Today is the first Sunday of Advent and the theme is “Hope in the Darkness.” We will take some time for ourselves, something we’re often not very good at doing. The reality is God cares deeply for you before you can do anything for him, and he wants that truth to settle deeply into our hearts today. We will be exploring what it means to have vision for ourselves holistically. How do we set ourselves up for success emotionally, physically and spiritually? The truth is you matter, and it’s my prayer you are strengthened and encouraged today.
Psalm 25:1-10 Names of God Bible
1 To you, O Yahweh, I lift my soul.
2 I trust you, O my Elohim.
Do not let me be put to shame.
Do not let my enemies triumph over me.
3 No one who waits for you will ever be put to shame,
but all who are unfaithful will be put to shame.
4 Make your ways known to me, O Yahweh,
and teach me your paths.
5 Lead me in your truth and teach me
because you are Elohim, my savior.
I wait all day long for you.
6 Remember, O Yahweh, your compassionate and merciful deeds.
They have existed from eternity.
7 Do not remember the sins of my youth or my rebellious ways.
Remember me, O Yahweh, in keeping with your mercy and your goodness.
8 Yahweh is good and decent.
That is why he teaches sinners the way they should live.
9 He leads humble people to do what is right,
and he teaches them his way.
10 Every path of Yahweh is one of mercy and truth
for those who cling to his promise[b] and written instructions.
The Word of God for the Children of God. In Excelsis Deo! Alleluia! Amen.
Psalm 25 is a plea from the depth of a suffering soul to the God in whom the speaker trusts for deliverance and mercy. Yet despite this trust, the text is a cry of utmost desperation. It points directly and decisively to our longing for God not only to deliver us from our troubles, also for God’s light to reveal us fully.
As we enter into this season Advent, we wait for God to see us through the darkness, reveal Himself, to bestow the mercy that we trust God alone to give.
While this reading is limited to verses 1-10, considering the entire Psalm provides a richer understanding of the Psalmist’s prayer.
In many ways, Psalm 25 is a brilliantly woven text. The Psalm as a whole appears to be two prayers woven together: one expressing the experience of a suffering individual who feels the absence of God, and the other expressing a community’s trust in God’s direction and deliverance. The individual and communal voices alternate, with verses 1-7, 11-12, and 16-21 voicing the individual, and verses 8-10, 13-15, and 22 voicing the community. It may be that two prayers were interwoven in this way for use in a worship context.
The result of this interweaving is a compelling prayer that contains all the elements of a lament:
- Petition: As we see from the first two verses, this Psalm is addressed to God, calling upon God to hear the sufferer’s plea. The speaker pleads for God’s attention to and for deliverance from suffering (verses 1-3 and 16-21), and also for forgiveness of sins of the past, which seem to be haunting the speaker and contributing to that affliction (verse 6-7 and 11-12).
Woven together with this plea is a petition for instruction in following the right path (verses 4-5 and 8-10). While mercy is utterly dependent on God and not on our own deserving, the Psalmist knows that such mercy is most often found by his walking the way that God has provided within the covenant community (verses 10, 13-15).
- Complaint: While we do not have here a clear description of the precise nature and source of the Psalmist’s suffering, it is clear, however, the situation is dire; the Psalm is rife with the language of shame, guilt, loneliness, and affliction. Whatever the cause of the individual’s suffering, a significant piece of the pain expressed here is the Psalmist’s idea, God’s apparent absence in the midst of it.
This absence of God is a source of shame for the speaker, who is persecuted for maintaining faith in a God who seems either unwilling or apparently unable to respond (verse 2-3 and 20). Indeed, for the Psalmist persecution is a “violent hatred” (verse 19) that further intensifies the very acute pain of the experience.
The Psalm is the Psalmists very heartfelt Appeal to God’s character: Here, the speaker takes this complaint to God precisely because God is the one who can be trusted to provide deliverance. In verses 6-7, 11, and 18, the Psalmist calls on God to make known the steadfast love that characterizes the Divine Reality.
