Messiah in Yom HaBikkurim Chapter 50

Parable #31. Lost Coin:

  1. Today is Day #31
  2. The Thirty-first Mashal of Messiah
  3. Searching for the lost treasure using the Lamp of the Scriptures
  4. The Woman and her Lost Silver Coin – 10 Observations
  5. The Dowry of the Patriarchs
  6. The Daughter’s Property
  7. The Bride’s inheritance from her Father’s house
  8. The evolution of the Dowry
  9. The Father of the Bride provides the Dowry
  10. The Groom and his Father provide the Bride a Gift
  11. The Marriage Contract
  12. Insurance for the Future
  13. The Sanctifying Presence of a Minyan – 3 Points
  14. Corporate witness of the Marriage of the Jewish Peasant Woman – 4 Insights
  15. The Redemptive Narrative of the Levirate Marriage to the widowed Jewish Peasant Woman
  16. The Redemptive Narrative of the Line of David Began Here…
  17. The drachma & the half-shekel Redemption of the Soul Tax – 5 Disclosures
  18. The Silver Coin of Father Jacob – 4 Explanations
  19. The Mystery of the Ten Silver Coins
  20. Interpretation (PaRDeS)
  21. Summary Conclusion

Today is Day #31:

1. Today is “Day #31” in the forty-nine day Countdown to Shavuot.

2. Today is Thirty-one days in the Omer.

Today is thirty-one days, which are four weeks and three days in the Omer.

היום אחד ושלושים יום, שהם ארבעה שבועות ושלושה יומים בעומר. פ

Haiyom echad ushloshim yom, shehaym arba’ah shavuot ushloshah yamim ba’omer.

“You shall count for yourselves — from the day after the Shabbat, from the day when you bring the Omer of the waving — seven Shabbats, they shall be complete. Until the day after the seventh sabbath you shall count, fifty days.” (Leviticus). “You shall count for yourselves seven weeks, from when the sickle is first put to the standing crop shall you begin counting seven weeks. Then you will observe the Festival of Shavu’ot for Adonai Eloheinu.” (Deuteronomy).

“Blessed are You, Adonai Eloheinu, King of the universe, Who sanctified us with Your commandments and commanded us to count the Omer.”

ברוך אתה, אדוני אלוהינו, מלך העולם, אשר קדשנו במצוותיו וצוונו על ספירת העומר.פ

Baruch atah, Adonai Eloheinu, melech ha’olam, asher kid’shanu b’mitzvotav v’tzivanu al sefirat ha’omer.

The Thirty-first Mashal of Messiah:

אוֹ מִי הָאִשָּׁה אֲשֶׁר־לָהּ עֲשָׂרָה דַרְכְּמוֹנִים וְאָבַד לָהּ דַּרְכְּמוֹן אֶחָד וְלֹא־תַדְלִיק נֵר וּתְטַאטֵא אֶת־הַבַּיִת וּתְחַפֵּשׂ הֵיטֵב עַד כִּי־תִמְצָאֵהוּ׃ וְהָיָה כְּמָצְאָהּ אוֹתוֹ תִּקְרָא לְרֵעוֹתֶיהָ וְלִשְׁכֵנוֹתֶיהָ לֵאמֹר שְׂמַחְנָה אִתִּי כִּי מָצָאתִי אֵת הַדַּרְכְּמוֹן אֲשֶׁר אָבַד לִי׃

או איזו אשה, שיש לה עשרה מטבעות כסף ואבד לה מטבע אחד, לא תדליק מנורה ותטאטא את הבית ותחפש היטב עד אשר תמצאהו? וכאשר תמצא אותו תקרא לחברותיה ושכנותיה ותאמר, שמחו אתי, כי מצאתי את המטבע שאבד לי. פ

[Lukas 15:8] “Or what woman who has ten silver coins (lit. drachmas) and lost one (drachma) coin, will not light a lamp and sweep the house and search carefully until she finds it? When she found it, she will call to her friends and neighbors and say, ‘Rejoice with me, for I have found the (silver drachma) coin I had lost!’”

כֵּן אֲנִי אֹמֵר לָכֶם תִּהְיֶה שִׂמְחָה לִפְנֵי מַלְאֲכֵי אֱלֹהִים עַל־חוֹטֵא אֶחָד אֲשֶׁר־שָׁב מֵחַטָּאתוֹ׃

אומר אני לכם, כך יש שמחה לפני מלאכי אלהים על חוטא אחד שחוזר בתשובה. פ

[Lukas 15:10] “I (the Messiah) say to you, so there is joy before the angels of God about one sinner who repents.”

Searching for the lost treasure using the Lamp of the Scriptures:

נֵר־לְרַגְלִי דְבָרֶךָ וְאֹור לִנְתִיבָתִֽי׃ נִשְׁבַּעְתִּי וָאֲקַיֵּמָה לִשְׁמֹר מִשְׁפְּטֵי צִדְקֶֽךָ׃

נר־לרגלי דברך ואור לנתיבתי׃ נשבעתי ואקימה לשמר משפטי צדקך׃

Your word is a ner (נֵר-lamp) unto my feet and a ohr (אֹור-light) unto my path. I have sworn an oath (נִשְׁבַּעְתִּי), and I will perform it, that I will keep Your righteous judgments (מִשְׁפְּטֵ֥י צִדְקֶֽךָ-righteous ordinances).”

Searching for Treasure #1.  We study scripture with scripture. Only the whole of the D’var HaShem is inerrant. You take one part out and remove that part from the Divinely inspired context of all of the other parts and you’ll miss something.

