Torah Portion

Dear Torah Portion Reader...

I am very excited that the Spring Feast is just around the corner! We are now in the final preparation count-down, which for us at Lighted Way Ministries is an "all-hands-on-deck" scenario. In the next few weeks and days, I will be finishing the book "God's Amazing Star Secret" (which I pray to have fresh from the press at Passover, on April 1, 2018), I will be writing the sermons, putting together the children's program, cooking (and freezing) the casseroles to serve during the Retreat week, and more...

In order to accomplish all of this, I will not be taking time to write the Torah portion commentaries during this period of time. However, that does not mean that anyone need to get behind. The following is the Torah reading and study schedule for the next few weeks. As you keep up with this schedule, you will be on track to complete all 613 Statutes this year. So, from now to April 14, the Torah portions will be posted without comment. Commentary and the usual Torah portions will resume on April 15. Thank you for your patience! And happy studying in the meantime :-)

Thursday, January 25, 2018

Torah Portion - January 25, 2018

Weekly Torah Studies

Today's Torah Reading: Genesis 21:16-34

The Hebrew Alphabet: 
Shin (continued)

How Far Should we Go – in Hearing God? Extreme Love – ultimate Shema

How much do you love your Heavenly King? Are you thankful to Him for all the love and blessings He has showered upon you? Just how far are willing to go to demonstrate your love for Yahweh? Do you love Him enough to go to the extreme?

A mighty warrior of valor is much more than a high ranking officer who leads soldiers into battle. In Spiritual terms, a TRUE mighty warrior of valor is any true Christian who is in THE KING’S Army and is willing to go yet one step farther – beyond the comforting safe zone – beyond the limits of what even seems possible – to see that his KING’S needs and desires are taken care of.

A true warrior of valor is one who would risk his or her own life, just to see that their KING gets a cool drink of water.

Throughout history there have been countless battles, in which innumerable soldiers have fought. But for those who merely fought, doing only the minimum required or just what had to be done, their names are buried in the sands of time. They were present, serving their king, yet they aren’t remembered because they didn’t love their king enough to go beyond the ordinary.

Yet, going beyond the ordinary is exactly what it takes to be a mighty of warrior of valor. And in all those countless battles, the Mighty Warriors of Valor ARE remembered, to this day – not for WHO they were - so much as for WHAT THEY DID to demonstrate their EXTREME love and commitment to their King.

Where soldiers just show up and do what is required, a Mighty Warrior of Valor goes above and beyond what is merely required, to honor his king.

What does it mean to be a mighty warrior of valor in the Cause of God? What does it take? In King David’s day, there were thousands of soldiers who drew the sword in defense of Israel. From out of all these warriors, thirty-seven of them earned a special place, being remembered in Yahweh’s Word as special, righteous warriors of special valor, whose heroic deeds are immortalized in Scripture. Of these 37 warriors of valor, three earned an even greater special distinction, for a specific act of selfless service to their king. God honored these three men, above all the rest, and we remember them as MIGHTY WARRIORS OF VALOR.

So what happened to cause them to be remembered in this way? In the time of King David’s reign, the Philistines had invaded Israel, pitching their encampment in the valley of Rephaim. A garrison of the Philistines  had control of Bethlehem.

King David was in a stronghold, the cave of Adullam. This photo was taken looking out through entrance of a cave in Adullum Grove National Park. In the book of 2 Samuel, David, battle-weary and beleaguered, is recorded as longing for a drink of water from a well by the gate of Bethlehem. This must have been a very special well, with very delicious water, so much so that David was longing for a drink of it.

But even in David’s wish for a drink of this water, there was the sense of how impossible it would be to receive this desire. For Bethlehem was the hold of the enemy.

2 Samuel 23:14-15 “And David was then in an hold, and the garrison of the Philistines was then in Bethlehem. And David longed, and said, Oh that one would give me drink of the water of the well of Bethlehem, which is by the gate!”

King David didn’t order anyone to get him a drink of water! He was just thinking out loud. All of David’s men would still be wonderful and obedient soldiers, who had done their duty to David, without satisfying the king’s impossible wish. But for three of David’s men, just doing their duty wasn’t enough. They were so loyal to David and so committed to serving him, that carrying out his slightest wishes was something they determined to do.

