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Parsha Tzav (צַו) “Command”
Torah portion: Vayikra/Leviticus 6:1-8:36
Haphtarah (concluding portion): Malachi 3:4-24
Brit Chadasha (New Testament): Hebrews 9:11-28
Did you know: Tzav is the second parsha [portion] of sefer [the book of] Vayikra [Leviticus]?
Science: Drinking blood from coming from another person or animal is dangerous because many diseases are blood borne and there is an increased chance of having their diseases transferred to you. This week we will learn about blood-borne diseases.
Bible and Pop Culture: This week we learn that anyone who drinks blood will be cut off from Israel (Leviticus 7:26-27). It is interesting to note that vampirism is becoming more and more popular in our society because of movies like The Twilight Saga, Underworld, etc. Those movies glorify vampirism. In past generations, vampires were depicted as villains in stories such as Dracula. This week, the older kids will be writing a paper that answers this question: What do you think the repercussions are on the younger generations our society of changing the way they view vampirism? What does the Bible say about drinking blood? What does the movie industry say about it?
Culinary Fun: This week we learn that the sacrifices were offered with unleavened bread. This week we will be making unleavened bread in preparation for Pesach. We might also make some honey butter and some garlic butter to accompany our unleavened creations.
Health: This week we will be studying the nutritional benefits of eating the traditional foods found on the seder plate. Who knew? 😀
Haphtarah Connections: This week’s haphtarah (concluding portion) is found in Malachi chapter 3. Malachi 3:13-18 reads
“Your words have been hard against me, says the Lord. But you say, ‘How have we spoken against you?’ You have said, ‘It is vain to serve God. What is the profit of our keeping his charge or of walking as in mourning before the Lord of hosts? And now we call the arrogant blessed. Evildoers not only prosper but they put God to the test and they escape.’” Then those who feared the Lord spoke with one another. The Lord paid attention and heard them, and a book of remembrance was written before him of those who feared the Lord and esteemed his name. “They shall be mine, says the Lord of hosts, in the day when I make up my treasured possession, and I will spare them as a man spares his son who serves him. Then once more you shall see the distinction between the righteous and the wicked, between one who serves God and one who does not serve him.”
Isn’t it awesome that a book of remembrance was written before him of those who feared the Lord and esteemed His name? This week we will midrash (discuss) what this verse means and why its important to never lose sight of the importance of walking in holiness and reverence before our Father.
Crafty Fun: Malachi 3:8 talks about the importance of bringing a contribution before the LORD with our tithes and offerings. This week, let’s make a recycled tzedakah box. If you already have a tzedakah box, consider making a breakfast gift basket or a pampering bath salts gift in a jar for someone you know who is in need of food, pampering, and/or cheering up.
Brit Chadasha (New Testament) Connection: Our reading for the NT this week is in Hebrews 9. Verses 11-14 read,
“But when Messiah appeared as a high priest of the good things that have come, then through the greater and more perfect tent (not made with hands, that is, not of this creation) he entered once for all into the holy places, not by means of the blood of goats and calves but by means of his own blood, thus securing an eternal redemption. For if the blood of goats and bulls, and the sprinkling of defiled persons with the ashes of a heifer, sanctify for the purification of the flesh, how much more will the blood of Messiah, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without blemish to God, purify our conscience from dead works to serve the living God.”
Let us never forget that the most important thing in our walk with the Father is the blood of His son, YESHUA that purifies us of our sin and washes us clean. As we prepare for the Passover in the coming weeks, may we focus on his amazing, loving sacrifice and thank him with true thankfulness and continue to be in awe of His mercy and grace. I like this object lesson from the folks at Kids’ Sunday School online that shows our kids what NOT being washed of sin can look like on the outside.