רָאִ֣יתִי אאֶת־הָֽעִנְיָ֗ן אֲשֶׁ֨ר נָתַ֧ן אֱלֹהִ֛ים לִבְנֵ֥י הָאָדָ֖ם לַעֲנ֥וֹת בּֽוֹ׃ אאֶת־הַכֹּ֥ל עָשָׂ֖ה יָפֶ֣ה בְעִתּ֑וֹ גַּ֤ם אֶת־הָעֹלָם֙ נָתַ֣ן בְּלִבָּ֔ם מִבְּלִ֞י אֲשֶׁ֧ר בלֹא־יִמְצָ֣א הָאָדָ֗ם אֶת־הַֽמַּעֲשֶׂ֛ה אֲשֶׁר־עָשָׂ֥ה הָאֱלֹהִ֖ים מֵרֹ֥אשׁ וְעַד־סֽוֹף׃

ראיתי את־הענין אשר נתן אלהים לבני האדם לענות בו׃ את־הכל עשה יפה בעתו גם את־העלם נתן בלבם מבלי אשר לא־ימצא האדם את־המעשה אשר־עשה האלהים מראש ועד־סוף׃

“I have seen the  task which Elohim (אלוהים) has given the sons of men (לבני האדם) with which to occupy themselves. He has  made everything  appropriate in its time. He has also set eternity in their heart (את־העולם נתן בליבם),  yet so that man  will not find out the work which Ha-Elohim has done from the beginning (מראש-beforehand) even to the end (ועד־סוף).

Those of us who study the Word of Adonai several hours a day know this. We know we have been entrusted with this eternal revelation and that the beginning and the end of it is beyond our ability to perceive.

We study the scriptures under the guidance of the Spirit. His Word is Perfect. We are not. The Messiah our Rabbi is Perfect. We are not. The inerrant Spirit of Truth helps us in our weakness. We believe there is one Written Torah (the Tanakh) and there is One Oral Torah, more precious than the Written Torah (looking in a mirror), and that is the actual Indwelling Presence of the Spirit of Adonai (Ruach Adonai) living within our regenerated hearts.

In our quickened heart (spirit) we see God Face to face. In the imperfection of our physical being we see the Holy One but only in part; like one trying to view one’s exact image through the use of a less than perfect mirror. On the day of our resurrection we will be shalem (whole, well) in all our mental and physical being; as well as be shalom (perfect, complete) in our spirits. Then throughout all of our being “we will know Him as we are known.”

Searching for Treasure #2.  The “reflecting” light of the moon rules over the night. The moon is a reflecting mirror of the Glory of the Sun. The Light of the Sun is the Source of all of the moon’s light.

The Sun rules over the day. Someday there will be only one eternal day and never again will there be night. Similarly, Messiah is the visible image of the invisible God. He is the exact Image of the Holy One (Tselem Elohim). We see the invisible Face of our Father in heaven revealed in the daylight of the visible Face of the Messiah. He is the radiance of the glory of Avinu Shebashamayim and the exact representation of His nature. With the help of the Holy Spirit we are lighting the lamp that gives forth the glorious light of the illuminating Face of Messiah, who is the exact visible image of the invisible God.

It is in the eternal light of the reflected glory of Messiah that we may sweep all of the floor of the the House of Scripture (the D’var HaShem). We do this Divine task of carefully searching all of the Scriptures that we soon might find our (Israel’s) lost treasure that we lost in the dark night of our national unbelief. Therefore, today we search for the treasure under the guiding light of the Spirit of Vision (רוח החזון). This we do using the light-directing lamp of the Messiah’s mashal of the “Lost Coin.”

Searching for Treasure #3.  Oftentimes there are deeper meanings (סודים ,סודות-sodit, sodim, hidden mysteries, secrets) in the prophetic sayings of Messiah and the prophets. These meanings are all tied together (tightly bound, hidden) within Scripture (the Tanakh).

It has been rightfully said that all of the Scriptures together equal but one solitary, very long word.

So when Messiah speaks—who is the one, solitary Living Word of Adonai—what He says in some way is connected to all of the other sayings within the entire D’var HaShem. When the Messiah mentions the figure of Ten Drachmas it is very important that we take His selection of terms very seriously.

The Light of the World (Or Ha’Olam) has chosen these specific words for us to study. We must be wise and through the Spirit of Wisdom (רוח החוכמה-Ruach Ha-Chokmah), who is our Helper (our Living Torah), understand that these d’varim tie into all of the other d’varim of the Scriptures. So in this study we will carefully look over (sweep) the ground of our being with the light of every word of the Messiah; from every angle of illumination that we can apply.

Searching for Treasure #4.  Sometimes this kind of exhaustive search by the light of the illuminating Presence of the Ruach Ha-Mashiach (רוח המשיח) yields results and sometimes it only leads to a dead end. In either case it is always the will of the Spirit of Revelation (רוח החזון-Ruach he-Chazon) that we diligently search all of the Scriptures (the House of His Revelation) in our humble (peasant) attempt to understand how the many small insights (*visions) serve to reveal to us the whole (the larger perspective) of the Holy One’s revelation (*dreams).

*In the Torah visions are a slice of revelation. Young men and women see a slice of the revelation of the Holy Spirit called “visions.” Dreams, however, are a much larger scope of spiritual perspective than visions. Older men and women “dream, dreams.” A dream is a horizon-to-horizon view of God’s reality (His revelation). Since a dream involves a much larger experience of God’s reality it is usually the practice of older, wiser men (fathers) and women (mothers) to have dreams.

Start here: Think small, be little, mini-size your-self!