But before we finish this part of the story, let’s look into the backstory of these three mighty warriors of valor.

The leader among the three was Adino the Eznite. He had already become renowned for lifting his spear against 800 enemy warriors. Adino slew them all single-handedly in one battle, thereby earning himself the roll of leader among the three Captains. The story is found in 2 Samuel 23:8:

“These be the names of the mighty men whom David had: The Tachmonite that sat in the seat, chief among the captains; the same was Adino the Eznite: he lifted up his spear against eight hundred, whom he slew at one time.”

Next was Eleazar. In the Name of Yahweh, he had defied the Philistines to their face. And when he was all by himself, he attacked them! He fought with them for so long that his hand became cramped around his sword and he couldn’t turn it loose. The Bible says that Yahweh used him to bring a great victory to Israel that day. It says the other soldiers only returned in time to strip the armor off the fallen enemy and loot their bodies. We find this account in 2 Samuel 23:9-10:

“And after him was Eleazar the son of Dodo the Ahohite, one of the three mighty men with David, when they defied the Philistines that were there gathered together to battle, and the men of Israel were gone away. He arose, and smote the Philistines until his hand was weary, and his hand clave unto the sword: and Yahweh wrought a great victory that day; and the people returned after him only to spoil.”

And the third of these Mighty Warriors of Valor was Shammah. Once, while the rest of the army of Israel retreated from the advancing Philistine army, Shammah refused to give ground. He stood alone, in a field of lentils to defend Israel. And Yahweh used him to stop the Philistines in their tracks, without any human help. It’s found in 2 Samuel 23:11-12.

“And after him was Shammah the son of Agee the Hararite. And the Philistines were gathered together into a troop, where was a piece of ground full of lentils: and the people fled from the Philistines. But he stood in the midst of the ground, and defended it, and slew the Philistines: and Yahweh wrought a great victory.”

These three Mighty Warriors of Valor overheard David’s musing. Maybe they kind of looked at each other across the cave. They knew what each other was thinking. They looked around. No one else seemed to be paying attention to what the king had said. Without a word, they each quietly got up. They retrieved their weapons from where they lay, close at hand. Slowly, they made their way through the crowd of other soldiers all gathered in the cave with David. At last, when they were out of the crowd, their paths joined. No one noticed their leaving, as they disappeared over the crest of the rise.
The Bible tells us that these three “broke through the host (or army) of the Philistines, and drew water out of the well of Bethlehem that was by the gate.”  The Bible account is so short that it almost makes this feat seem easy, but, in actuality, it was probably more like this…

Together, Adino, Eleazar and Shammah approached the walled, fortified city of Bethlehem on foot. The Philistines would have seen them coming from a mile away. When they were in range, the archers on the walls would have let fly every arrow in their quivers.

Undaunted by the arrows that rained down upon them, Adino, Eleazar and Shammah brought it on. As they neared the wall, the enemy infantry would have swarmed from the gates and fallen upon them with sword and spear. But these three Mighty Men of Valor, under the power of God, met their foe and drove back the incomprehensibly overwhelming hoard!

At last, they reached the well. Then what had been three swords united against an overwhelming number of enemy soldiers became only two swords, as one of the mighty men was forced to stop fighting long enough to lower a vessel into the cool depths of the well. When he brought up the water vessel and filled his flagon with the delicious well-water, the warrior again joined the intense fighting, careful to insure that he didn’t lose his precious cargo.

By this time, the whole city would have been alerted to the invasion. The three “Mighties” would have had to fight their way out of the gates and away from the walls. How far did the Philistine soldiers pursue them? Did they hound them out into the desert, leaving a trail of dead and dying Philistines to mark the three warriors’ path? Or were the Philistines stunned by the carnage wreaked within their walls by so small a fighting force and just happy to see them all leave? We aren’t told. But the Bible does say that they made it back to cave of Adullum in victory.

As quietly as they had left, they returned. The three warriors came before their beloved king without fanfare and extended the vessel for him to drink. But when David saw the blood that still oozed from crusted battle wounds, when he smelled the death and battle that clung to their clothing, his soul was overwhelmed by the magnitude of the love and devotion these men had demonstrated for Yahweh, Israel and their king. David’s heart was filled with gratitude and humility at such devotion.

2 Samuel 23:16-17  “And the three mighty men brake through the host of the Philistines, and drew water out of the well of Bethlehem, that was by the gate, and took it, and brought it to David: nevertheless he would not drink thereof, but poured it out unto Yahweh. And he said, Be it far from me, O Yahweh, that I should do this: is not this the blood of the men that went in jeopardy of their lives? Therefore he would not drink it. These things did these three mighty men.”

The selfless sacrifice and devotion displayed by these wonderful warriors was so off the charts that David’s response and gratitude in receiving this expensive gift needed to be of equal magnitude – and it was. The highest honor any drink can be given is to be used as a drink offering, poured out in worship of the Almighty. This is the honor David gave to this Bethlehem water, brought to him at such risk and cost, brought by devoted men, under the power of the Almighty, who went WAY beyond the call of duty in their desire to please their king.

Similarly, in Yahweh’s Kingdom there are special Mighty Warriors of Valor, who go above and beyond the normal call of duty. They aren’t content to do only what is asked or expected of them. So great is their love of their King, that they delight in pleasing Him in even the smallest things, doing things which most would find unnecessary.
Among Yahshua’s disciples, there were three of this caliber. They were Peter, James and John. And of these three, John was especially beloved. It wasn’t that Yahshua didn’t love and teach all of His disciples, its that these ones were not content with normal duty. They went above and beyond. Consequently, Yahshua took them places and let them behold glories that none of the other disciples were able to behold – like the Mount of Transfiguration.

It wasn’t that God was giving these men special treatment, while leaving the others out of the inner loop. The special treatment was bestowed because these men loved especially much and sought to be closer to the King than did all the rest. And their extra devotion was rewarded by Heaven, just as were David’s three Mighty Men.

So how does one do this today? How does one leave the masses of Christianity, and pursue a relationship with God that is deeper still? How does a person today go about becoming a spiritual Mighty Warrior of Valor willing to risk his own life just to see that their King gets that desired drink of water?


Being such a mighty warrior of valour all starts with a heartfelt desire. The Revelation of Yahweh that we are blessed to receive is proportionate to our level of seeking. So, if we’re content to just go to church once a week, attend the occasional campmeeting, and have the basic worship times with Yahweh each day, our relationship with God will be proportionate to this level of investment. But, if we aren’t content with merely keeping the wonderful mo’eds (Feasts from Leviticus 23) – the Divinely given appointed times with Yahweh – but rather seek to give Him those times AND more beyond, we will begin to discover the Revelation of Yahweh on a much deeper level still.

Jeremiah 29:13 “And ye shall seek Me, and find Me, when ye shall search for Me with all your heart.”

Think about it! DO you admire the relationship Moses had with Yahweh? Do you desire to have an intimate walk with God like David’s? Do you really? Do you know that YOU CAN have that walk with God – if only you will break out of the boundaries of what is merely required and throw your whole heart and soul into doing that which pleases your KING, going BEYOND – FAR BEYOND. This is the kind of people Yahweh is looking for.

2 Chronicles16:9 “For the eyes of Yahweh run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to show Himself strong in the behalf of them whose heart is perfect toward Him…”

If you’re feeling that your own soul is more like dry and dead bones – and your heart is worlds away from that level of love for Yahweh – then I want to remind you of the promise Yahweh made to us through the prophet Ezekiel:

Ezekiel 37:11-14 “Then he said unto me, Son of man, these bones are the whole house of Israel: behold, they say, Our bones are dried, and our hope is lost: we are cut off for our parts. Therefore prophesy and say unto them, Thus saith Yahweh GOD; 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 Israel. And ye shall know that I Am Yahweh, when I have opened your graves, O my people, and brought you up out of your graves, And shall put my spirit in you, and ye shall live, and I shall place you in your own land: then shall ye know that I Yahweh have spoken it, and performed it, saith Yahweh.”

Remember, David’s three Mighty Men of Valor conquered the Philistines of Bethlehem and brought water to the king, not in their own strength alone. Yahweh empowered them to do those mighty deeds. This is why the Bible says “and Yahweh wrought a great victory” through these men.

How far you go with God is really YOUR choice. So now the question comes to you, “Just how far DO you want to go with Yahweh?”