Here we see another example of the brilliant weaving of this Psalm: the appeal unto God’s character is interwoven with a particular plea for forgiveness. “Be mindful of your mercy, O Lord, and of your steadfast love . . . Do not remember the sins of my youth or my transgressions; according to your steadfast love remember me, for your goodness’ sake, O Lord!” (verses 6-7).
It is as if the speaker is saying, “Remember, God, both who you are and who I am, and forget the sin that seems to stand between us.” The natures of God and of the sin filled, sin darkened human being both seem hidden under deep suffering and deeper shame, and only God’s attention to the afflicted can restore them.
Statements of confidence in God, and promise of sacrifice or praise: These final two elements of Psalms of lament are less explicit and frequent here than in other such Psalms (see Psalm 22).
The speaker asserts his sure and certain trust in God (verse 2), maintains the goodness and uprightness of the Lord (verse 8), and repeats the refrain of waiting for God to respond, implying assurance God’s response will surely and certainly, directly and decisively, timely and succinctly come (verses 3, 5, 21).
The speaker praises God for the sureness of God’s instruction (verses 8-10). But the overlying theme of this lament remains that of the perception of suffering, God’s divine absence; the Psalmist’s faith remains interwoven with fear and doubt, the Psalm ends with a plea for the redemption of all Israel (verse 22).
Advent often seems to come to us as a pinhole of light surrounded by darkness.
The world, with its suffering, its violence, its ruthlessness, at times seems so dark, and the light at tunnels end seems so puny. We want it to be enough, but we’re not really convinced it will be. We fear the light that God has promised won’t really shine in the darkest corners of our world, or of ourselves. And it is only dimly, through that pinhole of light, that we see ourselves, reduced to our shortcomings, and we long for God to look past those faults and really see us.
With the Psalmist, as a community and as individuals, we pray, “See me, God, and show me that mercy and steadfast love for which I long, and which I can receive only from you.” As the season of Advent begins, our hope begins as we cry the lament of Psalm 25, and we wait for the salvation that we know is ours.
In the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit,
Let us raise up our souls unto the Lord our God, and enter into a time of prayer.
“O my God, in You I trust, do not let me be ashamed; do not let my enemies exult over me. Indeed, none of those who wait for You will be ashamed; those who deal treacherously without cause will be ashamed.”
Thank You, Father, that I can place my complete trust in You to keep my soul pure and holy. As we move forth into this season of Advent, Continue to guide me so that I will never be ashamed of my behavior, words or thoughts. I praise You that if I will wait for You and seek after Your heart, I will never be ashamed.
In Excelsis Deo! Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia! Amen.
One thought on “Advent Week 1: Hope for our World, Living Hope into our Darkness, Unto You alone, O God, Do I lift up my Soul.”
10th פרק of Parshat אמור contains two סוגיות.
This 10th פרק learns from כד: ה – ט, and כד: י – יב. The twelve loaves of showbread placed the entire week upon the table within the Mishkan. The smell of fresh cooked bread, like fresh brewed coffee, a pleasing aroma. They serve as an הבדלה separating shabbat from chol.
The Talmudic observance of the 3 meals learns from this פרק precedent. Nothing as blessed and pleasant as relationships with family and friends based upon shalom and trust. Basic Rule: a Jew should never break bread with enemies.
The Divine Name שלום, the name of my soul dedicated to HaShem on shabbat with the הבדלה blessings over wine and bread. When pronouncing the blessing over the shabbat wine, look straight and deep into Karen, my wife, her eyes. The blessing on the day, try to make eye contact with family members and friends. The k’vanna of these blessings, the k’vanna to make both an internal and external manifestation happening.
Bringing in the sanctity of shabbat, when my lips pronounce “Adonai”, within my heart I call forth the spirit of the dedicated שלום soul. The next word, “אלהינו”, call upon the specific tohor middah dedicated on Shabbat, affixed and learned from the Parshat Shevuah.
The middah learned from all the 11 chapters of Parshat אמור for example: the middah of חנון, affixed to the blessing רפאנו ה’ ונרפא. Learning: תעשה תפילתך במקום קבוע, as meaning affixing 7 the Divine Names to the 7 faces of my soul (nefesh, ruach, neshamah, chyyah, yechidah, nephesh klalli affixed to the 6 days of chol da’avening.) housed within my heart.
