Parashah 15: Bo (Go)
Learn more about what a parashah is here. The heart behind this Bible portion blog is to help you develop your own daily reading habit. We share what the portion is for the week, what we took note of, and what spoke to our heart. We hope that this will help you study the Word of God and hide it in your heart, and soon you can teach someone else to do the same.
Torah (first 5 books of the Old Testament): Exodus 10:1-13:16
Haftarah (section from the Prophets): Jeremiah 46:13-28
What we took note of.
The first thing I noted was in Exodus 10:23. Darkness was just put over all the land. It was so dark, it was said you could feel it, and no one went anywhere. It was dark for 3 days. "But all the people of Isra'el had light in their homes." It reminds me of the menorah, God's candelabra, and ultimately of Yeshua Jesus who would later come of the seed of Abraham. And we know Yeshua is the light of the world.
"When he does let you go, he will throw you out completely!" Exodus 11:1. This struck me. We know the people had been slaves for 430 years at this point. It's all this generation ever knew. And they lived under cruelty the scriptures say earlier. No doubt they wanted this season of life to end, the flogging and all of it. But God had a specific way He wanted the deliverance to take place, and there was divine wisdom in letting it play out the way God wanted it to. May our own deliverances take place in His timing, not before and not after, and in His methodology.
Celebrating Pesach Passover is very important to God, made evident in Him repeated the instructions over and over throughout chapters 12 and 13. You are to "celebrate it by a perpetual regulation" Exodus 12:14 says. "You are to observe this law, you and your descendants forever" is what Exodus 12:24 says. It really does seem important to God that this holiday be observed.
"The people of Isra'el had done what Moshe had said - they had asked the Egyptians to give them silver and gold jewelry and clothing; and ADONAI had made the Egyptians so favorably disposed toward the people that they had let them have whatever they requested. Thus they plundered the Egyptians." Exodus 12:35-36. It was amazing to see how they went from slaves to full of gold in the matter of a day. How quickly circumstances can change.
"At the end of 430 years to the day, all the divisions of ADONAI left the land of Egypt. This was a night when ADONAI kept vigil to bring them out of the land of Egypt, and this same night continues to be a night when ADONAI keeps vigil for all the people of Isra'el through all their generations." Exodus 12:41-42. The timing of God was so specific. 430 years to the day. That's just incredible, precise, and obviously on purpose. This led us to a passage in Galatians 3 that also talks about this exact timing and more, which I will share below because it just melted my heart. Continuing on in the verses, I'm amazed that not only did God keep a vigil that night to bring them out, but that He is still keeping a vigil every year to the day of this event. It is very important to Him. This just has never been clear to me like it is now. And how I wish I would have started observing Pesach Passover sooner.
What spoke to our heart in this reading.
The three days of darkness seemed especially kind of God. He took away the light, and the Egyptians worshiped the sun god. For days, God made it clear He was the only God. And then made it abundantly obvious, by there only being light in the homes of the Israelites, that they worshiped the real God.
I wasn't there, but I can imagine there must have been Egyptian families who realized the God of the Hebrews was the one true God, and that they even began to believe and follow. We don't know for sure, but it really seems like the heart of God, and we know from many other scriptures (like 2 Samuel 22:31) that all can take refuge in Him. They just had to follow His ordinance, to put the blameless blood on their doorposts and their own homes would be passed over.
The number 430 was so specific earlier. In bondage for 430 years and not a day more. It made me curious where else that number appears in scripture. I found a few interesting things, but one of them just really stood out to my heart. In Galatians 3 and 4, Paul talks about this story."Now the promises were made to Avraham and to his seed. It doesn't say, 'and to seeds,' as if to many; on the contrary, it speaks of one - 'and to your seed' - and this 'one' is the Messiah. Here is what I am saying: the legal part of the Torah, which came into being 430 years later, does not nullify an oath sworn by God ... But God gave it to Avraham through a promise...so that what is promised might be given, on the basis of Yeshua the Messiah's trusting faithfulness, to those who continue to be trustingly faithful... Also, if you belong to the Messiah, you are seed of Avraham and heirs according to the promise." Galations 3:16-29. What became abundantly clear to me is that I am a seed of Avraham "for in union with the Messiah, you are all children of God through this trusting faithfulness" Galations 3:26. Now when I read the verses in Exodus about passover, I see He did that for me. I am part of Isra'el now. Moreover, I need to observe Pasech Passover and "On that day you are to tell your son, 'It is because of what ADONAI did for me when I left Egypt" Exodus 13:8. First person, what He did for ME. And that earlier verse about God still keeping a yearly vigil, it said "this same night continues to be a night when ADONAI keeps vigil for all the people of Isra'el through all their generations" Exodus 12:42. I am part of that lineage, I am one of those generations, through my union with Messiah Yeshua Jesus, He is still remembering that night and I want to remember it too.
A friend of mine looked up the gematria of 430 for me. Gematria refers to the numerical values letters in the Hebrew alphabet have. The Hebrew alphabet is so much richer than the English one. In Hebrew, each letter has its own meaning and its own numerical value. So when the number 430 stuck out to me, she dug deeper into the gematria, the Hebrew letters that correspond to that numerical value, and the meaning it has. So 430 broken down, 400 is the value of the letter tav and 30 is the value of the letter lamed. Tav means mark, sign, and covenant. Lamed means tail, and it comes from the root meaning of pile, or mounting up. The pesach passover door is a perfect visual, of the blood on the door, and how it meant this family was marked and in covenant with God, so they would be shielded. Tav, written out in Hebrew, also looks like the blood on the door "ת". Lamed means tail, and it comes from the root meaning of pile, or mounting up. When the two meanings are put together, its a revelation of when things were mounting and piling up, God came in with a covenant and rescued, freed, redeemed, and judged.