Who is really the Savior?

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Who is really the Savior?
By: William J Jackson

So who is the Savior? To those who are Tanakh centric (Old Testament), like the Jewish people are, the answer will be YHVH, and of course to the Christian, it’s going to be Jesus or Yeshua. So let’s turn to G-d’s word and resolve this matter.

The Tanakh/Old Testament:

The Hebrew root word for Savior is “yasha” (yaw-shah’) which also means “to deliver” or “deliverer“(1). As we read we see in 26 cases G-d is declared as our Savior. In 3 of these cases He is identified as our only Savior (Isaiah 43:11, 45:21, Hosea 13:4). G-d being our exclusive Savior only makes sense. This is actually the first of G-d’s Ten Commandments (Exodus 20:3).

The New Testament:

Now in the New Testament (NT) the Greek root word for “savior” is sótér (so-tare’) which also means “deliverer”(2). Interestingly G-d is declared Savior throughout the NT (Luke 1:47, Titus 1:3, 2:10). Even Jesus proclaimed G-d as Savior (Matthew 6:9-13 and Luke 11:2-4).

Remember, there’s a difference between the Savior and the Messiah:

Never forget, at no point does G-d extend His title as Savior onto anyone else, and that includes “the Messiah.” “I am the Lord, and there is no other; besides Me there is no God…” (Isaiah 45:5).

Here are the 26 verses declaring the One and only G-d as Savior:

2 Samuel 22:2 He sang: “The Lord is my rock, my fortress, and my savior;

2 Samuel 22:3 the God who is my Rock, in whom I find shelter, my shield, the power that saves me, my stronghold and my refuge. My savior, you have saved me from violence.

Isaiah 43:3 For I am Adonai, your God, the Holy One of Isra’el, your Savior — I have given Egypt as your ransom, Ethiopia and S’va for you.

Isaiah 43:11 I, yes I, am the Lord, and there is no other Savior.

Isaiah 45:15 Truly, you are a God who hides himself, God of Isra’el, Savior!

Isaiah 45:21 Let them stand and present their case! Indeed, let them take counsel together. Who foretold this long ago, announced it in times gone by? Wasn’t it I, Adonai? There is no other God besides me, a just God and a Savior; there is none besides me.

Isaiah 49:26 I will feed those oppressing you with their own flesh; they will be drunk on their own blood as with wine. Then everyone will know that I, Adonai, am your Savior and your Redeemer, the Mighty One of Ya‘akov.”

Isaiah 60:16 You will drink the milk of nations, you will nurse at royal breasts and know that I, Adonai, am your Savior, your Redeemer, the Mighty One of Ya‘akov.

Isaiah 62:11 The Lord has sent this message to every land: “Tell the people of Israel, ‘Look, your Savior is coming. See, he brings his reward with him as he comes.’”

Isaiah 63:8 For he said, “They are indeed my people, children who are not disloyal.” So he became their Savior.

Jeremiah 14:7-8  Although our crimes witness against us,
take action, Adonai, for your name’s sake; for our backslidings are many; we have sinned against you. You, hope of Isra’el, its savior in time of trouble, why should you be like a stranger in the land, like a traveler turning aside for the night?

Hosea 13:4 Still, I am Adonai your God, from the land of Egypt; and you don’t know any God but me or, other than me, any Savior.

Zephaniah 3:17 Adonai your God is right there with you, as a mighty savior. He will rejoice over you and be glad, he will be silent in his love, he will shout over you with joy.”

Psalm 17:7 Show how wonderful is your grace, savior of those who seek at your right hand refuge from their foes.

Psalm 18:2 The Lord is my rock, my fortress, and my savior; my God is my rock, in whom I find protection. He is my shield, the power that saves me, and my place of safety.

Psalm 24:5 They will receive the Lord’s blessing and have a right relationship with God their savior.

Psalm 27:9 Do not hide your face from me, don’t turn your servant away in anger. You are my help; don’t abandon me; don’t leave me, God my savior.

Psalm 38:22 Come quickly to help me, O Lord my savior.

Psalm 40:17 As for me, since I am poor and needy, let the Lord keep me in his thoughts. You are my helper and my savior. O my God, do not delay.

Psalm 42:5 Why am I discouraged? Why is my heart so sad? I will put my hope in God! I will praise him again— my Savior and my God!…

Psalm 42:12 My soul, why are you so downcast? Why are you groaning inside me? Hope in God, since I will praise him again for being my Savior and God.