A unique expression of kabbalah, daily revolves around Divine Names (Ya, Ha’El, El, Elohim, El Shaddai, Eish Ha’Elohim) which separate each and every day of chol, the one from the other within my heart. The term Siddur contains the idea of Order. Hence to da’avin to HaShem most essentially requires making an order within the heart, how a person dedicates that unique daily soul, holy to HaShem.
As previously repeatedly mentioned, the wisdom to pronounce the Name לשמה learns from the precedent of blowing the shofar. Avodah zarah universally profanes the Spirit Name יהוה, into foreign words – the essence of the sin of the golden calf mussar applicable to all generations forever. Aaron, for example, translated the Name of HaShem into the word אלהים, the name of the soul dedicated to HaShem every יום רביעי/Wednessday.
The gospel Book of John, that specific avodah zarah work, clumsily attempted to reproduce the imagery of his opening words of בראשית. John 1:1 declares – ” In the beginning was the Word, and the ‘Logos’ was with God, and the ‘word’ was God.” John 1:1 serves as a tumah, false precedent of the k’vanna of the language of the Torah. This stark distinction which separates tohor בראשית from the tumah gospel of John, effectively, (believe it or not), serves to emphasize the sh’itta of Talmudic common law.
The Talmud endeavors to learn the k’vanna of a given Mishnaic source, by means of bringing similar halachic precedents of legal opinions held by other Tannaim, organized and edited by Amoraim scholars, whose scholarship produced the Gemarah’s “commentary to the Mishnah“. This common law legal method, attempts to compare similar case studies affixed to a specific Mishnaic case, by way of bringing outside halachic precedents.
In this sense, the Gemarah interprets the k’vanna of the Mishnah, rather than comments directly upon the language of a given Mishnah. As such the Gemarah does not qualify as a “commentary to the Mishnah”, like as exemplifies the Reshonim “commentaries” on both the Chumash and Talmud.
Gemarah common law treats the language of the Mishnah as something comparable to the qualities of a balloon; the Mishnah language has the flexibility to include outside halachic precedents within its original k’vanna. This disciplined sh’itta of learning, equally applies both to the Torah as the Written Constitution of the Republic as well as to the Mishnah common law legal codification of Sanhedrin Case/Rule cases.
This unique sh’itta of Jewish common law most essentially recognizes the roles of Judicial prosecutor and defense functions, within any lateral Torts court legal system. Jewish Torts courts contained no less than three judges in order to achieve the Judge, prosecutor, and defense most essential common law equilateral triangle requirements.
Before any person can properly learn the Talmud, they require a working understanding of the basic organization of the Courtrooms which prevailed prior to the g’lut of Jews from Judea by the Romans. The 3 judge system, which defines Talmudic Jewish Torts courts, stands radically opposed to the vertical, salaried Judge & prosecutor vertical Goyim courtrooms.
Alas, as a consequence of Jewish assimilation/avodah zarah\, Jewish lateral common law courts have ceased to exist. The Dayanim, influenced by the Roman statute law, the so-called: ‘Great Codes’; they failed to maintain the Talmudic common law legal system. Yet Talmudic common law ideally defines the role of the three justices of every Jewish Torts beit din.
The Talmud organized a Jewish beit din into an ordered Judge, prosecutor, and defense equilateral triangular lateral common law courtroom. Post the Rambam Civil War, Jews abandoned the study of the Talmud as common law in favor of assimilated Roman statute law. For this reason the Yad Chazakah, Tur, and Shulkan Aruch, most unwelcome enemies, absolutely never invited to sit at my Shabbas table. Refuse to break bread with these assimilated works of avodah zarah.
A slightly distant precedent: ה: א – ה. The showbread serves as an eternal memorial to Moshe the law giver, who ascended and learned the 611 commandments following the initial revelation of the opening first two commandments @ Sinai.
A complex exact, precise precedent which interprets the k’vanna of the showbread: ה: טז – ו: ט. The Sinai revelation summarized, starting with honoring our father and mother. Adjacent to this positive commandment, the negative commandments of murder, ערוה, theft, false witness, evil eye as having Universal applicability.
