Now your two sons [Ephraim and Manasseh], who were born to you in the land of Egypt before I came to you in Egypt, are mine; Ephraim and Manasseh shall be mine [that is, adopted as my heirs and sons as surely], as Reuben and Simeon are my sons.Then Israel said to Joseph, “Behold, I am about to die, but God will be with you, and bring you back to [Canaan] the land of your fathers. Moreover, I have given you [the birthright,] one portion [Shechem, one mountain ridge] more than any of your brothers, which I took [reclaiming it] from the hand of the Amorites with my sword and with my bow.” Genesis 48: 5, 21-22 (AMP)

Jacob adopted Joseph’s sons as his own sons Ephraim and Manasseh. Adoption means that one takes the child as his own child and that child stands to inherit from the person who adopted him. This would mean that Joseph would get his inheritance from his father and his sons also. In essence the sons of Joseph were now part of the house of Israel. It is interesting to note that throughout the bible there is no reference to the tribe of Joseph among the twelve tribes of Israel, however his sons Ephraim and Manasseh consist of the twelve tribes of Israel.

As we take an over view look at the life of Joseph, it is no secret that he suffered so much from betrayal by his own, to slavery and then to imprisonment without a cause. Later on he is promoted to be the most powerful man after Pharaoh and we now see that God rewarded him greatly for all the years of misery. Infact the reward of the double portion blessing from his father and his sons forming part of the tribes of the great and powerful nation of Israel far outweighs the years of his suffering. Indeed, our God is El Shaddai, the God of more than enough blessing. It reminds me of the promise of Isaiah 61:7

Instead of shame and dishonor, you will enjoy a double share of honor. You will possess a double portion of prosperity in your land, and everlasting joy will be yours. Isaiah 61:7

Though Reuben was the firstborn from his father Jacob, Joseph got the firstborn blessing. Remember, that Joseph lived before the time when God gave Moses the law, they all live under the covenant of Abraham which is a grace covenant like us, who live under the grace covenant. The reason I am bringing up the covenant governing their lives then is because under the law, Joseph should have never inherited the double blessing it was only reserved for the firstborn.

“If a man has two wives, one loved and the other unloved, and both the loved and the unloved have born him sons, and the firstborn son belongs to the unloved wife, then on the day when he wills his possessions to his sons, he cannot treat the son of his loved wife as firstborn in place of the son of the unloved wife—the [actual] firstborn. nstead he shall acknowledge the son of the unloved as the firstborn, by giving him a double portion of all that he has, for he was the beginning of his strength (generative power); to him belongs the right of the firstborn. Deuteronomy 21:15-17 (AMP)

It is no secret Jacob had two wives, Leah (the unloved wife) and Rachel (the loved wife). Leah’s firstborn was Jacob’s first child, Reuben who according to the law, it was his birth right to get the double portion of inheritance. However, Rachel’s firstborn, Joseph was Jacob’s most beloved son and instead of Reuben, he inherited the double portion.
Jacob more than anyone else understood the first-born blessing because he not only bought it from his elder twin Esau with a bowl of soup but he also had to trick his father to get it. Jacob though he was passionate about God and possessing all of God’s promises the manner in which he obtained it was contrary to the very nature of God. Hence his name Jacob.

The first-born blessing was ordinary reserved for the firstborn, in most cases in the bible it was a son. Compared to the blessing that the other siblings would receive, the first born blessing was a double portion, it was the best blessing a father could give his son. Ordinary, it was the father who blessed the son. This is a picture of our Heavenly Father blessing His begotten Son Jesus Christ. We who believe in Jesus Christ’s finished work are in Christ (Colossians 3:3) so in essence our Heavenly Father when blessing Christ, He is blessing us with the firstborn blessing that’s why we are co- heirs with Christ.