Psalm 42:11 Why am I discouraged? Why is my heart so sad? I will put my hope in God! I will praise him again— my Savior and my God!

Psalm 43:5 Why am I discouraged? Why is my heart so sad? I will put my hope in God! I will praise him again— my Savior and my God!

Psalm 65:5 You faithfully answer our prayers with awesome deeds, O God our savior. You are the hope of everyone on earth, even those who sail on distant seas.

Psalm 68:19 Praise the Lord; praise God our savior! For each day he carries us in his arms. Interlude

Psalm 70:5 But as for me, I am poor and needy; please hurry to my aid, O God. You are my helper and my savior; O Lord, do not delay.

References:

(1) Bible Hub Strong’s (3467) http://biblehub.com/hebrew/3467.htm

(2) Bible Hub Strong’s (4990) http://biblehub.com/greek/4990.htm

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Do we need the Temple?

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Do we need the Temple?
By: William J Jackson

Do we need a Temple? In order to answer this question we need to know the purpose of the Temple .  The Temple (which first started off as a Tabernacle*) was a Holy place to meet G-d (Exodus 25:8). It also was the place where the leaders and people came together to worship and offer sacrifices (1).

Sacrifices seemed to have been a major component of the Temple. So lets explore this understanding. The word used in the Hebrew that is usually interpreted as sacrifices and offerings is Karbanot.  The root of this word  means “to draw near” which implies this is an act of drawing nearer to G-d.  The Karbanots (Sacrifices) could be for (2):

a. Communing with G-d and becoming closer to Him
b. Expressing thanks to G-d, love or gratitude.
c. Used to cleanse a person of ritual impurity
d. Atonement

Not having the Temple would appear to be a huge obstacle for those of us who are Torah centric.

In my earlier walk I assumed the Christian Messiah fulfilled the role of the Temple and that’s why he predicted its destruction in 70 CE (Mark 13:2, Luke 21:6, Matthew 24:2).  Why have a Temple if it’s purpose has been replaced?  This was one of my sticking points when I was battling with purifying my walk by leaving the NT and moving towards G-d’s word the Tanakh (OT).

Thankfully I found many of my answers in 2 Kings 8 where King Solomon first dedicates the Temple.  Here Kings Solomon tells G-d’s people that they can pray towards the Temple and their prays would be heard (2 Kings 8:30). Also Solomon brings up incidences that would cause G-d’s people to be separated from the Temple.  Always he gives the same answer; G-d will hear their voice and forgive their sins.

This is echoes again and again throughout the Tanakh (Old Testament):

Psalm 50:23 One who slaughters a confession sacrifice honors Me, and [I will] prepare the way; I will show him the salvation of God.”

Psalm 51:19 (17) The sacrifices of G-d are a broken spirit; O G-d, You will not despise a broken and crushed heart.

Hosea 6:6 For I desire loving-kindness, and not sacrifices, and knowledge of G-d more than burnt offerings.

Isaiah 1:11 (G-d) “Of what use are your many sacrifices to Me? says the Lord. I am sated with the burnt-offerings of rams and the fat of fattened cattle; and the blood of bulls and sheep and hegoats I do not want” (Isaiah then goes on to verse 20 explaining what G-d truly wants from us).

And let us not forget the Prophet Jonah:

Jonah spoke on G-d’s behalf to Nineveh.  His message was to repent from sin and change their ways.  Nineveh did not go to the Temple and offer sacrifice, they repented as G-d said and were forgiven (Jonah 3:5-10).

I offer as a final point both Noah and Abraham.  These men were considered righteous (Genesis 6:9, 15:6), something G-d wants us to strive towards.  What did these two men possess that gave them this status, it wasn’t a Temple.  It was being in Commune and adhering to the will of  G-d.

References:

(1) What is the Tabernacle of Moses?, The Tabernacle Place http://the-tabernacle-place.com/articles/what_is_the_tabernacle

(2) Jewish Practices & Rituals: Sacrifices and Offerings (Karbanot), Jewish Virtual Library http://www.jewishvirtuallibrary.org/jsource/Judaism/qorbanot.html

* Refer to the article posted 23 February 2015 titled: The Tabernacle becoming a Temple.

