With Questions and Proposed Answers
Background and printed text: Exodus 20
Exodus 20:1 And Elohim spoke all these speeches to say,
2 “I am Yehovah thy Gods Who exited thee from the land of Egypt, from the house of slaves!
3 “He shall not be to thee—other gods—upon my faces! 4Thou shalt not make to thee an engraved-[image] and every picture that is in the heavens from above and that is in the land from under and that is in the waters from under to the land. 5Thou shalt not prostrate to them. And thou shalt not serve them. For I am Yehovah thy Gods, a jealous mighty-[One] visiting iniquity of fathers upon children upon thirds and upon fourths to my haters, 6And doing Grace to thousands—to my lovers and to guards of my commandments!
7 “Thou shalt not carry Name Yehovah Thy Gods to a vanity! For Yehovah will not clear whoever will carry His Name to a vanity!
8 “Remember-thou Day of the Ceasing to sanctify him! 9Thou shalt slave and do all thine errand six days. 10And Day the seventh is a ceasing to Yehovah thy Gods. Thou shalt not do any errand—thou and thy son and thy daughter, thy slave and thy female-slave and thy cattle and thy sojourner who is in thy gates. 11For, six days Yehovah did the heavens and the land, the sea and all that is in them. And He ceased in Day the seventh. Yehovah therefore blessed Day the seventh, and He sanctified him!
12 “Glorify thy father and thy mother so-that thy days will lengthen upon the soil that Yehovah thy Gods gave to thee.
13 “Thou shalt not murder.
“Thou shalt not commit-adultery.
“Thou shalt not steal.
“Thou shalt not answer via thy neighbour, a witness of a lie.
14 “Thou shalt not covet a house of thy neighbour. Thou shalt not covet a woman of thy neighbour and his slave and his female-slave and his ox and his ass and any that is to thy neighbour.”
15And all the people, they are seeing the voices and the torches and a voice of the shofar! And the mountain is smoke! And the people saw. And they tottered. And they stood from a distance. 16And they said unto Draw [Moshe], “Speak thou with us! And we hearkened! And Elohim will not speak with us lest we will die!”
17And Draw [Moshe] said unto the people, “Don’t fear-ye. For the Elohim came in order to test you and in order that His fear will be upon your faces so-that-ye-shall-not-sin!”
18And the people stood from a distance. And Draw [Moshe] neared unto the neck-falling-darkness where there is the Elohim.
19And Yehovah said unto Draw [Moshe], “So thou shalt say unto children of Israel, ‘Ye, ye saw that I spoke with you from the heavens! 20Ye shall not make with me gods of silver! And ye shall not make gods of gold to you! 21Thou shalt make an altar of soil to me. And thou shalt sacrifice thine ascensions and thy ‘peaces,’ thy flock and thy herd upon him. I will come unto thee in each place that I will remind my Name. And I will bless thee. 22And if thou wilt make an altar of stones to me, thou shalt not build them a cutting. For thou did swing thy sword upon her, and thou profaned her! 23And thou shalt not ascend upon my altar via steps so-that thy nakedness will not-be-exposed upon him!’”
I. All These Speeches (verse 1)
Elohim spoke all these speeches. This section shows what all the speeches said.
1. Who is Elohim? The title, Elohim literally means gods. This is plural; yet it is singular when used of the Creator described in the first chapters of Genesis. While Elohim refers to Yehovah, it specifically refers to the One Who is sent from Yehovah to interact with Israel and with others. He is both Yehovah and with Yehovah. Thus, this is the Messiah Himself.
2. How many speeches are given in these texts? There are many speeches. Each speech gives a different teaching, and each teaching has at least one saying, and often many sayings. (A speech is made of a group of sayings.) The Ten Statements given in this chapter have at least ten speeches, and the chapter contains more. Since the Bible was never originally divided into chapters and verses, the speeches to which Elohim is referring don’t stop or start with this chapter.
3. This speech of verse 1 states, “Elohim spoke all these speeches to say.” What are these speeches saying? This information is given later by the same One who gave these speeches (that is, by Elohim):
Matthew 22:34 But the Pharisees, having heard that He had silenced the Sadducees, were gathered together. 35And one of them, a doctor of the Torah, questioned Him, tempting Him and saying, 36 “Teacher, which is the great commandment in the Torah?” 37And Yeshua said to him, “Thou shalt love Yehovah thy Gods with all thy heart and with all thy being, and with all thy very much! 38This is the first and great commandment. 39And the second is like it: Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. 40All the Torah and the prophets hang on these two commandments.”
The Book of Mark gives this event in a more complete way:
Mark 12:28 And one of the scribes came. And having heard them reasoning together, and perceiving that He had answered them well, asked Him, “Which is the first commandment of all?” 29And Yeshua answered him, “The first of all the commandments is, ‘Hearken Israel! Yehovah, our Gods, Yehovah is One! 30And thou shalt love Yehovah thy God with all thy heart and with all thy being and with all thy mind and with all thy strength!’ This is the first commandment. 31And the second is like this: thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. There isn’t another commandment greater than these.” 32And the scribe said to Him, “Right, teacher. Thou hast said that God is one according to Truth. And there isn’t another besides Him. 33And to love Him with all the heart and with all the understanding and with all the soul and with all the strength, and to love a neighbour as oneself is more than all the ascensions and the sacrifices.” 34And Yeshua, seeing that he intelligently answered Him, said to him, “Thou art not far from the Kingdom of God.” And no one dared to question Him any more.
Thus, these speeches are all given to say to the Israelis to love Yehovah, the Elohim of the Israelis, with all their everything, and their neighbours as themselves.
4. To whom did Elohim speak all these speeches? He spoke them to Moshe to speak them to the Israelis; He spoke them to the Israelis to speak them to the races of the world.
II. The First Statement: The Identity of Yehovah (verse 2)
Yehovah identified Himself: “I am Yehovah thy Gods.” He said what He did: “… Who exited thee from the land of Egypt (Double-Adversity)…” He also did this: “… Who exited thee from the house of slaves!”
1. What does the name Yehovah mean? It means He will be, He is, He was. It is an abbreviation (contraction) for the following:
Ye-he-yay Ho–vay Hi-yah
Yeheyay: He will be; Hovay: He is; Hiyah: He was.
Take the emboldened and underlined parts and put them together:
This Name is sometimes contracted to Yah.
2. Why does the text state, “Yehovah thy Gods” instead of “Yehovah thy God”? The Israelis have a tendency to have many and different gods. In other words, they have a tendency to be idolatrous (believing in idols). Yehovah is all the Gods that there are, and He is all the Gods that the Israelis will ever need. He is the God of the sea, the God of the land, the God of the air, the God of crops, the God of the universe, the God of the constellations, the God of war, the God of protection, the God of fertility, the God of life, etc. He is the Gods of Israel.
