This is what YHWH says,

"Stand ye in the ways,

and see,

and ask for the old paths ,

where is the good way,

and walk therein, and you shall find rest for your souls."

Jeremiah 6:16 

Life Skills from the Word of YHWH

 Chukkat (Ordinance)
(Sefer Bamidbar) Numbers 19:1 – 22:1


19:10- And he that gathers the ashes of the heifer shall wash his clothes, and be unclean until the even: and it shall be to the children of Yisrael, and to the stranger that sojourns among them, a statute forever.
11- He that touches the dead body of any man shall be unclean seven days.
13- Whosoever touches the dead body of any man that is dead, and purifies not himself, defiles the tabernacle of YHVH; and that soul shall be cut off from Israel: because the water of separation was not sprinkled upon him, he shall be unclean; his uncleanness is yet upon him.
20:1- Then came the children of Yisrael, even the whole congregation, into the desert of Tzin in the first month: and the people abode in Kadesh; and Miryam died there, and was buried there.
2- And there was no water for the congregation: and they gathered together against Moshe and against Aharon.
10- And Moshe and Aharon gathered the congregation together before the rock, and he said unto them, Hear now, ye rebels; must we fetch you water out of this rock?
11- And Moses lifted up his hand, and with his rod he smote the rock twice: and the water came out abundantly, and the congregation drank, and their beasts also.
12- And YHVH spoke to Moshe and Aharon, Because ye believed Me not, to sanctify Me in the eyes of the children of Yisrael, therefore ye shall not bring this congregation into the land that I have given them.
14- And Moshe sent messengers from Kadesh unto the king of Edom, Thus says thy brother Yisrael, Thou knows all the travail that has befallen us:
21- So Edom refused to give Yisrael passage through his border: and so Yisrael turned away from him.
23- And YHVH spoke unto Moshe and Aharon in mount Hor, by the coast of the land of Edom, saying,
24- Aharon shall be gathered unto his people: for he shall not enter into the land which I have given unto the children of Yisrael, because ye rebelled against My word at the water of Merivah.
28- And Moshe stripped Aharon of his garments, and put them upon Eliezar his son; and Aharon died there in the top of the mount: and Moshe and Eliezar came down from the mount.
29- And when all the congregation saw that Aharon was dead, they mourned for Aharon thirty days, even all the house of Yisrael.”
21:6- And YHVH sent fiery serpents among the people, and they bit the people; and many of Yisrael died.
7- Therefore the people came to Moshe and said, We have sinned for we have spoken against YHVH and against thee; pray to YHVH that He take away the serpents from us. And Moshe prayed for the people.
8- And YHVH said unto Moshe, Make thee a fiery serpent, and set it upon a pole: and it shall come to
pass, that every one that is bitten, when he looks upon it, shall live.
9- And Moshe made a serpent of brass, and put it upon a pole, and it came to pass, that if a serpent had
bitten any man, when he beheld the serpent of brass, he lived.”

 

“To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven: A time to be born,
and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted; A time to kill, and
a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up; A time to weep, and a time to laugh;
a time to mourn, and a time to dance.”
(Ecclesiastes 3:1-4)

 
“Precious in the sight of YHVH is the death of his saints.”
(Psalms 116:15)


“I have said to corruption, Thou art my father: to the worm, Thou art my mother, and my sister. And \
where is now my hope? as for my hope, who shall see it?”
(Job 17:14-15 )


“He will swallow up death in victory; and Adonai YHVH will wipe away tears from off all faces;
and the rebuke of his people shall he take away from off all the earth: for YHVH has spoken it.”
(Isaiah 25:8)


“By mercy and truth iniquity is purged: and by the fear of YHVH men depart from evil. When a
man's ways please YHVH, he makes even his enemies to be at peace with him.”
(Proverbs 16:6-7)


“When my soul fainted within me I remembered YHVH:

and my prayer came in unto thee, into thine
holy temple.”

(Jonah 2:7)

 

Chukkat Summary:
1. Preparing the Ash to Purify the Assembly and Pass By:

Readied by the earlier warnings, the generation that left Egypt was dying in the wilderness. With each death that visited the camp, came the likelihood of some inevitable defilement. Here in parasha Chukkat, a sedra filled with tragedy and death, the enduring hope of restoration with purification is introduced through the ashes of the red heifer, a sacrificial offering raised to deliver cleansing to the exposed congregation. The mixture of these ashes, vestiges of the fiery offering, spoke of the finality and totality of HaShem’s Ordinance and when sprinkled over the people in the waters of separation, became the telling sign of how we could inherit new life.
In yet another living illustration in the Torah, the red heifer incorporates yet another facet of the Messianic Redemptive work in the nation. That the heifer had to be red, points to that of war and the battles that lie ahead. As Esav the red brother became the immediate obstacle and the nation led into its inheritance, the remains of the red heifer release a people of their uncleanness, pointing to the power to overcome the enemies ahead. Suggested within this bovine picture of priestly intercession, as the administering kohanim find themselves momentarily defiled due to the offering, is the restored Kingly Authority rising through the ashes of death. Indeed, Mashiyach ben David, the Captain of the Armies of YHVH Tzivaot, is hinted at through the red hair of the heifer as 1 Samuel 16:12 records:
“...Now he (David) was ruddy, and withal of a beautiful countenance, and goodly to look to.
And YHVH said, Arise, anoint him: for this is he.”
Preparing for the next conflict isn’t always easy, when we a confronted with sorrows and the incessant reality of death. If it were not for the waters of purification, the weight of death would too great. The statue of the red heifer would point to a victory beyond the grave. Though a nation would see member after member die before them, they were not to lose heart. There was to come a day when Yisrael’s life of wandering would end. Ezekiel 36:24-25 speaks of this ultimate restoration:
“For I will take you from among the heathen, and gather you out of all countries, and will bring
you into your own land. Then will I sprinkle clean water upon you, and ye shall be clean: from
all your filthiness, and from all your idols, will I cleanse you.
Synonymous with Yisrael’s spiritual redemption is the possession of the land, as Ezekiel 36:33 states:
“Thus says Adonai YHVH; In the day that I shall have cleansed you from all your iniquities I will
also cause you to dwell in the cities, and the wastes shall be built.”
 

2. Decrees Descending to Death and Ascending from Dust:
Doleful indeed is the grim reality of mortality and corruption. With his beloved sister now departed, Moshe is spared no time for solace as the thirsty complaints of the self-centered now make demands upon the mourner. Whose name means bitter waters, Miryam left this earth in the midst of bitter waters; at the waters at Merivah, where Yisrael’s striving affected even the Deliverer as Psalms 106:32 avers:
“They angered him also at the waters of strife, so that it went ill with Moshe for their sakes...”
In a most prophetic way, the confirmation, that Yehoshua and Calev alone would enter, was tragically ratified. Now, even Moshe was served notice. Like Aharon, he too would taste of death prior to entering the good land. With the passing of each soul that goes before us, we must not lose heart, but embrace the journey onward. No matter how many times Moshe had fallen on his face, the dust had now settled. As Psalms 119:89 confirms, and as there is a time for everything under heaven, let us rest, as we remember:
“Forever, O YHVH, Thy word is settled in heaven.”
 

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