Isaiah 40:31But they that wait upon Yahweh shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.”

Shin: The Letter of Flame
The Hebrew letter shin looks a bit like a flame. This is not an accident. Hebrew tradition teaches that the shin is
essentially fire and flame. Fire consumes. When the shin follows an aleph, the word eesh אש (fire) is created. Also, when the shin is followed by the aleph, the word sah שא is created, which means to “go up” or “ascend” as a flame. The greatest fire in our universe – the sun – begins and ends with shin (shemesh) שמש. Interestingly, shin’s numerical value (300) has Biblical connections to flame.

Gideon attacked the Midianites with only 300 men armed with flaming torches in one hand and swords in the other (Judges 7:16-22). Also, Samson burned the fields of his enemies by releasing 300 foxes with torches tied to their tails.

Let us read the description of the Holy Spirit’s Coming, as recorded in Acts:

Acts 2:1-4 “And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord in one place.  And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting. And there appeared unto them cloven tongues like as of fire, and it sat upon each of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.”

Pentecost is the holy Feast Day which commemorates the giving of the Torah to Moses on Mt. Sinai. At that event, God descended upon the mountain in Flame, Smoke, and Thunder to meet with His people. 1500 years later, to the day, the Holy Spirit descended upon the faithful with tongues of fire.

The shin, the letter of flame, appears on the head of every person who sought His Presence. This is true Perfection, Completion and Peace – This is the ultimate Message of the letter Shin.

This Week's Torah Studies: (Statutes 61-80)
The Torah studies are provided in two formats for your convenience. The first option (below) is the blank worksheets for this week, which will allow you to print out the worksheets and hand-write the studies yourself. If you have less time, you may wish to read/print my completed Statute studies. The completed worksheets are the second option (below):

An Overview of this Week's Torah Studies:
This week we will be studying Statutes 61-80, which are summarized below. Happy studying!

Statute 61-62 Summary:
(61) The priests are to burn incense before Yahweh (which represents prayer–Revelation 8:3-4) every morning and every evening. (62) The lamps (which represents our witness – Matthew 5:14 – being filled with Yahweh’s Spirit and abiding in YAH) are to be dressed every morning and freshly lit every evening.

Exodus 30:7-8  “And Aaron shall burn thereon sweet incense every morning: when he dresseth the lamps, he shall burn incense upon it. And when Aaron lighteth the lamps at even, he shall burn incense upon it, a perpetual incense before Yahweh throughout your generations.
Statute 63-64 Summary:
(63) The fire on the Altar of Burnt Sacrifice (representing the Cross) is always to be kept burning, day and night. (64) Priests are to offer burnt offerings and peace offerings upon it to Yahweh.

Leviticus 6:12-13  “And the fire upon the altar (of burnt sacrifice) shall be burning in it; it shall not be put out: and the priest shall burn wood on it every morning, and lay the burnt offering in order upon it; and he shall burn thereon the fat of the peace offerings.  The fire shall ever be burning upon the altar; it shall never go out.”

Statute 65 Summary:
(65) Yahshua was the One Who laid aside the white “linen” of His perfect righteousness, put on my filthy robes and suffered for me outside the “camp.” It is by His humiliation and atonement that I am made clean and accepted by Heaven. This work of the Saviour is to bring about true repentance and sorrow for sin. The priest carried the ashes outside the camp to cause the people to think about the Saviour’s work of redemption. This is statute of remembrance. By beholding, we become changed. We are to cogitate Calvary daily.

Leviticus 6:10-11  “And the priest shall put on his linen garment, and his linen breeches shall he put upon his flesh, and take up the ashes which the fire hath consumed with the burnt offering on the altar, and he shall put them beside the altar.  And he shall put off his garments, and put on other garments, and carry forth the ashes without the camp unto a clean place.” 

(See also Hebrews 13:11-13) (Also note: ashes was a mark or token of grief, humiliation, or penitence - Nehemiah 9:1Job 42:6)

Statute 66-68 Summary:
(66) We are not to allow anything unclean to come into the heart or home where Yahweh dwells. We are not to allow leprosy into our hearts or homes. Spiritually, leprosy is reprobation (because we lose our ability to perceive guilt when we choose to justify ourselves rather than repent from sin) (John 3:19-20). (67) We are not to allow an issue into our hearts or homes. Spiritually, the issue is pining or wasting away; as in being unthankful, embittered, or complaining (1 Corinthians 10:10). (68)We are not to allow our hearts or homes to be defiled by the dead. Spiritually, death is following lusts and fleshly desires (Hebrews 9:14).

