Parasha Mishpatim

Sh’mot (Exodus) 21:1 – 24:18

Haftarah: Yirmeyahu (Jeremiah) 34:8 – 22 & 33:25 – 26
Brit Chadasha: Mt. 5:38 – 42; 15:1 – 20, Mk. 7:1 – 23, Acts 23:1 – 11 and Hebrews 9:15 – 22 and 10:29 – 39

The Alef Tav

  • In the Revelation of Yeshua HaMashiach to John we find 4 references to the Alef Tav, the first and last letters of the Hebrew Alef Bet; Rev. 1:8, 1:11, 21:6 and 22:13.
  • The translation reads “I am the Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending.”
  • Alpha and Omega are the first and last letters of the Greek Alphabet.
  • Messiah Yeshua is a Hebrew man and not a Greek man therefore He would have said “I am the Alef and the Tav, the beginning and the ending.
  • He is the entire Hebrew Alef Bet from A to Z so to speak therefore He is ALL the Hebrew letters, ALL the Hebrew words. Jn. 1:1 confirms this understanding. “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with Elohim, and the Word was Elohim. He was in the beginning with Elohim.”
  • In its ancient form the Alef Tav would read “strength of the covenant.”
  • Deuteronomy 6:6-7 These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up.

Parasha Mishpatim
“judgments “meaning מִּ שְׁ פָּ טִ ים

Parasha Highlights:

  • This parasha contains 53 mitzvot—23 imperative commandments and 30 prohibitions.
  • The Shemitah
  • The pilgrimage festivals
  • Israel’s second and third vows to Yehovah
  • The angel of protection
  • The Father uses the “commandments” to bring separation; separation between His people and the nations.
  • Obedience to His “commandments” is clearly a matter of the heart, our heart. Ps. 119:10 I seek you with all my heart; do not let me stray from your commands.
  • This is what the Brit Chadasha (aka New Testament) is all about, the commandments will be written on our heart.
  • Jer. 31: 31 – 33 “Behold, the days are coming, says Yehovah, when I will make a new covenant with the house (יתֵ ת־בֶּ א ( of Israel and with the house (יתֵ ת־בֶּ א ( of Judah—not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers ( םָ ותֹבֲאת־א
  • ֶ ) in the day that I took them by the hand to lead them out of the land of Egypt, My covenant (יִ יתִ רְ ת־בֶּ א ( which they broke, though I was a husband to them, says Yehovah. But this is the covenant that I will make with the house ( יתֵ ת־בֶּ א (of Israel after those days, says Yehovah: I will put My law (יִ תָ ורֹֽ ת־תֶּ א ( in their minds, and write it on their hearts; and I will be their Elohim, and they shall be My people.”
  • The word for new, or renewed ( שָׁ דָ ח = הָֽ שָׁ דֲ ח ( as is used in scripture is feminine. The renewed covenant is instructions to the bride on how to prepare herself for the bridegroom; by the Torah being written on our heart.

The first ordinance in our Parasha is the “bond servant.”

