Bits of Torah Truths, Parashat Vayetze

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More may be going on than we realize

This weeks reading from Parashat Vayetze (Bereshit / Genesis 28:10-32:2) Jacob fleas from Esau and begins his journey to the land of Haran.  During His journey, he lays down at Bethel (בֵּית אֱלֹהִים) the Lord speaks to him in a dream and reiterates the covenant promises that He had promised to his Fathers Abraham and Isaac. ג   וְהִנֵּה יְהֹוָה נִצָּב עָלָיו וַיֹּאמַר אֲנִי יְהֹוָה אֱלֹהֵי אַבְרָהָם אָבִיךָ וֵאלֹהֵי יִצְחָק הָאָרֶץ אֲשֶׁר אַתָּה שֹׁכֵב עָלֶיהָ לְךָ אֶתְּנֶנָּה וּלְזַרְעֶךָ: יד   וְהָיָה זַרְעֲךָ כַּעֲפַר הָאָרֶץ וּפָרַצְתָּ יָמָּה וָקֵדְמָה וְצָפֹנָה וָנֶגְבָּה וְנִבְרְכוּ בְךָ כָּל-מִשְׁפְּחֹת הָאֲדָמָה וּבְזַרְעֶךָ: טו   וְהִנֵּה אָנֹכִי עִמָּךְ וּשְׁמַרְתִּיךָ בְּכֹל אֲשֶׁר-תֵּלֵךְ וַהֲשִׁבֹתִיךָ אֶל-הָאֲדָמָה הַזֹּאת כִּי לֹא אֶעֱזָבְךָ עַד אֲשֶׁר אִם-עָשִֹיתִי אֵת אֲשֶׁר-דִּבַּרְתִּי לָךְ: 28:13 And behold, the Lord stood above it and said, ‘I am the Lord, the God of your father Abraham and the God of Isaac; the land on which you lie, I will give it to you and to your descendants.  28:14 ‘Your descendants will also be like the dust of the earth, and you will spread out to the west and to the east and to the north and to the south; and in you and in your descendants shall all the families of the earth be blessed.  28:15 ‘Behold, I am with you and will keep you wherever you go, and will bring you back to this land; for I will not leave you until I have done what I have promised you.’ (NASB)  After these things, Jacob wakes up and we read what he says and does in Bereshit / Genesis 28:6-9.

כתבי הקודש / The Holy Scriptures

           ספר בראשית פרק כח
טז   וַיִּיקַץ יַעֲקֹב מִשְּׁנָתוֹ וַיֹּאמֶר אָכֵן יֵשׁ יְהֹוָה בַּמָּקוֹם הַזֶּה וְאָנֹכִי לֹא יָדָעְתִּי: יז   וַיִּירָא וַיֹּאמַר מַה-נּוֹרָא הַמָּקוֹם הַזֶּה אֵין זֶה כִּי אִם-בֵּית אֱלֹהִים וְזֶה שַׁעַר הַשָּׁמָיִם: יח   וַיַּשְׁכֵּם יַעֲקֹב בַּבֹּקֶר וַיִּקַּח אֶת-הָאֶבֶן אֲשֶׁר-שָֹם מְרַאֲשֹׁתָיו וַיָּשֶֹם אֹתָהּ מַצֵּבָה וַיִּצֹק שֶׁמֶן עַל-רֹאשָׁהּ: יט   וַיִּקְרָא אֶת-שֵׁם-הַמָּקוֹם הַהוּא בֵּית-אֵל וְאוּלָם לוּז שֵׁם-הָעִיר לָרִאשֹׁנָה: כ   וַיִּדַּר יַעֲקֹב נֶדֶר לֵאמֹר אִם-יִהְיֶה אֱלֹהִים עִמָּדִי וּשְׁמָרַנִי בַּדֶּרֶךְ הַזֶּה אֲשֶׁר אָנֹכִי הוֹלֵךְ וְנָתַן-לִי לֶחֶם לֶאֱכֹל וּבֶגֶד לִלְבֹּשׁ: כא   וְשַׁבְתִּי בְשָׁלוֹם אֶל-בֵּית אָבִי וְהָיָה יְהוָֹה לִי לֵאלֹהִים:

