Nazarene Space

There are three major themes in this week’s parshat:

  1. the red heifer, or “parah adumah” פָרָה אֲדֻמָּה in Hebrew;

  2. the water from the rock. Rock in Hebrew is “seila” which in Hebrew is סֶּלַע;

  3. the copper snake, which in Hebrew is “nachash nechoshet” נְחַשׁ נְחֹשֶׁת;

 

The Red Heifer

It is explained that one of the key concepts with the red heifer ritual is the “ashes” (Num 19:9), which in Hebrew is אֵפֶר, “efer”. Surprisingly, this word was changed into עֲפַר “afar” in Num 19:17, which means: “earth, dust, soil”.

The difference between “ash” and “soil” is that of death and life. Ash is the residue of that which is burned, this is death. Life, however, springs from the soil, when there is water.

The first man Adam was created from dust, soil, afar עֲפַר. This is life.

It is therefore that the “ash” of the red heifer is mixed with “living water” (Num 19:17), which in Hebrew is “mayim chaim” מַיִם חַיִּים, and it is precisely in this verse, the “ash” is transformed to “soil”, by the power of the living water.

What does the red heifer symbolize?

She is defined with 5 attributes as follows:

English

Hebrew

Transliteration

Gematria

heifer

פָרָה

parah

285

red

אֲדֻמָּה

adumah

50

without spot

תְּמִימָה

temimah

495

no blemish

אֵין-בָּהּ מוּם

ein bah mum

154

upon which never came yoke

לֹא-עָלָה עָלֶיהָ, עֹל

lo alah aleiha ol

351

 

 

 

1335

 

It is explained by Arizal that these 5 attributes correspond to the 5 Hebrew letters that have sofit (end form) as follows:

English

Regular form

End form (sofit)

Gematria

Kaf

כ

ך

20

Mem

מ

ם

40

Nun

נ

ן

50

Peh

פ

ף

80

Tzadi

צ

ץ

90

 

 

 

280

 

Having an end form (sofit) denotes restriction, i.e. judgment. Adding 5 for each of the letters, the gematria is 280 + 5 = 285, exactly that of the heifer, parah פָרָה.

Let’s develop further on this concept of “judgment”.

First the gender has to be female. Female is on the left side, as distinct from male which is on the right side, based on the sefirot model. The right side is “love” and the left side is “judgment”. This is why Mashiach has to sit on the right side of the father, or the blessed sheep on the right side and the condemned goats on the left side as in Mat 25:33.

Color red alludes to blood, severe judgment.

“Without spot”, “no blemish”, “no yoke” etc, is the result of careful examination and selection, the process of judgment.

The combined gematriot of these 5 attributes is 1335, which is the gematria of Satan, when it is calculated based on “mispar keedmee”, (http://www.innerpedia.org/index.php?title=Triangular_value) which is a Jewish tradition equivalent to the triangle number in mathematics, as follows:

Satan in Hebrew is שָׂטָן, which consists of three letters: Shin, Tet, and Nun.

Shin is the 21st letter, hence the gematria of all numbers preceding and including Shin is:

1 + 2 + 3 + 4 + 5 + 6 + 7 + 8 + 9 + 10 + 20 + 30 + 40 + 50 + 60 + 70 + 80 + 90 + 100 + 200 + 300 = 1095

Tet is the 9th letter, hence the gematria of all numbers preceding and including Tet is:

1 + 2 + 3 + 4 + 5 + 6 + 7 + 8 + 9 = 45

Nun is the 14th letter, hence the gematria of all numbers preceding and including Nun is:

1 + 2 + 3 + 4 + 5 + 6 + 7 + 8 + 9 + 10 + 20 + 30 + 40 + 50 = 195

Total = 1095 + 45 + 195 = 1335

The calculation of “mispar keedmee” in this case reveals the full potency of Satan as the enemy, which introduces death to this world.

The antidote is the red heifer, by sacrificing the red heifer to ashes (death), comes life (soil) that is eternal, an obvious allusion to the death of Yeshua on the cross, which is the secret of the red heifer ritual.

As Yeshua is the fulfillment of the Torah, it follows that the antidote in practical term is for the believers to study and fulfill the Torah in the same way as Yeshua did.

The gematria of “written Torah” is exactly 1335, which in Hebrew is Torah SheBiKhtav תּוֹרָה שֶׁבִּכְתָב, the 5 books of Moshe.

