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Torah Gemstones – V’yishlach (He sent) – Genesis 32:4-36:43

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Torah Gemstones – V’yishlach (And he sent out) Genesis 32:4 – 36:43

 

The legacy of Jacob that we are most familiar with is his twelve sons, who became the twelve tribes of Israel and, ultimately, represented the whole nation. What we fail to recognize is Jacob's life struggle to gain the inheritance that God promised to those tribes.

Jacob’s life is fraught with struggle, mostly against an enemy of one kind or another.  The enemy continually put roadblocks in his path; sometimes he was even his own worst enemy.  Jacob had to fight for the firstborn position, for the blessings that accompanied that birthright, for his bride of promise, Rachel, and finally for the land of Israel itself.  At first he fought unsuccessfully with Esav in the womb for the firstborn status. Then he fought again with Esav for the inheritance of the birthright. He clashed with Laban for his bride of promise, and finally he struggled with an unnamed adversary for the land of Israel.

His life reflects the struggle against an eternal enemy who continually attacks the sons of Israel, those past and those yet to be born. Jacob never gave up though, and continued to fight the good fight for the sake of his progeny.  His final struggle was for the future ingathering of all the tribes. The first ingathering had been in Egypt where Joseph declared, "God sent me before you to preserve for you a remnant in the earth, and to keep you alive by a great deliverance" (Gen 45:7). The final ingathering would be in the land of Israel.

In the Torah portion Ha’azinu (Deut 32), Scripture tells us Jacob’s family is God’s inheritance. For Adonai’s portion is His people; Jacob is the measure of his inheritance. Measure (חבל) means a rope, or binding something by wrapping it with a rope. Ropes were used to measure a plot of land and so the rope became synonymous with the physical inheritance of the tribes. In addition, because a rope with its many twisted strands is stronger than an individual strand, the sages say it was Jacob who was described as God’s rope because he represented the combined strengths of Abraham and Isaac. It was Jacob, therefore, who had the strength to contend for the inheritance for his children against an eternal enemy.

The fight over that inheritance, when Jacob wrestled with "a man," is the epic battle against an unnamed adversary. Rabbinic opinion struggles to understand the passage. Some suggest the adversary was HaSatan, some the guardian angel of Esav, still others declare it was an agent of God.  In any case, this battle unfolds under the cover of darkness with this unnamed adversary over whom Jacob ultimately prevailed. And this account is written in a way that seems to be purposefully ambiguous.  As a result, there are many interpretations and scholars rarely agree on the meaning of this narrative.

One of the mysteries in the interpretation is caused by the repeated use of the pronoun “he,” which makes it difficult to determine who is wrestling with whom. However, even though this account is rather a brief episode in the life of Jacob, it remains one of the most important events.

Jacob left the clutches of Laban, his father-in-law, and came to the ford of the Jabbock River. The Hebrew indicates he first took his family safely across and then made a second trip with all his possessions. After doing this he returned to the original side.  Jabbock (יבק) is actually a play on similar letters for the word wrestled (אבק). Both words mean to displace another from his standing position. This word (אבק) is only used in Scripture in this passage and can also mean, according to the sages, the place from which it “breaks out.” This understanding suggests an idiomatic expression for the Kingdom of Heaven, that is, “breaking forth.” The struggle, it says, continued until the breaking of day, another idiom for the coming forth of the Kingdom.

Although his adversary weakened Jacob by preventing him from using his natural abilities, when the day was breaking their positions were reversed. This seems to indicate Jacob was now deserving of the blessing to which the firstborn was entitled. The “man” touched Jacob’s hip and caused his walk to be diminished physically. Although the “touch” was a blow, still Jacob prevailed. Even though it caused him to limp or favor one side  (צלע), that side was now the side of Adonai. Jacob then declared, “I have been delivered” (נצל), a word related to the side but one that points to the redemption.