The contrast between these specific commandments from many of the other Torah commandments? The latter commandments apply to specific persons. The laws of niddah, for example, target women. Moshe later arranged the order of the עשרית הדיבורות to teach the Torah klalli commandments.
These Universal commandments function as general precedents to all the other mitzvot precedents which come to interpret the k’vanna language of the opening first two Sinai commandments. The showbread serves to recall the obligation upon our hearts, known as ‘fear of heaven’. The kre’a shma p’suk, together with its opening פרק teaches the k’vanna of the showbread.
Simply an exact precise precedent: כג: ח – יט. The mussar not to detest the Egyptians or Esau, an especially difficult mussar for me to grasp. My Yatzir does not willingly release its intense hatred for Europeans after three generations have passed. The mussar instruction applies strictly and only to Goyim converts who qualify as a ‘new creation’.
Torah law does not favor the modern penitentiary system/gulags; it does not address in a positive manner the bureaucratic systems common among ancient Monarchies. Crime and punishment the Torah favors an approach which requires that the two quickly follow upon the heels of one another.
The business of the Courts to try and judge cases. The Western concept of ad-infinitum retrials, based upon legal technicalities, the Torah rejects this mockery of justice outright; as the definition of judicial bureaucratic assembly line production of mechanical judicial forms of justice. Rather than the substance of justice which endeavors to make fair compensation of damages inflicted upon others among our people. Expensive trials encourage judicial and attorney corruption, the exact opposite of intent of lateral common law courtrooms.
The US Constitution employs a similar style, it too does not directly address the forms of State government. The Federal ever growing bureaucratic machine of State, the Book of שמואל directly denounces. The emphasis Jefferson placed upon the Bill of Rights directly supports the דיוק of State economic autonomy Rights, expressly laid out in the Commerce Clause, as the substance of States autonomy (from the Federal Government) rights.
The concept of justice learns from the precedent of tumah accidents during times of war. The idea of keeping the camp tohor כג:יא – טו the concept of ערות דבר – this term applies equally to subjects of divorce as well as in matters of justice.
לא תביא אתנן זונה ומחיר כלב בית ה’ אלהיך לכל נדר כי תועבת ה’ אלהיך גם שניהם.
This verse directly and specifically addresses the k’vanna concept of courtroom established Sanhedrin justice. The famous case of king Shlomo, his threat to cut the surviving prostitute baby into two parts, it serves as the definitive failure and rebellion against the mussar commanded by Natan which Shlomo ignored.
Tumah injustice: Shlomo prioritized building a Cathedral “Temple”. He corrupted the משנה תורה k’vanna. King Shlomo’s rebellion and rejection of the prophet Natan’s mussar, to establish the Sanhedrin as the יסוד of the Torah Constitutional common law, resulted in Civil War. This curse impacted all generations, till the kingdom of Yechuda suffered total defeat in war by the king of Bavil. ירידות הדורות, the monarchy of the House of David, its avodah zarah, which failed to establish lateral common law Sanhedrin courts, as the legal system of the Torah Constitutional republic.
This fundamental failure, king Shlomo’s decision to prioritize construction of a Cathedral Temple, (an altar, so to speak, constructed of hewn stones), rather than emphasize as most holy, righteous judicial lateral common law justice, best defines the avodah zarah all the kings of the house of David, which ultimately lead our people back to the slavery of Egypt.
No king of the house of David ever succeeded to atone for the Torah curse placed by the prophet Natan upon the House of David; as expressed through king Shlomo’s avodah zarah – Civil War. This avodah zarah abomination likewise learns from the new testament false messiah avodah zarah abomination. Av tumah avodah zarah guilt, which condemns the House of David, likewise directly learns from the ירידות הדורות post second Temple Av avodah zarah precedent. The failure of the Reshonim scholars’, their inability to inspire the generations of g’lut Jewry to sanctify the collective Will among our people to observe, the commitment of our obedience to keep the commandments לשמה.