  • Ex. 21:2-6 If you buy a Hebrew ( יִ רְ בִ ע ( servant, six years he shall serve: and in the seventh he shall go out free for nothing. If he came in by himself, he shall go out by himself: if he was married, then his wife shall go out with him. If his master has given him a wife, and she has born him sons or daughters; the wife and her children shall be her master’s, and he shall go out by himself.
  • Any time we see six days or years with the seventh day or year we’re seeing a mirror of the week of creation, seven days.
  • And if the servant shall plainly say, I love my master את־אִ שְׁ תִּ י ) wife my), אֶ ת־אֲדֹנִי ) ֶ ) and my children את־בָּ נָי )ֶ ); I will not go out free: Then his master shall bring him to the judges; he shall also bring him to the door, or to the door post; and his master shall bore his ear ( וֹנְזָ ת־אֶ א ( through with an awl; and he shall serve him for ever.
  • This narrative can be viewed in more than one way. Is it literal? Yes. Is it telling us something on a deeper level? Yes. The Alef Tav master is Yeshua. The Alef Tav wife and children is His bride.
  • It was not uncommon for New Testament authors to view themselves as a bondservant of Yeshua.
  • Rom. 1:1 Paul, a servant (bondservant) of Yeshua Mashiach, called to be an apostle, separated unto the gospel of God…
  • 1st Corn. 7:22 For he who was called in the Lord as a bondservant is a freedman of the Lord. Likewise he who was free when called is a bondservant of Mashiach. (ESV)
  • James 1:1 James, a bondservant of God and of the Lord Yeshua HaMaschiach, to the twelve tribes which are scattered abroad. (NKJV)
  • Why is it necessary for the “bond servants” ear to be bored through with an awl? What happens to him after this procedure?
  • Is it safe to say that a small amount of the bondservants blood would drip down the doorpost? Isn’t the bondservant entering into a lifelong covenant with his master?
  • After this procedure, the Hebrew bondservant would cross over the threshold of his masters home and become “adopted” into the family. Another picture of being grafted in. Recall the Alef Tav was connected to the word ear. It is the ear of the Mashiach that is being bored through.
  • If our ears are going to “hear correctly” then they must be circumcised.
  • Consider Ps. 40:7 – 9 Sacrifice and offering You did not desire; My ears You have opened. Burnt offering and sin offering You did not require. Then I said, “Behold, I come; In the scroll of the book it is written of me. I delight to do Your will, O my Elohay, and Your Torah is within my heart.”
  • Jeremiah 6:10 To whom shall I speak and give warning, that they may hear? Indeed their ear is uncircumcised, and they cannot give heed. Behold, the word of Yehovah is a reproach to them; they have no delight in it.
  • Acts 7:51 You stiff-necked and uncircumcised in heart and ears! You always resist the Holy Spirit; as your fathers did, so do you.
  • Mt 13:15 For the hearts of this people have grown dull. Their ears are hard of hearing, and their eyes they have closed, lest they should see with their eyes and hear with their ears, lest they should understand with their hearts and turn, so that I should heal them.’
  • Acts 7:51: “behold, their “ear” is uncircumcised, and they cannot hear; their ears were stopped with the filth of sin naturally, and they willfully stopped their ears like the adder; and so being unsanctified, they neither could hear nor desired to hear the word of Yehovah, as to understand it.
  • The Hebrew word for ear is ןֶזֹא .The numerical value is 58; 58 = 13 reducing to a single digit is 4. In its ancient form “ozen” would read “the leader will be cut off before He continues.” The 7th letter of the Alef Bet is the Zayin which means to cut or cut off. Is it possible that what is being “cut off” is the foreskin of our hearts?
  • If we want to hear what the Spirit of Holiness is telling us then our ears must be circumcised. “Those who have ears, let them hear what the Spirit is saying to the Messianic Communities” is a phrase written to all seven churches in the book of Revelation.

