The Hebrew name for this portion of the Torah is Bemidbar, meaning “In the wilderness.” It is also the Hebrew name for the book itself, since this portion begins the book of Numbers. Greek people called this the book of Numbers, since it begins with census lists of the names of God’s people and how they were arranged around the Tabernacle, the special portable temple in the wilderness.
The twelve tribes were divided into four groups of three tribes, each gathered about the Tabernacle in the four directions—north, south, east and west. Today’s reading describes the arrangement on the eastern side.
Look how important it was for the people to know that God is the center of their lives. What can you do today to be reminded that God is meant to be the center of your life as well? Is there a place in your room that would remind you that the most important relation you have is with Jesus?
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The Saturday passages follow the reading list that Jewish people use in their synagogue worship
throughout the world. They are taken from
“The Torah,” the first five books of the Bible from Genesis to Deuteronomy
that are read each year beginning with autumn.
These Firestarters are for families with children. For the Firestarters in the original edition, I recommend the ebook. You will have the entire program of well over a thousand of these introductions with you on your phone or tablet! Check the menu options at the site for more information.