This means we must first look carefully at all of the small stuff.  Then when we have been faithful in the little things (d’varim), we can expect God our Father to show us the bigger things (d’varim). So let us first consider all of the small redemptive and worshipful meanings of the Hebrew words “dowry,” “silver,” and “coins;” including the very specific Greek term “drachma” (as it is used in the Septuagint) and other terms as well; such as: the number “ten” explicitly and the number “five” implicitly. For we will discover in this study that ten (Greek) drachmas in the Tanakh is actually equal to five shekels (and ten half-shekels).

So let us now, with our lamps fully illuminated sweep the area.

Let us begin our search for the (hidden) treasured meanings of the mashal of the one Lost Coin. The following is our initial questioning response to the first hint provided by the Messiah our Rabbi, to help us begin the search. First Question:

Question: How much is the one (lost) Greek drachma coin worth in ancient Jewish coinage?

Answer: The lost one drachma coin is equal in value to one (lost) temple half-shekel.

The Woman and her Lost Silver Coin – 10 Observations:

Observation #1.  In the mashal of the Lost Coin we see the perspective of a woman’s love. There are many differences that exist between our human male and female brains. Over one hundred very significant differences between the male and female brain have been identified by modern research (1, 2, 3). We have come to strongly believe that women possess a superior emotional-relational capacity than men (a higher E.I.Q.-Emotional Intelligence Quotient).

This discovery that our Creator has given women a superior Emotional Intelligence is quite a significant breakthrough-insight for us men.

In all human history we have never had a situation like we have today. In the past men were very important for both reasons of problem-solving (neocortical brain) and survival (lower brain, the reptilian brain). Unfortunately, during this incredibly long period of male dominance the women were treated as less important.

However, now in this technologically more advanced age a new thing has been created by Adonai our God: in this Information Age women are now beginning to be treated as being more important than men. What happened to cause this incredible change? As the prophet Jeremiah predicted, this is the time (the Information Age) when “a woman shall encompass (תסובב-surround) a man” (נקבה תסובב גבר).

 כִּֽי־בָרָ֨א ה’ חֲדָשָׁה֙ בָּאָ֔רֶץ נְקֵבָ֖ה תְּס֥וֹבֵֽב גָּֽבֶר׃

כי־ברא ה’ חדשה בארץ נקבה תסובב גבר: פ

“For Adonai has *created a new thing in the earth —  A woman will encompass a man.”

*Bara (ברא-created, creating) – The second word used here in Jeremiah 31:22 is the same Hebrew verb bara (ברא‎) used in Genesis 1:1. It is in the masculine form, so that “He” [Adonai] is implied.  A peculiarity of this verb is that it is always used with God as its subject, meaning that only Adonai our God can “bara.” Therefore, only Adonai (the LORD our God) can employ the kind of creative activity that could make the heavens and the earth, with their physical properties, from something that has no physical properties at all—-His conscious thoughts! (i.e. God is Spirit and He exists without physical properties).

How can this be? What does this mean? Why did Adonai Eloheinu assign women a higher E.I.Q than men? How should this truth change how men and women relate to one another today and in the future?

Previously, for the sake of our survival in a fallen-violent world, love intelligence took a back seat to problem-solving and survival intelligence.

Now, in the Information Age of the 21st Century, things are dramatically changing. Now we have automation and technology to make our goods and services; and to defend us (keep us safe). Automation and technology are on the verge of sheltering us, clothing us, feeding us, and protecting us. In regard to the old male superiority of survival intelligence: now we have robotic systems that are being developed to protect us and highly sophisticated defensive weapon systems to facilitate our survival.

The new E.I.Q. question is: what happens in the near future when automation and technology replace man’s role as the problem-solving provider (industrial age) and as the survival intelligence protector (all previous ages)? Going forward from today’s Information Age and on into the distant future: what remaining intelligence has Adonai Avinu given us that will allow humankind to still boast, “We are better than the machines at this?” The answer going forward into the near and distant future is:

Going forward (into eternity) emotional (relational) intelligence will be the most important of all our human intelligences.

Think of this in terms of redeemed humanity’s future (ultimate) eternal destiny, will problem-solving and survival intelligence be important in heaven?” The answer is “No!” The only thing that will be important in heaven is Love Intelligence.

Adonai our heavenly Parent and our God made the female brain out of the best of Man, and therefore out of the best of Himself—-our Creator (Hayotzer). Man (ish) is the exoskeleton of woman (ishah). The woman is the best of man. She is the fifth rib of man that rests just over the heart. The heart is a symbol of the Spirit of the Holy One. The woman was wired for love and as we just learned in the last mashal before this one, “Adonai is Love (Ahavah).”

מי שאינו אוהב אינו יודע את אלהים, שכן האלהים הוא אהבה.  פ

He who does not love does not know God, for God is love.

Therefore, the woman (אִשָּׁה-ishah, wife) is a test for man. She is a man’s test of love. If the man does not love the woman then how can Adonai ever trust man with His own treasured emotional life? He can’t. This is why it is written by Shim’on Peter (a messianic Jew):

You husbands… live with your wives in an understanding way (בִּידִיעָה), as with someone weaker (who is vulnerable; more valuable), since she is a woman (אִשָּׁה); and show her honor (כָּבוֹד) as a fellow heir of the grace of life (בְּנַחֲלַת חֶסֶד הַחַיִּים), so that your prayers (תְּפִלּוֹתֵיכֶם) will not be hindered.”

