much the same as Spanish and Italian today share a common alphabet and many common root words.)

(There is strong textual and historic evidence that a majority of the New Testament documents were originally written in Aramaic or a combination of Aramaic and Hebrew.  The exploration of this will be done at a later time.  See Hebrew Origins of New Testament Scripture on this blog)

The word גמל (gamala) in the Aramaic manuscripts of the Gospel of Matthew as well as the Hebrew manuscripts known to exist, are the same.  But when we use this Aramaic meaning of גמל, in Matthew 19:24, and translate it as “heavy rope” the entire passage begins to makes much more sense.  Especially since one must reconcile the seeming contradiction between verses 21 and 24.

With this Aramaic word in mind, we have a picture of two things here, a heavy rope and the eye of an actual needle, both of which are being used by Yeshua as a kind of metaphor to illustrate His teaching.  Can a large heavy rope go through the eye of a needle?  The answer is yes, but only after it is unwound or unraveled.  This is just as Yeshua answered the rich man in verse 21, “go and sell your possessions, give the proceeds to the poor and follow me.”  The rich man must “unravel” his life; he must remove the very thing that is holding him down to this world.  This is the lesson that Yeshua was teaching his disciples.

So, with that said, what does this have to do with the letter ג gimel?  In the ancient form of Hebrew, the gimel was a pictographic symbol resembling a camel or beast of burden.  The modern symbol looks something like a man walking slightly bent over as if carrying a load.  And as we see from the definitions above, the letter by itself can mean “benefit” or to “lift up.”  Like the rich man of Matthew 19, we carry burdens in this life.  We collect things; we have possessions that tie us down when we put a misplaced pride in them.  We carry emotional and spiritual burdens that can be an even greater hindrance to our relationship to God.  Yeshua said in the gospel of John:

John 12:32 NKJV 32 "And I, if I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all peoples to Myself."

He also said in Matthew:

Matthew 11:29-30 NKJV 29 "Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 "For My yoke is easy and My burden is light."

When we lift Him up we receive redemption.  Take a look at the Hebrew word for redeem:

#1350.  גאל ga'al, gaw-al' a primitive root, to redeem, i.e. to be the next of kin, deliver, purchase, ransom, redeem(-er), revenger.

The word picture for ga’al, or redeem

ג = To lift up, benefit
א = Strength, leader, first
ל = Control, authority, shepherd

The last two letters of ga’al are אל = Strong leader, or a shortened name of God, pronounced “El”

When combined with the fires letter, the gimel we get גאל = Ga’al = To lift up the strong leader or the shepherd or God

When we lift up God, we are redeemed!

 שלום ברוך
Shalom and be blessed
Dan and Brenda Cathcart

Visit our web site at

Monday, August 8, 2011

Tish B’Av, (the 9th of Av) a National Day of Fasting

Tomorrow August 9th 2011 is also the 9th of Av on the Biblical calendar.  In Judaism, this is considered a great day of tragedy in Jewish history.  It is one of 4 additional fast days other than the one mentioned in scripture, Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonements.  The fast of Tish B’Av involves restrictions including no eating, drinking, washing, use of cosmetics, and marital relations. Leather shoes are not worn. Torah study is restricted to topics connected with the Destruction of the Temples, prophecies of rebuke and such because the study of the Torah is normally considered a great joy.  Sitting on chairs is not permitted until the afternoon, and the wearing of Tefillin and Tallit are only at the mincha (afternoon) service. 

In Jewish tradition, the hour before the start of Tisha B'Av, one hour before local sunset, is marked by a “mourning meal,” consisting only of a hard-boiled egg dipped in ashes, bread, and water. It is usually eaten while sitting on low stools or on the floor, with each person sitting alone in a different corner of the room.

The regular evening prayer service is followed by the reading aloud the book of Lamentations, in a traditional mournful melody.

Events on Tish B’Av in Jewish history.

