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Parashat Ki Tisa

Updated: Apr 19

21st Portion

[25 Feb - 2 March 2024]

Theme of the Book of Exodus:

About pursuing the instructions in order that we can build a dwelling place for Yeshua.

Meaning of "ki tisa" = "when you elevate"

This week's Torah portions:

Sunday: Exodus 30:11-31:17

Monday: Exodus 31:18-33:11

Tuesday: Exodus 33:12-16

Wednesday: Exodus 33:17-23

Thursday: Exodus 34:1-9

Friday: Exodus 34:10-26

Shabbat: Exodus 34:27-35 & 1 Kings 18:1-39

Apostolic Writings:

2 Corinthians 3:1-18

Daily Bread for Busy Moms portions:

2 Kings 9-14

Pslams 119:97-125:5

John 13-18

This week's portion starts off with Abba commanding Moses to take a census of the Israelites. All of the adult men had to be counted. For the census, each man had to bring half a shekel. Why then only half a shekel? Some rabbi's and Bible scholars say that only half a shekel was required - to establish the fact that God doesn't care whether you are rich or poor, whether you are qualified or not, etc. Every man is a half a shekel before God. Wow! Just let that sink in for a moment! God paid the same price for each one of us.

The idea of the half shekel also reminds us that we are not whole on our own. We need others to complete the picture. Abba did not intend for us to go through life on our own. We need to have fellowship and do this thing called life with others - so that, together, we can form the whole body of Yeshua. The Bible is so filled with rich symbolism which I know I have missed for so many years, and I've only recently started discovering the tip of the iceberg. So if you're feeling that there's so much that you don't know or have never grasped when you read this section (or any other section) of the Bible before - know that the rest of us feel the same way!

But Abba is so faithful, He meets us exactly where we are in our individual journeys. And with Him there is ALWAYS more! As long as we remain teachable, He will continue to take us deeper and reveal more and more to us of His Word and His ways.

The correct meaning of the original Hebrew word for a census means "to raise the heads." Which once again blows my mind. In other words, when Abba instructed Moses to do a census, Abba told him to raise up the heads of the Israelites. The same applies for each one of us today! We can pick up our heads because we are worthy to Him! In God's eyes we all count and no one is superior. In God's Kingdom nobody is a nobody.

In this week's portion we also read how Abba instructs Moses regarding the building of the brass basin. The basin was to be used to wash their hands and feet before their service. What's interesting to take note of is that this basin was actually made from the mirrors which the women brought as sacrifice. Back in the day, mirrors were not like we are used to them these days. Mirrors were actually brass that was melted with a piece of gold on the inside. And then once it set, it had the effect that you could see yourself in it - like a mirror today. Thus when the priests came to wash their hands and feet, they would see their own reflection in the basin. And as they were dressed in the priestly garments (explained in last week's portion), what they would see is someone dressed in these priestly garments. It's a spiritual rich concept of seeing themselves as being these righteous priests. And the same applies to us today.

I love how the late Gerrit Nel from Kol Kallah always used to say, that God is not a respecter of persons, He is a respecter of faith. In Abba's eyes we are all half a shekel. But we need to understand that through the works of His Son, Yeshua - God looks at us as being dressed in righteousness - wearing the white priestly garments. God doesn't see us as the sinners and the ones falling short of His grace. No! He sees us as the ones made righteous through the Blood of Yeshua!

Later on in this portion, we also read about the instructions regarding the formula of the anointing oil. What we can learn from this is that when we start to live our lives from this place of righteousness, with this anointing oil upon me (last week's portion) - our lives would carry this fragrance. A fragrance which would hang all around us. These oils were to be offered twice a day in the tabernacle and it was not to be used for personal use. It had to do with worshipping God and not worshipping ourselves. If we want to live in Abba's provision and walk in the calling which He has in store for each one of us - our focus must never be on ourselves. It must always be on Him and His Kingdom, serving Him with all our being. The fruit we carry is not for ourselves. But for the benefit of His Kingdom.

When we read in the Bible about Yeshua being the vine and us being the branches... It confirms that the fruit is never for us. The grapes on the branches are not for the enjoyment of the branches. But for the enjoyment of the farmer. In the same way, the fruits we carry is not for our own benefit - but for God's Kingdom benefit. Yes we have it and it's enjoyable to have it, but it's not for us.

God then also gives Bezaleel the anointing to be the chief craftsman of the tabernacle. And then somewhat out of nowhere, there is this discussion about the Shabbat. So what does Shabbat have to do with the tabernacle and it's preparations?

(If you haven't read our blog about the Shabbat before: you can do so here)

We know from Scripture that there are certain works which we are not allowed to perform on Shabbat. When we take a look at the things which are not allowed on the Shabbat, it's actually the things which the priests had to do in preparation for the tabernacle. Shabbat is all about entering into God's rest and what He has in store for us. And from this portion we can learn that our lives and time here on earth - is the preparation phase. And whilst we are on earth we should prepare ourselves to spend eternity - the ultimate Shabbat - with Yeshua!

When we celebrate Shabbat, we are reminded that we cannot add or take away anything form the week prior. It's done and completed. We have to work for six days and then rest on the seventh. The same applies to our lives. We have to "work" and prepare ourselves during our time on earth, because when eternity comes - we won't be able to prepare ourselves then. We have to prepare a dwelling place (tabernacle) for Yeshua now!