Fine china is more vulnerable and can be damaged a lot more easily than bone china. But so what? The (weaker) fine china is still worth considerably more than the more durable (stronger) bone china. A high performance racing car requires a more intelligent, highly skilled driver and better maintenance support than an old passenger truck. All men must agree that in many areas of function and capability the race car and its driver are superior to the truck and its driver. Therefore, from an eternal perspective what could ever be superior to the revelation of the Creator (Hayotzer) than His creation of the first woman? What could ever be superior to the love intelligence and the Divinely appointed relational excellence that was endowed in the first woman? Nothing!

The reason why the woman originated from the fifth rib of Adam is because this rests over the Heart (the symbol of the Spirit of Holiness). Therefore, the woman is the “treasure” of Adonai Eloheinu. She is the “best” of Adonai Avinu that was instilled in Adam (his fifth rib). For Adonai Elohenu brought the best of Himself out from the sleep of man (ish) to be man’s helper (עֵ֖זֶר כְּנֶגְדּֽוֹ-a help(er) suitable for (him). Notice the words:

So that your prayers (relationship with Adonai) will not be hindered.

These words are directed at men because the first Adam completely excused himself from any blame or fault for his own sin and instead he projected all of the blame on the woman and indirectly he even blamed Adonai (our Father) who made and “gave” (entrusted) the woman (His daughter) to him. In truth, the woman did not sin. She was “deceived.” The Man-Adam was not deceived. He sinned. Adam sinned openly, willfully and defiantly (1, 2, 3). When it came time for Adam to make things right he completely failed. He accepted no blame. He completely blamed Adonai (implicitly) and the woman (explicitly) for his predicament (Genesis 3:12):

“The woman whom You [Adonai] gave to be with me, she gave me from the tree, and I ate.”

Adonai did not like the accusitory words, “The woman whom You gave me.” The first Adam ben Ha-Elohim was blaming the Holy One for the mess that was caused. The Holy One did not like how the first Adam tried to use the woman (his wife) as a human shield for his sins and the consequences of his sins. The fact is the first Adam was responsible to protect his wife (the best of him and of God). Adam was to protect his wife no matter what the cost; instead, he chose to use the woman as a human shield to protect himself. The Man was saying to Adonai our God:

“Judge her. Save Me!”

The Point? Almost two thousand years ago the Messiah (the Last Adam Ha-Elohim) gave all of us Jewish men an example. When the Last Adam (HaAdam Ha-acharon) was faced with the dilemma of who should be blamed, he said “blame Me and leave her (fallen humanity) out of it.” More simply put:

“Judge Me. Save her!”

Messiah taught his male followers (בני ישראל-the sons of Yisra’el) to be “Servant-leaders.” “Love your wives as I have loved the Assembly:” Just as Messiah also loved the Assembly of Israel and gave Himself up for her—Adonai through the Messiah is our Shield who acts as our Redeemer—so that He might sanctify her [us] having cleansed her [us] by the washing of water with the word, that He might present to Himself the Assembly in all her [our] glory, having no spot or wrinkle or any such thing; but that she [we] would be holy and blameless.

Messiah taught all of His male talmidin to never “lord it (over women and children) like the pagans do” (1, 2, 3).

Rather, the Jewish men are instructed to humbly take the least place and selflessly serve (like our Chief Shepherd-שַׂר הָרוֹעִים) all those who are assigned to our trust: “You know that the rulers of the Goyim (Gentiles) lord it over them, and their great men exercise authority over them. It is not this way among you, but whoever wishes to become great among you shall be your servant, and whoever wishes to be first among you shall be your slave [this applies doubly to one’s wife and children even more than it does to any of a man’s closest male associates]; just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many.”

The one who is the greatest among you must become like the youngest, and the leader like the servant.

The point is this: that the trusted leader who represents the Protect and Serve part of Adonai (our Creator) has never passed the test of loving the most intimate, treasured part of Adonai our God—-the woman who represents His Love.

Men, we have perceived that we are so slow to learn these important truths that if it were not for the help of the Spirit we don’t believe any of us would ever pass Adonai’s ‘test’ of loving the best of Him and ourselves: our mothers, wives, sisters, daughters and all women— the fifth rib!

The number five represents the graciousness of Adonai (our heavenly Parent, and our God) His loving-kindness (חֶסֶד-chesed) and His most generous favor (חֵן-chen, חָנַן-chanan). The Rib is representative of the human “Soul” (נֶפֶשׁ-nefesh, nephesh) which in the temple nomenclature is symbolized in the “treasure” chambers that are located immediately next to the Spirit (קֹדֶשׁ הַקֳּדָשִׁים-Holy of Holies) and the Mind (הַקֹּ֙דֶשׁ֙-Holy Place) of Adonai Eloheinu.

Observation #2.  In Attachment Theory, a theory that explains how our brains best grow and mature neurologically, the cardinal focus of the female brain is the “safety” and “security” of a mother’s offspring. In this theory we discover that there uniquely exists in the brains of women an innate set of extremely powerful bio-chemical devices and neurological circuitry that hard-wires them for the task of successfully sustaining and nurturing the lives of their children. It is this incredible (miraculous), innate, supremely powerful and personal love of a mother for her children that is subtly represented in the mashal of the woman and her ‘Lost Coin.’

Observation #3.  How does the mothering role apply to the woman in this mashal? The woman in the parable is a common peasant. She lives in a small dwelling (hut) with a dirt floor. She has ten very small silver coins (drachmas). Each drachma is equal to about one day of pay. So this Jewish peasant woman possesses a life savings that is worth about ten days of emergency funds.

