This Shabbat the Torah reading (in Israel) will be Parashat Pinchas (Numbers 25:10-30:1) and the reading from the prophets is from Jeremiah 1:1 – 2:3. Last week we read the dramatic story of Balaam and his donkey. The donkey was smarter than the famous magician with an international reputation.

This week the reading starts with a very dramatic event in Israel’s camp. The president of the tribe of Simeon, Zimri the son of Salu, took the princess of Moab, Cozbi the daughter of Zur, and had sex with her in public in front of the Tabernacle of the Lord. This horrible act of rebellion, and total rejection of the Lord God Himself, was done by the advice that Balaam gave to Balak.

Balaam could not curse Israel, but he found a way to bring Israel down, by sending all the beautiful Moabite girls to seduce the men of Israel. This horrible advice took root in Israel, and as idolatry and immorality often go together, this is what happened in the camp of Israel.

This was just a short time before they were to enter the land of Canaan, that was promised to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob as an inheritance forever. Now Moses and the elders of Israel are standing by and wringing their hands with sorrow. They are totally horrified, and they have both loss of words and loss of deeds, they are paralyzed.

While all this is going on, a young man by the name of Phinehas the son of Eleazar, the son of Aaron the priest, takes the law into his own hands. He took his javelin in his hand, and he went into the tent and thrust both Zimri and Cozbi through.

The javelin of Phinehas went through both the man and the woman and stuck in the ground killing both of them in front of the leadership of Israel. This brave young man Phinehas stopped the plague that was raging among the children of Israel.

You would think that both Moses and God would be angry with Phinehas for taking the law into his own hands, and killing the two lawbreakers who did this sin as an act of defiance and rebellion against God and against Israel. This prince and princess had one aim in doing this sex act publicly. They wanted to prove that the God of Israel is impotent, and that the leadership of Israel was impotent.

Phinehas (Pinchas), the young priest of the house of Aaron, didn’t wait to get permission from Moses or Aaron. He took the law into his own hands, because he wanted to save God’s honor and the honor of the Tabernacle of God, that stood in the middle of the camp of Israel.

He did it on his own, an act that was totally outside the box, outside of what is politically correct, of what is permissible by the Torah. According to the Torah, an execution cannot be done in the camp of Israel without an orderly court trial and a decision by a special majority of the judges of Israel.

Phinehas did not wait for anyone to give him permission. Today in Israel, Phinehas and men like him would go to jail. The opposite happened.

God blessed Phinehas, and he was made the chief of staff of the forces of Israel – a 4 star general – for this act of bravery, and for the initiative that he took in a moment where the older and wiser leaders, like Moses, did not know what to do. Above all of the above, as a result of the act of this young man Phinehas, God stopped the plague that killed 24,000 men of Israel, and rewarded the not-politically-correct young man Phinehas.

There is a lesson in this, my dear brothers and sisters. God, more often than not, works outside the box. He honors, respects, and rewards men that have that energy to do things that are outside of the box.

The biggest outside-the-box act is when God sent His Son, Yeshua, to die on a Roman cross for our sins. What can be more irregular? What can be more politically wrong and deplorable than a father who sacrifices his own son for the sake of strangers and criminals?

God’s love for us, humans, is totally outside the box. This is why God understood the heart and the motivation of Phinehas, and in place of punishment, a reward was given by the Creator Himself. Let us all learn from this story in the Torah, that where there is no man to stand up for what is right and just and righteous, you be that man. If there is no Maccabee to fight for God, you stand up and be the Maccabee yourself.

Ruby Little has had another chemotherapy session, and the problems and effects of the chemo have a very harsh effect on her. Please pray for Ruby to quickly recover from the chemo effects, and return to her strength and general better feeling and health.

We (Marcia and I) are in Thousand Oaks, California. We are participating in the UMJC conference. The biggest benefit and joy is to see old friends and brothers whom we have not seen for a long long time. The big surprise is that all of them have gotten old!

Our daughter Danah and granddaughter Noaam are in the conference with us, and Noaam is actually doing babysitting for the children of parents who came to the conference with little children. Daniel Stern is here too, and he will speak tomorrow.

One of the objectives for our participation is to find young and talented people who can join our staff and work in editing and I.P., and help us produce good content and interesting material to bless our brothers in Israel and around the world. Please pray for us to be successful in accomplishing our goals and bring to Israel young and talented brothers and sisters who will be a part of the Netivyah team.

Please pray for Daniel Stern’s young son Roi, who is only 4 years old and is in the hospital with an unknown problem, where he can’t walk and his legs are swollen. Pray for David Stern who has also had a setback in his health and damaged his eye, and now he has a respiratory problem.

Praise God that Noaam our granddaughter, who had a tonsillectomy two weeks ago, is feeling much better and can work as a babysitter during this conference.

Please keep Marcia’s father and mother in your prayers. They are old and sick, and living on the other side of Tennessee in the mountains. They both need special prayers, because of their age and their illness.

Israeli politics are still the same, a total mess, and Israel needs the prayers of faithful Christians to intercede before God’s mercy seat for the fulfillment of His promises, and for the quick return of Yeshua the Messiah to Jerusalem, to set all things in order, and establish His Kingdom forever! All this will be without democratic elections! This would be the most wonderful Kingdom, and it will be eternal, and it will even be without income tax and shopping! Praise the Lord of all forever!

There is an additional element, and drums of war between Israel and Iran, and Israel and the Hamas. The situation is extremely serious and needs for every disciple of Yeshua, and everyone who believes the Bible, to pray and pray and pray for the Lord of all to intervene in only the way that He can intervene, to stop this serious deterioration in the relationships in the Middle East.

