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Daily manna from the Torah by Dr Ketriel Blad

Bo 15-7


Exodus 13:1-16 

This observance will be for you like a sign on your hand and a reminder on your forehead that the law of the LORD is to be on your lips. For the LORD brought you out of Egypt with his mighty hand.

Ex. 13:9 NIV

How can we understand the parallelism between both worlds?

The Torah commands the sons of Israel to put a sign on the arm and between the eyes. The Hebrew text doesn't say "like a sign" – כאות – but "for a sign" –לאות  – which leads us to believe that this is not about anything symbolic, invisible, but about something specific, physical. In other words, the Eternal commands those of the circumcision to put a physical sign on the arm and the head to remember something.

These signs serve a deeper purpose as well. Whatever the Eternal does, He does in several worlds at a time. Material things are the result of heavenly things and material things speak of the heavenly ones. There is also a spiritual relationship between material and spiritual. In this way the material doesn't exclude the spiritual and vice versa. The fact that this message has a spiritual dimension doesn't take its material importance away; and, since there is a connection between the material and heavenly things, the ones who wear a tefillin (phylacteries) on the arm and forehead, will have a connection with the heavenly world through them. One doesn't rule the other out. Both worlds live in parallel and do not oppose each other.

We can learn a lesson of all that happened on the first redemption. What happened then will happen on the second redemption, the final one. There is a symbolism between these two redemptions. Pharaoh symbolizes the prince of this world, satan. Egypt symbolizes the current world system. The sons and daughters of Israel symbolize all mankind. Physical slavery symbolizes men's bondage to sin. Moshe was the first deliverer; the Messiah will be the second one.

Conclusion: The Messiah will deliver us from the power of evil to take us to everlasting freedom.

Blessed be the Almighty for the deliverer that will come!

Shabbat shalom,


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