Furthermore in this portion we read about Moses who went up onto Mount Sinai to meet with God and get the Ten Commandments. When Moses returned to camp, he found the people in idol worship. Abba told him that the Israelites have made a golden calf. When Moses came down form the mountain with the Ten Commandments, we all know form Scripture that Moses broke the stone tablets. And I don't know about you - but I always assumed that he broke it out of anger towards the Israelites for making the idol. But what I then learned that Moses breaking the tablets was actually him interceding on behalf of the whole of Israel. Moses knew that if he entered the camp with those stone tablets, that the Israelites would have been found guilty and broken the marriage covenant which God has made with them. And the result thereof would have been death. Thus, what Moses did was the exact opposite of an act of anger! Instead it was probably one of the biggest acts of intercession ever!

After Moses broke the stone tablets, he went all the way down the mountain and destroyed the golden calf and dealt with the people. On that day, from Scripture we know that 3000 people died. Those were people who were not willing to acknowledge their sins and repent for it. Sin always leads to death. Back in the time of the Israelites in the desert, it was a physical death. In today's day and time it's not necessarily a physical death but a spiritual death.

We need to sacrifice ourselves to God and His Kingdom. Remember that the fruit we bear is never for ourselves.

In this portion we also read how God instructed Moses to lead the people towards the Promise Land. Even after all that has happened - God still had a plan for them and a destiny in store for them! May this serve as a gentle reminder that you are NEVER too far gone to return back to God! No matter how far we have gone astray, His plan for our lives stay in place. And if we turn back to Him, He will forgive us and lead us into our Promised Land!

Moses interceded for the Israelites in a way I'm honestly not sure I would be able to do if I was placed in his shoes! When he created the second pair of stone tablets, Moses spoke to God and told Him that if He was not willing to forgive the Israelites, that God should remove his name (Moses's) also from the Book of Life. Now I'm not sure about you. But I don't know if I will be able to say the same. Being willing to loose your spot in heaven for eternity on behalf of others who have chosen to go astray. Wow! And to think I always, with my limited understanding, thought that Moses broke the tablets out of anger. But this is such an indescribable act of love and intersession!

Moses loved these people so much that he was literally willing to lay down his life for them. His desire was to serve God, but not only that. He also desired for others to serve God as well. Which brings us back to the concept of the half shekel. We are all equal in God's eyes and together we form the Body of Yeshua. And therefore, my life and the fruit I carry is not only for myself but to the benefit of others and to grow His Kingdom!

Throughout this entire ordeal, God reminds and instructs them to keep the feasts. Remember that the feasts are all about harvest times. God wants for us to live in His rhythm so that we could experience His harvest! When we truly want to live a life of fruitfulness, we have to be intercessors.

Once again my idea / concept of what an intercessor is was so off. When we hear about intercessors, we often imagine this set-apart person who is "spiritually advanced" (if that's even a word) who intercedes for others. But God called each one of us to an intercessory lifestyle. And that requires no expert level of spirituality. It only requires a willingness to walk in the rhythm of God and to live a prophetic life. To do things prophetically to bear fruit and carry those around us on our hearts. We should carry others on our hearts with the principle of the half shekel in the back of our minds. We all need one another and we all need to carry one another in our hearts and bear fruit to the benefit of others - so that we can form the Body of Yeshua.

Another interesting thing to note is that a half shekel is made out of silver. Silver has to be purified. Just like each one of us has to be purified and sanctified. We need to seek Abba's face and ask Him to purify and sanctify us - in order that we could be a blessing unto others and walk into the calling which He has in store for each one of us! When I surrender my life to Yeshua, it forms the basis of the dwelling place for Him. And as we walk the journey of sanctification and righteousness - we build on this basis and bring forth fruit - to the benefit of His Kingdom!


If you are new here, you can follow the Torah portions with us every week!

(Simply click on the one you want to read)

  1. Portion 1: Bereshit

  2. Portion 2: Noach

  3. Portion 3: Lech Lecha

  4. Portion 4: Vayera

  5. Portion 5: Chayei Sarah

  6. Portion 6: Toldot

  7. Portion 7: Vayetzei

  8. Portion 8: Vayishlach

  9. Portion 9: Vayeshev

  10. Portion 10: Miketz

  11. Portion 11: Vayigash

  12. Portion 12: Vayechi

  13. Portion 13: Shemot

  14. Portion 14: Vaera

  15. Portion 15: Bo

  16. Portion 16: Beshalach

  17. Portion 17: Yitro

  18. Portion 18: Mishpatim

  19. Portion 19: Terumah

  20. Portion 20: Tetzaveh

  21. Portion 21: Ki Tisa (This blog you are reading now)

  22. Portion 22: Vayakhel & Pekudei

  23. Portion 23: Vayikra

  24. Portion 24: Tzav

  25. Portion 25: Shmini

  26. Portion 26: Tazria / Metzora

  27. Portion 27: Achrei Mot / Kedoshim

  28. Portion 28: Emor

  29. Portion 29: Behar / Bechukotai

  30. Portion 30: Bamidbar

  31. Portion 31: Nasso

  32. Portion 32: Beha'alotcha

  33. Portion 33: Sh'lach

  34. Portion 34: Korach

  35. Portion 35: Chukat / Balak

  36. Portion 36: Pinchas

  37. Portion 37: Matot / Masei

  38. Portion 38: Devarim

  39. Portion 39: Vaetchanan

  40. Portion 40: Eikev

  41. Portion 41: Re'eh

  42. Portion 42: Shoftim

  43. Portion 43: Ki Teitzei

  44. Portion 44: Ki Tavo

  45. Portion 45: Nitzavim / Vayeilech

  46. Portion 46: Ha'Azinu

  47. Portion 47: Vezot Haberakhah

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