Shalom. Our teaching this morning will be about the menorah, the seven branch candlestick that burned continually in the Sanctuary and the Temple outside the veil which was before the ark of the covenant.
Let’s read Exodus 25.31-40.
According to midrash, a midrash is Jewish tradition of some kind of story in the form of a commentary on The Tnakh, The Old Testament Scriptures, Moses was given directions for the Tabernacle menorah several times. A blueprint for its design was projected against the cliffs of Mt. Sinai with white, red, and green and black fire. GOD, the midrash says, even cast the design of the menorah against His own palm. And Moses repeatedly forgot the design of the menorah. And there are two opinions of how the problem was resolved. In one version, GOD referred Moses to the artisan, or the craftsman Bezalel who carried out the instructions immediately and perfectly. In another version, GOD commanded Moses to cast a talent of gold, some 80 pounds of gold into a fire. When he did so, the menorah shaped itself.
I tell this midrash or story because I had difficulty describing the menorah from the description in The Bible. I’m sure Moses had no problem remembering its design. GOD perhaps knowing that it might be difficult understanding the design of the menorah from words, gave Moses a vision of the menorah in Mt. Sinai proving that a picture is worth a thousand words. While Moses was with The LORD forty days and forty nights in the mountain, The LORD showed Moses a vision of the menorah, and said to him, see that you make them, that is the menorah and the utensils, after the pattern which was shown you in the mountain. Exodus 25.40
Here’s a description in words from The Bible describing the menorah which is a Hebrew word meaning candlestick, or candelabrum, or lampstand. Thus, I have a seven branch menorah placed on the table for all to see. It’s beautiful.
So here’s the description of the menorah that GOD gave Moses. Make a menorah of pure beaten gold. The entire menorah and its decorations shall be one piece. It will have three branches going out from each side of the center shaft. Each branch decorated with three almond flowers. The central shaft itself will be decorated with four almond flowers. One placed between each set of branches. Also there will be one flower above the top set of branches, and one below the bottom set. These decorations and branches, and the shaft are all to be one piece of pure beaten gold. Then make seven lamps for the menorah, and set them so that they reflect their light forward. The snuffers and trays are to be made of pure gold. You will need a talent of pure gold, or eighty pounds of pure gold for the menorah and its accessories. Be sure that everything you make follows the pattern I am showing you here in the mountain.
According to the Talmud, the menorah of pure gold was eighteen handbreadths high. A handbreadth ranges from 2 1/2 inches to 4 inches. Thus the menorah was 4 to 6 feet high.
The menorah was placed in the Sanctuary and Temple in front of the veil which was before the ark of the covenant. And it burned from evening to morning before The LORD continually. EXODUS 27.20-21
A copy of the menorah was made for the second Temple, as the original menorah might have been stolen or destroyed by the Babylonians when they destroyed Jerusalem and The Temple in 586 B.C.E., B.C. The Babylonian empire of 586 B.C.E., B.C. were the Iraqis and Syrians of today. GOD says in Genesis 12.3, “I will bless those who bless the Jewish people, and curse those who curse the Jewish people”. Witness the turmoil, killings and bombings in Iraq and Syria today.
The Romans, on the other hand for their evil and wickedness to the Jewish people for destroying Jerusalem and The Temple in 70 C.E., A.D., and killing upwards of a million Jewish people will receive their payback from The LORD in His time for all they perpetrated against GOD’s inheritance, Deuteronomy 4.20.
And should Iran carry out their threats against Israel and the Jewish people as they have threatened over the past thirty-four years to destroy Israel and wipe them off the face of the map, they too will meet The GOD of Israel, and it will not be pleasant for the Iranians. It’s not too pleasant today for Iran with all the sanctions placed on them crippling their economy and their way of life. The value of the Iranian Rial in the 1960s was 76 Rials (the Iranian currency) to one U.S. dollar. Today it takes 24,800 Rials to buy one Dollar.