Observation #4.  If the woman was single (which we believe is highly unlikely) these ten very small coins would have represented her dowry. The ten drachmas would be a symbol of her readiness for marriage, to set up housekeeping, and become a mother. The single woman would have received this starter kit for marriage and motherhood from her father. No matter how small and trivial the amount of commercial value these ten little coins might appear to have to you and me, to this young Jewish peasant woman these little coins would be of immense value because they symbolize her right to leave her family, get married, set up a household, and start a family of her very own.

Observation #5.  If the woman was married already (and we believe this to be the case) then the ten coins are representative of the great trust that has been placed upon her. These ten coins are a symbol of the legitimacy of her marriage (a sign of her parent’s approval and support). Also, the ten coins are insurance that the woman’s new husband and her present (or future) children will be able to exist in a higher state of safety and security than would otherwise be the case; if she had no economic resources at all.

Observation #6.  In an ancient Jewish peasant family the woman’s husband was considered successful in his job (as a day laborer) if he only brought home enough to feed his family for the day. In the life of the barely subsisting agrarian peasant class there were no extra funds for savings; at least not during the first few years of the marriage. The only savings that a new young family might possess would be those funds that the wife possessed by way of her dowry and the gifts that the father of the husband might have given to his son and his new daughter-in-law.

It needs to be pointed out that this harsh circumstance of a peasant family barely surviving on a day to day basis is still a reality in some parts of our modern world. One world hunger estimate is that almost eight million people will die of hunger this year (cf. “Facing the Future, Think Quest, Hunger Relief Organization”).

Fortunately in ancient Israel there were laws to protect and provide for the poor (the practice of gleaning, alms for the poor, etc.). However, these allowances were no guarantee of survival. In the ancient Jewish agrarian subsistence economy starvation was a widespread possibility for the families of the peasant class in times of famine. In addition: war and pestilence were also times of great threat; not just to the Jewish families of the peasant class but even for those Jewish families that were economically advantaged.

Observation #7.  The ten small silver coins were from the woman’s dowry. Ideally in the time of Messiah a Jewish peasant woman would hope to preserve all of her dowry, including any wedding gift the new father-in-law had given her, so as to assure her husband and near future children of enjoying some degree of safety and security. In complete poverty everyone in the family was dependent on the income of the day. No income. No food. And in a matter of just a few days no food meant the grim possibility of malnutrition and even starvation. The ten little silver coins, therefore, represent a life or death cushion of safety and security for the woman to ensure the day to day survival of her husband, her children, and herself. This means that saving just “one” of these little coins could represent a life or death measure of necessary safety for her husband and her “little ones.”

Observation #8.  This means the woman finding her lost coin was more than an exercise in the mere vanity of preserving her dowry. Finding her lost coin was the woman’s most effective means of insuring the continued health, safety, and welfare of her children. Losing even one coin, therefore, was completely unacceptable to the woman because it meant the erosion of her provision for ‘her’ children. We also believe that it was the desire of this Jewish peasant woman not only to hold on to her dowry but to sacrificially accrue sufficient resources so that she and her husband might one day (in the future) provide a dowry for her daughters; that they too might one day be blessed to find a suitable husband, get married, give birth to children and raise-up little ones of their own.

Observation #9.  In contrast to the shepherd’s stoic unemotional love of his lost sheep that principally focused on his doing his duty (cf. Parable #30), the woman’s love of her lost coin was not one that was primarily born out of her duty (relevant as that may be). Rather the woman’s love was imbued with high emotion because of the immense relational importance and worth of what the coins meant to her. The love of the ten silver coins represent the woman’s love of her parents. It represents her parents’ honoring desire that she establish a household of her own, give birth to her own children, and above all that she pass on to her children and ‘their’ grand-children the treasured convictions, beliefs, and values that had been inherited by their Jewish ancestors. Therefore, all ten coins represent a baseline of cherished family spiritual inheritance and security; entrusted to the woman by her father and mother; that is at the very least to be preserved; and ideally is to be increased.

Observation #10. Therefore, the Jewish peasant woman in the mashal of the Lost Coin symbolizes a lavish “person-oriented” love that passionately seeks to provide for one’s children. The loving goal is to “Preserve the Dowry.” For Preservation of the Dowry represents the fulfillment of the woman’s ultimate mission which is to “Preserve the treasured way of life of her ancestors that it may be ‘passed-on’ to her children.”

The Dowry of the Patriarchs:

The Dowry (Aramaic, Nedunya) is that property that a wife brings to her husband in marriage. In the ancient practice of the dowry a price or ransom (“mohar“) was paid for the bride (1, 2, 3).

First, this mohar (מֹ֣הַר) was given in the dual form of a ransom to the father and a gift to the bride. Both these requirements were met in the mohar of Eliezer (mohar of the “Helper“) the servant of Abraham, given on behalf of the groom Isaac. Eliezer delivered costly gifts to Rebekah when he betrothed her for his master’s son Isaac.

Second, Isaac’s son Jacob served Laban (Rebekah’s brother) for fourteen years to ransom his two daughters (Rachel and Leah) and an additional seven years (twenty-one years in all) so that Jacob possessed livestock of his own sufficient for him to support his own family independent of his father-in-law’s help.

Third, in the time of the Patriarchs a ransom was paid by the groom (and his family) to the father of the bride; as well as gifts were given to the bride herself.

The Daughter’s Property:

Besides the ancient custom of the bridegroom making gifts to the bride and paying a ransom to her father the Torah also makes frequent mention of property. The dowry could be coinage, real estate, servants, wardrobe, etc. which the woman brought to her husband at marriage. Rebekah brought to her husband Jacob female slaves from her father’s household (cf. Genesis 24:59, 61). Laban made similar gifts to his daughters Leah and to Rachel at the time of their marriage to Jacob (Genesis 24: 29; 29:24, 29).