Jacob’s name, often referred to as meaning “crooked,” is now changed.  His adversary gives him the new name, Israel.  Israel (ישראל) is generally translated one who contends with God. However, it can also mean one who is upright or straight.  So, although the enemy touched the hip of Jacob and tried to diminish his walk physically, Jacob's new name indicates that his spiritual walk is now straight. He has overcome the adversary. He has won the firstborn status, the blessing of the birthright, the bride, and finally the land of Israel.

Torah Gemstones – V’yetzeh (He went out) – Genesis 28:10-32:3

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Torah Gemstones:  Parshah V’yetzeh (He went out) Genesis 28:10-32:3

 

The expression “Jacob’s ladder” is certainly familiar to many, even to those outside the biblical world.  The setting for Jacob’s dream, however, may not be so familiar.  To begin with, Jacob left Beersheva in the south to head north to Charan to his mother’s family in order to secure a bride.  On his way he stopped for the night at “the place” called Beit El (House of God) in the land of Moriah, which was the future site of the Temple.  There he had a divine encounter with God.  That encounter was a prophecy of the spiritual legacy of Jacob’s seed, given to him before he took four wives who produced thirteen children.

The place or makom, where Jacob rested, is actually one of the names for God.  Jacob took from the “stones” of “the place”, arranged those stones at his head and lay down to sleep.  When he awoke he took the “stone” and set it up as a monument.  The rabbis say the “stones” in the first instance represented the twelve tribes while the singular “stone” signified the tribes united into a one nation.

Midrash Rabbah. R. Judah said: He took twelve stones, saying: ‘The Holy One, blessed be He, has decreed that twelve tribes should spring forth. Now neither Abraham nor Isaac has produced them. If these twelve stones cleave to one another, then I know that I will produce the twelve tribes.’ When therefore the twelve stones united, he knew   that he was to produce the twelve tribes.

 

During the night Jacob dreamed of a ladder (sulam) that was standing upright in the earth with its top reaching to heaven and with angels ascending and descending.  Needless to say, there have been numerous interpretations for the meaning of the ladder both from the view of the ancient sages as well as more modern ones.  This is the only place the word ladder or sulam is used in all of Scripture.  Some have identified the sulam with the Torah.  This is because the gematria for sulam and for Sinai is 130 and Sinai was where Israel received the Torah.  Some sages have connected the ladder to the prayer service because the “stone” where Jacob laid his head was the location of the Altar of burnt offering.  The prayer service is the substitute for the offering services.  Incidentally, this is the same location Abraham built an altar to offer his son Isaac as a burnt offering.  Others saw the ladder as representing Torah study, and still others identified the ladder with Jacob, Israel, their future generations or even all three combined.  Ultimately the ladder was a prophecy connected to Jacob that pointed to his future wives and their combined progeny.

There also seems to be an emphasis on the relationship between Beit El, House of God, and the seed of Jacob because God promised his seed would “burst forth” in all four directions from this the center point of the universe.  In addition, all the families of the earth would be blessed through those descendants.  Since spiritual seed would go forth from the House of God, the house has often been described as the Chuppah or the wedding chamber.  The Chuppah was “the place” the bride and groom would retreat to for their wedding week.  The wedding week is called the Seven days of the Chuppah.  You may recall Jacob fulfilled his “wedding week” with Rachel after working for seven years.  The House of God, therefore, not only represented the place of unity between heaven and earth, it represented the unity between husband and wife.  In fact the Talmud says that a house or bayit is synonymous for a wife.  In other words, a man’s wife is called his house.

This interpretation barely scratches the surface of the depth of meaning of Jacob’s dream.  Overall, the House of God is a picture of the wedding chamber and the ladder represents the Torah or the Ketubah, which was the wedding contract.  Consider the whole nation received the Torah in Sinai at Shavuot (weeks), the time of their betrothal, which is seven weeks of seven days from Passover.  The contract describes the groom’s real estate that was promised to the bride at their marriage.  The stone points to the whole House of Israel.  Israel is the seed that came forth both physically and spiritually from the line of Jacob and his wives.  In addition, this Torah reading is the seventh portion from the beginning of the year.  Coincidence!  I don’t think so.