3. Why does Yehovah identify Himself as the Gods “who exited thee from the land of Egypt,” of all the different ways that He could describe Himself? While unbelieving Israelis could refuse to recognize Yehovah as the source of many other things, they would have a hard time denying that Israel had been in Egypt as slaves, and that they were later no longer slaves in Egypt. Egypt was a great military power; no large group of slaves just walks out of Egypt.
4. What does house of slaves mean? A house in the Bible can refer to the structure in which a family lives, but more often it refers to the smallest unit of government—a household. All members of a house are not necessarily related family members, but they all live in the same area and work together. Their livelihoods depend on each other. Slaves of a family are still members of that house. Thus, it is like a small unit of government.
The Israelis were all part of a house in Egypt that was designed for slavery to the Egyptians. They who were members of this ‘house’ therefore had a government by which they ran that house. The entire government was a slave to Egypt, and all worked for Egyptian prosperity.
5. Who is thee in, “Who exited thee?” This refers to Israel—the entire people (as if they all are one person, since they are one group).
6. Why did Yehovah exit Israel from the land of Egypt? That was His plan from the beginning. He claims Israel as His property. He used Egypt to ‘grow’ Israel into a great race in a very short amount of time; Egypt toughened Israel up into a strong army. Once Israel was ready, Yehovah took His own property from Egypt. The Egyptians clung to the Israelis, so that Yehovah had to give them ten incentives to send the Israelis. Even after these ten incentives, Egypt sent its army to retrieve them, so Yehovah set a trap for the Egyptian army in order to stop Egypt from trying to re-enslave the Israelis.
III. The Second Statement: NO Other Gods (verses 3-6)
Yehovah stated very specifically: “He shall not be to thee—other gods—upon my faces!”
He then added details: “Thou shalt not make to thee an engraved-[image].”
“Thou shalt not make to thee every picture that is in the heavens from above.”
“Thou shalt not make to thee every picture that is in the land from under.”
“Thou shalt not make to thee every picture that is in the waters from under to the land.”
Yehovah then commanded what not to do:
“Thou shalt not prostrate to them.”
“And thou shalt not serve them.”
He then gave the reasons:
“For I am Yehovah thy Gods, a jealous mighty-[One].”
What does a jealous mighty One do?
“…visiting iniquity of fathers upon children upon thirds and upon fourths to my haters…”
He also does beneficial things:
“…And doing Grace to thousands to my lovers and to guards of my commandments!”
1. Why did Yehovah word this, “He shall not be to thee—other gods—upon my faces,” instead of wording it this way: “Other gods shall not be to thee upon my faces”? The way He worded it is far more personal: “He shall not be to thee!” This shows the jealousy of Yehovah over this issue! Any other Elohim will make Yehovah very, very jealous, and thus, very, very angry!
2. Why does He say, “upon my faces”? He doesn’t want to even see other gods! Since He doesn’t have a back side, and everything that happens occurs right in His faces, any Israeli who has another god at all will be having that god upon His faces! He will be furious!
3. Why does the text read, “upon my faces,” instead of, “upon my face”? Faces are always plural in the Bible since every object and every person always has more than one face. (The face of a rock in the front of the rock isn’t the same as the face of that rock in the back of that rock. On the other hand, the face of a person can be a smile one moment and a frown the next. Faces are made of curves, being three-dimensional; human and animal faces also experience changes and expressions. Yehovah’s faces are of the same nature. He is everywhere, and His faces vary a great deal. Every human holds the very image of God, and every human therefore reflects the faces of God.
Thus, any action that humans do is done upon Yehovah’s faces!
4. What is an engraved image? It is an image that has been carved into something or sculptured from something.
5. Is Yehovah commanding the Israelis to refrain from every carving and sculpture? This section is about other gods; it isn’t about carvings, sculptures or pictures in general. Yet, with this in mind, one person’s nature sculpture can easily become another person’s deity. If the one who made the sculpture did it for its beauty (only), and if another worships it as a deity, that isn’t the fault of the one who produced it, but it is the fault of the one of makes it into a god.
6. Is this text commanding the Israelis to never make any pictures? Again, this text refers to pictures that are of gods or that are used as pictures of gods. Thus, if an Israeli person recognizes a certain picture as a picture of Jesus, and if that Israeli person views Jesus as God, having that picture is a violation of this commandment for every Israeli. Yehovah commands against having such a picture upon His faces.
7. What would an engraving or a picture look like if it is “in the heavens from above”? That would be an engraving or a picture that is supposedly set in the heavens. (Pictures that show Jesus going up into the heavens or coming down out of the heavens are perfect examples of this; if Jesus is God, such representations are violations for the Israelis.)
8. What is “the land from under”? That is the land that is under the heavens (referring to all the land on earth).
9. Does this command prohibit making photographs? It prohibits the Israelis from making photographs of gods and goddesses. This prohibition therefore includes all pornography since pornography pictures a man, woman or child as a god or goddess of pleasure and desire.
10. What are the “waters from under to the land”? They are the waters that are lower than the land (and thus include all oceans, lakes, rivers, streams, and the great underground waters that exist).
11. Are only pictures of these gods and goddesses prohibited? Engraved images are also prohibited. Thus, the Israelis must not make to themselves any statues of gods or goddesses, as well as pictures of the gods or goddesses.
12. What does prostrate mean? It means to lie down flat, face-down.
13. What does “Thou shalt not prostrate to them” mean? It means that the Israelis are not to lie down flat (showing the willingness to serve) to any god or goddess, to any engraved image of a god or goddess, or to any picture of a god or goddess.
14. What is involved in serving them? Serving other gods and/or goddesses involves doing what priests and/or priestesses of them command to do to benefit these false gods. It also involves working to benefit and promote these false gods (and goddesses).
15. Do folks today serve false gods and goddesses? Most religious individuals in this world serve false gods. Some have idols (images) to which they pray and serve. Some don’t have visible idols, but they serve gods that are still idols. Some name these idols with names associated with the True and Living God (like Jesus, Jehovah), but they are still idols since their Jesus and their Jehovah don’t fit the Bible’s description of the True and Living God.
Very few serve the Biblically described God.
16. Who is thou in, “Thou shalt not prostrate to them”? This command is to Israel; therefore, this command is to all Israelis (since if one Israeli violates, all Israel has violated!).
17. Is this command only to whom you identified in the answer above? This section of text is only to Israel, and therefore is only to every Israeli comprising (making up) Israel.
Now, Yehovah created every human in His own image. All who wear His image are owned by Him. Any person serving other gods is declaring that Yehovah doesn’t own him/her! Therefore, serving other gods is wrong.