·        God decreed, following the Sin of the Spies as recounted in Numbers 13-14, that the Children of Israel would not be allowed to enter the Land of Israel until the entire generation had died out. 

·        The 1st Temple was destroyed in 586 BCE.

·        The 2nd  Temple was destroyed in 70 CE

·        The fortress of Beitar, the last fortress to hold out during the Bar Kochba revolt in the year 135 C.E., fell to the Romans.

·        A year later, the Temple area was completely leveled, leaving no trace of the 2nd Temple.  This marked the last time the Jews had control of the Temple mount until it was retaken in the 6 Day War of 1967.

·        In 1290, the Jews of England were kicked out by King Edward 1st.  The expulsion was revoked in 1656

·        In 1492 the Jews of Spain were expelled by King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella at the height of the Spanish Inquisition which was not abolished until 1834.

·        World War I erupted in 1914, setting the stage for World War II and the Holocaust.

·        The official documents detailing the “Final Solution” were signed by Adolph Hitler in 1942.

·        On the same day, the mass deportation of Jews from the Warsaw Ghetto to the Treblinka death camp began.

·        The Jews of Gush Katif spent their last legal day in their homes on this day in 2005, and were forcibly expelled three days later.  Since then, over 8000 rocket and mortar attacks have been fired from the Gaza Strip against the civilian population of the Southern Negev.

Despite the sadness of the day, the saddest part of the regular daily prayers - tachanun - is not recited, in the anticipation of the final joyous Redemption that will render Tisha B'Av a day of joy.  It says in Zachariah that all of the fast days will be turned into feast days and men from every nation will join them and worship the LORD in Jerusalem.

Zechariah 8:19-23 NKJV 19 "Thus says the LORD of hosts: 'The fast of the fourth month, The fast of the fifth, The fast of the seventh, And the fast of the tenth, Shall be joy and gladness and cheerful feasts For the house of Judah. Therefore love truth and peace.' 20 "Thus says the LORD of hosts: 'Peoples shall yet come, Inhabitants of many cities; 21 The inhabitants of one city shall go to another, saying, "Let us continue to go and pray before the LORD, And seek the LORD of hosts. I myself will go also." 22 Yes, many peoples and strong nations Shall come to seek the LORD of hosts in Jerusalem, And to pray before the LORD.' 23 "Thus says the LORD of hosts: 'In those days ten men from every language of the nations shall grasp the sleeve of a Jewish man, saying, "Let us go with you, for we have heard that God is with you."

The Sabbath following Tish B’Av is called Shabbat Nachamu, the Sabbath of Consolation.  The Torah Portion for this day is called Va’etchanan and includes the reading of the Sh’ma from Deuteronomy 6:4-9.  When Messiah Yeshua was asked what the greatest commandment was in Matthew 22:36-38, He quoted the Sh’ma.  The Haftarah reading is from Isaiah 40:1-26 and it speaks of comforting God’s people.  It is the first of seven Haftarah readings speaking of comforting leading up to the fall feast of Rosh Hashanah, the New Year.

We can join our Jewish brothers and sisters in this day of fasting, sitting with them in remembering the great tragedies in history in anticipation of the great joy that will take place at the return of Messiah.  For when we stand (or sit) with the Jewish people, we are standing with the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob as a light to the Nations.

שלום ברוך
Shalom and be blessed
Dan & Brenda Cathcart

Visit our web site at

Monday, August 1, 2011

The Biblical Month of Av.

Today, August 1st 2011 begins the important month of Av.

Nu 33:38 And Aaron the priest went up to Mount Hor at the command of the LORD and died there, in the fortieth year after the sons of Israel had come up out of the land of Egypt, in the first of the fifth month. (MKJV)

The biblical month of Av begins with a significant event in history, the death of Aaron, the first High Priest of Israel. The death of Aaron, was perhaps a signal that this month would be a month of tragedy throughout most of Jewish History.