 

But in the last days it shall come to pass, that the mountain of the House of God shall be established in the top of the mountains, and it shall be exalted above the hills; and people shall flow to it. And many nations shall come, and say, 'Come, and let us go up to the mountain of God, and to the House of the God of Ya’akov; and He will teach us of His ways, and we will walk in His paths; for Torah shall go forth from Zion, and the word of God from Jerusalem.

Micah 4:1-2

Torah Gemstones – Tol’dot (Descendants) – Genesis 25:19-28:7

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Torah Gemstones: Tol’dot (history/descendants) Genesis 25:19-28:7

 

This week’s portion is a tale of two Kingdoms.  One is represented by Esav and the other by Jacob.  The twins came forth from the womb of Rebecca and are described in Scripture as being two nations.  Tol’dot, then, is the history of the eternal destiny of these two nations.

Typically Jacob gets a bad rap for being the “supplanter” and stealing the birthright from Esav.  However, the sages have a different take.  According to the rabbinic literature the name Jacob means, “his sovereignty will supplant mine in the Olam Haba (the World to Come), that is, he will rule after me.”  In other words, Jacob’s sovereignty will supplant Esav’s in the time of the “World to Come”, so that Jacob will rule after Esav.  The rabbis added, Isaac concedes This Present World to Esav and The World to Come to Jacob”.  This now becomes a picture of Esav’s rulership over this present physical age and Jacob’s rulership over the future age to come.  Their struggle in the womb becomes the eternal conflict between the Kingdom of Darkness and the Kingdom of Light.

So what is the character of each of these two individual kingdoms?  First, Esav is described as “a man who knows hunting” and “a man of the field”.  Yeshua explained in the parables that the field was the world.  The word for hunting, tza’id, means one who lays an ambush to snare his prey.  This is the nature, then, of the ruler of this world and the thrust of his kingdom.  He continually ambushes, entraps and enslaves his prey until they are his.

Esav came forth red (adam) like a wide garment (aderet) that is hairy.  The “hairy” outer garment represents the flesh, which is red in color.  Hairy or sei’ar comes from the singular root s’ar.  The sei’irim are the goat demons or satyrs found in much of pagan worship. It was Jeroboam who appointed priests for the Sei’irim and made images of goat demons, and it is the sei’irim who lived in the wilderness according to Leviticus.   This is where the concept of the Azazel or the “scapegoat” came from.

Azazel is from two words 'azaz' and 'el', meaning 'strong one of a god.'  Azazel probably derived from the Canaanite god, 'Asiz, who caused the sun to burn strongly.  It is interesting that Azazel is the chief of the Se'irim, or goat-demons, who haunted the desert and to whom most primitive Semitic tribes offered sacrifices.

This helps in understanding the concept of the Azazel goat in the service for Yom Kippur.  The Lord ordered his high priest, Aaron, to 'place lots upon the two goats, one marked for the Lord and the other marked for Azazel' on the Day of Atonement (Yom Kippur).

The goat designated by lot for the Lord is to be used as a sin offering, while the goat designated for Azazel, "shall be left standing alive before the Lord, to make expiation with it and to send it off to the wilderness for Azazel." (Lev 16:10)  

Aaron was to "lay both his hands upon the head of the live goat and confess over it all the iniquities and transgressions of the Israelites,       whatever their sins, putting them on the head of the goat; and it shall be sent off to the wilderness. Thus the goat shall carry on it all their iniquities to an inaccessible region; and the goat shall be set free in the wilderness." (Lev 16:21-22)

In one account of the fall of the angels in the Book of Enoch, Azazel (Asa'el as in the Qumran texts) is the leader of the Watchers who educates humankind of heavenly secrets that lead humankind to sin. The angels then charge Asa'el before the Lord with crimes of revealing the heavenly secrets which mankind was not supposed to know.  Rapha’el was then assigned to punish Asa'el by binding him hand and foot and throwing him into the darkness among the sharp and jagged rocks, where he would remain until the Day of Judgment when he would be hurled into the fire.