18. What is the reason Yehovah gives for not prostrating to or serving false gods? He gives the reason next: “For I am Yehovah thy Gods”! Yehovah is also a jealous mighty One!
19. Isn’t being jealous very childish? No! While jealousy can be childish and petty, it can also be exactly the right response. This text shows that Yehovah is jealous, and another text indicates that Saints are to be God-like in character. Therefore, being jealous is right if it is for the right reason. (Most jealousies are not for the right reason.)
20. In what way is Yehovah jealous? If any Israeli prostrates to and serves a false god, Yehovah is very jealous since Yehovah has a very special relationship with Israel, and thus with all Israelis.
21. What is iniquity? It is the guilt that remains after a person or group has sinned. Guilt remains if a person or group sins even if he/it stops sinning. The guilt must be removed; if it isn’t, the person/group will die in sin and with that guilt.
22. What does visiting iniquity upon someone mean? This means bringing consequences for the guilt (iniquity) upon someone—that is, making certain that the target person of the consequences suffers some type of loss or pain for the guilt that hasn’t been removed. Visiting indicates keeping an appointment (in this case, the appointment was set when the sin that resulted in guilt was committed). Thus, visiting iniquity is keeping the appointment of the punishment for the guilt, and keeping that appointment with the person who has the guilt.
23. Is Yehovah doing right by visiting the iniquity of fathers upon children? Should children be held responsible for what their fathers did? This text is describing fathers who had children, and those children had children (and thus are grandchildren). The fathers sinned, and they never turned from their sins. Thus, they also kept the guilt of their sins (the guilt being the iniquity). Now, the children of the fathers also sinned. Children normally sin to a greater degree than their fathers if they choose to sin. Thus, the children have even greater iniquity. They in turn have children, and those children commit greater sins, and thus gather even greater iniquity. This is now to the third. Sometimes Yehovah visits the iniquity in this third ‘generation,’ and sometimes He waits until the fourth ‘generation.’ The fathers hated Yehovah (which is why they sinned and made themselves guilty, keeping that guilt and not turning). The children hated Yehovah even more, and their children hated Yehovah even more. (Had any of them turned to Yehovah, refusing to sin, what I am about to describe would have been stopped.) Now, Yehovah sees this third or this fourth group of children—that is, He sees the grandchildren or the great grandchildren; He sees that they hate Yehovah more than their parents, who in turn hated Yehovah more than their parents. Yehovah is now ready to visit the iniquity (guilt) of the fathers upon these children, knowing that the guilt of the fathers is far less than the guilt of the grandchildren or the great grandchildren. Had Yehovah determined to visit the guilt of each upon his/her own sin, that would have been much worse. Instead, Yehovah shows mercy by only bringing the guilt of the first generation of sins.
Look at this drawing to see what I am describing:
Thus, Yehovah is far less harsh than He would have been by visiting the true amount of iniquity on the ones who deserve a much harsher punishment or chastisement. He does this because His desire is for them to repent from sin and to live. He takes no pleasure in their deaths.
They are not being held responsible for what their fathers did; they are being held responsible for what they did, and Yehovah is bringing only part of that consequence upon them!
24. What is Grace? It is a fervent, ardent zeal by which one is actuated. Now, I will define the definition’s terms: It is a fervent (very strong) ardent (‘burning’—that is, with great emotion) zeal (an intense and constant draw for a cause or against a cause) by which one is actuated (that is, motivated to take action).
You will hear other definitions of grace. One that used to be popular is unmerited favor, but this definition has always been wrong. Instead, mercy is unmerited favor, and Biblical grace and mercy are definitely not the same. Another definition that you will hear is unconditional love. This definition is nonsense, since absolutely nothing is unconditional; all things always come with conditions. Besides this, Biblical grace can be demonstrate without any love whatsoever since it can be the motivation for attacking enemies of life and Truth.
25. What does doing Grace mean? Grace isn’t some feeling; it always involves action. Doing Grace is taking action for or against anyone or a group based upon that fervent, ardent zeal! Yehovah does Grace—that is, He takes action on behalf of thousands who do what is right toward His lovers—those who love Him and who are guards of His commandments!
26. What is a ‘lover’ of Yehovah? This is a person who truly delights in what He has done and what He will do regarding His righteousness, His justice, His Grace, and His many other attributes. Such a person will therefore behave much like Him, given the situation, since folks who love others tend to act like them. A lover of Yehovah also loves what He has said, and therefore loves the contents of the Bible, taking it very literally.
A lover of Yehovah will obey Yehovah should Yehovah command him/her to do something, but this person will first make sure that Yehovah truly commanded it.
27. What is a guard of Yehovah’s commandments? This person first hears Yehovah’s commandments. He/She then thinks about them to understand them. After this, He/She hearkens to His commandments, which always includes doing exactly what he/she has been told to do. If the commandments are not directed toward him/her, the person still gets to know them very well, and makes certain to not forget.
There is one other part of guarding Yehovah’s commandments. Every Israeli is personally a commandment of Yehovah. If an innocent Israeli is in danger, and another Israeli or a non-Israeli is capable of helping that Israeli (that Jewish person), that person capable of helping has already been commanded to help. Thus, the Israeli is a commandment already given. Guarding Yehovah’s commandments includes guarding the Jews from enemies! They have the image of God, and the Salvation of God is from them. This action will be the opposite of idolatry!
IV. The Third Statement: Carrying the Name to a Vanity (verse 7)
Yehovah commanded, but He spoke of Himself in the third person (as if He were speaking of another being): “Thou shalt not carry Name Yehovah Thy Gods to a vanity!” (A vanity includes a false god; see the questions.)
He then gave the threat, but again in the third person, as if He were speaking of another: “For Yehovah will not clear whoever will carry His Name to a vanity!”
1. What is a vanity in the Bible? Since the word vanity means nothingness, anything that is vain is empty. A vain person is an empty person—empty in the head (where it counts)!
Yehovah uses the word vanity to describe idols since they are truly empty of life, empty of the ability to respond or help, and empty of power. Idols do work, but that is because demons (angels who rebelled) power them! The demons give gullible humans (‘suckers’) the impression that the idols work because the demons do things when humans call upon their idols. An idol itself has no power.
2. What does “Thou shalt not carry Name Yehovah Thy Gods to a vanity” mean? Israelis must not place the Name Yehovah (or Yeshua) onto an idol!
Violating this commandment is commonly done in most churches today. They will take the name Jesus, which is a distant form of Yeshua, and they will apply this name to gods whose descriptions differ from Yehovah/Yeshua in the Bible. They don’t know (or believe) that they are doing this, but Yehovah commanded the Israelis to not do this.