It is a terrible thing to fall into the hands of the living GOD, for GOD is a consuming fire. Better to bless the Jewish people and be blessed, rather than curse the Jewish People and be cursed.
Genesis 12.3, Hebrews 10.31, Hebrews 12.29
When The Temple was destroyed a second time in 70 C.E., A.D. by the Romans, The Temple menorah was captured and stolen by the Roman armies led by Titus and taken to Rome. A replica of it is shown being carried to Rome in a triumphal procession. It appears in the famous arch of Titus in Rome where it symbolizes the subjection of the Jewish people to Rome.
Like Babylon and Syria, Rome will be destroyed also because the Romans were glad and rejoiced when they destroyed GOD’s heritage, the Jewish people. Because a time is coming when Rome will not be inhabited, but it will be wholly desolate. Like Babylon, so will it happen to Rome. And if Iran is foolish, so will it happen to Iran. JEREMIAH 50
Iran or Persia, in the days of King Cyrus and Artaxerxes, blessed the Jewish people by allowing them to return from Babylonian exile to Israel to rebuild their country and The Temple.
But today’s Iranian President, Hassan Rouhani said recently in American television interviews that the establishment of Israel is a crime. While his predecessor threatened Israel with annihilation; Israel and the Jewish people will remain forever. Iran will not. And those like Iran and the many enemies of Israel, unless they change for the good, face eternal damnation.
ISAIAH 45.1-7, 2 CHRONICLES 36.22-23, JEREMIAH 25.8-12, JEREMIAH 29.10-14,
NEHEMIAH 2.5-8, ISAIAH 66.22-24
Let’s look at some Biblical expressions concerning the Light, and the light of the menorah, the seven branch candlestick.
GOD is The Light. At the Creation, before GOD created the sun, GOD said, let there be light, and there was light. And GOD was The Light. GENESIS 1.3, 16, JOHN 8.12
There is no need for the sun in Heaven, for The LORD GOD, Yeshua The Messiah gives us light.
I believe that the seven lamps of fire burning before the throne like a menorah that John saw, are the seven Spirits of GOD, that is the fullness of all that GOD is. And His fullness is beyond comprehension.
And GOD’s Spirit and power have no limitations. It can move mountains with ease. And GOD’s Spirit and power will protect you forever. ZECHARIAH 4.1-6
GOD’s Law, The Law of Moses is Light, and Life.
PROVERBS 6.23, PSALM 119.105, ISAIAH 8.20
The menorah that is lit continually in the Sanctuary could very well symbolize that He Who keeps Israel shall never slumber nor sleep, and from Whom comes our help. PSALM 121.1-8
The teachings of The LORD, and His Law of Moses are Light. ISAIAH 2.4
And Light is life, salvation, GOD Almighty and His Holy Spirit. ISAIAH 49.6, 1 PETE
And Light is Yeshua the Messiah, The GOD Creation, Salvation, Truth and Good.
JOHN 12.36, EPHESIANS 5.8
In Messiah Yeshua, we turn from darkness to light, and from the power of satan to GOD, and atonement for the forgiveness of our sins through the death of Messiah Yeshua, and a brilliant inheritance, sanctified and made holy by faith that includes a Law-abiding life in Torah, The Law of Moses through Yeshua The Messiah. ACTS 26.13-18
Light is a symbol of life, blessing, peace, knowledge, understanding, wisdom, salvation and good. Whereas darkness represents chaos, death, ignorance, sin, suffering and evil. GOD is Light, and there is no darkness in Him. And GOD is the source of Light. GOD’s elect are the Children of Light, and the reprobate, those disobedient to GOD and His Law of Moses are the children of darkness. And that light of the menorah that burned continually in the Sanctuary and The Temple outside the veil, before the ark of the covenant, symbolizes that He Who keeps Israel will never slumber nor sleep. And He Who keeps you, will never slumber nor sleep. And The LORD will protect you from all evil. He will preserve your soul. He will watch over your going out, and your coming in from this time forth, and forever more.
Shalom, Ira Weinstein