Numbers 5:2-3  “Command the children of Israel, that they put out of the camp every leper, and every one that hath an issue, and whosoever is defiled by the dead:  Both male and female shall ye put out, without the camp shall ye put them; that they defile not their camps, in the midst whereof I dwell.”  

Statute 69 Summary:
(69) The priests of Yahweh are first to be sanctified in order to fill this role. Then they are set apart for holy use. (See Revelation 5:10).

Leviticus 21:8  “Thou shalt sanctify him (the priest of Yahweh) therefore; for he offereth the bread of thy God: he shall be holy unto thee: for I Yahweh, which sanctify you, am holy.”  

Statute 70 Summary:
(70) The priests of Yahweh are to be spiritually clothed in special garments for glory and beauty (see Ezekiel 16:14 and Ephesians 6:11-18).

Exodus 28:2-4, 40 “And thou shalt make holy garments for Aaron thy brother for glory and for beauty. And thou shalt speak unto all that are wise hearted, whom I have filled with the spirit of wisdom, that they may make Aaron's garments to consecrate him, that he may minister unto me in the priest's office.  And these are the garments which they shall make; a breastplate, and an ephod, and a robe, and a broidered coat, a mitre, and a girdle: and they shall make holy garments for Aaron thy brother, and his sons, that he may minister unto me in the priest's office… And for Aaron's sons thou shalt make coats, and thou shalt make for them girdles, and bonnets shalt thou make for them, for glory and for beauty.”

Statute 71-72 Summary:
(71) Yahweh’s people are to never practice fortunetelling, nor have anything to do with magic. (72) Yahweh’s people are to never eat anything with the blood.

Leviticus 19:26 “Ye shall not eat any thing with the blood: neither shall ye use enchantment, nor observe times.”

Statute 73-78 Summary:
(73Yahweh’s people are to belong to Him wholly and completely, without any divided or competing affections. This is what it means to be perfect with Yahweh. (74) Godly parents are never to alienate their children, transitioning them in crossing over to the devil. (75) Yahweh’s people are to not consult sorcerers, nor practice sorcery. (76) Yahweh’s people are not to practice magic, nor consort with magicians. (77) Yahweh’s people are not to practice witchcraft, nor consult witches. (78) Yahweh’s people are not to consult with demon spirits, nor consort with those who do so.

Deuteronomy 18:10-13 “There shall not be found among you any one that maketh his son or his daughter to pass through the fire, or that useth divination, or an observer of times, or an enchanter, or a witch, or a charmer, or a consulter with familiar spirits, or a wizard, or a necromancer. For all that do these things are an abomination unto Yahweh: and because of these abominations Yahweh thy God doth drive them out from before thee. Thou shalt be perfect with Yahweh thy God.”

Statutes 79-80 Summary:

Yahweh’s people are to dress in a way that clearly reveals their gender. (79) Men are not to dress like women. (80) Women are not to dress like men.

Deuteronomy 22:5 “The woman shall not wear that which pertaineth unto a man, neither shall a man put on a woman's garment: for all that do so are abomination unto Yahweh thy God.” 

Daily Bible Reading - January 25, 2018

Today's Reading:

Luke 19:1-27

Genesis 32-33

Psalm 25

Listen to the Bible








Thoughts and Commentary on Today's Reading:

Today I'd like to share something from our reading in Genesis. Jacob sent a series of animal droves to his brother, Esau, as gifts, hoping to appease him and prevent bloodshed.  Since owning many animals was one of the greatest expressions of wealth, in those days, it is obvious that Jacob's gifts to Esau were a blessing to his estate. But there was much more to it than that. Jacob was speaking to Esau through the gifts. His messages would have been clearly understood by EsauAnd I thought it would be fun to be able to "read" Jacob's Message to Esau, remarkably communicated in the animal droves.
In Bible times numbers had meaning. (This is because Hebrew letters also have numeric values.) Also, different animals had different meanings. In fact, there was so much meaning in both the kind of animal that Jacob sent and the number of that kind of animal that Jacob's gifts would have been as meaningful as a written letter. This shouldn't be too strange a concept for us today, for in more recent times - in the Victorian era - whole letters were "written" with flower arrangements. Today, we call it the "Victorian Flower Language" or floriography (which literally means "flower writing").