The Shemitah

  • The Shemitah follows the same pattern of six and seven as found in the narrative of the bondservant, the pattern of creation.
  • 23:10 – 12 “Six years you shall sow your land (ךֶצְ רַ ת־אֶ א ( ָ and gather in its produce (הָּֽ תָ בוּאְ ת־תֶּ א ,( but the seventh year
  • you shall let it rest and lie fallow, that the poor of your people may eat; and what they leave, the beasts of the field may eat. In like manner you shall do with your vineyard and your olive grove.
  • Six days you shall do your work, and on the seventh day you shall rest, that your ox and your donkey may rest, and the
  • son of your female servant and the stranger may be refreshed.
  • The seventh day is of particular interest to Yehovah. The 7th word in Scripture is “the land.” This command is unique to “the Alef Tav land” and its “Alef Tav produce.” The seed, which is the Word, is sown for six thousand years and those with a circumcised ear are to be gathered in the seven thousandth year.
  • The 7th letter is the Zayin and means to cut or cut off.
  • The seventh day is the Shabbat.
  • Every seven years the Alef Tav land is to rest, the Shemitah. If the land is resting what are the people doing? No sowing or reaping.
  • Seven years times seven years, 49/50 is the Yovel/Jubilee.
  • There are seven branches in the Menorah.
  • The seven Festival of Yehovah.
  • The seven Spirits of Yehovah.
  • The millennial kingdom.
  • Israel failed to keep the commandment resulting in the Babylonian captivity.
  • Jer. 25:4 – 11 “And Yehovah has sent to you all His servants אֽת־כָּל־עֲבָ דָ יו) ֶ ) the prophets, rising early and sending them,
  • but you have not listened nor inclined your ear (םֶכְנְזָ ת־אֶֽ א ( to hear. They said, ‘Repent now everyone of his evil way and his evil doings, and dwell in the land that Yehovah has given to you and your fathers forever and ever. Do not go after other gods to serve them and worship them, and do not provoke Me to anger with the works of your hands; and I will not harm you.
  • Yet you have not listened to Me,” says Yehovah, “that you might provoke Me to anger with the works of your hands to your own
  • hurt. Therefore thus says Yehovah of hosts: ‘Because you have not heard My words (יָֽ רָ בְ ת־דֶּ א ,( behold, I will send and take all
  • the families (ותֹחְ פְּ שִׁ ל־מָת־כֶּ א ( of the north,’ says Yehovah, and Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babylon, My servant, and will bring them against this land, against its inhabitants, and against these nations all around, and will utterly destroy them, and make them an astonishment, a hissing, and perpetual desolations. Moreover I will take from them the voice of mirth and the voice of gladness, the voice of the bridegroom and the voice of the bride, the sound of the millstones and the light of the lamp.
  • And this whole land shall be a desolation and an astonishment, and these nations shall serve the king of Babylon seventy years. (see also 2 Chron. 36:20-21)
  • Judah, the Southern Kingdom, failed to keep the Shemitah for 70 years so The Father caused them to be taken into captivity. This is the Babylonian captivity. Among others, the prophet Daniel was included in this captivity. The prophets Ezra and Nehemiah record their return to the land. (see Dan. 1)

The Pilgrimage Festivals

  • 23:14 “Three times you shall keep a feast to Me in the year: You shall keep the Feast (גַ ת־חֶ א ( of Unleavened Bread (you shall eat unleavened bread seven days, as I commanded you, at the time appointed in the month of Aviv, for in it you came out of Egypt; none shall appear before Me empty); and the Feast of Harvest, the firstfruits of your labors (יךֶ שֲׂעַ ת־מֶֽ א ( ָ which you have sown in the field; and the Feast of In gathering at the end of the year, when you have gathered in the fruit of your labors from the field.
  • There are seven Festivals of Yehovah as outlined in Lev. 23. The 2nd, 4th and 7th festivals are pilgrimage festivals. This means that wherever you live in the land of Israel the men are to travel to Jerusalem, to the Temple in observance. Yehovah reckons time in cycles and the festivals are no exception.
  1. Pesach/Passover
  2. Unleavened Bread
  3. Firstfruit
  4. Pentecost/Shavuot
  5. Yom Teruah
  6. Yom Kippurim
  7. Sukkot
  • The festival cycle is also a mirror of the week of creation.
  • Day 1 = the Alef Tav light = Yeshua the Passover lamb.
  • Day 2 = the heavenly water = Yeshua the living water.
  • Day 3 = seed bearing vegetation = Yeshua the pure seed.
  • Day 4 = the luminaries = created for the appointed times, the Alef Tav Hag. (Festivals 1 through 4 were fulfilled at Yeshuas’ first advent)
  • Day 5 = birds and fish = birds were given as a sacrifice by Yeshuas’ mother; He fed the multitudes with fish.
  • Day 6 = creation of male and female = perished in the great flood, Yeshua the righteous judge.
  • Day 7 = the Shabbat = Yeshua, Lord of the Shabbat.