The Bride’s inheritance from her Father’s house:

When Jacob made up his mind to leave the house of his father-in-law and return to the land of Canaan, he called his wives out into the field of their deceitful, shrewd father (his father-in-law) Laban and informed them of his intention. They expressed their approval and their willingness to go with him in these words (Genesis 31:14-16): Have we any longer a share or an inheritance in our father’s house? Have we not been reckoned by him as foreign women? As a matter of fact he has sold us; indeed he has eaten up our money. All the wealth that Elohim has taken away from our father belongs to us and our children. Do what Elohim has told you to do.” This Torah narrative gives us a valuable glimpse into the social ideals and customs that later served as a guide and foundation to the practice of the dowry in Israel.

The evolution of the Dowry:

In the Tanakh at marriage Caleb gave to his son-in-law Othniel a field of springs (Judges 1:15). Solomon received from his father-in-law Pharaoh a city as the portion (שִׁלֻּחִ֔ים-“shillucḥim”) of the princess (I Kings 9:16). Later the practice of giving a dowry to a daughter entirely superseded the gift or ransom given by the groom. Therefore, it (nedunya) became the custom that a father must give some of his property to his daughter when she is about to be married.

The Father of the Bride provides the Dowry:

There was no minimum amount specified. The father was only obliged to give in proportion to his means. The dowry might be withheld by the bride’s father if the groom abused his bride during the period of betrothal. In such a case the money was deposited with a trustee until reconciliation and peaceful accord was established in the family. If the father was unable to pay the sum he had promised as a dowry to his daughter, the groom could not on that account postpone the marriage, but he had to either marry her or to divorce her. These ancient marriages were consummated up to a year after they were established in a written legal agreement.

The Groom and his Father provide the Bride a Gift:

In the case of a poor peasant girl: If the groom agreed not to ask for the dowry, then he became obligated to provide her with all the property necessary (i.e. garments, etc.).

Poverty in the biblical narrative is oftentimes a paradoxical symbol for the spiritual riches of being ahumble person.

There is also the custom of the groom’s father contributing a gift to the dowry. The groom’s father can subscribe a proportional sum to the dowry; usually less than that given by the bride’s father, excepting when that father was very poor or in the special case that the bride was a slave in the household of the man she was marrying.

The Marriage Contract:

The dowry that the woman brought to her husband, whether real estate, slaves, or movable property, was recorded in the marriage contract (Ketubah). Custom decided what the sum (appraised value) of the dowry property mentioned in the marriage contract should be. This sum then became a claim upon the husband’s property equally with the ketubah itself; so that when the husband died or divorced her the woman could collect from his estate both the sum stipulated in the marriage contract and the value of her dowry.

Insurance for the Future:

Since a divorced wife in the Orient is entitled to all her wearing apparel, for this reason much of her personal dowry consists of coins on her headgear, or jewelry on her person. This becomes wealth to her in times of crisis (famine, war, death of husband) or when her marriage ends in divorce. This is why the dowry is so important to the bride and so much emphasis is placed upon it in the negotiations that precede marriage. Therefore, the Jewish peasant woman who had ten silver coins and lost one was greatly concerned over the loss because it was likely one-tenth of all her marriage dowry.

The Sanctifying Presence of a Minyan – 3 Points:

In the Scriptures and Judaism the number ten bears a special meaning related to the corporate sanctification of a marriage and other legal matters; as well as a considerable number of worship activities. [Three points:]

First point, in Judaism a minyan is the quorum of ten Jewish male adults that is required for certain religious obligations. The word minyan itself comes from the Hebrew root “maneh” meaning to count or to number. The word is related to the Aramaic word “numbered” (mene) appearing in the writing on the wall in Daniel. The most frequent activity requiring a minyan is public prayer. Consequently, the term minyan is most commonly used to refer to a prayer service (worship).

Second point, the sages derive the requirement of a minyan (the presence of “ten” men) for “matters of sanctity.” This belief is arrived at by the synthesis of the meanings of seven Torah terms that are derived from (principally) five scripture verses:

Torah term #1.  “Midst.” The word midst is referenced in the verses: “And I shall be sanctified in the midst (be-tok) of the children of Israel” (Leviticus 22:32); and “Separate yourselves from the midst (mi-tok) of the congregation” (Numbers 16:21).

Torah terms #2 & #3. “Sanctify” and “Separate.” “And I shall be sanctified (ve-niq-dash-ti) in the midst of the children of Israel; I am the Adonai who sanctifies (me-qa-dish-kem) you.” (Leviticus 22:32); and “separate (hi-bad-lu) yourselves.” (Numbers 16:21).

Torah term #4. “Congregation.” The word “congregation” is used in the verse: “Speak to all the congregation (‘edah) of the children of Israel, and say to them: You shall be holy” (Leviticus 19:2). The term “congregation” is also used in another verse that describes the ten spies who brought back a negative report of the Land of Israel:  “How long shall I bear with this evil congregation (‘edah) which murmur against me?” (Numbers 14:27).

Torah term #5.  “Holy” (which is the root word for “sanctify” and “separate,” kadosh (also spelled qadosh): “You shall be holy (k’do-shim), for I the Adonai your Elohim am holy (ka-dosh).” (Leviticus 19:2).

Torah term #6.  “Children of Israel.” The sixth term is based on the words “children of Israel” which appears in the following two verses: “And the children of Israel (bnei Israel) came to buy among those that came” (Genesis 42:5). “And I shall be sanctified in the midst of the children of Israel (bnei Israel).” (Leviticus 22:32).