3. What does Yehovah say that He will do to anyone who carries this Name to a vanity? He says that He will not clear anyone who carries His Name to a vanity! That means that such a person will not be legally cleared (found innocent) in the Judgment when that person is tried for his/her works! The text doesn’t say what will be done beyond this.
4. Most translations give the impression that using God’s name in vain is what this command about. This gives the impression that this command is against cussing/swearing using His name. Is this also correct? This text has nothing to do with cussing or swearing, but instead with false gods. Cussing and swearing falsely are wrong, and using the names Yehovah/Yeshua (or Jesus) while cussing or swearing is also wrong, but this text doesn’t deal with these issues; other texts do.
Claiming that ‘Jesus’ has desires and attributes that are not true is far more offensive to Yehovah than cussing or swearing. Many folks who go to church refuse to cuss and swear, but many who go to church make lying claims about Jesus without knowing how offensive this is to Him. Now, this text is a command to the Israelis: they must not do this practice. Therefore, it should be obvious that Yehovah/Yeshua is against this practice (even if a non-Jewish person does it).
V. The Fourth Statement: the Day of Ceasing (verses 8-11)
The commands continued as if Yehovah were not the speaker, since they are not in the first person (“I,” “my” or “me”), but in the third person (“He,” “His” or “Him”). “Remember-thou Day of the Ceasing to sanctify him!”
Yehovah then gives the directions: “Six days thou shalt slave and do all thine errand. And Day the seventh is a ceasing to Yehovah thy Gods. Thou shalt not do any errand—thou and thy son and thy daughter, thy slave and thy female-slave and thy cattle and thy sojourner who is in thy gates.”
He gives the reason: “For six days Yehovah did the heavens and the land, the sea and all that is in them. And he ceased in Day the seventh.”
“Yehovah therefore blessed Day the seventh, and He sanctified him!”
1. What is this Day of Ceasing? This is the Sabbath, in Hebrew called Shabbat. This Day of Ceasing occurs more than once a week (since there are more Sabbaths than just the one at the end of the week). The one that occurs once a week starts on Friday at sundown and ends on Saturday at sundown. There are also special holy days (later called holidays) that occur once a year, including the following:
- Pesach (Passover, better called skip-Over)
- Yom HaKippureem (Day of the Coverings, wrongly called Day of Atonement)
- Sukkot (also known as booths, tabernacles)
Each of these Days of Ceasing (Sabbaths) are times when the Israelis are to do no normal work (except tending their children, relatives, and animals), though priests who tend Sabbath sacrifices must continue their work! (They cease later.)
2. What do the Days of Ceasing picture? They picture life-saving events on earth during which the Israelis won’t be able to do the necessary work, and Yehovah will do what is necessary so that the work will be accomplished. One example of such a work is providing everlasting Salvation for every person. No human can obtain his/her own Salvation by any form of work since a perfect sacrifice that is of equal or greater value than the human must be provided. Yeshua does the necessary work by voluntarily being that perfect sacrifice, and humans must refuse to work for that Salvation (that rescue from sin and to righteousness) in order to obtain it! (Anyone who is working for it won’t be given it.)
3. What does sanctify mean? It means to cause something to be owned. It is exactly the same as to become holy, which means to become owned. (This is all that it ever means; it never means more, and it never means less.)
4. How can one sanctify a Day of Ceasing? This command is to Israel (as if all Israel is one person). Israel must make this Day of Ceasing Israel’s own property. This ownership will show itself by all of Israel doing exactly what Yehovah commanded regarding the Day of Ceasing, and by believing what the Days of Ceasing picture!
Also, the Sabbath is later viewed as a person. The gender of the word Shabbat in Hebrew is feminine; yet the pronouns he and him are applied to the Sabbath as if it refers to a man. Indeed, it does: it refers to Yeshua Who is the very One who will cause all of Israel to cease while He does the works that will save the lives of all Israel. Those same works will be for folks of all races so that all can have Salvation from sin and the resulting everlasting death, instead being granted everlasting life in order to live righteously.
Thus, when all Israel finally claims Yeshua, that act will be sanctifying Yeshua and the Sabbath!
Every Sabbath Day is designed to give Israelis reason to think about these things.
5. How many days of the week is Israel assigned to work? The text states, “Thou shalt slave and do all thine errand six days.” Israel is assigned to slave and do all the errand six days. (Other Sabbaths sometimes make work weeks shorter than six days.)
6. Why must Israel slave? What does this mean? This means that Israel must work hard as owned (by Yehovah)! A slave always has an owner.
7. What is an errand, and how does this differ from work? An errand can be work, but it doesn’t have to be. An errand involves going somewhere in order to do, obtain, give or send something. An errand is like an assignment or a task, but it involves going somewhere.
8. Why is errand singular (“all thine errand”)? Yehovah’s command assumes that Israel has only one errand (even if that errand has many parts). Yehovah has sent Israel to do one errand: to teach Truth to the races. Ceasing on the Sabbath will continue to teach Truth to the races!
9. Why is Day the seventh a ceasing to Yehovah instead of being a ceasing to Israel? It belongs to Yehovah! Israel must make it Israel’s property, but it initially belongs to Yehovah. He is the One Who first ceased from His labour. Because it belongs to Yehovah, Israel must not violate it, and Israel must not violate it while on Yehovah’s land! (Violating it while on His land will be the same as violating the Land of Israel!)
10. Why mustn’t Israel do any errand, including even a sojourner who is in Israel’s gates? This points to an event far into the future (and thus, this is a show-and-tell event) when Israel won’t be able to do any errand, and Yehovah will do all the errand!
11. What did Yehovah do for the six days mentioned in verse 11? Yehovah did the heavens and the land, the sea and all that is in them. (He created some things, He made other things, He multiplied some things, and He commanded some things.) This is recorded in Genesis 1 and 2.
12. What does bless mean, and how did Yehovah bless Day the seventh? To bless is to transfer benefits to another (the benefits coming with responsibilities to use them for the good of others).
Yehovah gave advantages to Day the seventh that include responsibilities for the day to do good for others. This day will provide Salvation to humans who carefully consider what it pictures and Whom it represents.
13. How did Yehovah sanctify him, and who is him? Yehovah took this secular day, and He made him (the day) His own property. The other days belong to humans, but the Day the seventh belongs to Yehovah! He therefore commanded the Israelis to treat this day as Yehovah’s property, and to do what Yehovah commanded: to cease in him.
VI. The Fifth Statement: Glorification and a Prolonged Stay (verse 12)
Yehovah commanded one being (described by thy) to glorify this being’s father and mother. He gave the reason: “so-that thy days will lengthen upon the soil that Yehovah thy Gods gave to thee.”
1. What does glorify mean? It means to demonstrate as very important.
2. Who is thy in, “Glorify thy father and thy mother…”? I above stated that this text is to Israel as if Israel is one person. If this is the case, the command is for Israel to glorify Israel’s father and Israel’s mother.