The political parties are at each other’s throats, and all sides are spreading fake news and lies about each other. The mess is going on and growing like leaven in a warm and wet lump of dough.

Please be praying for our dear sister Emma in China, and add to your prayers a dear sister called Deborah Ruth who also lives in Beijing, China. Add to these specific prayers also special prayers for all our brothers and sisters in China who are followers of the Messiah. They are going through some not-so-simple times.

Keep Netivyah in your prayers. We have been blessed by brothers from around the world who love God, love Yeshua, and love Israel, and the funds for a new van are almost there, but almost is not enough, and we ask people who have not contributed for the van to make a little bigger effort, and help Netivyah get the van. Transportation of people and supplies for the HaMotzi food distribution program, and for the youth and the elderly, is essential. This is not a van for private use, and the old van was not for private use, it served the community, and the food distribution program HaMotzi, for more than 15 years.

Please make an effort to join Netivyah’s 40th anniversary tour and seminar in November 2019. Our intention is to have one big tour bus that holds 55 people. The numbers are approaching the limits, and I urge you that if you are interested to attend, you should be immediately registering and making your financial deposits.

Time is getting very short, dear brothers, if you would like to take part in this very special time in the land of Israel, with unusual and special events that will inspire and refresh and encourage and bless you from the land of Israel and from fellowship with Netivyah, please act quick and register and send your deposits as soon as you can.

I ask all of you to mobilize your prayers to pray for the Aliyah and the return of the Anussim, both spiritually, outside of the adulterated brands of Christianity back to the pure waters of God’s word, and also physically, to the land of our forefathers, the land of Zion, Jerusalem.

Please don’t forget to pray for my family, and especially for Marcia my dear wife, and Danah and Noaam, and Barry, Beth, Joey, and all those on this prayer list – that God will be glorified in their lives and in their healing.

Keep Elena Litvak, Efim’s widow, in your prayers, and sister Altamiro from Belo-Horizonte who also lost her dear husband Dr. Altamiro. Our brother Bob Weiner is still in need of our prayers. Please remember our dear brother Jacob Damkani in your prayers.

Please pray for Dr. Song and his dear wife Dr. Kim. They are Korean brothers for whom I have the most special respect and love. Also keep the other group of brothers and sisters in Korea who love God and love Israel, and work for the salvation of Israel and the Jewish people.

Please keep the whole Abu-Eid family in your prayers. Please continue praying for baby Lion from the Huch family in DFW.

Please pray a special prayer for Anna West (she is 99 years old and continues praying for the salvation of Israel daily). You can also include Ann’s dear son Roger and his family in your prayers.

Pray for our Jewish brother Hillel from Helsinki, and Keijo and Salme in Nokia, and for Tim Tucker, Anne-Mirjami, Satu-Maria and Anna-Majia, Sinni Tuuli, Erki and Sirpa Murto, Evelina, and Eva H., all in Finland. Pray for our dear sister Leah, who is traveling to Finland this week. She is one of those volunteers from Finland who came in 1973, during the war, and has served the Jewish nation as a volunteer nurse for many years. She just had her 88th birthday.

Pray for Patty, Andrea, and Tineke – and our brothers and sisters in the Netherlands that need healing from God.

Continue to pray for Julia and Victor. Pray for our dear sister Paula in Switzerland who needs a divine breakthrough. I want to also add Barry and Dalia, two dear brothers who live in Tiberias and are suffering from illness and pain, and are in need of prayer and help.

I would like to add a dear brother and the son of a dear family of Netivyah supporters in Finland. Their son Aaron Tani is a young man with diabetic problems. Aaron has a family and children and he needs our prayers urgently. Please pray for Aaron Tani.

Please keep praying for a dear sister named Zhou WenriIan living in China. Please intercede for Pastor Isaac in Chennai. Pastor Isaac needs healing for his kidneys.

Please lift in your prayers the following brothers and sisters who need the Lord’s gracious touch of healing: George, Gary, Melanie, and Aaron and Nancy Hook. Also, our congregation members, Sarit, David S., Gabriela the adult, Ahuva, Leah, Ilana, Hannah, young Gabriela, Zvi D. and Batsheva, and Jonathan B. and his wife Aviva. Our dear sisters Laurel, Orna, Sima, and Aviva.

A special prayer is needed for one of my godsons, David B.A., and his family, and especially Elhanan and Julie David’s father and mother, my dear friends and brothers. Keep the whole family in your prayers.

These are brothers and sisters from around the world who need your prayer and your intercession, and healing: Paulo and Noami, Marcelo’s parents, Curita Sensei, the Abe family, Toru, Takeo Sensei, Daisuke Sensei, Tomoko San, Yumi, and her father and family.

This prayer list is very special because we are not only praying for the physically sick brothers and sisters. We are praying for healthy brothers and sisters who are a blessing in God’s Kingdom, but they need that extra “what do you call it” to succeed and become a bigger blessing for the Lord and His Kingdom.

In Hong Kong, we pray and ask you to join us and pray for Louisa and Tony. Keep our dear brother Goh and his family in your prayers. In Korea pray for Sister Christy. Please keep brother Michael Knezevich in prayer. Please add Ismael Alves who lives in Portugal, and Asher Gabriel in Kenya.

I wish all of you, who stand with Israel and who pray for Jerusalem, the best of the Lord’s blessings and the fulfillment of all His promises to His faithful children. Those who hear God and do His will are the ones who are called wise! Those who only hear His word and don’t do it are called foolish! Let us all strive to be wise and never foolish! The best is yet to come!

The Lord God of Israel and the grace of Yeshua our Messiah, King, Teacher, Rabbi, and Lord be with you all!