Friday, 12 November 2021
The third son born to Jacob (Leah #3) was named Levi. Genesis 29:34 Then she became pregnant again and gave birth to a son, and said, "Now this time my husband will join himself to me because I've given birth to three sons for him." For this reason he was named Levi.
Levi is written with 3 Hebrew letters, Lamed-Vav-Yud. The Lamed-Vav couplet (pronounced "Lo") is very common in Hebrew. It means "to him" as in "belonging to him." We also say, "His" in English. The Yud at the end of a word is frequently a contraction of "Li," written Lamed-Yud meaning "to me" or "mine." The Lamed is contracted off and only the ending Yud remains making what it's attached to possessive. So "Levi" means "Me to him," or "Mine to his." It's a challenge to put it into good English directly from Hebrew, but you should get the point.
But now we want to examine how this is part of the story of the life of every believer and how the narrative is unfolding in the names of the first 3 sons born to Jacob. With these 3 sons we are starting to see the fulfillment of God's promise to Abraham. God's promise to multiply Abraham begins in Genesis 12:2a My heart's desire is to make you into a great nation.
The promise of multiplication is repeated and enhanced. Then, after the binding of Isaac, God repeats His enhanced promise to Abraham. Genesis 22:17a I will richly bless you and bountifully multiply your seed like the stars of heaven, and like the sand that is on the seashore. But Isaac was getting older and was quite single before God brought Rebekah into his life. Even then, Rebekah had no children. Finally, she had twin boys. Isaac was "tricked" into blessing the younger son, Jacob. At last we are seeing the fulfillment of the original promise.
But, (there's always a "but") the promise involves so much more than multiplication. Genesis 12:2b so that you may be a blessing. Remember, Yeshua is the reality of all things. Therefore; Yeshua is the reality of the promises +made to Abraham. This is never more evident than in the message of the names of the first three sons of Jacob (whose names are on the stones of the top row of the breastplate). The message is simple. "Behold the Son, listen to Him, and be joined to Him."
That's a good start to the life of being a follower of the way. In the coming days we'll uncover more of the story. Shabbat Shalom.
Rabbi Michael Weiner,