3. If the answer to the above text is true, identify the father and the mother:
Speaking to the Israelis, Yehovah said,
Joshua 24:3 “And I took your father Avraham from the other side of the flood. And I led him throughout all the land of Canaan. And I multiplied his seed. And I gave him Isaac.”
Thus, Avraham is the father of Israel.
Another text identifies the mother of Israel:
Galatians 4:26 Jerusalem that is above is free, which is the mother of us all!
Thus, Jerusalem is the mother!
4. How will glorifying Avraham lengthen Israel’s days upon the soil that Yehovah, Israel’s Gods, gave to Israel? Avraham is the example of faith in the Bible. Demonstrating Avraham as important will include demonstrating the faith of Avraham. Since Avraham believed God, and God thought him righteous on account of this, anyone who considers Avraham important will likewise believe God. Therefore, if Israel recognizes Avraham as important, Israel will refuse to sin and will do righteousness upon the soil that Yehovah gave to Israel. Yehovah will then be pleased to keep Israel on the soil of the land and will not permit enemies to drive Israel off. Yehovah will also keep the Palestinians from being active enemies to Israel.
5. How will glorifying Jerusalem lengthen Israel’s days upon the soil that Yehovah, Israel’s Gods, gave to Israel? If Israel will recognize the importance of Jerusalem in a Biblical way, all Israel will refuse to sin in Jerusalem, and will maintain Jerusalem as a place of righteousness, justice, Grace, and of the Teaching (Torah). Thus, races from all over the world will be able to come to Jerusalem to learn righteousness. Yehovah will be pleased to maintain Israel in Jerusalem, and He will stop all enemies who desire Israel’s demise (destruction and death).
6. Has Yehovah given the soil of the Land of Israel to the Israelis? He hasn’t yet. The Israelis don’t yet know how to treat the soil of the Land of Israel. The Israelis continue to sin while on that soil; sin mistreats the soil.
VII. The Sixth Statement: Don’t Murder (verse 13)
Again speaking to one being, Yehovah commanded, “Thou shalt not murder.”
1. What is murder? It is intentionally killing a person without the force of proper law behind that killing. It differs from manslaughter (which is accidentally killing a person), and war (in which killing non-surrendering members of an opposing army is right, or killing surrendering members of an opposing army for proper vengeance because of needless slaughter on the part of the enemy is right), and legally proper execution of a criminal who deserves the death penalty.
Do not confuse manslaughter—that is, accidentally killing a person—with murder that might look accidental. If a person has gotten drunk before and gets drunk again, and then drives, and then ‘accidentally’ kills someone, that isn’t manslaughter; that is murder. That was as intentional as if it were planned. The person had warnings and knew better, but took the risk—at the risk of another person. That is murder.
2. Who is being commanded to not murder? The target is the same: Israel (as one person, including all Israelis together as if they form one person). If an individual Israeli murders, all of Israel has murdered.
VIII. The Seventh Statement: Don’t Commit Adultery (verse 13)
He then commanded to this one being, “Thou shalt not commit-adultery.”
1. What is adultery? That is participating in sexual activity when one or more persons is married to someone else. (This differs from fornication in which a male and a female participate in sexual activity when neither is married.)
2. Who is being commanded to not commit adultery in this text? Israel as a whole (consisting of all the Israelis together) is being commanded to not commit adultery. If one Israeli commits adultery, all of Israel is committing adultery.
3. With whom might Israel as a whole commit adultery? Israel belongs to Yehovah. When Israel is portrayed in the Bible as a woman, she is Yehovah’s wife. If she goes after any other gods, she is committing adultery. Therefore, adultery and idolatry (putting one’s trust in idols) will often be directly connected in the Bible.
4. Is Israel as a whole committing adultery right now? Israel’s faith is in the United States, in the United Nations, and in human good will and good sense. All three of these defy what the Bible teaches Israel. Thus, Israel is practicing adultery, not looking to the only source of peace: Yehovah, Israel’s husband.
IX. The Eighth Statement: Don’t Steal (verse 13)
Yehovah told this one being, “Thou shalt not steal.”
1. Who is being told to not steal? Israel as a whole is being told to not steal. If any Israeli steals, Israel has stolen.
2. From whom could Israel steal?
- Israel could steal from Yehovah (taking what belongs to Him as if it belongs to Israel). For example, Yehovah alone owns the right to teach Truth. If any Israeli claims to teach truth, and that truth isn’t Yehovah’s truth, that Israeli has stolen Yehovah’s right to give and be Truth, and thus Israel has stolen.
- Israel could steal from the races. Israelis have often stolen the gods of the races, making them their own gods. If an Israeli does this, all Israel has done this. Yehovah becomes very angry over such theft.
- Israel could steal from Israel (in the form of Israeli stealing from Israeli). When one Israeli steals from another Israeli, that involves Israel as being both the thief and the victim of theft! That doesn’t promote loving one’s neighbour as oneself, but rather violence! Yehovah hates violence.
X. The Ninth Statement: Don’t Answer as a Witness of a Lie (verse 13)
Yehovah commanded against answering a question by means of a neighbour such that the person answering is a witness of a lie.
1. What does “Thou shalt not answer via thy neighbour, a witness of a lie” mean, and how does it differ from “Thou shalt not answer, a witness of a lie”? This command is against an Israeli answering a question by giving a lying testimony—that is, by claiming to have seen, heard, smelled, tasted, or physically felt something that never occurred at the time being discussed. For example, if Johnny says, “I saw Martha throw the glass at Jody,” and Johnny never saw Martha throw the glass, Johnny is a witness of a lie. He isn’t just a lying witness, but he is a witness of a lie—the lie being what Johnny (and perhaps others) planned to say against truth.
Now, Johnny answered via his neighbour—that is, by means of his neighbour, since he is using his innocent neighbour to construct and uphold a lie. That lie is now on the shoulders of his innocent neighbour, and that neighbour must carry that lie until that lie is exposed.
Yehovah has strong fury against a witness of a lie.
Had the text instead said, “Thou shalt not answer, a witness of a lie,” this would not have involved any neighbour. It would also have appeared to be commanding to not answer at all. Other texts show that the Israelis must give testimony if they saw or heard something that is important in cases brought before judges in Israel. There is a major difference between “thou shalt not answer” and “thou shalt not answer via thy neighbour.”
