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Posted December 29, 2013 - 6:00am

Therefore let us leave the elementary doctrine of Christ and go on to maturity, not laying again a foundation of repen­tance from dead works and of faith toward God, and of instruction about washings, the laying on of hands, the resurrection of the dead, and eternal judgment. (Hebrews 6:1–2)

Within the biblical record we find a concept called middah k’neged middah, or “measure for mea­sure,” quite frequently. The book of Genesis is filled with examples we can clearly see. For instance, just as Jacob used deception and dis­guises himself in order to receive the blessing from his father Isaac, he is deceived by Laban and Leah is substituted for Rachel. Just as Jacob used the skin of a goat to deceive his fa­ther, the skin of a goat is used to deceive him into believing Joseph has died. Just as Judah lead his brothers in selling Joseph, making his father believe he is dead, both Judah’s sons Er and Onan were taken by the LORD allowing Judah to feel the pain of his father’s loss. Just as Pharaoh threw the Hebrew babies into the Nile, the Egyptian army was destroyed by the waters of the Red Sea. The list goes on and on.

We also have this principle explained to us in the light of the compensation for damages within the Torah with the expression “an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth.” If a person is responsible for damaging another’s prop­erty, he is liable for restitution to the degree of damage.

Posted December 9, 2013 - 4:30am

In our previous edition of Dust of the Master, we made the observation that many times a Jewish text can help us better understand a teaching of Yeshua. We started by exploring the text of Mark 2:21-22. In this issue we will look at a traditional interpretation of this passage and then look at a few Jewish texts which will help us better understand Yeshua’s words in this instance.

Let’s first take a look at the traditional understanding of this passage. Here is a traditional interpretation pulled at random from an internet search:

Like old wineskins, the Pharisees had become too rigid in their lifestyle and in their traditions; they could not accept Jesus because he would not be bound by the rules they themselves had set. It was time for change where new approaches, new traditions and new structures were required… 

Luke 5:39 And no one after drinking old wine wants the new, for he says, `The old is better.’ "

Jesus tells us in Luke 5:37-38 that the old and the new don’t mix-and shouldn’t but what He was giving us was something totally new; something fresh and exciting. Roman. 7:6 But now, by dying to what once bound us, we have been released from the law so that we serve in the new way of the Spirit, and not in the old way of the written code.1

Posted December 6, 2013 - 9:22am

We have now entered the Amazon Marketplace with our first book, The Four Responsibilities of a Disciple (published September 3, 2013). This will help our resources be seen by thousands of people who would otherwise not be aware of them. In the next few days we hope to make available a Kindle version of our book as well, which can be purchased from the same location. If you have read The Four Responsibilities of a Disciple, please consider posting a brief review on Amazon for us. This will both help people understand the premise of the book, as well as increase its visibility. Please be sure to share this with your family and friends as well.

Update: Our Kindle version is now available. Thank you for all of your prayers!

Posted November 13, 2013 - 11:28pm

Many times in our exploration of Jewish sources there will be a text which will help better elucidate a passage within the Scriptures, particularly the words of our Master. I would like to show how one such text does so in relation to Yeshua's double-parable of the Torn Garment and the Wine Skins. For no particular reason, I am going to use the version found in Mark's Gospel account. Let's take a look at this parable together.

No one sews a piece of unshrunk cloth on an old garment. If he does, the patch tears away from it, the new from the old, and a worse tear is made. And no one puts new wine into old wineskins. If he does, the wine will burst the skins—and the wine is destroyed, and so are the skins. But new wine is for fresh wineskins. (Mark 2:21-22)

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Latest Book Review

The Magerman Edition

Author: Daniel Rose & Jay Goldmintz
Publisher: Koren Publishers
Year: 2014

The Koren Ani Tefilla Siddur is one of the latest in Koren’s growing collection of siddurim (prayer books) geared towards a specific demographic. Koren describes Ani Tefilla as “an engaging and thought-provoking siddur for the inquiring high school student and thoughtful adult.” Koren says that Ani Tefillah has been developed in order “to help the user create their own meaning and connection during the Tefilla [prayer] experience.” The name of the siddur is connected with its objective. Ani Tefilla means “I pray.” 

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