Similarly, Jacob "wrote" a message to Esau in fauniography (okay, so I made that word up...  "Fauna" is animals and "graphy" is a suffix meaning "writing" - so "fauniography" would be "animal writing"). Let's go through Jacob's Message, gift-by-gift, to see what he was saying to Esau (Genesis 32:14-15).

200 Ewes and 200 Female Goats

In Hebrew, the number 200 is also the Hebrew letter "R", which is the Reysh (also spelled resh). Reysh means “HEAD”, “CHIEF”, “MASTER”, “PRINCE”, “COMMANDER”. But it also more specific. By sending 200 ewes and 200 female goats, Jacob was underscoring the Message of the Reysh, plainly telling his brother that God (Yahweh) was Jacob's "Master, Head," and "Commander". 

The fact that Jacob sent two animal droves, both with 200 animals, meant that Jacob was confirming the reality that Yahweh was his Master, for it is a Heaven-ordained principle that in the mouth of "two or three witnesses everything is established." (Genesis 41:32, Deuteronomy 17:6, 2 Corinthians 13:1). In other words, Jacob and Esau both understood that anything ordained of God needed two witnesses to demonstrate this ordination.

Now let's look at Jacob's message in the choice of animals. The Bible tells us that Jacob gifted Esau a drove of 200 ewes and another of 200 female goats. Both ewes (female sheep) and goats are sacrificial animals (meaning they are animals which God chose to represent some aspect of Messiah, Who was the ultimate Lamb of God). Of the sacrificial animals, you couldn't pick more opposite messages than sheep and goats. 

Sheep represent purity and innocence. Our Saviour was pure and undefiled. To demonstrate this, a sheep was offered, showing Messiah's Purity and Fitness to serve as our substitutionary Sacrifice, taking away our sin.
John 1:29  "The next day John seeth Jesus (Yahshua) coming unto him, and saith, Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world."
Sheep also represent God's people. A sheep cannot represent a worldly person. For only those whose sins have been washed away through the Sacrifice of Messiah can be called Sheep. Of course, Jacob was claiming Messiah's Blood and forgiveness over his life and past sins by faith (since Christ had not yet died at the time of Jacob's life).
Psalm 95:7 "For He is our God; and we are the people of His Pasture, and the sheep of His hand. To day if ye will hear His Voice."

By sending a drove of 200 sheep, Jacob was giving Esau this message:

Direct message: I am servant of the Most High. God is my Commander and Chief. In Him, I am noblood-bought, washed, and made-clean from my past sins. 

Implied message: However you choose to deal with me, remember, God is my ChiefIt is He Who decides what happens to me. 

On the other hand, goats represent sinfulness, and ultimately Satan. The goat demonstrates our wayward and rebellious ways. On the Day of Atonement there were two goats chosen for the offering. Yahweh's goat was selected (by lots) and was sacrificed. This was to show that the Saviour would become sin for us. He would take our sins upon Himself. The second goat (also selected by casting lots) was the devil's goat, called the Azazel Goat. While Yahweh's goat would die as the Atonement for Israel's sins, the Azazel Goat would be taken out into the wilderness as a judgment for Satan's role in tempting Israel. Since the devil is the one who tempts us into sin, the Azazel Goat would be taken out and left to die in the wilderness.

Goats also represent people. By Christ's Sacrifice and in-dwelling Grace, all goats must become sheep. Any goats remaining at the end of the world will be lost.
Matthew 25:32-33, 41  "And before Him shall be gathered all nations: and He shall separate them one from another, as a shepherd divideth His sheep from the goats: And He shall set the sheep on His right Hand, but the goats on the left...  Then shall He say also unto them on the left Hand, Depart from Me, ye cursed, into Everlasting Fire, prepared for the devil and his angels."

By sending a drove of 200 female goats, Jacob was giving Esau this message:

Direct message: do not try to hide my sins from you. I freely admit that I have been a rebellious goat. However, I am repentant for my past. Yahweh is my Captain now. I am a changed man.