Bereshit / Genesis 28:6-9
28:16 Then Jacob awoke from his sleep and said, ‘Surely the Lord is in this place, and I did not know it.’  28:17 He was afraid and said, ‘How awesome is this place! This is none other than the house of God, and this is the gate of heaven.’  28:18 So Jacob rose early in the morning, and took the stone that he had put under his head and set it up as a pillar and poured oil on its top.  28:19 He called the name of that place Bethel; however, previously the name of the city had been Luz.  28:20 Then Jacob made a vow, saying, ‘If God will be with me and will keep me on this journey that I take, and will give me food to eat and garments to wear, 28:21 and I return to my father’s house in safety, then the Lord will be my God. (NASB)

Jacob awoke from his sleep and said “Surely the Lord is in this place and I did not know it” (וַיִּיקַץ יַעֲקֹב מִשְּׁנָתוֹ וַיֹּאמֶר אָכֵן יֵשׁ יְהֹוָה בַּמָּקוֹם הַזֶּה וְאָנֹכִי לֹא יָדָעְתִּי).  According to the Scriptures, Jacob did not know the Lord was with him until this moment in his life.  The Lord gave him a promise that He is going to work mightily in his life so much so that in his descendents all of the families of the earth with be blessed (וְנִבְרְכוּ).  Throughout this week’s Parasha, the Lord works in the background, through the birth of Jacob’s children and in the blessing of wealth in livestock and possessions.  As in that time, so it is to today, the Lord may be working in the background in ways we are unaware of.  The Apostle Paul tells us in Romans 8:26-28.

Romans 8:26-28
8:26 In the same way the Spirit also helps our weakness; for we do not know how to pray as we should, but the Spirit Himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words; 8:27 and He who searches the hearts knows what the mind of the Spirit is, because He intercedes for the saints according to the will of God.  8:28 And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose. (NASB)

Because God is working in the background, at many times we do not know how to pray as we should, however, we are told that the Holy Spirit of God will intercede on our behalf as the Lord searches our hearts and our needs through prayer.  At times we may not know the reasons why things happen the way they do, but like in Jacob’s life, we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose (Romans 8:28) in Yeshua the Messiah!  BTT_Parashat Vayetze-2012

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Duane D. Miller received his Ph.D., M.S., and B.S. Degree in Chemical Engineering from The University of Akron Ohio. He is currently a Chemical Engineering Researcher. Duane’s research expertise has focused upon functional materials development for the control, conversion, and release of process gases in Energy production technologies. His R&D interests include computational chemistry, developing novel technologies for converting biomass to fuels and studying their fundamental interactions during the chemical conversion process. His past experience includes sorbent development for pre- and post-combustion CO2 and SO2 capture, selective absorption of H2S from methane streams, O2 capture for oxy-fuel combustion, photocatalytic reduction of alcohols, NOx reduction catalysis, the development of oxygen carriers to combust fossil fuels (CH4 and coal) for the chemical looping combustion processes, and the extraction of rare earth elements using patent pending sorbents. His research expertise has focused on operando-characterization using Infrared, Raman, and UV-Vis spectroscopy to observe the nature of the catalytic active sites and reaction intermediates under realistic reaction conditions, allowing direct correlation of molecular/electronic structures with catalyst performance during Gas-Solid / Liquid-Solid Adsorption and Photocatalytic Processes with real time online analysis of reaction products using ICP-MS and mass spectrometry. His current work involves a multi-disciplinary approach to developing, understanding, and improving the catalytic gasification of coal and methane, high temperature chemical looping combustion, and the catalytic decomposition and gasification of biomass and coal using novel microwave reactor.​ He has been studying the Hebrew Scriptures and the Torah for 20+ years and sharing what he has learned. The studies developed for MATSATI.COM are freely to be used by everyone, to God be the Glory!