The Anatomy of the Human Soul (Part 3, Ruach)

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The Anatomy of the Human Soul (Part 3, Ruach)
By: William J Jackson

The “ruach” in relation to our soul is the spirit of Adonai.  Another way of saying this is that it’s Hashem’s influence on us. The human soul has three parts; the nephesh*, the neshamah** and finally the ruach.  The “nephesh” (animal soul) is the lowest level and the “neshamah” (G-d soul) is the highest level so this implies the “ruach” is the mid-level soul.  This is a good illustration because the ruach binds these two other levels together (1) and connects them all to YHVH.

The ruach is the first of the three parts of our soul that is mentioned in scripture (Genesis 1:2).  It is actually mentioned before the creation of the world.

It is sometimes showcased as Adonai’s creative side:
Job 33:4 The spirit (ruach) of God made me, and the breath (neshamah) of the Almighty keeps me alive.

Even animals have Ruach: Genesis 7:15, Psalm 104:25,29

When the ruach relates to us, it’s the soul’s emotions, its morality and can be God inspired (2).

It can serve as Adonai’s instructions as we see in Nehemiah 9:20;

“And You gave Your good spirit (ruach) to make them understand…”

And yet a better example of the ruach’s influencing us can be seen in Ezekiel 36:27

“And I will put My spirit (ruach) within you and bring it about that you will walk in My statutes and you will keep My ordinances and do [them].”

You may ask yourself how does Adonai use His ruach to influence us?  He uses it in a verity of different forms.  The Prophet Isaiah does an exceptional job of showing us six of the these forms used by Hashem:

Isaiah 11:2
The Spirit of the Lord will rest on him—
the Spirit of wisdom and of understanding,
the Spirit of counsel and of might,
the Spirit of the knowledge and fear of the Lord—

If we pull out Hashem’s influences (ruach) from this passage they would look like this;

Wisdom
Understanding
Counsel
Strength (Might)
Knowledge
Fear of the Lord

Remember this is not an inclusive list of synonyms for Hashem’s ruach, just some examples.

In summation a crude way of illustrating the ruach in relation to the other two parts of the soul (nephesh and neshamah) is by imagining a radio.  The nephesh, which is the simplest part of the soul, would be the body of the radio and it’s battery.  The neshamah which is the soul’s highest level would be represented by the radio’s complex circuitry designed to receive signal.  The ruach would be the signal that affects the radio.

References

(1) Rabbi Aryeh Kaplan, The Soul

(2) Rabbi Chaim Miller, Stack Exchange

*The Anatomy of the Human Soul (Part 1, Nephesh)

**The Anatomy of the Human Soul (Part 2, Neshamah)

The Anatomy of the Human Soul (Part 2, Neshamah)

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The Anatomy of the Human Soul (Part 2, Neshamah)

https://www.facebook.com/CenterforTanakhBasedStudies?fref=ts

By: William J Jackson

The “nephesh” piece of our souls is the simplest part (*part 1).  It is considered the seat of desire, appetites, emotions and passions (1).  Conversely, the “neshamah” is on the opposite end of the soul spectrum.  It is the divine spark of Adonai that lives in each of us.  This divine spark or neshamah separates us from Adonai’s other creations.

As the nephesh is considered the lowest level being nicknamed the animal soul, the neshamah is the highest level and thus is called the G-d Soul.

We see the neshamah first talked about on the 6th day of creation in Genesis 2:7

“And the Lord God formed man of dust from the ground, and He breathed into his nostrils the soul (neshamah) of life, and man became a living soul (nephesh).”

God breath

Interestingly we see two components of the soul in this passage; the neshamah and the nephesh. Adonai breathed into man giving man his neshamah and this became a living soul or nephesh

Another point to ponder; remember in Genesis 1:20 and 24 Adonai spoke His creatures into existence but in Genesis 2:7 Adonai breathed man into existence. We can all admit breathing something into existence is more intimate then speaking it into existence.

So as we can deduct from Tanakh, animals only possess the nephesh but man possesses both the nephesh and neshamah. We know that this is true because in Torah (Genesis 1:27, 5:1 and 9:6) it states that “God created (only) humankind in his own image”.

The next question we should ask ourselves is do all people possess neshamah?

Isaiah the prophet answers this in Isaiah 42:5; “So said God the Lord, the Creator of the heavens and the One Who stretched them out, who spread out the earth and what springs forth from it, who gave a soul (neshamah) to the people upon it and a spirit (ruach) to those who walk thereon.”