The Chiastic structure

  • The bondservant, the Shemitah and the Pilgrimage festivals all are a mirror of the week of creation. They are all a chiastic structure. They all have something in common, something that stands out.
  • Recall the definition of chiastic: A chiasm (also called a chiasmus) is a literary device in which a sequence of ideas is presented and then repeated in reverse order.
  • Week of creation Bondservant Shemitah Pilgrimage
  • 1 1 1 123
  • 2 2 2
  • 3 3 3
  • 4 4 4 4
  • 5 5 5
  • 6 6 6
  • 7 7 7 7

  • We can see by example that our focus, or central theme, is on the 4th day, the 4th festival.
  • Ge. 1:14 – 19 Then Elohim said, “Let there be lights in the firmament of the heavens to divide the day from the night; and let them be for signs and seasons (moedim), and for days and years; and let them be for lights in the firmament of the heavens to give light on the earth”; and it was so. Then Elohim made two (יֵנְ ת־שֶׁ א ( great lights: the greater light (ורֹאָ מַּ ת־הֶ א ( to rule the day, and the lesser light (ורֹאָ מַּ ת־הֶ א ( to rule the night. He made the stars also.
  • Elohim set them in the firmament of the heavens to give light on the earth, and to rule over the day and over the night, and to divide the light from the darkness. And Elohim saw that it was good. So the evening and the morning were the fourth day.
  • The times and seasons referred to in verse 14 are the appointed times, the festival cycle. The luminaries were created so that we could reckon time the same way our Father reckons time. After all, it was Yehovah who established time and space from outside time and space.
  • The Hebrew word for lights is מאוֹר ָmeaning light or luminary. Ma’owr comes from the root אוֹר which means “to be become” light.
  • The first and second mention of אוֹר can be found in Ge. 1:1 and 1:3. The third mention is found in Ge. 1:4 And Elohim saw the light ( ורֹאָ ת־הֶ א ,(that it was good; and Elohim divided the light from the darkness.
  • What this is telling us is that the Alef Tav will become light. Where?
  • The world.
  • In last weeks Parasha we studied the Matan Torah, the giving of Torah, on Mt. Sinai. This momentous event occurred on the 4th festival, Shavuot (Pentecost).
  • We have actually seen the entire festival cycle reflected in the first Exodus. The first Pesach, Passover; followed by unleavened Bread, the day of Israel’s departure from Egypt. The mixed multitude represents the first fruit of the nations culminating in the giving of the Torah on Shavuot.
  • 19:16 Then it came to pass on the third day, in the morning, that there were thundering’s and lightning’s, and a thick cloud on the mountain; and the sound of the trumpet (shofar) was very loud, so that all the people who were in the camp trembled. **this is Yom Teruah, the day of the awakening blast.
  • Thus far the first five festivals have been accounted for.
  • In conclusion, the number four is very significant:
  • The first Alef Tav appears as the 4th word of Scripture.
  • The luminaries of day 4.
  • The 4th commandment is Shabbat.
  • Messiah descends from the 4th son of Jacob, Judah.
  • The servant branch of the Menorah is the Shamash.
  • The 4th festival of Shavuot, the giving of Torah.
  • The 4th man in the furnace.


Yirmeyahu (Jeremiah) 34:8 – 22

  • The connection to the Torah portion is as follows: King Zedekiah sealed a covenant with all the people who were in Jerusalem regarding the ordinance of the “bondservant.”
  • V 11 After the agreement was made they reneged; made the covenant of no effect by taking back their bondsman.
  • Thus their judgment was the “sword” and “pestilence” and “famine.”
  • Three out of the four altar judgments.

Brit Chadasha

  • Mt. 5:38 – 42 “an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth”
  • Mt. 15:1 – 20 “Anyone who curses his father or mother must be put to death”
  • Mk. 7:1 – 23 “ “
  • Acts 23:1 – 11 “You are not to speak despairingly of a ruler of your people”
  • Heb. 9:15 – 22 “This is the blood of the covenant which G-d has ordained for you”
  • Heb. 10:28 – 39 “ The blood of the covenant”