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Talit, Mezuzah & Kippah
 

Radio teaching notes from Rabbi Jeremy Storch


Monday

Today I'd like to talk to you about the Jewish prayer shawl, called Talit in Hebrew.

In Numbers 15:37-40, God commanded the Israelites to put fringes on the corners of their garments. The fringes, known as “tzitzit” (pronounced tzeet-zeet in Hebrew) represent the 613 commandments in God's Torah. God commanded the Israelites to wear the “tzitzit” as a reminder to them to obey all of His commandments and not to stray after the lust of the eyes and the lust of the flesh, which the pagan nations surrounding them did.

To gain a deeper knowledge of the significance of the “tzitzit”, we must understand that the letters of the Hebrew language also have numerical value. The numerical value of the word “tzitzit” is 600. Each corner of the Jewish pray shawl, Talit in Hebrew (pronounced tah-leet) has 8 strands (fringes) which are tied in 5 knots. When you ad the numerical value of the word “tzitzit” which is 600, plus the 8 strands and the 5 knots, it gives us a total of 613, which is exactly the number of commandments in God's Torah.

In addition, there are 39 loops wrapped between the 5 knots on each corner of the Talit. The 39 loops spell out the Hebrew phrase “Adonai Echad”, which means “the Lord is One”.

By virtue of God's name being in the tzitzit, there is a supernatural dispensation of God's power and authority in the garment itself. I am not talking about magic or about ancient Jewish mysticism which is found in the Kaballah. I am talking about something that is very scriptural and very real. Here are some examples:

When Elijah, a Torah-observant Jewish prophet, touched the Jordan River with his Talit, the waters parted in two (2 nd Kings 2:8). The same thing happened again when Elisha, the successor to Elijah, took the same garment and struck the water – it divided in two (2 nd Kings 2:14)

Yeshua (Jesus) was also a Torah-observant Jew who kept all of His Father's commandments. He, too, wore the Talit with the fringes at the hem of His garment. According to Luke 8:43-48, a woman with an “issue of blood” pressed through the crowds and when she came in contact with the tzitzit of Yeshua's garment, she was instantly healed!

Matthew 14:36 tells us that multitudes who were sick, who touched the hem of Yeshua's garment were instantly healed! According to Revelation 19:16, when Yeshua returns riding on a white horse with the armies of heaven behind Him, that the edge of the garment resting on His thigh will bear the name of God – “Melech Hamlacheem” (King of kings) and “Adon Ha Adonim” (Lord of lords).

For believers in Yeshua today, wearing the Jewish Talit has great significance: Obedience to the Word of God; supernatural power, authority and healing; divine covering and protection; divine intimacy with God. When the Talit is draped over one's head, it literally becomes a “prayer closet” and also (Revelation 19) reveals that it is a symbol of the 2 nd coming of the Messiah Jesus.  

Tuesday

Yesterday, I spoke to you about the significance of the Jewish prayer shawl called the Talit in Hebrew. For a copy of that teaching, please contact our Temple office. Today, I'd like to speak to you about another garment, the Jewish skullcap which is called the “Kippah” in Hebrew (pronounced Key-pah) and means “covering”.

In Yiddish, which is a European dialect of the Hebrew language, the kippah is referred to as a “yarlmulka”. This comes from the Hebrew phrase “Yaray may Elohim” which means “in fear” or “in reverence for God”. While there is no Biblical mandate to wear the kippah, the origins of it being a sacred garment is traced back to the wardrobe of Aaron, the High Priest of Israel and to Aaron's ministry in the Tabernacle of Moses. According to Exodus 28:4, one of Aaron's priestly garments was a turban which was wrapped around Aaron's head. The turban was called “Mitznefet” in Hebrew. Attached to the front of the turban was a gold plate with the words “Kodesh L'Adonai” engraved on it, which means “Holiness to the Lord”. (Exodus 28:36)

1 st Peter 2:9 says that as believers in Yeshua (Jesus) we are all a “royal priesthood and a holy nation”. Hence, the application for male believers (Jew or Gentile) to wear the Kippah, recognizing that it is a sacred, holy garment, just like the Talit, the Jewish prayer shawl.

Some of you may be saying, didn't the apostle Paul warn men not to cover their heads in 1 st Corinthians Chapter 11? There is a great misconception here by many believers today. First of all, as you read through all the chapters in 1 st Corinthians, you will see that the believers in Corinth were experiencing many problems which Paul had to address. One of them was a “role distinction” problem, which was part of the Greek culture – namely men giving the “appearance of women” and women giving the “appearance of men”.

In 1 st Corinthians 11, Paul uses the Greek word “kataka-loopto” for the word “covering” when he warns men not to “cover” their head. “Kataka-loopto” means to cover one's head with a “veil” or with “long hair” as some were doing. It has nothing to do with the kippah, the Jewish skullcap, which wasn't even invented until about 500 years later. Paul was telling the men in Corinth not to look like women!