2. Is lying as a witness ever right? Yes! When the only way to save an innocent person from the hands of guilty persons is to lie as a witness, anyone who fears Yehovah must lie. If the person doesn’t lie, and if the innocent person is therefore taken by guilty persons, Yehovah will hold the person who didn’t lie as a coconspirator with the guilty persons! The Bible gives several examples of righteous persons who lied to save the innocent from the hands of the guilty. The midwives did so in the beginning of Exodus, and both Avraham and Isaac lied in order to save many lives. Yehovah blessed the midwives, and Yehovah threatened those to whom Avraham and Isaac lied rather than being angry with Avraham or Isaac!
This command, “Thou shalt not answer via thy neighbour, a witness of a lie,” therefore holds for Israel, as do the commands around it, and for Israelis with Israelis when the Teaching (Torah) is being obeyed by all parties involved. No one will need to witness a lie under these circumstances!
3. How else can Israel answer via Israel’s neighbour, a witness of a lie? Yehovah chose Israel to bring the Truth to the races. Israel’s teachers and rabbis have brought tradition to the races, the occult to the races, many false doctrines to the races, the Truth of Yehovah to the races, Salvation to the races, the Word of God to the races, and many other things. Thus, Israel has brought what will bring Salvation as well as what will bring damnation. At present, Israel, as a whole, is teaching the races that peace will come through dialogue—that is, through enemies sitting down and talking together. This is a witness of a lie. This testimony of Israel violates this commandment.
Just as it is wrong for an Israeli to be a witness of a lie against another Israeli, it is wrong for all of Israel to be a witness of a lie to the races. Both promote death and killing.
XI. The Tenth Statement: Coveting What Can’t Be Obtained (verse 14)
Yehovah commanded against coveting particular items: a house of one’s neighbour, a woman of one’s neighbour, a male slave of one’s neighbour, a female slave of one’s neighbour, an ox of one’s neighbour, an ass of one’s neighbour, and any item that is holy to one’s neighbour.
1. What does covet mean? It means to very strongly desire the very item or position that another person or group has.
In some cases, a person can purchase an item from another person; coveting isn’t wrong if the item is for sale, and if purchasing the item isn’t doing wrong.
In some cases, the item can never be acquired. For example, if a woman desires a man to become her husband, and if that man is already married to another woman, the only way that she can obtain this man is by adultery or by the other woman dying. If the woman covets this man, she is doing wrong.
In one case in the Bible, a king coveted the property of an Israeli. The king could not have that property; it was part of an inheritance to the man who had it. The king’s wife had the man murdered. That is what wrong coveting can do.
Coveting Biblically Spiritual things is not wrong; it is right. Spiritual things come with responsibilities and with dangers, but coveting them is right. (Trying to purchase them with money is wrong!)
2. Who is thou in, “Thou shalt not covet…”? As shown above, it refers to Israel as a singular being.
3. If the answer above is correct, what is wrong with Israel coveting a house of Israel’s neighbour? This easily will lead to war, and war produces deaths. Coveting a house isn’t worth the deaths of humans.
If any Israeli covets the house of a neighbour, all Israel is also coveting that house.
4. What is wrong with coveting a neighbour’s woman? That woman is usually the wife of the neighbour. Coveting in such a case will often lead to adultery or to murder. Yehovah will avenge such a crime.
5. If the neighbour has a slave, can’t the slave be purchased if the one who is coveting can afford the price? Coveting is far stronger than desiring to make a purchase. It is akin to lusting after something—a desire that is strong enough to lead the coveting person to sin in order to obtain the coveted object or person. This is why Yehovah commands against coveting what belongs to Israel’s neighbour.
6. Can Israel go to war with neighbours, and take property (including slaves and women for wives) from the neighbours? Yehovah gave Israel certain conditions under which Israel could go to war. As long as the war was with a neighbour outside of the land of Canaan, and as long as the Biblical conditions for war were met, Israelis could capture slaves and could take women for wives. Taking these persons and their possessions was not considered violating the command against coveting.
XII. Terror of Dying (verses 15-16)
All the people of Israel are seeing the voices! They see the torches, and they see the voice of the shofar! The mountain is smoke. Upon seeing these things, the people tottered, and they stood from a distance!
The Israelis then said unto Moshe, “Speak thou with us!” They guaranteed, “And we hearkened!” They then requested, “And Elohim will not speak with us lest we will die!”
1. How can all the people see voices, including the voice of the shofar? The Israelis would have seen the voices if the voices were accompanied by light (as thunder is always accompanied by lightning).
The word see in English has a similar set of definitions in Hebrew. If I say, “I see what you mean,” I am not describing anything visible, but I am describing that I understand. The Israelis understood that they would die if Elohim continued to speak. I cannot tell from the text that this is what Yehovah was communicating via the voices. I propose that the voices were accompanied by light.
2. What torches were there? The text doesn’t describe what the torches were, but rather that there were torches. They were not being held by the Israelis; they were there on the mountain with Elohim.
3. What do torches do, and why were they there with Elohim? Torches give light. The torches were there with Elohim because Elohim was giving light to Israel at this time. Torches are used in darkness when the surrounding area doesn’t have light of its own. Yehovah will give Israelis light during the Tribulation when they have no light; He will send His torches for them.
4. If the above answer is correct regarding the torches, what do the voices do, and why did Elohim send the sounds of the voices? Voices give information. Elohim’s voices give Truth. He will send His voices during the Tribulation so that Israelis and their friends who desire to come to the Salvation of Mount Sinai will know where to go and what to do.
5. What is a shofar? It is a ram’s horn (I showed a picture of it in a previous BCS chapter). Once it is made hollow, it can be blown like a trumpet; its sound will travel for quite a distance. It was (and will be) used militarily to call folks to a gathering point and to become ready for some event.
6. What does “the mountain is smoke” mean? This means that the entirety of Mount Sinai was completely covered with smoke so that the Israelis couldn’t see the mountain; just the smoke.
7. Why did the people totter, and what does that mean? To totter is to rock backward, forward, or sideways, as about to fall. It is like what a person who is very drunk does when trying to walk.
The Israelis tottered because of the terror of what they were seeing (and hearing). This mountain that only moments ago was clear was now all covered with smoke, very loud sounds, and lights.
8. What did the Israelis do as they tottered? The text states that they “stood from a distance,” meaning that they repositioned themselves so that they were farther away from the mountain.
9. What did the Israelis desire Moshe to do, and why? They desired Moshe to speak with them—that is, instead of Elohim speaking with them! They wanted Moshe to be their prophet of Elohim. They claimed that they would hearken if Moshe spoke with them. They didn’t want Elohim to speak with them because they were afraid that they would die if He did.
10. Would they have died if Elohim had continued to speak with them? They might have died of fright. Elohim wasn’t there to harm them; He was there to test them and to give them His beneficial fear. The only kind of fear of Elohim that they had was a harmful fear! It drove them away from Elohim.