Torah term #7. The number“Ten:” This seventh and final term is indicated by the association of the word “congregation” with the number of the “ten” (‘eser) spies (cf. Numbers 13:1-14:4). This requirement of a quorum of ten men for purposes of sanctification is witnessed to in the narrative of the kinsman redeemer Boaz’ marriage of Ruth; as it is written, “He [Boaz] took ten men (a minyan) of the elders of the city and said, ‘Sit down here.’ So they sat down.”

The witness, therefore, of the ten men was assembled for the purpose of being a witness to and providing a sanctifying presence for the Levirate marriage (called Yibum in Hebrew) of Boaz to Ruth.

Third point: A quorum of ten men is a symbol of sanctification. Without a quorum of ten men there is an insufficient number to facilitate community worship. Worship has to do with evoking the Presence of the Holy One. For a community of Yehudim to properly call upon the Presence of Adonai Eloheinu to worship him a (symbolic) fullness of ten men is required. Nine men are insufficient.

From the multiple scriptural witnesses and seven Torah terms referenced above it is believed that if the term “congregation” refers to the ten spies, then the phrase “you shall be holy” refers to a “congregation” of ten. If the “children of Israel” refers to the ten sons of Jacob who descended to Egypt to obtain food during the famine then the “sanctification” among the “children of Israel” must (minimally) occur in the presence of at least ten men.

Therefore, it is concluded that “sanctification” (love/worship of the Presence of Adonai) must occur in the “midst” of a “congregation” of at least ten men. This means related to the ten silver coins it is important once again, as was the case in the last mashal of the Lost Sheep that we realize that the mashal of the Lost Coin (the 10th coin) has a corporate background to it (explicit to the Messiah’s choice of the number Ten).

Therefore, the marriage of the (humble) Jewish peasant woman is not considered as an individual affair. We are reminded that every Jewish marriage is one that is instituted by Adonai (our Creator) for the purpose of His raising up His own (זֶ֣רַע אֱלֹהִ֑ים) Seed (cf. Malachi 2:15). So this woman’s marriage is instituted by the Almighty and as we shall see next in the following narrative of Ruth: This woman’s marriage was only official in the eyes of the Almighty when it was witnessed to by a quorum of ten.

The presence of ten is required in every wedding so that the marriage is sanctified (so the Presence of “Adonai is There”

In the case of the marriage of the (widowed) Jewish peasant woman, Ruth to the rich man Boaz, a quorum of ten was required so that their individual marriage could be incorporated into the much more significant (larger, corporate) marriage of Adonai Elohim to all of Israel. In conclusion, therefore, it is an important fact to keep in mind that such a quorum of ten (with its corporate sanctification and explicit witness to the marriage of Adonai Eloheinu to all Israel) was required at the wedding of the  humble Jewish peasant woman (Jewess) who is the central character in the thirty-first mashal of the Messiah.

Corporate witness of the Marriage of the Jewish Peasant Woman – 4 Insights:

Insight #1.  This belief and practice of a minyan (in the marriage of the Jewess who lost the coin) as illustrated in the narrative of the sanctification of Ruth’s (levirate) marriage to her “kinsman redeemer” husband Boaz demonstrates that marriage is never an individual matter alone. For the ultimate purpose of marriage is for all of us to participate in the larger (Mystery) of Adonai’s Marital union to the entire Assembly of Redeemed Israel.

Insight #2.  All sanctified Jewish marriages, therefore, are but a participation in the ultimate corporate marriage of Adonai Eloheinu to Israel; which in turn, through the eventual conversion of all the Gentile peoples and nations of the world will become the means through which all of Redeemed Humanity will come to faith in Adonai (our Creator).

Insight #3.  Therefore  no “matter of sanctification” in the life of the children of Israel is more important than that of participation in the Mystery of Marriage. This is so because Adonai said in Malachi that He created the institution of marriage so that He might have “zera Elohim” (זֶרַע אֱלֹהִים). This literally means that Adonai created the institution of Marriage so that He might draw out “Seed from Himself.”

Insight #4.  The story of Ruth is a narrative template of the (mystery) of the Jewish corporate Marriage and Redemption of Adonai to Israel. What could be more important for us to study than that? Therefore, a minyan (an assembly of Ten) is present in the narrative of Ruth’s marriage to the Kinsman Redeemer Boaz so that the Union of the one couple, in the institution of marriage, is ultimately seen as an integral part of the larger “corporate” Union of the entire “Assembly” of Israel with Adonai Avinu.

The Redemptive Narrative of the Levirate Marriage to the widowed Jewish Peasant Woman:

“Now Boaz went up to the gate and sat down there, and behold, the close relative of whom Boaz spoke was passing by, so he said, ‘Turn aside, friend, sit down here.’ And he turned aside and sat down. He took ten men of the elders of the city and said, ‘Sit down here.’ So they sat down. Then he said to the closest relative, ‘Naomi, who has come back from the land of Moab, has to sell the piece of land which belonged to our brother Elimelech. So I thought to inform you, saying, ‘Buy it before those who are sitting here, and before the elders of my people. If you will redeem it, redeem it; but if not, tell me that I may know; for there is no one but you to redeem it, and I am after you.’ And he said, ‘I will redeem it.’ Then Boaz said, ‘On the day you buy the field from the hand of Naomi, you must also acquire Ruth the Moabitess, the widow of the deceased, in order to raise up the name of the deceased on his inheritance.’ The closest relative said, ‘I cannot redeem it for myself, because I would jeopardize my own inheritance. Redeem it for yourself; you may have my right of redemption, for I cannot redeem it.’ Now this was the custom in former times in Israel concerning the redemption and the exchange of land to confirm any matter: a man removed his sandal and gave it to another; and this was the manner of attestation in Israel. So the closest relative said to Boaz, ‘Buy it for yourself.’ And he removed his sandal. Then Boaz said to the elders and all the people, ‘You are witnesses today that I have bought from the hand of Naomi all that belonged to Elimelech and all that belonged to Chilyon and Machlon. Moreover, I have acquired Ruth the Moabitess, the widow of Machlon, to be my wife in order to raise up the name of the deceased on his inheritance, so that the name of the deceased will not be cut off from his brothers or from the court of his birth place; you are witnesses today.’ All the people who were in the court, and the elders, said, ‘We are witnesses. May Adonai make the woman who is coming into your home like Rachel and Leah, both of whom built the house of Israel; and may you achieve wealth in Ephrathah and become famous in Bethlehem. Moreover, may your house be like the house of Perez whom Tamar bore to Judah, through the offspring which Adonai will give you by this young woman.'”

