Wednesday, April 20, 2016

On the Last Day of Passover

Nadene Goldfoot                                      
The Exodus from Egypt to the Jewish Homeland
There has been a custom for some to hold a special dinner called the Seudart Moshiach on the last day of the Jewish holiday of Passover which commemorates the Exodus from Egypt.  This is the time we hear a lecture from the head of the family giving the dinner "Seder" of our story of having been slaves to Pharaoh in Egypt and being redeemed by the Hand of G-d who sent us Moses to debate the Pharoah and lead us back to where he wanted us to live, which was Canaan.
Traditional plate starting Passover Seder's 1st night  that helps to tell our story; the
egg, shank bone, bitter herbs, haroseth, parsley and horseradish
Passover, April 2, 2007 with my daughter-in-law, her mother and guest
at my home
Passover is celebrated and remembered for 8 days outside of Israel but 7 days in Israel.  The extra day allows for time change away from Israel.  After all, it's only been recently that we know what time it is in Jerusalem if we live in Oregon, USA.  Right now it is 7:17 pm in Jerusalem while here it is 9:21 am, a difference of about 10 hours, and we in Oregon are on daylight saving, so actually it would be 8:21 here standard time-11 hours difference.  This last day of Passover has been associated with the qualities of the Messiah and what the future will be like. with complete peace found on earth.
I write this at a time that Iran has threatened the lives of all Israelis with atomic weaponry within a few years, but that no nation on earth except that one involved, Israel, is highly concerned, and also at a time that Israel has been finding people from the Lost Ten Tribes taken away by Assyria as well as by the Babylonians and the Romans.  The return to Israel has been happening ever since the Temple was destroyed in 70 CE, more so since the late 1800s. At that, Israel has been speeding up return of exiles.

While I lived in Safed, I saw many Ethiopians settled there, said to be descendants of Queen of Sheba and King Solomon.  So many Israelis were from exotic places.  Among native English speaking Jews, I was surrounded by South Africans, Canadians, Brits, Australians,  and a few Americans.

Jews have not forgotten that this was a prophecy by Isaiah and that for many years it has been happening.  .  .
Isaiah  was a prophet who lived and prophesied in Jerusalem from the death of Judah's King Uzziah (Azariah)  (780-740 BCE)  until the middle of King Hezekiah's reign from 720 to 692 BCE.   He came from a noble family and was closely connected with the royal court and popular in public affairs.
Isaiah (740-701 BCE) son of Amoz; in Jerusalem
            His prophecy starting with #11:1 tells us that the 10 Tribes that were stolen away by the attacking Assyrians in in 722-721 BCE will also be redeemed by the future Messiah, who will descend from the son of Jesse, father of King David.  David ruled from 1010 BCE to 970 BCE.
David as youth
fighting Goliath, a
Philistine giant
David when King of Judah
in Hebron, took
Jerusalem in his 8th year
David was not an only child.  He was the YOUNGEST son of Jesse. That means there were other sons.   A sister known was Zeruiah.  She would fit the bill as well being a shoot of Jesse's roots. She must have married and had children.   David had married King Saul's daughter, Michal, but had no children by her.  He is known for his son, King  Solomon by Bathsheba.   DNA testing of the Y haplogroup would help to decide if someone was of this line from Jesse.  Other tests would be noted.  The Torah gives these details:

The family line of Jesse is that he married Ithra's daughter. who was the mother of King David.  Jesse's father was Oved, and Oved was the son of  Boaz who married Ruth, a Moabite.  Ruth converted to Boaz's religion of believing in ONE G-d.  Moabites lived in Moab, a country in southern Transjordan.  It was bounded by the river, Heshbon in the North, the river Zered in the south, the Jordan and the Dead Sea to the west, and the Syrian Desert on the east.  They were kindred to the Israelites, being traditionally descended-like the Ammonites-from Lot who was Abraham's nephew.  This is how Arabs and Jews go back to Abraham.

"The spirit of Hashem will rest upon him---a spirit of wisdom and understanding, a spirit of counsel and strength, a spirit of knowledge and fear of Hashem.  He will be imbued with a spirit of fear for Hashem;  and will not need to judge by what his eyes see nor decide by what his ear hear.  He will judge the destitute with righteousness, and decide with fairness for the humble of the earth.  He will strike the wicked of the world with the rod of his mouth, and with the breath of his lips and he will slay the wicked.  Righteousness will be the girdle round his loins, and faith will be the girdle round his waist."  
His prophecy lets us know in the next part #6 of what will be after his appearance and deeds and this has not yet happened to us.                                          
#6 The wolf will live with the sheep and the leopard will lie down with the kid;  and a calf, a lion whelp and a fatling will walk together, and a young child will lead them. 
Abnormal meeting of animals from different areas, bear
of America with lion and tiger of to make
friends without getting hungry