Implied message: However you choose to deal with me, remember, God is my ChiefIt is He Who decides what happens to me. 

40 Kine (Cattle)

Jacob also sent Esau 40 kine (or a small herd of cattle). In Bible times, kine were a symbol of "fruitfulness". In Hebrew, the number 40 is also the Hebrew letter "M", which is the mem. Mem means “WATERS”, "SPRING" or "PEOPLE/NATIONS". By sending 40 kine to Esau, Jacob was conveying that God (Yahweh) had abundantly blessed Jacob and made him fruitful. God had made Jacob the well-spring and producer of a great many people.

By sending a drove of 40 kine, Jacob was giving Esau this message:

Direct message: God has blessed me and made me fruitful. I am now the father of large tribe.

Implied message: God has promised to make a great nation out of me. I am to be the source of many "waters". If you attack me and reduce my numbers, you will be going against the Will of God.

30 Nursing Camels and 30 Camel Colts

In addition, Jacob sent Esau 30 mother camels, who were nursing young and 30 camel colts (the nursing baby camels). The word "camel", in Hebrew, means "to repay" and "requite". The camel was an animal symbolizing wealth, as a camel train was the "semi truck" of the ancient world. The fact that the camels were nursing mothers and their babies lent another suggestion of abundance. Milk is a symbol of richness and prosperity. Remember, Canaan was referred to as "the land flowing with milk and honey".

In Hebrew, the number 30 is also the Hebrew letter "L", which is the lamed (lah-med). Lamed means 
“TEACHING” or "LEARNING". By sending 30 mother camels with their babies, Jacob was verifying the Message of the Lamed, plainly telling his brother that God (Yahweh) was Jacob's "Teacher" and that he had "Learned" his lesson.

By sending a drove of 30 camels with their young, Jacob was giving Esau this message:

Direct message: I desire to repay you. Please allow me to do so, as an agreement between us will be prosperous for us both.

Implied message: God has been teaching me. And I have learned my lesson. I am no longer the same guy that I was when I wronged you.

20 Rams, 20 Female Donkeys and 20 Male Goats

Besides these Jacob also sent Esau 20 rams and 20 male goats. the word "ram", in Hebrew, means "exalted" and "strength". The ram is the protector of the flock. And, as such, it is a symbol of God, Who was Jacob's Protector. 

In Hebrew, the number 20 is also the Hebrew letter "K", which is the khaf. Khaf means 
“COVER” or "COVERING" of Yahweh. By sending 20 rams and 20 male goats, Jacob was underscoring the Message of the Kaph, plainly telling his brother that God (Yahweh) was Jacob's "Protector" and "Covering".

The ancient Kaph was drawn as “a wing”.  The “wing” of the Almighty, is our protective covering –

Psalm 91:4  “He shall cover thee with His Feathers, and under His Wings (Kanaph) shalt thou trust…”

By sending a drove of 20 rams, Jacob was giving Esau this message:

Direct message: The Almighty God is my Protector. 

Implied message: Since Yahweh is my Protector, if you choose to attack or harm me, He will deal with you.

Jacob's more direct message in the 20 rams was tempered by his humble message of the 20 goats. The goats were an acknowledgment of his past wrongs, and a suggested apology

By sending a drove of 20 male goats, Jacob was giving Esau this message:

Direct message: I recognize that I am a sinner. I am sorry for my past and am now fully covered under the Wings of the Almighty and authorized under His Authority.

Implied message: Since Yahweh is my CoveringI am no longer the same as I was before.

So why did Jacob send a drove of 20 donkeys to Esau? In Bible times, a donkey was a symbol of peace. Kings typically rode donkeys in times of peace. But a horse was ridden in times of war. Jacob's gift of donkeys to Esau was an offering of peace - it was a proverbial olive branch.

By sending a drove of 20 donkeys, Jacob was giving Esau this message:

Direct message: I, who am covered under the Wings of the Almighty (the meaning of 20)am wishing to make peace with you (the meaning of the donkeys).

Implied message: Since Yahweh is my Protector, if you choose to attack or harm me, He will deal with you. Considering this, I would think you would also want to make peace with me.

10 Bulls and 10 Foals

The smallest drove of animals which Jacob sent to Esau was 10 bulls. In Scripture, a bull is a symbol of "strength" (Proverbs 14:4) and "power in judgment" (Deuteronomy 33:17).  This gift to Esau signified that Judgment should be meted out. But the number of bulls (10) signified that God - not Esau - should be the One to judge Jacob.

In addition to the 10 bulls, Jacob also sent Esau 10 foals. The word "foal" from Genesis 32:15 is translated from the Hebrew word "bane". Bane is usually a word which is used for human children - sons.

Bane (usually rendered into English as "ben"), is found over 4,700 times in the Hebrew Scriptures. The word literally means son or children. In the Bible, it was translated nearly 3,000 times as "son" and 1,500 times as "children." The same word is also (but rarely) used to refer to the young of animals, as it does in Genesis 32:15. Here are a few examples in Scripture showing the primary meaning of bane:

"3:16 Unto the woman he said, I will greatly multiply thy sorrow and thy conception; in sorrow thou shalt bring forth children [bane]; and thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee." (Genesis 3:16 KJV)
"4:17 And Cain knew his wife; and she conceived, and bare Enoch: and he builded a city, and called the name of the city, after the name of his son [bane], Enoch." (Genesis 4:17 KJV)

Now let's look at the message in the number of animals - 10. In Hebrew, the number 10 is also the Hebrew letter "Y", which is the yod. Yod means “HAND” of Yahweh or "WORKS" of Yahweh. Now let's put the full message together which Jacob sent to Esau in the gift of the 10 bulls and 10 foals.

By sending a drove of 1bulls, Jacob was giving Esau this message:

Direct message: know that you believe I am deserving of Judgment (the meaning of the bull. And you are right. But the Work of Judging me belongs to God (the meaning of the 10) and God Alone.

Implied message: If you take God's Work upon yourself, you are putting yourself at unnecessary risk. God is perfectly able - and strong enough - to do Judgment without your help.

By sending a drove of 1foals, Jacob was giving Esau this message:

Direct message: We are brothers, children of the same physical father and spiritual Father. God designed it so that we would be sons of the same father - brothers.

Implied message: Brothers shouldn't fight, nor resist the Work of God in causing Jacob and Esau to be created as brothers.

 When you break it all down and put the meaning of all the droves together, Jacob's appeasement fauniography read as follows:


I am servant of the Most High. God is my Commander and Chief. In Him, I am noblood-bought, washed, and made-clean from my past sins. (However you choose to deal with me, remember, God is my ChiefIt is He Who decides what happens to me.)  

do not try to hide my sins from you. I freely admit that I have been a rebellious goat. However, I am repentant for my past. Yahweh is my Captain now. I am a changed man. (However you choose to deal with me, remember, God is my ChiefIt is He Who decides what happens to me.)  

God has blessed me and made me fruitful. I am now the father of large tribe. (God has promised to make a great nation out of me. I am to be the source of many "waters". If you attack me and reduce my numbers, you will be going against the Will of God.)

I desire to repay you. Please allow me to do so, as an agreement between us will be prosperous for us both. (God has been teaching me. And I have learned my lesson. I am no longer the same guy that I was when I wronged you.)

The Almighty God is my Protector. (Since Yahweh is my Protector, if you choose to attack or harm me, He will deal with you.)

I recognize that I am a sinner. I am sorry for my past and am now fully covered under the Wings of the Almighty and authorized under His Authority. (Since Yahweh is my CoveringI am no longer the same as I was before.)

I, who am covered under the Wings of the Almightyam wishing to make peace with you.

know that you believe I am deserving of Judgment. But the Work of Judging me belongs to God and God Alone. (If you take God's Work upon yourself, you are putting yourself at unnecessary risk. God is perfectly able - and strong enough - to do Judgment without your help.)

We are brothers, children of the same physical father and spiritual Father. God designed it so that we would be sons of the same father - brothers. (Brothers shouldn't fight, nor resist the Work of God in causing us to be created as sons of the same father.)

What a "letter"! Jacob was truly a Spirit-led negotiator. And Esau heard Jacob's message, and received him with a brother's welcome.

I am thankful that the same wonderful God Who was Jacob's Protector and Covering also covers and protects all the seed of Israel as well!