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Daily manna from the Torah by Dr Ketriel Blad

BeHaalotcha 36-1

When you lift up

Numbers 8:1-14

In this way you are to set the Levites apart from the other Israelites, and the Levites will be mine.

Num. 8:14 NIV

What lies in the Eternal’s heart?

The Eternal created men in His image and likeness. That's why when He sees men He sees a reflection of Himself. The commandment to love our neighbour as oneself came from His heart and therefore He loves man. The Eternal loves man with all His heart - that's why it hurt him so much when Adam hid from His presence in the garden after having sinned. Sin separates men from the Eternal. That's why He hates sin, though He loves man.

The only way of restoring the initial relationship in paradise is to remove sin from men. Through sacrifices, sin is covered and forgiven, but not removed. But through death and resurrection sin is removed from men.

Now, the Eternal wants to be close to men - better said, He wants men to be close to Him. That's why He chose the people of Israel to have a nation that was close to Him. But this wasn't enough; His love and yearning for being close to mankind made Him choose a group from among the chosen ones; He chose the Levites from among the sons of Israel and He says that they are to be His.

This clearly shows what lies in the Eternal's heart, a deep desire to be close to men because He loves men as Himself, as it is written in Malachi 1:2a: "I have loved you," says the LORD." (NIV) And in Luke 2:14 it's written: "Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to men on whom his favor rests." (NIV) And in 1 John 4:16 it's written: "And so we know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in him." (NIV)

What lies in the Eternal's heart? Men!

Shavua tov


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