Isaiah again confirms this in Isaiah 57:16

To expand the definition of the neshamah it has been considered the intellect (2) and the intuition of human Soul.

In Job 32:8 it says that the neshamah gives us understanding

In Proverbs: 20:27 it is called “…the lamp of the Lord that sheds light on one’s inmost being.”

Many believe that the neshamah gives us the desire to reconnect with its source Adonai (3).

The article “Three parts of soul” says it here beautifully “The neshamah is the spiritual existence which pulls the man towards Adonai, to the performance of good deeds, to be pious and humble and to seek knowledge and achievement in spiritual fields.” (4)

We can all agree that the neshamah is a critical part of the human soul. So what binds this Adonai (neshamah) soul to the animal (nephesh) soul, and more importantly what binds all of this to Adonai (5)?  We will answer that question in Part 3 “The Ruach” on Thursday, July 16

References:

(1) Strong’s Hebrew Lexicon Number H5315

(2) Moshe Miller, Levels of Soul Consciousness, Chabad.org

(3) Yanki Tauber, What is a Soul? Chabad.org

(4) Three parts of the soul, Ask the Rabbi, Ohr Somayach International
(5) Rabbi Aryeh Kaplan, The Soul, Aish.com

*The Anatomy of the Human Soul (Part 1, Nephesh)

The Anatomy of the Human Soul (Part 1, Nephesh נָפַשׁ)

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The Anatomy of the Human Soul (Part 1, Nephesh נָפַשׁ)
By: William J Jackson
https://www.facebook.com/CenterforTanakhBasedStudies

There is an age old question that plagues believers and non-believer alike, and it goes like this “what happens when it’s all over?” Well we do know one thing, the body will end one day, so the question then becomes “is there a soul that will live on?” Just remember “You do not have a soul. You are a soul. You have a body” (unknown author). Conceding to the fact we are a soul, most of us have a limited understanding of this crucial creation.

Many of us think that our souls are just one, a simple single unit.  But when we study Torah we find that we have three distinct components. If we take the challenge of understanding the soul’s dimensions it will unlock an invaluable code that will gives us important insight on how we are influenced by good and evil.  Additionally by following the journey of the human soul we can take a gimps into the afterlife.

The 3 parts of the soul are as follows (1):

1. Nephesh is the soul as the engine of physical life.

2. Neshamah is a G-dly soul with a desire to reconnect with its Source.

3. Ruach is the emotional self and “personality.”

Part 1 Nephesh

The first component of the soul is the “nephesh”.  It is first mentioned in Genesis 1:20 on the fifth day of creation.

Genesis 1:20 states, “And G-d said, ‘Let the waters swarm a swarming of living creatures (nephesh), and let fowl fly over the earth, across the expanse of the heavens'”.

We also see in verse 24 of the same chapter on the 6th day of creation HaShem gives “nephesh” to other living creatures, beasts, livestock, etc.

Now lets skip forward roughly 1600 years (2). Here the great flood recedes and Noah’s ark comes to rest on the mountains of Ararat.  At the beginning of Genesis chapter 9 G-d tells His covenant to Noah.

Genesis 9:12 And G-d said: “This is the sign of the covenant, which I am placing between Me and between you, and between every living soul (nephesh) that is with you, for everlasting generations.”

So we see here both man and creatures have “nephesh”.

Other areas that confirm human’s have nephesh are Genesis 2:7, 35:18, Exodus 1:5 and Isaiah 38:17.

One of the more profound verses that supports all people having a nephesh was written by Ezekiel in Ezekiel 18:4;

“Behold, all souls (nephesh) are Mine. Like the soul (nephesh) of the father, like the soul (nephesh) of the son they are Mine; the soul (nephesh) that sins, it shall die.”

Obviously this is referring to the “nephesh” and means that all souls belong to G-d not just the Jew or the righteous but all.

Simply said, nephesh is our life force (3). It is the seat of desire, appetites, emotions and passions (4).

When we do things out of habit, instinct or necessity it can be considered the nephesh side of our soul.