The name of the month "Av" like all the other names of months in the Hebrew Calendar, was changed after the exile in Babylonia. (As a matter of fact, only two of the original names are recorded in scripture.)  "Av" means "father." In the name "Menachem Av," "The One Who comforts, the Av," could refer to Hashem, Who is called the Father, He is the one who comforts His people for all the tragedies that were suffered in the month of Av throughout history.

The period beginning with "Shiva Asar B'Tammuz," "17 Tammuz," and ending in "Tisha B'Av," "9 Av" is known as the period of "Bein HaMetzarim," "Between the Straits," or “Dire Straights” are days of historic trouble and tragedy for the Jewish People.

The most important event in history, the one that started it all is the report from the 12 spies that went to the promised land to see what was there. They reported back that they could not defeat the inhabitants of the land. For their disbelief, the entire generation that came out of Egypt would die in the wilderness. Only their children would enter the promised land. This became a type of exile and the pattern would be repeated again and again throughout history.

Here are some of the other significant events that occurred on the 9th of Av.

587 BCE The First Temple was destroyed by the Babylonians under the rulership of Nebuchadnezzar.

70 CE The Second Temple was destroyed by the Romans under the leadership of Titus.

135 CE The Romans conquered Bar Kochba's last fortress, Betar, and destroyed his army. The Roman Emperor Hadrian turned Jerusalem into a Roman city, changing its name and killing or expelling all the Jews.

1290 King Edward the1st of England signed an edict expelling all Jews from England.

1492 Jews were expelled from Spain.

1670 The last Jews left Vienna, following expulsion orders.

1914 World War I began (Germany declared war on Russia on August 1, 1914).

1940 Himler presented his plan for the "Final Solution" to the Jewish problem to the Nazi Party.

1942 Nazis began deporting of Jews from the Warsaw Ghetto

2005 Gaza was abandoned by Israel and over 8000 rockets have rained down on Israel since.

The first of Av begins a 9 day period of more intense mourning. Jewish traditions are varied for the observance of this 9 day period and include: Not cutting one’s hair, abstaining from meat, not washing cloths and especially not studying Torah (9th only). All of these things are considered to be joyous and are not practiced during a time of mourning. Another interesting custom in some circles is that if the 9th of Av falls on a Sabbath, the fast is postponed to Sunday and the blessing of the wine is done on Sunday night. The Sabbath is also a joyous festival and is not observed in the usual way during a time of mourning.

Tisha B’Av is the only other full day fast aside from Yom Kippur. The last meal is eaten before sunset on the 8th of Av and usually is comprised of round foods to symbolize the cycles of life.
Seven days after Tisha B’Av is Tu B’Av or the 15th of Av. This day is observed as a joyous celebration and is similar to the ending of the mourning period after the death of a loved one. According to some rabbis, this minor holiday of Tu B’Av is celebrated in a similar way as Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement where atonement was made and forgiveness was granted for the sin of the golden calf. Tu B’Av marks the end of the 40 years of wandering in the wilderness and is symbolic of the ending of the shiva, or the seven days of mourning for the generation who died in the wilderness.

All of this will change in the millennium, when Yeshua returns. Tisha B’Av along with the other fast days will be turned into feast days!

Zec 8:18 And the word of the LORD of hosts came unto me, saying, 19 Thus saith the LORD of hosts; The fast of the fourth month, and the fast of the fifth, and the fast of the seventh, and the fast of the tenth, shall be to the house of Judah joy and gladness, and cheerful feasts; therefore love the truth and peace. {feasts: or, solemn, or, set times} (KJV)

No longer will mourning be necessary. Yeshua will rule from Jerusalem and the nations will come up to the mountain of the LORD.

Isaiah 2:3 NKJV 3 Many people shall come and say, "Come, and let us go up to the mountain of the LORD, To the house of the God of Jacob; He will teach us His ways, And we shall walk in His paths." For out of Zion shall go forth the law, And the word of the LORD from Jerusalem.

שלום ברוך
Shalom and be blessed
Dan and Brenda Cathcart

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