XIII. The Test and Sin-Preventing Fear (verse 17)
Moshe responded by saying unto the people, “Don’t fear-ye.” He explained, “For the Elohim came in order to test you.” That wasn’t the only reason, however; He also came “in order that His fear will be upon your faces;” that fear was intentional. That way, the Israelis won’t sin!
1. What good did Moshe’s telling them to not fear do? Does telling fearful folks to not fear do any good? If those being told to not fear believe in the person telling them to not fear, it will do some good! If a good parent tells a child to not fear something, the child’s level of fear will decrease. In some cases, the child will entirely lose fear!
If the Israelis had believed Moshe, they would have become a little less fearful (or they would have lost their fear of what they were seeing).
2. What is the purpose of a test from Elohim? His test is given in order to show to the person being tested the truth about him or her.
Elohim never tests a person by presenting an option to sin in front of a person. He always tests a person so that the person can do what is right and righteous. Anyone can pass His tests by obtaining His help if necessary. (Some who are tested do not need His help to pass His tests; they already trust Elohim.) His tests are designed to help a person or a group to not sin.
3. What are the two reasons given for Elohim coming (to Mount Sinai)? They are to test the Israelis and so that His fear will be upon their faces so that they won’t sin.
4. What does fear being upon a person’s face have to do with not sinning? When the fear is great enough, and that fear shows up on a person’s faces, the person will not violate the one whom he/she fears. Elohim put His fear into the faces of all the Israelis so that they wouldn’t disobey what He said to do.
5. Does anyone show a fear of Elohim on his/her faces today? Yes! There are some who show that fear on their faces if others are attempting to get them to sin!
XIV. Neck-Falling Darkness (verse 18)
The people of Israel still stood from (at) a distance. Moshe neared unto the darkness where Elohim was. It was ‘neck-falling’ darkness.
1. Why does the text again state, “And the people stood from a distance”? This showed that their fear continued in spite of Moshe’s telling them to not fear. The entire people did not move from the distant position.
2. Why is the darkness described as neck-falling? I propose that this describes a darkness intense enough that a person in it will look down to his/her feet in order to see anything. Looking down to one’s feet can only be done by the neck falling.
3. Why did Moshe approach this? Wasn’t he afraid? Moshe greatly feared Elohim. That fear did not keep him from Elohim; it drew him to Elohim.
Moshe knew that Elohim desired him to come so that he (Moshe) could deliver the Teaching (Torah) to the Israelis.
4. Does Elohim show up in great darkness elsewhere in the Bible? Yes.
1 Kings 8:12 Then Solomon spoke, “Yehovah said that He will dwell in the thick darkness!”
5. What is the benefit of Elohim’s appearing in neck-falling darkness? One benefit will be for some during the Tribulation. Since they will know that Elohim will be present in such darkness, they will not be afraid of the darkness. They will know that Elohim is there. That darkness will also be a refuge for them; enemies won’t be able to approach them in that darkness. An event almost like this already occurred just before the Israelis crossed the Red Sea when the cloud was darkness to the Egyptians and provided light for the Israelis. The darkness kept the Egyptians from approaching. The Israelis will willingly approach to Elohim Who will be in such darkness during the Tribulation so that they will be safe from enemies!
Children are sometimes very frightened of the dark. During the Tribulation, the opposite will occur: they will not be afraid of the dark; they will know that there is safety there!
XV. Against Idolatry (verses 19-23)
Yehovah now gave Moshe more things to say unto the children of Israel. Yehovah started with what He did: “Ye, ye saw that I spoke with you from the heavens!”
Since Yehovah is therefore right there with them, He commanded, “Ye shall not make with me gods of silver!”
He also commanded against making gods of gold to (for) themselves.
Now, He commanded them to make one item: “Thou shalt make an altar of soil to me.” He gave its purposes: “And thou shalt sacrifice thine ascensions and thy ‘peaces,’ thy flock and thy herd upon him.”
How will Yehovah respond? “I will come unto thee in each place that I will remind my Name. And I will bless thee.”
He didn’t command against a stone altar, but He gave one restriction: “And if thou wilt make an altar of stones to me, thou shalt not build them a cutting. For thou did swing thy sword upon her, and thou profaned her!”
There was one other restriction regarding an altar: “And thou shalt not ascend upon my altar via steps so-that thy nakedness will not-be-exposed upon him!”
1. Did Moshe now see Elohim (since Moshe just entered into the neck-falling darkness)? This text section doesn’t say. Another does:
Exodus 33:11 And Yehovah spoke unto Moshe faces to faces as a man speaks unto his friend.
Also, when Moshe will return to the camp, he will be glowing very brightly. I am therefore convinced that he saw Elohim.
2. Yehovah told Moshe to tell the children of Israel, “Ye, ye saw that I spoke with you from the heavens!” Did Yehovah speak to them from the heavens, or did He speak to them from Mount Sinai? We just read that He spoke to them from Mount Sinai; the mountain was above the Israelis so that they had to look up into the heavens to see the source of the voices. Yet I am convinced that this refers to a future event that won’t have anything to do with Mount Sinai when He will speak with the Israelis from the heavens! Other texts describe examples of such an event:
Matthew 3:17 And behold a voice from the heavens saying, “This is my beloved Son in Whom I am well pleased!”
Matthew 17:5 While he yet spoke, behold, a bright cloud overshadowed them. And behold a voice from the cloud that said, “This is my beloved Son in Whom I am well pleased! Hearken ye to Him!”
Mark 9:7 And there was a cloud that overshadowed them. And a voice came from the cloud saying, “This is my beloved Son! Hearken to Him!”
Luke 9:35 And a voice came from the cloud, saying, “This is my beloved Son! Hearken to Him!”
3. Why did He speak with them from the heavens instead of appearing on the land where they were? The Israelis were not ready for Him to make a land appearance. He will later make such a land appearance and walk among the Israelis for three years in the form of Yeshua! He will call the Israelis to become ready since the Kingdom of God will near. Yet, they won’t become ready at that time; their readiness for Him to remain with them on land will wait many centuries.
4. What does Yehovah’s speaking with them from the heavens have to do with their not making gods of silver with Him and not making gods of gold to them? Had Yehovah come and spoken with them on the land, they would have been in the greatest danger of being slaughtered because of the gods of silver and of gold. Yehovah is very jealous of any competition from false gods when it comes to the Israelis! Thus, He spoke with them from the heavens so that they would be warned. He is keeping His distance from the Israelis because they are not ready for Him to come to them in a personal way.
5. Yehovah said two different things: “Ye shall not make with me gods of silver” and “Ye shall not make gods of gold to you.” What is the difference between the two besides the metal from which the gods are made? The first states, “Ye shall not make with me…” while the second states, “Ye shall not make to you.” The first commands against making idols with Yehovah, implying that they can serve both Yehovah and idols, which will greatly anger Yehovah. The second commands against making idols to them implying that they can serve idols apart from Yehovah, which will also greatly anger Yehovah.