Now the 5th attribute (upon which never came yoke) is very enigmatic:

לֹא-עָלָה עָלֶיהָ, עֹל

The gematria of this verse is 351, which is the triangle number of 26, the gematria of the tetragrammaton.

The 4 words have the following 2-letter roots:

לא על על על

The key here is the relationship between “alef” and “ayin”. In Jewish tradition, the interchange between the two letters denotes transformation between light and vessel, as in the “ash” and “soil” above.

In the first word, if we replace the alef with ayin, and re-arrange the first two letters, the result:

על על על על

In gematria, this is 4 x 100 = 400, in meaning, על denotes ascent, as in “burnt offering”, olah עֹלָה.

400 is the gematria of the last letter Tav in the alphabet, which is the “cross” in pictographic form.

Or, to take this one step further, 400 is the gematria of: …your salvation (Yeshua) יִשְׁעֵךְ as in Isaiah 62:11.

Yoke (עֹל) in rabbinical interpretation is always connected with the “yoke of heaven”, which means commandments (mitzvah), or Halacha, which is the “details” of the law, as distinct from the “principles” of the law. In this context, the “yoke” is Yeshua’s Halacha, which is light and easy (Matt 11:30), as compared to rabbinical Halacha which is heavy and strict.

 

The Water from the Rock

There are two instances in the Torah when water came out of a rock. The 1st instance is immediately after the first Passover in the wilderness, when the rock was stricken, which was perfectly fine. The 2nd instance is in this week’s parshat which is one year before the entry to the land of Israel. It became a problem for Moshe to strike the rock twice.

The difference is that in the 1st time the act was performed before the elders only (Ex 17:6), whereas in the 2nd time the act was performed before the entire congregation (Num 20:10).

Another problem is when (water) “from the rock” appeared the 1st time in Num 20:8, the Hebrew is:

מִן-הַסֶּלַע

Whereas when the same phrase appeared the 2nd time in Num 20:10, the Hebrew was changed to:

 הֲמִן-הַסֶּלַע

by adding a “hey” in front the word “min”, which means “from”.

In the Torah, the only other time the word “min” מִן comes with a prefix “hey” is in Gen 3:11: …have you eaten from the tree…? A question asked by God after the primordial sin.

הֲמִן-הָעֵץ

Astonishingly, “from the rock” (ha-min ha-seila) and “from the tree” (ha-min ha-etz) have the same gematria of 165.

It follows that the water from the rock is the antidote to the sin of eating from the tree.

According to 1Cor 10:4, the “rock” is the Mashiach.

If Mashiach is the rock, it follows that the water is the Torah as taught by Mashiach, as water in rabbinical interpretation is Torah.

The Hebrew word Hey, Mem, and Nun is also the same word for both Haman (הָמָן) the Agagite, and the Manna (הַמָּן) the bread from heaven. Both are pronounced as “Ha-man”, as distinct from “Ha-min”.

Haman is the prototype of the enemy that sought to kill, whereas Manna is the antidote that sustains life.

The parallel is thus established:

 

Hebrew

English

Hebrew

English

English

English

The enemy

הֲמִן-הָעֵץ

From the tree

הָמָן

Haman

Satan

Serpent

The antidote

הֲמִן-הַסֶּלַע

From the rock

הַמָּן

The Manna

Red heifer

Mashiach

 

The obvious question is why hitting the rock is permitted the first time, but forbidden the second time?

It is explained that both instances involved miracles.

There are two types of miracles:

  1. revealed miracle

  2. concealed miracle

Revealed miracle is more dramatic, like splitting the sea, resurrection from the dead, etc. which is the downright change of nature. This is great for the unbelievers, or infant believers.

Concealed miracle is more subtle. As a matter of fact, nature is miraculous in and of itself when you come to think about it. It is for this very reason, the name of God that created nature is called Elohim אֱלֹהִים, the gematria is 86, exactly that of the nature, hateva הַטֶבַע. The fact we can breathe and live is nothing short of a miracle by the grace of God. This appreciation of concealed miracle, however, is for the matured believers.

Hitting the rock is a lower level miracle whereas speaking to the rock is a higher level miracle.

It is for this reason that hitting the rock is not only necessary, but actually required for the infant believers, during the 1st year of their wilderness journey, as they only drink milk. This corresponds to the dramatic event of the cross, which was witness by not so many people.

Speaking to the rock is a higher level miracle, intended for a more spiritual, matured audience. This is the “still small voice” that speaks to the soul of those that are no longer babes but can eat meat.