Jacob, Joseph and Ephraim all received the first born blessing from their father. What is interesting about this is that all of them were not firstborn!! I love it. We can learn something about the nature and character of God from this. We learn that God is gracious and loving and He does not conform to any tradition. He only does His will and it be of great concern to us that we seek God and seek His will be done in our lives because all His plans are good. All this occurred under the covenant of grace and not the law. That why its important to seek the Lord’s will and follow religion blindly.
Remember that God’s is Holy and all He does is Holy so no one can influence His will. He is no respecter of person. God’s Sovereign Choice is expressed eloquently in Romans 9:11-16 (AMP)

…though the twins were not yet born and had not done anything either good or bad, so that God’s purpose [His choice, His election] would stand, not because of works [done by either child], but because of [the plan of] Him who calls them, it was said to her (Rebekah), “The older (Esau) will serve the younger (Jacob).” As it is written and forever remains written, “Jacob I loved (chose, protected, blessed), but Esau I hated (held in disregard compared to Jacob).”

What shall we say then? Is there injustice with God? Certainly not! For He says to Moses, “I will have mercy on whomever I have mercy, and I will have compassion on whomever I have compassion.” So then God’s choice is not dependent on human will, nor on human effort [the totality of human striving], but on God who shows mercy [to whomever He chooses—it is His sovereign gift]. Romans 9:11-16 (AMP).

In contrast to the sovereign will of God is man made tradition or in other term, religion. Tradition such as religion is culture that is passed from person to person or generation to generation. It is often created by an individual and the rest of the generations preserve it without questioning its origin or intention of existence. The human nature is accustomed to honouring itself and exalting its ideal and opinion above God’s word. This results in masses blindly following customs and religious traditions instead of seeking the will of God.

It is no wonder Paul exhorts us in Romans 12:2 not to be conformed to this world but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God. The perfect will of God does not conform to our customs that’s why we should be dependent on Him like a sheep to its shepherd. We should be teachable like a child , obeying all He tells us only.

One Comment Add yours

  1. mosckerr says:

    Vake Alexandrian Deceptions: Exposing The Nothing Only Conspiracies Against God’s Words –Introduction. She writes of truth. But the 8th middah of Oral Torah logic defines truth as path. One person cannot dictate or own a monopoly upon truth.

    Ever here the saying: The victors write the history books? Well the biblical translations did just that, they wrote their bibles in the image of Xtian theology. A very nice mythology.

    Consider the letters O, D, & G. Depending how a person organizes those letters, forms different ideas. God vs. dog. The framers of the Torah organized the Torah as having 54 Parshaot and further broke up those Parshaot through use of פ & ס. The פ refers to a פרק\chapter. While the ס refers to a סוגיה\sub chapter. Talmudic rabbinic authorities would later debate if the contents of one sugia influenced the contents of an adjacent sugia. This סמוכים\adjacent debate has a profound influence how differing sh’ittot\systematic logic deductions based upon how a person organizes their thoughts, whereby they reach vastly different conclusions. The Talmud refers to 70 sh’ittot in the Torah. A euphemism for vast number of logical deductions which people can rationally deduce.

    The biblical translators “absolutely” rejected how Jews edited their T’NaCH Primary sources. They chose instead to organize their bible into chapters and verses. The Xtian bible totally abandoned the organization of the Torah into 54 Parshiot. בראשית\נח\לך לך etc etc etc. In like manner the Church translators edited out the division of the T’NaCH into sub-chapters. This played well into their biblical exegesis analysis of their bible. But while the new testament writers plucked a verse totally out of the context of its sugia\sub-chapter, and interpreted the meaning of that verse as an independent variable; Jewish scholarship totally rejected this “scholarship” as nothing short of religious rhetoric and propaganda; the error of taking a statement out of its surrounding context.

    All generations struggle to interpret the meaning of Scripture. Jewish Common law, like all common law systems, stands upon precedents. Common law compares a current case heard before the Court with prior cases argued before other courtrooms. This style or sh’itta goes by the term “precedents”. The Jewish Oral Torah logic format designed to make a comparative study of similar Case\law studies. Western literature calls this Comparison & Contrast.