Making idols of any kind will bring the intense anger of Yehovah upon the Israelis.
6. Why did Yehovah specify that the altar must be made of soil? Humans tend to want to make religious items fancy and very valuable; expensive items (they think) show their dedication. Now, Yehovah made humans out of soil, not out of gold and silver. An altar of soil, then, will typify humans rather than showing off a person’s or groups wealth. Those things sacrificed on the altar will also typify (picture) humans. Soil can easily picture humility just as throwing soil on one’s own head can picture being humbled or humiliated.
7. What is an ascension, and how is it sacrificed? An ascension is the sacrifice of an animal (like a sheep or goat) that typifies (pictures) a person or group that will be sacrificed, and that will ascend into the heavens.
Saints who died at the time that Yehovah gave the texts of the Torah did not ascend into the heavens, but went to the paradise side of Sheol in the heart of the earth.
Paradise is the Garden of Eden that was moved from its location on earth into the heart of the earth because of Adam’s sin; it is a most delightful place for humans, and is a miniature of the New Earth that will have Paradise over all its surfaces. Paradise was later transferred to the heavens so that Saints ascended into Paradise, as they do now. Thus, these sacrifices that are ascensions showed a picture of Paradise being in the heavens and not in Sheol.
The person doing the sacrifice of ascension brings a perfect proper animal (usually a sheep or goat). He/She lays hands on the animal’s head, and slits its throat, killing it. The priest is there to oversee and to help, if necessary. The animal is then cut open, and the various parts on the inside are removed, each part also being a type—a picture of very important events. The animal’s skin is removed, and the animal is roasted on the altar. The priest and the one doing this sacrifice then eat the animal, enjoying a meal together that pictures their becoming part of what the animal and its parts picture. It is a show-and-tell of events to come.
8. What are ‘peaces,’ and how are they sacrificed? The word ‘peaces’ is plural for peace—that is, for the condition of not being at war or in debt, but of a good relationship that is potentially beneficial to all concerned.
‘Peaces’ sacrifices typify (picture) events and persons who will bring various forms of peace to both the Israelis and all Israel during the Tribulation. Because these sacrifices typify humans, those humans will heroically die to bring various forms of peace to the Israelis and Israel.
At the beginning of the Tribulation, Yehovah will have great anger toward Israel and most of the Israelis. Heroic persons (Israelis and even some non-Israelis) will give their own lives to save Israelis from Yehovah’s wrath toward Israel and to show the kind of selflessness that alone can and will bring peace in all areas of life. Many Israelis at first will view these heroes and heroines as evil, some even thinking that they are the ones bringing Yehovah’s wrath on Israel. The Israelis will later learn that they are wrong, and that these heroes and heroines knew the Truth about Yehovah and His plan. These sacrifices are like memorials to those heroes and heroines even before they ever live.
9. Why did Yehovah specify, “thou shalt sacrifice … thy flock and thy herd upon them” when that is obvious? Yehovah is teaching the Israelis that they will be sacrificing Israeli heroes and heroines, slaughtering innocent Israelis in groups!
10. Yehovah next stated, “I will come unto thee in each place that I will remind my Name.” What does He mean by “remind my Name,” what places are these, and what will Yehovah do? The places where He will “remind” His Name are places that He will set His Name there. One way of identifying those places is seeing where Yehovah commanded the Levitical priests to place altars there so that the Israelis could do sacrifices. Yehovah identified certain cities for the Israelis to go when they ate and drank the tithes; these were the same cities where the remembrance of His Name was placed. Israelis and others could come to these cities and be taught about Yehovah’s Name (Who is later identified as Salvation—as Yeshua).
Yehovah stated that He will come unto thee—unto Israel—in these places. I propose that these are also cities of refuge where a person who accidentally kills another person could flee in order to be judged and in order to live. The following text identifies these six cities:
Joshua 20:7 And they appointed Kedesh in Galilee in mount Naphtali and Shechem in mount Ephraim and Kirjatharba, which is Hebron, in the mountain of Judah. 8And on the other side Jordan by Jericho eastward, they assigned Bezer in the wilderness upon the plain out of the tribe of Reuben and Ramoth in Gilead out of the tribe of Gad and Golan in Bashan out of the tribe of Manasseh. 9These were the cities appointed for all the children of Israel and for the stranger who sojourns among them so-that whosoever kills any person at unawares will flee to there and not die by the hand of the redeemer of blood unto his standing to the faces of the congregation.
11. Yehovah mentioned two types of sacrifices: the ascension and the peaces. Why didn’t He also include the various sin sacrifices? Yehovah desires to bless Israel. If the Israelis sin, that will not bring a blessing from Yehovah, but rather His wrath. Yehovah did not provide the sin sacrifices in order to give the Israelis the impression that they could sin and repent with a sacrifice, and that everything would be fine; He provided the sin sacrifices for them as types—pictures of events to come in which true heroes and heroines will willingly give their own lives to save the lives of Israelis who are not yet in faith. These sin sacrifices are therefore very sad and reminders of future heroism.
12. Why will Yehovah bless Israel? He will bless Israel because Israel will do right and will sacrifice his ascensions and his peaces to Yehovah—types of heroes and heroines to come.
13. What does “build them a cutting” mean? This means to build them by cutting them into shapes.
14. What is wrong with cutting the stones into shapes in order to make a pretty altar to Yehovah? He explained, “For thou did swing thy sword upon her, and thou profaned her!” This sword is a stone-cutting tool. When humans try to make their own faiths look better by using tools, they prove their faiths to be false. A real faith doesn’t need to be made pretty. While cut stones can be very pretty, Yehovah has no pleasure in His altar being made from cut stones. An altar made with cut stones is profaned—that is, it is now secular. (That means that it is not owned by Yehovah, but rather is unowned, and is for anyone’s use.) Natural stones are what Natural stones are what Yehovah made. The altar will typify what Yehovah makes, not what humans make.
15. What nakedness will be exposed if Israel ascends upon Yehovah’s altar via steps? The use of undergarments was not universal; the types of garments they wore did not make them necessary. If any part of Israel (like an Israeli) were to ascend an altar of Yehovah, viewing the person from underneath would reveal the person’s nakedness. Yehovah does not want any form of nakedness to approach His altar. If steps were made for the altar, the steps would become part of the altar.
16. What is wrong with nakedness? Doesn’t Yehovah have the ability to see through all garments, and didn’t He design the human body in the first place? Nakedness is also a type! It pictures shame and vulnerability (that is, the human body is easily able to be damaged when it is naked) due to sin! When Adam sinned, he realized that he was naked, and he hid from Yehovah!