Moses took the wagons and the oxen, and gave them unto the Levites. Two
and four oxen he gave unto the sons of
, according to their
: and four wagons and eight oxen he gave unto
the sons of
unto their service,
the hand of
the son of Aaron the
The Tabernacle structure was transported around the exile in the wilderness in wagons. Eventually those wagons would return the Tabernacle, or Mishkan [from shakhan, thus Shekhinah], to the Land of Israel. This is why Jacob makes Joseph promise to bury him at Hebron, for Abraham had purchased it from the sons of Heth [English-Hittites], that is C
het. It is pronounced exactly like the Hebrew letter
chet, representing life. Specifically, it was purchased from Ephron. The root of Ephron is the same as
afar, which means dust, ashes, and ruin.
Father Abraham symbolically redeemed life from the ruin of death in purchasing a burial cave in which he didn't intend to stay forever. His place of burial in Hebron was faith in resurrection. Jacob knew that he had to be returned to Hebron to complete the "couples," for the Cave of Machpelah means the Cave of the Couples, or Doubles. Three doubles: Abraham and Sarah, Isaac and Rebekah, and Jacob and Leah. Three, the number of resurrection. Six people, the number of man, the day of his creation.
As Part 1 of this newsletter explained, Rachel, the seventh, was not buried at Machpelah in Hebron, but on the road to Bethlehem and Efrat so that she could weep and intercede for the exiles as they left Jerusalem for Babylon. She could also see their return. She will not be consoled, however, until ALL the exiles return from Babylon. Not all who left Israel have returned from Babylon the Great.
The perfect Seven's spirit will be revived when she, like Jacob, sees the wagons carrying Israel home to Jerusalem. Rachel is weeping for her children near Bethlehem, and she is waiting for consolation, just as the righteous in Israel awaited the Consolation of the Messiah:
And, behold, there was a man in Jerusalem, whose name was
Simeon; and the same man was
just and devout, waiting for the
of Israel: and the Holy Spirit was upon him. (Lk 2:25)
The clues are in the wagon bosses:
= expulsion, exile
A play-on word in Gershon's name is "strange tongue":
maror, the bitter herbs of exile eaten at a Passover seder
Two fundamental principles describe Israel's return. They will be expelled and exiled like Joseph in Egypt, presumed dead, but really wandering like wagons as little Tabernacles in the wilderness. They will be speaking strange tongues. Because of "maror," they will return in wagons. Yeshua's bitter taste of death on the tree, even down to the myrrh [same root as maror in Hebrew] in the vinegar (Mk 15:23) and in the burial spices (Jn 19:39), signaled the beginning of the end of exile at Passover for some of Joseph's children, children who had been adopted and blessed by Israel.
In Vayechi, Israel tells his children to "gather" around him so that he may prophesy to them what will happen in the last days. He wants them to be in unity. Ironically, the Jewish sages say that when those among the nations begin to recite the Shma, it will be a sign that this prophecy is coming to pass:
For then will I turn to the people a
, that they may all call upon the name of the LORD, to serve him with one consent. (Zeph 3:9)
Those righteous exiles who spoke with strange tongues gathered in Acts Two to celebrate Shavuot, a feast of Israel. At that time, the story of resurrection of Messiah ben Joseph was told to them in their strange languages, and their spirits revived. They took the story back to those nations: there is a resurrection from the dead, and there will be a resurrection from the exile that will revive Israel's spirit.
When Israel returns to Jerusalem to "gather round" the next time, she will be returned to a pure language, for serving the Father with one consent will require pure communication. It will require returning to the feasts of Israel, not those of the corrupted nations that are Babylon and Egypt. It will require returning to the Shabbat, the Shabbat rest of Messiah on the Seventh.
What's our final clue? Shabbat. The Seventh Day.
Jacob gives Joseph the clue when he requests that Joseph return him to Hebron.
The clue is "
berat." Rachel died only a "berat" from Bethlehem and Efrat. The other times berat is used as a unit of land distance is after Naaman the leper immerses seven times in the Jordan in 2 Kings 5. He goes back to Elisha and requests "earth" to carry back to Aram so that he will be reminded that the holy place of worship is Israel and so that he will not worship the gods of his king in Aram. He took a little bit of Israel back with him to a land that he now considered a place of exile, not home. After collecting his Israelite earth, he goes a "little distance," a
In fact, consider this. The human body regenerates its cells every seven years. If you move to the Land of Israel and eat only its produce for seven years, you will literally, physically become Israel. How much more a revival of the Spirit you would experience with seven years of eating the spiritual Word in the Land!
Rachel was buried a
berat from Bethlehem and Efrat. A
berat is the equivalent of 2,000
amot, or paces. If one is outside an inhabited area, then a Sabbath day's journey is 2,000 amot, or a berat. The sages illustrate this as a circle. If you are standing at the centerpoint of a circle, then 2,000 amot (a berat) in any direction is the limit of travel. They then added the north-south-east-west of the four corners of the earth, demonstrating the circle of the earth within the square, called the
techum. The shaded area in the graphic below is the
techum of Shabbat.
The exiles will come from the four "corners" of the earth, coming out of Babylon and Egypt. From one new moon to another, and from one Shabbat to another, they will come to worship in Jerusalem (Is 66:23).
The corners of the fields in Israel are left to sustain the stranger (
), alien, orphan, and widow.
Imagine Rachel even now interceding for this resurrection of the dead and the exiled Children of Israel! Think of the significance of Yeshua ben Joseph's birth in Bethlehem and his exile to Egypt.
The earthly square, or cube, techum, of Shabbat foreshadows the Sabbath rest in New Jerusalem, whose twelve gates open with the story told by the twelve sons of Israel and whose foundations are built on the twelve apostles who told the story of Joseph's resurrection; that is, Messiah ben Joseph's story of resurrection.
The one who spoke with me had a
to measure the city, and its gates and its wall
city is laid out as a square, and its length is as great as the width; and he
measured the city with the
hundred miles; its length and width and height are equal
. (Re 21:15-16)
1. Tell the story.
2. See the wagons.
The wagons of consolation are moving, Israel. Is your spirit reviving at the news? Is it okay now to die since we know the son of Joseph has resurrected from the dead and is returning us from the long exile? Yeshua wept over the destruction of the Second Temple, but perhaps he weeps a much longer time on Israel's neck of exile. Come to the feasts of Israel. Come to Shabbat. Be revived.
The graves of death will empty when Yeshua returns, but the graves of exile are already emptying. The street that intersects Emek Refaiim today is named Rachel Imenu, Rachel, Our Mother. The public bus that picks up and drops off at Rachel Imenu is the #18 bus. The number eighteen is chet (8) plus yod (10), which spells "life," chai. Vayechi. Am Yisrael Chai. The People of Israel live.
Your children are coming home, Rachel. We're coming. Not much longer, Rachel Imenu. Weep no more, my lady.
I hear wagon wheels.