    It does not matter if a person studies T’NaCH or Talmudic sources the methodology of learning remains unchanged. Just as the Gemara makes a Case study by bringing diverse halachot learned from a vast diversity of subjects; it compares these outside halachic ruling to the current Case expressed through a specific Mishna; in like manner Jewish scholarship makes a sugia study of T’NaCH sources by comparing one sugia within the T’NaCH with other sugiot within the T’NaCH. This comparison and contrast study defines how Jews, throughout history to this very moment in time, how they study both T’NaCH and Talmudic Primary sources.

    Your discussion here opens with Isa 66:2 which as a Xtian you take totally out of its context. Jewish study of the T’NaCH absolutely rejects as false this propaganda rhetoric. The p’suk\verse which you quote, its contained within a larger sugia. The T’NaCH has no chapters and verses, because it rejects the new testament notion that permits cherry picking specific verses to preach a propaganda rhetoric. Xtianity rejects mussar. Whereas rabbis like myself have learned that the Torah defines the term prophesy as a commandment of mussar! Your quoted verse, exists in a larger sugia. For convenience sake, seeing i am communicating with a non Jew who reads a Xtian bible, I shall translate sugiot into chapters and verses. This sugia which contains your verse begins with 66:1 – 66:4. Each sugia of the T’NaCH teaches a defined mussar.

    Jewish scholarship searches to compare Case studies; it learns the contents of one sugia by connecting that sugia to some other similar sugia found else where, within that specific Book of the prophets. Rabbi Akiva explained the revelation of the Oral Torah which Moshe the prophet orally heard from HaShem at Sinai\Horev with his Divine Chariot mysticism known as פרדס. Which means פשט, רמז, דרוש, סוד. As a warp and a weft of a loom have two opposing threads so too Aggaditah and Halacha exist as two opposing threads – they make the “fabric” of Talmudic learning. The study of both the T’NaCH and Aggaditah within the pages of the Talmud follows a defined axis of drosh and p’shat. The haachic parts, the majority of the Talmud follows the opposing loom like thread axis of remiz and sod.

    This tends to get complicated very quickly. But to keep things simple, a close and similar sugia within the Book of ישעיה, chapter 9:7-12. The mussar through this comparison of case\din studies … it seems to me that the prophet addresses Justice Justice pursue. The prophet Natan opposed the will of king David to build a house of cedar. The last act of Moshe the prophet, he established the small sanhedrin courts in 3 of the Cities of Refuge. King Shlomo erred and ignored the elder prophet Natan, just as his son when he travel to Sh’Cem, ignored the advice given by the elder advisors of king Shlomo. An interesting comparison between the behavior of the young king Shlomo to the young king Rehav’am.

    King Shaul, HaShem rejected him as the anointed Moshiach because he erroneously prioritized sacrifices over obedience to prophetic mussar commandments. The sugia which contains 66:2 likewise denounces sacrificial worship. This same prophet declares that HaShem never commanded sacrifices. This mussar stands in the face of the Book of ויקרא, the 3rd Book of the Torah! The meaning of the prophetic mussar which interprets the k’vanna of the Torah,,, that HaShem never commanded man to make a barbecue unto Heaven. HaShem took Israel out of the oppression of Egypt. Israel conquered the land and kingdoms of Canaan to rule the oath sworn lands with justice. The courts have the Torah responsibility to rule the land with justice. Justice defined as a fair compensations for damages inflicted irregardless whether those damages came by intent or accident. The decree of g’lut\exile comes upon Israel when the government rules the lands of Canaan like as did Par’o enslave Israelites – invited guests – in Egypt.

    Justice does not depend upon building grand Temples and churches at public expense. Justice requires that the Judges receive no bribes or show favoritism to any person who stands before the Court. Lateral courtrooms: the Judges nor the prosecuting attorney, that neither receive a salary from the State. Vertical courtrooms; State vs. So and So … the Judges, Prosecuting Attorney and Police receive their salaries from the State. The Torah commands that judges must not accept bribes. Bribes pervert justice.


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