In all the despicable tumah church “debates” that serve to define religious oppression, throughout the Dark and Middle Ages, no rabbi ever denounced Goyim believers, their avodah zarah belief in either the bible or koran – for their guilt and exact duplication of the Golden Calf; their translation of the tohor Spirit יהוה, into avodah zarah tumah words, names of other Gods.
Nor did any rabbi teach the basic fundamental: Monotheism directly violates the 2nd Sinai commandment. That ברית does not mean “covenant”, but rather swearing a Torah oath לשמה. The bible and koran false prophet counterfeits failed to grasp the genesis of בראשית … the faith of the justice requirement, sworn through ברית אש. HaShem brought Israel out of Egyptian bondage. The k’vanna: for Israel to rule the lands of Canaan through righteous tohor lateral common law Sanhedrin courtrooms. All Creed or theology based belief systems,,, the Torah definition for the worship of other Gods.
G’lut Jewry had to endure generations of tumah replacement theology avodah zarah! The g’lut of European Jewry produced the ultimate curse: the Shoah! This horrible disaster has in and of itself failed to cause Liberal Reform Jews to recognize their error by which they refer to Berlin as their “New Jerusalem ”! Modern Orthodox rabbinic Judaism has also yet to express our shame for its perversion of both Torah and Talmud sealed Primary Sources of Jewish faith. The identical guilt of Melchizedek, who confused the Order of priority – and blessed Avraham before the honor of HaShem; Reshonim secondary source scholarship does not and cannot replace the sealed Primary sources as “the sh’itta Way” to study Jewish Common Law.
Another exact precise משנה תורה precedent: כד: יז – כה: טז. Justice stands upon the יסוד that the dignity of our People merits respect. Essential, that Torah justice makes a Chag-like public sanctification of the Name, through the public shaming of the reputation and guilt of רשעים.
Judged by the courts as guilty, an essential aspect of the required justice compensation for damages inflicted; the public validation, the guilt of רשעים, and their obligation to make “compensation and restitution” for damages inflicted upon others among our People. This Torah learns from the precedent of the mitzvah of the Shabbos rest, which equally to our animals. The יבמות commandment also teaches this essential k’vanna obligation: guarding the dignity of our people. As does the negative commandment not to do business with inaccurate scales, serves as a valid precedent which understands the k’vanna of the positive showbread commandment.
A distant precedent: כז: א – ח. The placing of Torah blessing and curse באר היטב fundamentally emphasizes the primary nature of establishing lateral common law Sanhedrin courts as the system of Jewish law within our homelands. A precise exact precedent: לג: ז – יט. The blessings given by Moshe to the Tribes of Yehudah, Levi, Benyamin, and Yosef, these Tribes most essentially revolve around ruling the brit land with justice. The greatest leaders of our people have come from these Tribes.
The kabbalah of יחזקאל teaches a exact and precise kabbalah mussar commandment: ב: ג -ג: טו. All T’NaCH prophets command the tohor mussar that addresses as key – the Torah justice obligation of faith. The משל metaphor of a scroll, the mussar which implies the דיוק, the נמשל interpretation: Justice – ‘sweet as honey’. The פרדס logic system, Rabbi Akiva’s explanation of the prophet’s chariot mysticism concerns justice and only justice, as expressed and defined through our lateral common law Sanhedrin courtrooms.
Another exact precise precedent: ה: י – יז. Nothing defiles and profanes the “Mishkan” of justice more than State legalization of oppression of the poor and weak – the widows and orphans. Legalized racial oppression of minority populations, like pogroms, causes the curse of g’lut to rain down upon our rebellious people, the tumah Yatzir Ha’rah within us that arouses ecstasy passions which detest this most essential tohor Torah k’vanna, understanding the commandments לשמה – the first Commandment of the revelation of the Torah @ Sinai @ Horev.
Still another precise exact Torah precedent: ט: ד – יא. G’lut, death, destruction, humiliation etc the mussar vision of the prophet יחזקאל upon all generations of bnai brit, we all equally bear the yoke of this prophetic mussar, to abhor terrorism and blind oppression and victimization of the weak and unarmed – incapable of defense. Herein the prophet understands the ‘Fear of Heaven’ mussar which the positive commandment of showbread instructs the generations of Israel.