The Page for “Daily Davar” our Bible-In-A-Year Scripture Reading Schedule
Rabbi Rich Reflections
Week of October 20, 2019
Heading in the Right Direction…With the Book of Hebrews
This week, in addition to our readings in the important Books of Chronicles in the Tanakh, we encounter the often-misunderstood Besorah (New Testament) Book of Hebrews.
“Hebrews”… the very name sounds old-fashioned. Today we use the term “Jews” for the Jewish people. I like this better. I don’t feel like a “Hebrew”. I am a Jew. Hebrew is our language (and Hebrew National is our hot dog)!
But the biblical book called Hebrews, despite the archaic title, still means “Jews” or “the biblical book written specifically to a group of Jewish believers living in the First Century.”
Now, the author—some say Rav Shaul (the Apostle Paul), others suggest different writers—had a problem in mind when he wrote. The author likely stayed up nights worrying about some Messianic Jews who, due to external pressure exerted by other members of the Jewish community, were tempted to lose their faith in Yeshua and to leave the believing community. We modern Messianic Jews understand well this temptation. The marginalization we face from people we love can have the effect of dulling our passion for Messiah. It happens slowly over time. Some give in. Others of us are determined to stay the course. We know truth when we see it and we know that truth must guide our paths.
How did the author (I favor Rav Shaul for a number of reasons) address the problem? By showing that the magnificence of Yeshua is vastly greater than even the loftiest of Israel’s heroes and more important than even the most time-honored of her institutions.
For example, the book talks about angels. Angels are real. They are powerful servants of God. But Yeshua’s stature is far above theirs.
Moses and Abraham are the (almost) unparalleled heroes of our Jewish story. But the author reminds us that even they can’t compare with the Son through whom all creation came into being and continues to function.
The Temple with its services is a fabulously important institution. But One even greater than the Temple showed up in Eretz Yisrael—Yeshua—whose ultimate self-sacrifice was pictured by the sacred drama enacted every day by the cohanim in the Temple.
The author’s point is not to denigrate, de-legitimatize, or render as unimportant to our national existence or God’s purposes the lofty roles of our heroes or national institutions. Christians have generally read the book with this mistaken understanding. Correctly perceived, the Book of Hebrews simply uses powerful Jewish ideas to demonstrate that Messiah is more important to Jewish national life then all these. That is why He is worth everything, even the loss of status, money, or the approval of others—sometimes even life itself. This message is as important today as it was back in the First Century.
Enjoy the Book of Hebrews!
Enjoy the Daily Davar!
|Date||1st Reading||2nd Reading||3rd Reading||Day|
|10-01-2019||Ezra 6-10||2 Timothy 1||Tuesday|
|10-02-2019||Neh 1-5||2 Timothy 2||Wednesday|
|10-03-2019||Neh 6-9||2 Timothy 3||Thursday|
|10-04-2019||Deut. 31:1–30||Hos. 14:2(1)–10(9)||Mt. 18:21–35||Friday|
|10-06-2019||Neh 10-13||2 Timothy 4||Sunday|
|10-07-2019||1 Chron 1-4||Titus 1||Monday|
|10-08-2019||1 Chron 5-8||Titus 2||Tuesday|
|10-09-2019||1 Chron 9-12||Titus 3||Wednesday|
|10-10-2019||1 Chron 13-16||Philemon 1||Thursday|
|10-11-2019||Deut. 32:1–52||2 Sam. 22:1–51||Jn. 6:26–35||Friday|
|10-13-2019||1 Chron 17-20||Hebrews 1||Sunday|
|10-14-2019||1 Chron 21-24||Hebrews 2||Monday|
|10-15-2019||1 Chron 25-29||Hebrews 3||Tuesday|
|10-16-2019||2 Chron 1-4||Hebrews 4||Wednesday|
|10-17-2019||2 Chron 5-8||Hebrews 5||Thursday|
|10-20-2019||2 Chron 9-12||Hebrews 6||Sunday|
|10-21-2019||2 Chron 13-16||Hebrews 7||Monday|
|10-22-2019||2 Chron 17-20||Hebrews 8||Tuesday|
|10-23-2019||2 Chron 21-24||Hebrews 9||Wednesday|
|10-24-2019||2 Chron 25-30||Hebrews 10||Thursday|
|10-30-2019||Ya’acov (James) 1||Wednesday|
|10-31-2019||Ya’acov (James) 2||Thursday|
Below is a scrollable list of the schedule of readings for the complete year: