Life Skills from the Word of YHWH

 Shelach (Send)
(Sefer Bamidbar) Numbers 13:1 – 16:16

 

13:17- “And Moshe sent them to spy out the land of Canaan, and said unto them, Get you up this way southward, and go up into the mountain:
22- And they ascended by the south, and came unto Chevron; where Achiman, Sheshai, and Talmai, the children of Anak, were. (Now Chevron was built seven years before Zoan in Egypt).
25- And they returned from searching of the land after forty days.
27- And they told him, and said, We came unto the land whither thou sent us, and surely it flows with milk and honey; and this is the fruit of it.
28- Nevertheless the people be strong that dwell in the land, and the cities are walled, and very great: and moreover we saw the children of Anak there.
30- And Calev stilled the people before Moshe, and said, Let us go up at once, and possess it; for we are well able to overcome it.
31- But the men who went up with him said, We cannot go up to that nation; for it is stronger than we.
33- And there we saw the Nephilim, the sons of Anak, which come of the Nephilim: and we were in our own sight as grasshoppers, and so we were in their sight.
14:2- And all the children of Yisrael murmured against Moshe and against Aharon: and the whole assembly said unto them, If only we had died in the land of Egypt! Or, if only we had died in this wilderness!
22- Because all those men which have seen My glory, and My miracles, which I did in Egypt and in the wilderness, and have tempted Me now these ten times, and have not hearkened to My voice;
24- But My servant Calev, because he had another spirit with him, and has followed Me fully, him will I bring into the land in which he went; and his seed shall possess it.
28- Say unto them, As truly as I live, says YHVH, as ye have spoken in Mine ears, so will I do to you:
29- Your carcasses shall fall in this wilderness; and all that were numbered of you, according to your whole number, from twenty years old and upward, which have murmured against Me,
30- But your little ones, which ye said should be a prey, them will I bring in, and they shall know the land which ye have despised.
33- And your children shall wander in the wilderness forty years, and bear your whoredoms, until your
carcasses be wasted in the wilderness.
38- Yehoshua ben Nun, and Calev ben Yephunneh, of the men that went to search the land, lived still.
15:38- Speak to the children of Yisrael, and say to them that they make them tzitzit in the corners of their garments throughout their generations, and they shall put on the tzitzit corner, a string of techelet:
39- And it shall be for you a fringe; and as ye see it and remember all the commandments of YHVH, and do them; and that ye seek not after your heart and after your eyes, after which ye went a whoring:
40- That ye may remember, and do all My commandments, and be holy unto your Elohim.”

“There were Nephilim in the earth in those days; and also after that, when the sons of
Elohim came in unto the daughters of men, and they bore children to them, the same became
mighty men which were of old, men of renown.”
(Genesis 6:4)


“And as soon as we had heard these things, our hearts did melt, nor did any More courage remain
in any man, because of you: for YHVH your Elohim, he is Elohim in heaven above and in earth beneath.”
(Joshua 2:11)


“The hand of YHVH was upon me, and carried me out in the spirit of YHVH, and set me down in the
midst of the valley which was full of bones.”
(Ezekiel 37:1)


“For YHVH had said of them, They shall surely die in the wilderness. And there was not left a man
of them, save Calev the son of Yephunneh, and Yehoshua the son of Nun.”
(Numbers 26:65)


“For him who is joined to all the living there is hope: for a living dog is better than a dead lion.”
(Ecclesiastes 9:4)


“This day will YHVH Shut thee into mine hand; and I will smite thee, and take thine head from thee;
and I will give the carcasses of Armies of the Philistines this day unto the fowls of the air,
and to the beasts of the earth; that all the earth may know that there is an Elohim in Yisrael.”

(1 Samuel 17:46)
 

Shelach Summary:
1. Calev, the Carcasses and the Nephilim Before Us:

In a clash between the heart of a giant in the faith, who called for courage in the camp, and the crowd of critics whose misdirected focus caught eye of the children of Anak, a confidence in Covenant eclipsed by Canaan’s corrupt seed, parasha Shelach sends us today to confront that unholy offspring. Rather than shudder at the idea of withstanding one’s ground in the face of the foe, Calev is doggedly determined to obey the command and conquer all that is promised. Pleading with the people to the point of renting their garments, he and Yehoshua, Yehudah and Ephrayim, will come to personify a nation, routable when divided, and yet indefatigable when united. The lack of vision for what Yisrael was to be gave way to a preference for the grave. Rewarding their pronouncement for death in the desert, HaShem would let the number of the carcasses total an average of three hundred per week throughout the wilderness wanderings. The bones of Yisrael’s unbelieving generation did not see
the land of Promise, suspended in sand, their sum would a sign; Psalms 22:17-18 echoes the plight:
“I can count all my bones: they look and stare upon me. They part my garments among them,
and cast lots upon my vesture.”
It would be far more than 38 years, and the bones would not be forgotten. This subject is dug up in light of a people who would face goliaths yet again, as the voice in Ezekiel 37:2 echoes the prophetic faith of Calev, as the day of Yisrael’s revival is at hand,
“Again He said unto me, Prophesy upon these bones, and say unto them, O ye dry bones, hear
the word of YHVH.”
The bones would be given life to fulfill the original call, as Ezekiel 37:10 & 12 point to our days:
“So I prophesied as He commanded me, and the breath came into them, and they lived, and
stood up upon their feet, an exceeding great army...Therefore prophesy and say unto them,
Thus saith Adonai YHVH; Behold, O My people, I will open your graves, and cause you to
come up out of your graves, and bring you into the land of Yisrael.”
May we remember Calev’s spirit. Of another spirit, his boldness refreshes us and enjoins us to taste and embrace the victorious, witnessed in Joshua 15:14; here, the determination of a man of faith is recorded:
“And they gave Chevron to Calev as Moshe said: and there he expelled the three sons of Anak…”
 

2. The Tzitzit, Binding Past Sins To Remember Tzion’s Way:
Beyond the camp murmurs, Moshe hears another cry; in Number 14:11, HaShem bears His heart:
“And YHVH said unto Moshe, How long will this people provoke Me? And how long will it be
before they believe Me, for all the signs which I have showed among them?”
So real was the sense of Ketuvah, the marital pledge of Elohim to His people. Their refusal to arise and possess their inheritance sadly reflected an attitude of doubt and underestimation of the value of the dowry. Given the land of Canaan , the sons of Yaakov, were called to the understanding that this promised possession was to be cherished and perceived as the integral to the Covenant. Commanded to wear the techelet, the four directions of the fringe cause us to focus upon HaShem’s vision, remembering the land. Fulfilled in the colors of the modern flag, the Tzitzit point us up. As we remember the ultimate call to take the land, the time to accept His strength is now. The mitzvot to adorn our garments with the tzitzit is in recognition that “all He has commanded we will do.” Even as the tzitzit flags the wearer as one who has heard the command to ascend, Ecclesiastes 8:4 re-ignites our hearts to believe, as is written:
“Where the word of a king is, there is power: and who may say unto him, What does thou?”
 

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