Hence hitting the rock is for the 1st generation, speaking to the rock is expected of the 2nd generation, which were expected to have matured enough to enter the land.

From a Kabbalistic perspective, hitting is physical, the function of the hand, the nefesh; speaking is spiritual, the function of the mouth with the wind, the ruach, which also means spirit.

The “rod” that God ordered Moshe to bring “from before the LORD” (Num 20:9) is no ordinary rod, but the same rod that has budded, which is intended for judgment “against the rebels”(Num 17:10).

Moshe got the message, that’s why he called the people “…ye rebels…” (Num 20:10).

It is explained that Moshe purposefully hit the rock in order to sacrifice himself for the people. A prototype of the Mashiach that is to come.

The message for us today is to grow up, to mature. Miracle is great when we are babies, but it’s about time for us to eat some meat, and study some deeper Torah wisdom.

 

The Copper Snake

The obvious connection between “snake” nachash נָּחָשׁ and “Mashiach” מָּשִׁיחַ is that they have the same gematria 358, hence Mashiach is the antidote to the Snake.

It is for this reason that Mashiach parallels himself to the “snake” on Moshe’s pole in John 3:13.

If we look closer to the Hebrew text, there is a problem.

In Num 21:6, God sent “fiery serpent”, which is Hebrew is הַנְּחָשִׁים הַשְּׂרָפִים, which are actually two types of snakes. One is called Saraf, the other is called Nechash.

The instruction from God is to make “Saraf” שָׂרָף only:

עֲשֵׂה לְךָ שָׂרָף

Make for you a Saraf…Num 21:8

Moshe actually disobeyed by making a Nechash…

וַיַּעַשׂ מֹשֶׁה נְחַשׁ נְחֹשֶׁת

And Moshe made a copper Nechash (serpent)…Num 21:9

The rabbinical interpretation is that Nechash is for slandering against God the Torah giver, Saraf is for slandering against Moshe the Torah teacher. While God forgives the offence against Him, He wanted to give honor to Moshe by ordering Saraf only. On the other hand, Moshe forgives the offence against him, but decided to give honor to God by making the Nechash only.

Let’s focus on this verse:

וַיַּעַשׂ מֹשֶׁה נְחַשׁ נְחֹשֶׁת

And Moshe made a copper Nechash (serpent)…Num 21:9

The verse has four words, which forms a symmetry with Moshe parallels Nechash, and Vayaas (and made) parallels Nechoshet (copper).

The gematria of Moshe מֹשֶׁה (345) + Nechash נְחַשׁ (358) is 703, 703 is the triangle number of 37, the gematria of Yehida יְחִידָה, the highest level of soul, or Mashiach, as Moshe is a prototype of Mashiach.

1 less 37 is 36, the triangle number of 36 is 666, which is the gematria of Elohim אֱלֹהִים (86) + Saraf שָׂרָף (580).

This comes to teach us that the number of beast (666) corresponds to the Saraf sent by God as a judgment on the people for slandering against His Torah teacher, which is this case is Moshe, but for mankind in general, is the Mashiach, the ultimate Torah teacher.

If we add the gematria of Nechash נְחַשׁ (358) to Elohim אֱלֹהִים (86), the result is 444. This is the gematria of the temple, mikdash מִקְדָּשׁ.

The difference is 222 (666 – 444), which is the gematria of the first born son, bechor בְּכֹר.

To summarize:

שָׂרָף

Saraf

580

נְחַשׁ

Nechash

358

אֱלֹהִים

Elohim

86

אֱלֹהִים

Elohim

86

The number of the beast

666

The number of the temple

444

 

This comes to teach us that the antidote to the beast is the temple of God, the body of the believer, or the collective community of the congregation of God, with the head being the first born son.

It is for this reason that Moseh made a Nechash instead of a Saraf.

The other pair of parallel is Vayaas וַיַּעַשׂ (and made) and Nechoshet נְחֹשֶׁת (copper).

The four letters of Vayaas can permute Yeshua יֵשׁוּעַ, which is the name of the Mashiach.

Nechoshet can be understood to mean: nailing the Nechash (נְחַשׁ) to the cross (ת), which is another way of saying nailing our “sins” to the cross.

The gematria of this pair is 1144, which is 26 x 44. 26 is the gematria of the tetragrammaton, and 44 is the gematria of blood, dam דָם. Truly, it is the blood of Yeshua that was shed on the cross that has the healing power.

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Comment by Denise Worley on July 13, 2014 at 2:48am

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