This was also a part of the ceremony for Yom Kippur during the Second Temple period.  The Azazel goat was escorted to the wilderness on a twelve-mile journey to a place called Mt Tzok or Mt Azazel.  There the goat was pushed backwards off the jagged cliff and torn into pieces by the sharp rocks. The Talmud also records the miracle of the scarlet wool tied to the horns of Azazel and hanging from the rock, called Chudo, that turned white as the goat was cast to its death.

“Though your sins were as scarlet they shall be white as snow”. (Is 1:18)

In the Book of Enoch, also quoted in the Epistle of Jude, Azazel was seen as the False Messiah.  During the Yom Kippur ceremony, the people in Jerusalem waited patiently for news from the wilderness of the destruction of the goat, Azazel.  The goat was considered to be the epitome of evil, wickedness and sin, and a picture of the False Messiah being destroyed and condemned to Gehenna at the time of Yom Kippur.  According to the sages, when Esav returned to his father, Isaac “trembled a trembling that was very great”, meaningIsaac perceived Gehinnom open beneath Esav”.

Now contrast this with Jacob, the man who was blameless or whole (tamim) dwelling in tents.  The tents referred to the tents of the Patriarchs, where the Shekinah or the radiance of God dwelt. This was the place of the Presence of God on earth where those who loved God’s word dwelled (sh’kan).  This was where the righteous experienced repentance, forgiveness and redemption as personified by the person of Jacob.

Rebecca (a picture of the Holy Spirit) told Jacob to listen to her “voice” and bring two goats from the flock.  After she took the garments of Esav and clothed Jacob, she then covered him with the skins of one of the goats.  She put the skins on his hands and on his neck, which were the parts his father could touch.  Scripture says, Jacob declared, my father will touch me and I will bring upon myself a curse.  He literally took on the clothing or the flesh of Esav, along with the skins of the goat, and made an offering of food to his father not unlike what Yeshua did for his heavenly Father.

Jacob was described as smooth skinned.  Smooth or halaq means to divide or to make a portion.  Jacob was, therefore, the Father’s portion, the one who would receive the rightful inheritance in the World to Come.  Jacob is truly a wonderful picture of Yeshua the Messiah literally taking on the curse of the flesh of this world, which were all the sins of mankind. The curse of the flesh was a fragrant aroma to Jacob’s father, Isaac, who smelled it and said, “This is the “fragrance of the Garden of Eden” (Gan Eden) or the World to Come.

Which kingdom most reflects your character?  Is it the works of the flesh as manifested by Esav, the ruler of this world, or the works of the Spirit fulfilled by Jacob, the legitimate ruler and rightful heir of the Kingdom of God?

Study to Show Yourself Approved – Session 7: Plastering the Walls (Liturgy)

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Many people shy away from the liturgy because they associate it with dead religion or just the ramblings of the rabbis. However, it is a wonderful resource for study.  There are many examples in the Gospels and Epistles that both Yeshua and Rav Shaul quoted from the liturgy.  Did you know that the Lord’s Prayer is really a summary of elements in the Amidah (18 benedictions or Standing Prayers)? In fact, much of the book of Revelation is filled with liturgical expressions from the prayers preceding the Shema (Hear O Israel).

 

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Torah Gemstones – Chayei-Sarah (Life of Sarah) Genesis 23:1-25:18

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Torah Gemstones:  Chayei-Sarah (Sarah’s lives) Genesis 23:1-25:18

The double life of Sarah might be a good title for this week’s Torah portion. Scholars have puzzled over the way the Hebrew language expresses the years of Sarah’s life.  Scripture says, “Sarah lived to be one hundred years and twenty years and seven years” for a total of 127 years. Incidentally Sarah is the only female in Scripture to have the years of her life stated.

Rashi explains that, “the word “years” appearing after each part of 127 is to distinguish between three different periods in her life”.  The Zohar takes a different view and explains that Sarah’s life was divided into two periods, which were separated by the birth of her only son Isaac.  From this perspective, she was ninety when Isaac was born, which is the first period of her life and then she lived another thirty-seven years, which is the second period, for a total of 127 years.  The Zohar explains the first word of the Parshah, v’yhu, having the value of thirty-seven which is the same number of years Sarah lived after Isaac’s birth.