Paul also warns women in 1 st Corinthians 11, not to “shave their heads bald” as some were doing. This kind of appearance was associated with temple prostitution in the pagan Greek society. Instead, he instructs the women to cover their heads with a veil, a symbol of humility, dating back to the humility of Rebekah, who covered herself with a “veil” when she first saw Isaac (Genesis 24:65)

So, for all of you men out there who are discovering your Jewish roots in the Messiah Jesus, feel free to wear the kippah, a sacred holy garment in Judaism and don't let anyone condemn you for doing it.

Wednesday

Please listen to the words of this song “Ruach” which means “Spirit of God” in Hebrew. You can order the CD “On Mount Zion” here.
 

Thursday

In Deuteronomy 6:9, God told the Israelites to write His commandments on the doorpost of their houses and upon their gates. This is done through the fastening of what is called in Hebrew, a “mezuzah” to the doorpost of Jewish homes and synagogues today. The word “mezuzah” means “doorpost”. In the exodus from Egypt , the “blood of the Passover Lamb” was applied to the doorposts of the homes of the Israelites leading to deliverance and salvation. The follow-up was obedience to God's commandments (His Torah) given to the Children of Israel at Mt. Sinai , further represented by the mezuzah.

It is the same for believers in Yeshua (Jesus) today. First the blood of Yeshua, our Passover Lamb, was applied to the “doorpost” of our hearts, giving us deliverance and salvation. Then we received the Ruach Ha Kodesh (the Holy Spirit) giving us the “grace to embrace” God's commandments in the Torah and in the entire Bible. As believers, we should actually hide the Word of God IN our hearts!

The mezuzah itself is comprised of two major parts – a container and the parchment paper itself. The container may be of almost any material (wood, brass, silver, ceramic or glass). The container generally bears the Hebrew letter “shin” which stands for the Name of God, in particular, “El Shaddai” which means “Almighty God”. “Dai”, comes from the Hebrew word “daiyenu”, which means “enough” or “sufficient”. God (El Shaddai) is certainly “sufficient” for all the needs of our household!

Sometimes the container of the mezuzah spells our the entire name “Shaddai” using all three Hebrew letters of the word, which are the “shin”, “dalet”, and “yud”, which is an acronym for the Hebrew phrase “Shomer daltot Yisrael” and means “Keeper of the doors of Israel”. Certainly “He that keepeth Israel neither slumbers nor sleeps”.

The “parchment paper” itself, which is rolled up and placed inside the container is made from the dried skin of a kosher animal on which a scribe has written by hand, in Hebrew, the scriptures from Deuteronomy 6:4-9 and Deuteronomy 11:12-21. On the back of the parchment paper, we again see the Hebrew letter “shin” representing God's name, made visible by a small opening on the back of the container.

The mezuzah is then fastened to the upper third portion of the right hand side of the doorpost. It is fastened in the vertical position with the top slightly inclined to the inside of the home. It is customary to touch the mezuzah and then bring your finger(s) to your lips, whenever you leave or enter the home as a reminder that the Word of God is always on your lips and that He will bless you in your “going out” and in your “coming in”.

What is the Messianic application to the mezuzah? Yeshua is the “Living Word”, El Shaddai, Himself, who came in the flesh. Through Him and through His Spirit, the Torah of God is written on our hearts. He is also the one who said in John 10:9, “I am the door, if anyone enters by Me, he will be saved, and will go in and out and find good pasture”.

If you would like to purchase a mezuzah for the doorpost of your home, please contact our temple office.

Friday

At The Tabernacle, we place an emphasis on spirit-filled high praise and worship for Yeshua (Jesus), King of kings and Lord of lords!

Psalm 100 says: “Make a joyful shout to the Lord, all you nations, serve the Lord with gladness, come before His Presence with singing . . . Enter His gates with thanksgiving in your hearts and come into His courts with praise . . . be thankful to Him and bless His Name for the Lord is good and His mercy endures forever!”

Please listen to the words of this song from one of our CDs entitled “I Will Bless the Lord My God” and remember that the “Joy of the Lord is your strength”. You can order the CD “On Mount Zion” here.

 

 

 

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"SHA-ALU SHALOM YIRUSHALAYIM"
Pray for the peace of Jerusalem:
May they prosper who love you.  Peace be within your walls.  Prosperity within your palaces.
Psalm 122:6

 

"The Tabernacle" is an outreach of Tabernacle of Praise Ministries, a 501(c)3 non-profit organization.
The Tabernacle is led by Messianic Rabbi Jeremy Storch and is located in Branson, Missouri.
If you have questions or comments, please email us at: info@TheTabernacleInBranson.com