 A cow and bear will graze and their young will lie down together;  and a lion, like cattle, will eat hay.  A suckling will play by a viper's hole;  and a newly weaned child will stretch his hand toward an adder's lair.  They will neither injure nor destroy in all of My sacred mountain;  for the earth will be as filled with knowledge of Hashem as water covering the sea bed.  . 
Raised happily together as pup and kitten
have no reason to hate each other
This means that even the animals will coexist in harmony with each other.  It shall be on that day that the descendant of Jesse who stands as a banner for the peoples, nations will seek him, and his resting place will be glorious.  
                                          The prophecy continues with the most interesting part.
Jews praying at Western Wall in Jerusalem
Today almost all men and women must serve in IDF
It shall be on that day that the Lord will once again show His hand, to acquire the remnant of His people, who will have remained, from Assyria and from Egypt and from Pathros and from Cush and from Elam and from Shinar and from Hamath and from the islands of the sea.  He will raise a banner for the nations and assemble the castaways of Israel;  and He will gather in the dispersed ones of Judah from the 4 corners of the earth.  

This special last feast day was instituted in the 18th  century by the Baal Shem Tov who was Rabbi Yisroel ben Eliezer, a famous mystical rabbi and founder of Hasidism.  This was his way to translate an intangible belief into a tangible action.

Rabbi Menachem Mendel of Lubavitch, the Tzemach Tzedek of the first half of the 19th century followed this custom.  He explained the connection between the 1st and the last day of Passover and between the 1st redemption and the final redemption of the Jewish people this way:

   "The last day of Passover is the conclusion of that which began on the 1st night of Passover.  It was the beginning.  The last day is our festival commemorating the final redemption, when the Holy One, Blessed by He, will redeem us from the last exile through our righteous Moshiach (Messiah), who is the final redeemer.  The 1st day of Passover is Moseh Rabbeinu's festival (Moses);  the last day of Passover is Moshiach"s festival.  

A misunderstood part of his prophecies have been 52: 13-53: 12.  Jewish commentators interpret this as referring to the Jewish people.  The Christian church believes it is foretelling the story of Jesus.  
He tells of uncircumcised and defiled people who will no longer enter Jerusalem.  For naught were you sold, and without money will you be redeemed.  

Hashem spoke...."As for Egypt, My people went down originally to sojourn there.  But Assyria oppressed them without justification;  so now, why should I remain here?  ---the word of Hashem---where My people was taken for naught?  Their rulers glorify themselves---the word of Hashem---and constantly, all day, My Name is blasphemed.  Therefore, My people shall know My Name---therefore, on that day, that it is I Who speaks, here I am! " ......

What we all agree on is that he prophesied about redemption and comfort and are of supreme importance to Judaism and Christianity.  

Then again, "Why Isaiah 42:1-13 is not about Muhammad?"  The debate is with Christians who say it is about Jesus.  Let's look at it.  It speaks about the Messiah according to Jewish knowledge.
Jews feel  he will be accepted by all.

   Behold My servant, whom I shall uphold;  My chosen one, whom My soul desired;  I have placed My spirit upon him so he can bring forth justice to the nations.  He will not shout nor raise his voice, nor make his voice heard in the street.  He will not break even a bruised reed nor extinguish even flickering flax;  but he will administer justice in truth.  He will not slacken nor tire until he sets justice in the land and islands will long for his teaching.......  

I wonder if Isaiah knew of his own demise.  According to legend, he was put to death by King Manasseh (720-692 BCE).  He had protested strongly against moral laxity, attitudes towards the poor and underprivileged  that he saw which were the lack of kindness, pity and justice.  He said this was more important to G-d than offering sacrifices.  He taught that Assyria's actions were G-ds instrument of divine anger. He was against all treaties with neighboring states, and that Israel were the people of G-d and therefore had to trust only in HIM.  He said that the people of Israel would be punished for their sins but not exterminated and that a remnant would return and renew their link between G-d and the Land of Israel.  He said that at the END OF DAYS G-d would judge the nations.  
Dishes are Desert Rose pattern, Franciscanware
California made
My research asks the question whether or not there is value in the custom of the last day of Passover being dedicated to the above discussion about the last redemption and Israel feels there is.  The faith in Mashiach by so many of us is non-realistic.  Many say they do believe, but how many of us really think it's going to happen, and at that, soon?  Of all my life in Oregon, I've never been to a last Passover day celebration such as Chabad and other Hassidim must celebrate.  However, when I was in Israel from 1980 to the end of 1985, I know that there was a lot of talk about The End of Days with the educated in Safed.  Children were pounding on their desks calling for the Moshiach.  There were stories of a rabbi walking about seeking the Moshiach by looking at young children.  I personally knew a young boy who would have been one, he was so smart and so questioning, the son of Americans who had  made aliyah from the east coast.  Surely he's a rabbi today.  I attended classes where we were told the time wasn't far off.  At the rate history is unfolding, one surely would think it's imminent.

The New Standard Jewish encyclopedia
Tanach (Bible) The Stone Edition, ArtScroll Series of the Mesorah Heritage Foundation


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