However, I would like to propose a third alternative, which also suggests two divisions in Sarah’s life.  The first period is the 120 years and the second is the 7 years.  To follow up on this idea let’s look at a number of examples in the first few verses of the Torah portion, which seem to connect Sarah to this double life.

The first verse literally says “and they were (v’yhu) the lifetime of Sarah (chayei Sarah), one hundred years, and twenty years, and seven years the years (sh’neh) of the lifetime of Sarah (chayei Sarah)”.

Again the word v’yhu, which means “and they were”, is speaking of the life of Sarah in the plural.  Next, the expression the “lifetime of Sarah” is repeated at the beginning and end of the first verse.  The phrase, “the years”, referring to the lifetime of Sarah, is sheneh from the root “shanah”.  It means second, repeat, double or even the concept of two.  You might recognize the word Mishnah, which has the same root and means to repeat. Furthermore, she was buried in the town of Hebron (Chav’ron), which means a couple, or to be bound by coupling together.  Finally, the cave where she was buried is called Macpeilah.  This word comes from the root capel and means double.  So it is no small thing all these elements keep pointing to the concept of two and the division in Sarah’s life.

Now if we go back to the years of her life, which are divided into 120 years and 7 years, an interesting pattern emerges.

And the LORD said, "My Spirit shall not strive with man forever, for he [is] indeed flesh; yet his days shall be one hundred and twenty years."   Genesis 6:3

A better translation might be, My Spirit will not judge man forever.  His Spirit is the One who judges and the One who restores life to his people.  The judgment came to the people in Noach’s day after 120 years.  Moshe experienced the judgment after his days of 120 years.  He died without crossing over the Jordan and entering into the land with the children of Israel.

So if Sarah’s life was divided in two, the 120 years could indicate the death of her flesh followed by the judgment.  She would ultimately be resurrected and restored to her people at that time.  The first division of 120 years is then followed by the 7 years, which could connect to the time of “Jacob’s trouble” and the birth of the Messianic Kingdom.  The 7 years is described in Revelation as period of great turmoil and upheaval as was the judgment related to Noach and the flood, Lot and Sodom and Gemorrah and the Exodus in Egypt.

Finally, the 120 years could also represent the physical dimension of time and our physical world, while the 7 years represents the spiritual dimension or what the sages call the Olam Haba or the World to Come.  The time of the final judgment happens to correspond to the resurrection of the dead, the ingathering of the exiles and the restoration of all things.  In essence, the division in Sarah’s life is really a picture of the division in the life of every person.  After the flesh dies in this world, then the judgment comes and we are raised to everlasting life by of our faith in the work of Yeshua the Messiah at the time of the World to Come.  What an amazing picture that is laid out for us in the double life of Sarah.

Feminine Voice of the Holy Spirit – Full Video Teaching

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Dr. Dye takes a look at the feminine aspect of the Holy Spirit in the creation account based on the view of the sages.  She further examines a very important Kingdom pattern found in the relationship between Adam and Eve, Jacob and the tribes, the sevenfold Spirit of God and the Day of the Lord.  Diana connects all these elements together within the context of a marriage, which she describes as the building block of the entire universe.

 

 

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Giving Thanks!

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Thanksgiving is a special time for most Americans.  My family enjoys this unique celebration because we love to take time to recognize God’s bounty in our lives, and to reflect on the price paid by our spiritual forefathers to see those blessings poured out on our nation.  One Psalm, that perfectly reflects our desire to honor the provisions we have received from the hand of the Father, is Psalm 136.  It speaks of the direct intervention by the Lord himself to give us our daily sustenance and ties that sustenance to the rule of God.  We might also recall the Lord’s prayer in which Yeshua reminds us to pray, “Give us this day our daily bread”.

