When an animal was going to the place of slaughter it was a hard thing to do. Some people prayed for the strength to do it. In the Temple, a lot of that happened. The individual realizes he is about to take a life and feels different. Some have a wrong impression of the korbanot. Here is an important concept to remember. In the Temple, the place of slaughter is called the “Beit Ha Mit’b”chaim” or “The House to/from Life.” That is how they saw the korbanot, they were life (Num 28.2).
When the altar for the next Temple goes up very soon, it is possible the process will start before the Natzal (catching away/rapture) of the believers on Yom Teruah (Rosh Ha Shannah), Tishri 1, year 6001 from creation. We believe that the altar will be set up before the Natzal, and the korbanot will begin to be offered according to the Torah (Ezra 3.1-6). But, when that altar goes up and those lambs start ascending, and people see it, it will hit them about what the Lord did. It will also infuriate unbelievers.
We are not worthy and we deserve death. The soul that sins shall die, that’s fair isn’t it? But God isn’t fair, but he is just. Can you imagine all those animals dying? This brings us to another problem. Christianity will say all of this has been “done away with.” A symbol that might do a work in our heart is gone, and that’s a good thing, right? Hos 6.4-6 tells us the Lord is displeased with Israel. They were not loyal and their hearts were wrong. All the symbols that God had set up had become meaningless. Does that describe our walk sometimes? We get into a routine day after day. After awhile nothing moves us, or impresses us anymore. That’s how we drift into disobedience. Things are very meaningful at first, then later it isn’t. We have all sorts of messianic symbols set up so we can have the proper instruction about who God and Messiah is and what the Lord is doing. Apostasy, or denominations, are what happens when we lose sight of what God really said or who he is. If you can change his identity, you can change his commands.
Men have given up on the central teaching of the Torah. Rom 11.17-18 gives us Paul’s Olive Tree Theology. The believers are the branches, and the fruits are the teachings/results of what they are doing as they observe what God has said. The Torah is the trunk of the tree and it brings nourishment to the branches (believers). The Messiah is the root, the source of nourishment, the “stabilizer” (Isa 33.6). The problem is we cut out the trunk (Torah) and then we end up with dead branches and no fruit.
The Torah establishes truth (Psa 119.142, 160; 2 Pet 1.12) just as the trunk stands strong and lifts up the branches. Have you ever had this conversation? People will say, “I have Yeshua and I don’t need sacrifices, or the Temple, festivals or the Torah.” So then say, “If you don’t have the acceptable sacrifice on the acceptable altar in the correct Temple, according to the tavnit (pattern/blueprint) in the Torah, you have no sacrifice, right?” Yeshua said that religious men always think the sacrifice is more important than the altar (Matt 23.16-22). A person of God knows the altar is more important because it has a kedusha, and that is what gives the offering a kedusha.
The Ten Virgins did not have oil for their lamps (Matt 25.1-13). The lamps are symbolic of the Torah (Psa 119.105). Today, we don’t even have the lamps! Those who say they have oil are in possession of a flammable liquid without any proper containers. Anything can happen then. The oil can go all over the place and if lit, it can burn people and property.
Another name for the Torah is “The Tree of Life.” If you don’t have an altar, you don’t have an acceptable korban according to Yeshua. That is one of the messages of Num 28-29. People are very opposed to this altar. If Israel has nothing to do with your walk, what gate are you going to use to get into the New Jerusalem (Rev 21.10-12). The people listed there were Torah observant Jews and some of them wrote the Gospels and Epistles. A “gate” in Scripture alludes to spiritual forces that filter down from God (Psa 24.7). The “pearly gates” are named for the twelve tribes. The number 12 in Hebrew is the letter “Lamed” and it means “teaching or purpose.” If you can’t get into the city, you are “outside the camp” and “cut off” (Rev 22.14-15). We don’t get judged on whether we have kept the commandments, we get judged on whether we “know the Lord” or not and the Torah is related to that (Jer 9.23; Matt 7.21-23; 1 John 2.3-4). Keeping the Torah (commandments) is the evidence that you “know the Lord.”
What happens to the branches that are not connected to the trunk (Torah). They are gathered up and burned. That is why we teach and emphasize the Torah (Acts 15.21). It connects us to the root (Messiah). The rich sap can nourish us, producing good fruit (teaching, results).
Now we are going to move on to the Torah portion called “Matot” meaning “Tribes” and it covers Num 30.1 to 32.42. This portion covers what is known as the “Law of the Tongue” and it is about the power of the spoken word. In Num 3.1 we learn that Moses speaks to the heads of the tribes (Matot). This will be based on the nomadic tradition about tribal customs and order. He is not talking to the Kohanim (priests) or the “sons of Israel.” This is the only portion given to the heads of the nation.
A congregation is made up of many families (tribes) and this alludes to a father over his family. Matot goes to the heart of vows and matot also means “staff or rod.” Each head of a tribe (family) had a staff to signify his headship and authority concerning that family.
A “vow” is something that is dedicated to God. In Hebrew it is the word “neder.” An “oath” is something that obligates us and in Hebrew that is the word “sh’vuah” and its root means “seven.” When we make a vow we change reality. Moses knows the lesson of word power (Num 20.6-13). Now, we speak in one three time periods in everything we say. Those periods are past, present and future. God’s seal is truth, in Hebrew “emet.” This word is spelled with an aleph, mem and tav. Aleph speaks of the past, mem speaks of the present/transition and tav speaks of the future.
With this in mind, we will pick up here in Part 31 with the “Law of the Tongue.” Understanding this concept will also help us understand several misunderstood scriptures like Gen 3.16; 1 Cor 14.34-35 and 1 Tim 2.11-15.