Of the three nephesh is considered the lowest form of the soul, it is sometimes called the “Animal – Soul” (5)

As we know, many people like evolutionist and humanist believe humans are nothing more than animals.  These skeptics of G-d’s divinity probably assume that humans posses only a nephesh with no inner spark. This “inner sparks” creates the uniqueness of the human soul and separates us from animals.  This spark can be refereed to as “Neshamah”.  To understand neshamah please refer to “The Anatomy of the Human Soul (Part 2, Neshamah נְשָׁמָה) next Thursday:

To be continued:

Part 2, Neshamah: Thursday 16 July

part 3, Ruach: 23 July

Reference:

(1) Yanki Tauber, What is a Soul? Chabad.org

(2) Bible Time line

(3) Body & Soul Indispensable partners for doing life’s sacred work, MyJewishLearning.com

(4) Strong’s Hebrew Lexicon Number H5315

(5) R.L. Kremnizer, Building Block No. 6 Nefesh HaBahamis (Animal Soul) Nefesh HoElokis (G-dly Soul) Chabad.org

Exodus Plagues: Scientists and Sorcerers

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Exodus Plagues: Scientists and Sorcerers
By: William J Jackson

Interestingly enough the ten plagues of Egypt are a very popular topic for our entertainment industry. Many high profile networks have presented documentaries dedicated to explaining the events of those days; *National Geographic, **the History Channel and the ***Discovery Channel just to name but a few.  All these docudramas present a hoist of theories and reasons for the phenomenon of the plagues.  If HaShem wanted to rely on His natural assets why not?  But we should be cautioned not to explain away the miracle by overlooking the details in the Torah.

Turning the Nile Red (Exodus 7:20): Many biologist report that an algae could have turned the Nile red.  This would have resulted in fish dying and it’s waters becoming putrid thus supporting Exodus 7:18. This algae could have been the Burgundy Blood algae (1) a toxic bacterium species that get’s it’s name from it’s color.  Other theories have gases or silt turning the Nile river red. The problem is in Exodus 7:17.  Here G-d states he will turn the Nile waters to “blood”.  The Hebrew word used is “dam” (Strong’s 1818) which means blood only.  The word for red is “adom” (Strong’s 122).  Why wouldn’t that word be used if HaShem was just turning the Nile red? Also lets look deeper into the text.  In Exodus 7:19 HaShem did not limit himself to the Nile, He said all the bodies of water to include ponds.  He even mentioned water in stone and wood vessels.  Yes algae, silt or even gases could contaminate the Nile but what about the waters not connected to the Nile?

The Nile red algae event is thought to have had a domino effect in initiating the other plagues:
– the frogs leave the contaminated Nile (plague 2)
– the frogs die causing an infestation of insects (plague 3 & 4)
– insects bring disease to livestock (plague 5)
– and boils to both livestock and humans (plague 6)

But the Nile turning to blood would cause the same chain of events.

As we move onto plague seven we find it one of the hardest miracles to explain away.  As stated in Exodus 9:24 “…there was hail, and fire flaming within the hail”.  Rabbi Dr. Darrell Ginsberg and the Jewish Sages have referred to this as “A Miracle within a Miracle”(3).  The before mentioned documentaries either don’t touch on this one or give limited hypotheses with no proof.  They are seemingly silence as akin to Pharaoh’s magicians in Exodus 8:14-15.  Here Pharaoh’s magicians admitted they could not replicate the plague of lice and said it was the finger of G-d.  Likewise the scientific community can not explain this plague away, their muteness give testimony it was the finger of G-d.

We see In Exodus 10:14 the introduction of another plague.  This is the plague of the locus and is seemingly easy to accept without thought.  Locus swarms in Egypt are not all that unusual.  Especially where scientist would have to explain them.  But as Exodus 10:13 states, these locus came from the East.  Locus usually come into Egypt from the Sudan and Ethiopia.  This would be a south to south westerly direction.  Some bible commentators have assumed that this was a mistake in the Torah (2).  Maybe this is HaShem’s signature showing us it was Him behind it and not just some coincident.

Exodus 10:22 ushers in our ninth plague of thick darkness for three days.  Many scientist accredit it to a dust storm or even volcanic ash.  The problem is Exodus 10:23”…all the children of Israel there was light in their dwellings.” as apposed to the Egyptians who did not.  Yes, some could say the dust storm or volcanic ash did not come over Goshen (where the Israelites lived). But HaShem had no problem using the word Goshen for two of the other plagues(flies and hail).  Here the word “moshab” is used in relation to His people which means dwelling (Strong’s 4186).

Now the grand finally, Exodus 12:29-30 the death of the first born.  The theories range in the scientific community from carbon monoxide poisoning to moldy grain created by the other plagues.  In history these factors have attested for mass killings but the death of the first born of both man and animals is a bit surgical to explain away.  This like the other plagues cannot be blamed on a mere happenstance, it’s uniqueness gives testimony to the finger of G-d.