This psalm has a special place in the liturgy and festival cycle of Israel, especially when the Temple was standing.  Psalm 136 was incorporated into many aspects of Temple worship.  For example, on the last day of Passover and on Hoshana Rabbah (Great Hosannah) at Sukkot, as well as at the time of the New Moon and on the eight days of the Feast of Dedication (Chanukah), Psalm 136 was sung in the Temple precincts.  According to the Mishnah (Ta’an 3:9) this psalm was also chanted on many other joyous occasions such as the rains coming after a long period of drought.  Today Psalm 136 is recited for every Shabbat morning service during the portion called Pesukei D’zimrah, or Verses of Praise, and at those times during Passover and Sukkot.

Another name for Psalm 136 is the “Great Hallel” or Hallel haGadol, which means the Great Praise.  It forms the climax to Psalms 113-118, which are called the Hallel, and which are recited during festival times.  Taken together these psalms speak of the great praise emanating from God’s mighty deeds.  For it is that God is enthroned in the heights of the universe giving sustenance to every living thing and for that we thank Him.  Psalm 136 even opens with a call to praise God because of his mighty acts in nature and a call to praise Him for the mercy He extends in the history of the nation of Israel.  This comes from the refrain in Psalm 118, which is repeated in Psalm 136, “Hodu L’Adonai ki tov, ki le’olam hasdo” (thank the Lord for he is good, for His mercy endures forever).

Psalm 136 has some other unique features. It is a responsive psalm where the refrain, “His mercy endures forever”, is repeated by the worshippers after every declaration of God’s greatness.  It has 26 verses in all, which connect to the value of the name of God (יהוה) and to Moshe who, according to the sages, was the 26th generation of the world who received the Torah God transmitted.  It is a psalm that speaks specifically of a multitude of miracles God performed that includes the Creation of the universe and the Exodus from Egypt.  Finally, every expression of praise is in the present tense because, as the sages saw it, God renews His creation daily.

The main theme of the whole of Psalm 136 comes from the verse “He gives nourishment to all flesh”.  This extols God for giving sustenance to every living being.  Every piece of bread given to mankind is viewed as a demonstration of God’s rule on earth.  God provided for all living creatures out of His abundant mercy.  In fact, all the verses of Psalm 136 portray the Father in all His greatness and His majesty expressing his universal rule in nature and in history.  He is the One True God among all the gods.

So this year why not take some time around the Thanksgiving table to read Psalm 136 with your friends and family.  It is the perfect expression of the provision God gives to His children and it contains our perfect response to that provision. “Give thanks to the Lord for He is good; His mercy endures forever.”

Ascent to Tziyon – Full Video Teaching

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Ascent to Tziyon (2 parts)

This teaching begins by explaining the importance of “returning”, or making teshuvah, to the Father.  I use the geography of Jerusalem to illustrate this concept in a physical sense and then connect it to our spiritual ascent to our Heavenly Father.  I then describe the place of the “tophet”, the most cursed place on earth, and explain how we must leave our flesh there in order to enter into the city gates and ascend.  From there I go into detail about Gihon Spring, the fountain of living water, and how it is a picture of the Spirit flowing into the Pool of Shiloach or Siloam.  Finally, I connect this to Yeshua’s declaration that “out of his belly will flow rivers of living water.”

 

 

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Study to Show Yourself Approved – Session 6: Halachah and Aggadah

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Did you know the Torah (1st five books of the Bible) has at least two very important elements?

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The first is called the Halachah or the way one is to walk in the commandments.  This aspect of the Torah covers the legal rulings on the commandments and is described as a rule that states the correct practice of the law rather than the actual law itself.   Yeshua always went beyond the traditional understanding of a commandment by adding his own unique twist.

The second aspect is called the Aggadah, which means to tell or give an account.  This describes a variety of legends, myths and anecdotes in a hidden or allegorical way.  For example, Yeshua used parables extensively to point to a deeper meaning based on the many rabbinical stories.

 

 

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Torah Gemstones – Vayera (He appeared) – Genesis 18:1-22-24

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Torah Gemstones – Vayera (He appeared) Genesis 18:1-22:24

This week’s Torah portion, Vayera, begins with a number of interesting anomalies in the very first verses.  First, most translations add in the name of Abraham so the text makes sense, but, in reality, the first six verses never mention his name.  Second, Vayera, the Torah portion title, is repeated two additional times in the first two verses, although in a slightly different form.  Third, Abraham is sitting at the entrance to his tent (ohel) when he lifted his eyes and saw three men standing over him.  The word for tent (ohel) is missing the letter vav.  Lastly, a question arises. How is it that the “men” are standing over him and yet Abraham ran towards them?

