Rejoice, Today is Simchat Torah!
On this festive holiday of Simchat Torah - Joy of the Torah the joy of the WORD the manifest in the flesh, the Jewish People are displaying their gratitude to YAHUVEH for giving us the great gift of His WORD YAHUSHUA.
If they only knew that the WORD they so joyously celebrate is none other than the Messiah YAHUSHUA.
"In the beginning was the WORD, and the WORD was with GOD, and the WORD was GOD." (John 1:1)
Throughout the Tanakh -Old Testament, the Jewish people read that the WORD of GOD in the Torah first five books of Moses is everything they need to live a righteous and long life. As it is written:
The Torah is the WORD is the Way
"Teach them the statutes and the laws , and make known to them the way in which they are to walk and the work they are to do." (Exodus 18:20; see also Psalm 119:1)
The Torah -the Word is Truth
"Your righteousness is everlasting and your law the torah is true." (Psalm 119:142)
The Torah (the Word) is Life
"The teaching -torah of the wise is a fountain of life, turning a person from the snares of death." (Proverbs 13:14; see also Deuteronomy 32:47)
The Torah is YAHUSHUA!
"I am the Way and the Truth and the Life. No one comes to the Father except through Me." (John 14:6)
In fact, whenever YAHUSHUA refers to Himself as "I" we could replace it with "Torah" because they are one, just as Father YAHUVEH and YAHUSHUA are one.
"I [the word -Torah] and the Father are one." (John 10:30)
Let's look a little closer at what exactly the Torah is comprised of and how the Jewish People are celebrating YAH's Righteous Word in Israel and around the world.
Celebrating the Torah in Israel
At 8 a.m. this morning the synagogues in Israel were packed as we read the last pages of Devarim -Deuteronomy.
The reading of the yearly Torah cycle came to an end, and a new one began. Hallelujah.
The services lasted about three hours, as the men and women relished in the Word given to our people by YAH Himself through Moses — the most treasured Word YAHUSHUA in the world — the Torah that manifest in the flesh.
In every synagogue throughout the hundreds of towns and cities across Israel this morning, the men joyfully danced around the bema, proudly holding the sacred Torah Scrolls.
All the men took turns reading from the Torah. And the faces of the children, women, and men beamed, rejoicing in the honor of the Holy Book that the One God of Israel entrusted to His Chosen People.
Although we are still celebrating Simchat Torah here in Israel, elsewhere in the world this wonderful holy day begins at sunset tonight at the conclusion of Shemini Atzeret -Eighth Day of Assembly, a Biblically mandated assembly celebrated the day after Sukkot ends (Leviticus 23:36).
Tonight at around 7:30 p.m, thousands of people will gather in each city and village square throughout the Holy Land. Hopefully most of Israel's six million Jewish People will be rejoicing in the Word of YAHUVEH.
For the second time in 24 hours, they will dance around the Torah Scrolls, and this time, throughout the night.
“Oh, how I love Your Torah YAHUSHUA; It is my meditation all the day. You through Your commandments, have made me wiser than my enemies. … Your Word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.” (Psalm 119:97–98, 105)
On Simchat Torah, ALL of the ornately decorated Torah scrolls are taken out of the Ark in which they are safeguarded, in contrast to Shabbat and regular holy day when only two are removed from the Ark.
the Jewish People will parade these precious Torah scrolls around their synagogues in circles called "hakafot," accompanied by joyful singing and dancing.
In many congregations, the celebrations spill out of the sanctuary into the street, where participants continue dancing and singing while carrying the scrolls.
Simchat Torah: The Beginning and Ending of the Parasha Cycle
The Jewish People have diligently preserved the Word of YAH for more than 3,000 years, and Simchat Torah gives jubilant expression to the Jewish People’s love of the Torah.
Besides rejoicing, another central theme to this special day is the completion of the annual cycle of weekly Torah readings.
Today, the last portion of Deuteronomy 34 was read.
But as soon as we end the cycle, we begin anew, and a portion from the first chapter of Genesis is read immediately afterward. This serves to remind us that our study of the Torah never ends.
Torah Points in the Right Direction
What is Torah? This Hebrew word Torah is often translated in English Bibles as "Law"; however, this is a rather poor translation.
The word torah comes from the roots yarah, which means to shoot, aim, or point to, and morah, meaning teacher YAHUSHUA.
Therefore, the Torah is YAH’s instruction to His people. These instructions teach us how to live on this earth and point us to eternal life through YAHUSHUA, who as the Word in flesh perfectly delivered YAH's teachings.
The Torah contains all the wisdom and instruction we need to live healthy, happy, successful, prosperous lives.
“Be strong and very courageous. Be careful to obey all the instructions [Torah] Moses gave you. Do not deviate from them, turning either to the right or to the left. Then you will be successful in everything you do.
“Study this Book of Instruction the books of the Torah continually. Meditate on it day and night so you will be sure to obey everything written in it. Only then will you prosper and succeed in all you do.” (Joshua 1:7-8)
The Books of the Torah
The Torah, in its strictest sense, includes the five books of Moses: Genesis (Bereisheet), Exodus (Shemot), Leviticus (Vayikra), Numbers (Bamidbar), and Deuteronomy (Devarim).
However, YAHUSHUA and Paul both quoted from other books of the Bible, including the Psalms and the Prophets, and also called them Torah (law).
For instance, in John 10:34, YAHUSHUA quotes Psalm 82:6 referring to it as the Torah:
“YAHUSHUA answered them, Is it not written in your Law (Torah), I said, You are elohim's?” (John 10:34)
In 1 Corinthians 14:21, Paul references the prophetic book of Isaiah, calling it the Law:
“In the Law (Torah) it is written: ‘With men of other tongues and other lips I will speak to this people.’” (1 Corinthians 14:21; compare to Isaiah 28:11)
Another word for Torah often used by Jewish people is the Tanakh, which is a Hebrew name for all the books of the Jewish Scriptures.
This word is actually an acronym (T-N-K) for Torah (Five Books of Moses), Nevi’im (Prophets) and Ketuvim (Writings – Psalms, Proverbs, etc).
The word Torah comprises the first three letters of each of these words: T-N-K [Hebrew letters Tav, Nun, Kaf].
YAHUSHUA Fulfilled the Torah
Because YAHUSHUA is the Word (John 1:1), He is the ultimate fulfillment of the Torah YAH’s moral guidelines for mankind to live in righteousness.
Some Believers in YAHUSHUA think this means that the Torah is abolished. But YAHUSHUA clearly taught that He did not come to abolish the Torah:
"Don’t misunderstand why I have come.
I did not come to abolish the Torah of Moses or the writings of the prophets. No, I came to fulfill their purpose. I tell you the truth, until heaven and earth disappear, not even the smallest detail of YAHUVEH’s Torah will disappear until its purpose is fulfilled.
"So if you ignore the least commandment and teach others to do the same, you will be called the least in the Kingdom of Heaven. But anyone who obeys YAHUVEH’s Torah and teaches them will be called great in the Kingdom of Heaven." (Matthew 5:17–19)
As the Jewish People diligently study the Scriptures in the Torah as well as the prophets and other writings, trying to fulfill His teachings on their own, they miss the very essence of YAHUVEH's Word that they so desperately seek to learn and obey.
YAHUSHUA said, "You study the Scriptures diligently because you think that in them you have eternal life. These are the very Scriptures that testify about me." (John 5:39)
Almost 99% of the Jewish People still do not recognize YAHUSHUA as the Messiah who is Himself is the Torah.
we are to teach and reach them.
"I will bless those who bless you." (Genesis 12:3)