Remember Pharaoh’s magicians were also able to replicate the occurrences Moses and Aaron summoned (Exodus 7:11, 22, 8:3).  But there is a point that HaShem proved for all that these were His supernatural events and not just coincidences.    HaShem wants us to study Torah.  In doing this we are worshiping Him.  Having somebody give us tidy little answers rob us of getting to know Him and His word.

References

(1) http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/science/science-news/7530678/Biblical-plagues-really-happened-say-scientists.html

(2) Ellicott’s Commentary for English Readers (Exodus 10:13)
http://biblehub.com/commentaries/ellicott/exodus/10.htm

(3) http://www.mesora.org/MiracleswithinMiracles.html

Note:

*National Geographic Mysteries of the Bible: Exodus Revealed (2006)
**History Channel, The Exodus Decoded (2006)
***Discovery Channel’s Biblical Mysteries Explained Exodus (2008)

How locust swarms help us avoid sin?

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How locust swarms help us avoid sin?
By: William J Jackson – https://www.facebook.com/CenterforTanakhBasedStudies

Of the ten plagues that hit Egypt some affected both the Israelites and the Egyptians and yet others only affected the Egyptians.  We see this with the death of the livestock.  Moses says “the Lord will make a separation between the livestock of Israel and the livestock of Egypt, and nothing of the children of Israel will die.” (Exodus 9:3).  HaShem makes a distinction between His people and the Egyptians, this is likewise seen with the hail storm (Exodus 9:26), the three days of darkness (Exodus 10:23) and the death of the first born (Exodus 11:5-7).  Interestingly, the plague of the locust doesn’t seem to exempt the Israelites.  If you remember just before the locust there is a hail storm that destroys much of Egypt’s crops.  Then HaShem deals Egypt’s agricultural economy an upper cut as He finishes them off with a swarm of locust.  Israel is exempt from the hail but they are not exempt from the locust.  If HaShem is setting Israel apart this would make no sense.  But it does make sense, the answer is in the motives.

Yes, the segregated killing of the livestock does set G-d’s people apart but let’s look at the hail storm and the motive behind it.  G-d gives Egypt an ultimatum (Exodus 9:20). Basically, if you believe in HaShem you will heed this warning, if you don’t you will suffer the consequences (Exodus 9:21).  Rightfully any Egyptian that believed in G-d would have spared his life, his servants lives and his cattle’s lives.

The fiery hail did destroy much of the Egyptian crops (Exodus 9:25, 31-32) but not all.  The locust came in later and destroyed the rest of Egypt, “no greenery was left in the trees or in the vegetation of the field[s] throughout the entire land of Egypt” (Exodus 10:5).  Remember Goshen (where the Israelites lived) is in Egypt and if you look on a map Goshen appears very lush.  This would have been a focal point for any swarm of locust.  Another point is that in the other plagues when the Israelites were exempted from the effects it is stated but not here.

We need to remember that the Israelites would be leaving soon, why worry about the crops?  Also, maybe HaShem wanted the temptation of staying in Egypt taken away.  This is a concept used throughout history.  Alexander the Great burnt his boats before invading Persia thus securing victory against a superior force, the Persians (1).  Also it is rumored Hernán Cortés did the same thing when he invaded Mexico in 1519 CE (2).  But why do this? It is easy, if there is no place to return to your focus is always forward.  Remember in spite of being rescued the Israelites would continue to desire to return to Egypt, again and again (Exodus 13:17, 14:11-12, 15:24, 17:3, Numbers 14:2, Psalm 106:24-25).  Removing their crops helped to commit them to their future.

We can apply this to our lives today.  When we turn from sins we need to “burn our boats”.  Get rid of the temptation whether it’s an old pack of cigarettes, the phone number to a negative relation, bad food if your dieting, your casino card if that’s the issue, or other poor influences like books, movies, music.. etc.  Basically get rid of whatever temptation you have allowed to lurk in your life.  Simply remove that “just in case” piece of the addiction puzzle.  Yes, it can be harder then it needs to be.  But this is when you get to go to HaShem and ask for help.

References

(1) http://www.theleadershipcoach.com/2010/burn-your-boats-paul-andrew-keynote-speaker-executive-coach/

(2) http://burningboats.com/about-burningboatscom/