Why is Abraham not mentioned by name?  Perhaps the focus of these verses is not meant to be on Abraham as the individual but rather on all his progeny. After all, he and his whole house were just circumcised, which was a sign of his seed.  Perhaps it is because the prophecies that are introduced in this Torah portion and which point to the future redemption, apply to the seed of Abraham.  The three significant prophecies that are alluded to in Vayera are the birth of Isaac, which is a picture of the birth of Yeshua, the Messiah, the destruction of Sodom, which is a picture of the final judgment at the end of days, and the binding of Isaac as a burnt offering on the altar, which is a picture of the resurrection of Yeshua.

This is what Abraham perceived (Vayera) sitting in the opening to his tent.  This is the true meaning of the word Vayera, an appearance, a perceiving, a vision, or a seeing of some kind.  In its root, Vayera connotes “the revelation of a great sight”.  This is the prophetic message the angels brought to Abraham concerning the redemption of the nation of Israel that would span the generations.  It was brought to him at the entrance of his tent.

The tent of the Patriarch, Abraham, came to signify the place of the Presence or Shekinah of God on earth, just like the Tabernacle or the Temple.  The Hebrew word for tent, ohel, means to shine, and normally has a value of forty-two in gematria.  However, ohel is diminished because it is missing the letter vav.  Perhaps because his tent was only a temporary shelter for the Shekinah and when a permanent house (Yeshua) was built, the redemption would be complete.  Forty-two is the value of one of the names of God, which has forty-two letters.

In addition there were forty-two stages to the journey of the Israelites in the wilderness outlined in Numbers 33.  This is based on three sets of fourteen different locations.

      Zohar Hadash, Ma’amar 42 Journeys When G-d brought the Jews out from Egypt, He brought them out with the mystery of the 42-letter name, just as He   created heaven and earth…

In the same way, the geneology of the Messiah, in Matthew, is described as three sets of fourteen for a total of forty-two.

      Matityahu 1:17 So all the generations from Abraham to David are fourteen generations; and from David until the carrying away into Babylon are fourteen generations; and from the carrying away into Babylon unto Mashiach are fourteen generations.

According to the sages, God brought the world into existence by the first forty-two letters of the Torah, and, since the Torah is the blueprint for creation, it is designed with forty-two lines in the column of the text.  The first blessing of the Amidah, which is forty-two words, recalls the greatness of the patriarchs through whom God would help Israel.  Finally, forty-two is associated with the building of the Temple.  From this we can understand that the forming of many stones into a Beit HaMikdash and the forming of many tzaddikim into the body of Mashiach is associated with the number forty-two.       (www.betemunah.org)

The last anomaly has to do with the shadow cast over Abraham by the three angels.  This helps explain why the text says they were “upon” him although he ran to them.  The Oak tree at Mamre, the location of Abraham’s tent, referred to a Canaanite cultic shrine dedicated to the supreme, sky god of the Canaanite pantheon.  It was said to have spread its branches out over its followers to afford them shade.  The concept of shade typically meant to come under the rule or authority of a sovereign.  If the branches turned upward and cast no shade upon the ground then it signified that idolaters went under the shade of the tree.  By contrast the shade that was cast upon Abraham came directly from the Heavenly Host through the ministry of the three angels.  Abraham came under the shade of the Most High.

According to various legends, the three men were the angels Micha’el, Rapha’el and Gabri’el.  Raphael, it was said, came to heal the wound of Abraham, Michael was sent to bring glad tidings of a son to be born, and Gabriel was connected to the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah.

Abraham, by his act of obedience in circumcision, rejected the shade or sovereignty of the Canaanite gods and received from the true armies of heaven. The three angels revealed to him and for all generations to come, prophecies of the future redemption through the narratives in Vayera.