“So Boaz took Ruth, and she became his wife, and he went in to her. And the Adonai enabled her to conceive, and she gave birth to a son. Then the women said to Naomi, ‘Blessed is Adonai who has not left you without a redeemer today, and may his name become famous in Israel. May he also be to you a restorer of life and a sustainer of your old age; for your daughter-in-law, who loves you and is better to you than seven sons, has given birth to him.’”

The Redemptive Narrative of the Line of David Began Here…

“Then Naomi took the child and laid him in her lap, and became his nurse. The neighbor women gave him a name, saying, ‘A son has been born to Naomi!’ So they named him Obed. He is the father of Jesse, the father of David. Now these are the generations of Perez: to Perez was born Hezron, and to Hezron was born Ram, and to Ram, Amminadab, and to Amminadab was born Nahshon, and to Nahshon, Salmon, and to Salmon was born Boaz, and to Boaz, Obed, and to Obed was born Jesse, and to Jesse, David.” The Book of Ruth is a story of redemptive love and devotion (chesed). Ruth was a Gentile who became a Jew. Ruth is the Great Grandmother of King David, whose regal descendant is the Messiah Yeshua.

The Story of Ruth is a picture of the Missionary Faith of National Israel.

Tiny Israel is destined to one day become the Mother Nation of all the nations of the world. We believe this is why the lost coin was identified by the Messiah as a Greek “drachma” (the universal secular coinage at the time); rather than as a Jewish half-shekel (the sacred temple-tax coin). We believe that after the (imminent) triumphant return of Messiah tiny Israel will be expanded into an International Commonwealth of Israel composed of 153 nations that will be organized into ten districts; with Israel being the Central District and the Millennial Temple of Ezekiel’s vision being the only place on earth where temple worship will be allowed. At that time the Messiah will universally rule over all of the nations and peoples of the world. Ruth’s husband Boaz is her *go’el, her kinsman redeemer.

*Go’el (גואל) is a Hebrew term which comes from the word ga’al (“to redeem”), hence the meaning “Redeemer;” which in the scriptures and the rabbinical tradition denotes a person who as the nearest relative of another accepts the responsibility of restoring the rights of another. There are several laws of the Torah that are referenced in the Megillah of Ruth (המגילה של רות), four of these are:

Law #1. The laws of redemption (Leviticus 25:32-55);
Law #2. The laws of family inheritance (Numbers 27:8-11); and
Law #3. The laws of yibbum or “levirate marriage” (Deuteronomy 25:5-10); and
Law #4.  The law that all the children must be holy that they are to be separated (undivided devotion). The people of Israel (corporate) are to be married solely to Adonai Eloheinu and that they are not to be assimilated into the surrounding cultures (Exodus 3:12; Deuteronomy 7:1-6; 14:2).

In the narrative of Ruth, the Kinsman Redeemer Boaz corrects the failure of his relatives, the sons of Elimelech and Naomi, to produce children to carry on the family line. The meanings of the names of the two sons of Elimelech (the Almighty is My King) are quite a contrast to that of Boaz (the “Strong One”).

The names of the two sons of Elimelech mean “Weak” and “Wasting Away.” It is obvious, therefore, in the meanings of this redemptive narrative of Ruth (the “Companion”) that the Spirit is revealing to the children of Israel how to leave behind all that is “weak,” “sick,” “wasting away,” and “destruction” to us and be corporately restored to a general state of spiritual health and useful “Service” to Adonai. The meaning of the name of the child born to Boaz and Ruth is the “Servant” (Oved).

In conclusion: the necessity that the response of faith in the Messiah be a “corporate” one is explicitly indicated in the story of Ruth in the requirement that there be a quorum of ten present at the City Gates (the City Hall) of Bethlehem to bear witness to and approve of the marital union of the Jewish Kinsman Redeemer Boaz to the converted Gentile Bride Ruth. Only in this way could the child Oved and his children and his children’s children be sanctified; whose family line includes all of the progeny of the line of David, including his direct descendant the Messiah who forever stands in Adonai our King’s place as His Chosen Progeny (i.e. Servant), who is the Kinsman Redeemer of us all.

The drachma & the half-shekel Redemption of the Soul Tax – 5 Disclosures:

Disclosure #1.  The ten drachma coins that are the dowry of the Jewish peasant woman are silver coins. The word drachma is used in the Septuagint (Greek translation of the Tanakh; cf. Exodus 30:13, lit. one-half of two drachmas, i.e. one drachma) as the rendering of a “beqa” (temple half-shekel). The shekel is a weight in the Tanakh, not a coin (cf. Ezekiel 4:10). Metals mean something in the Scriptures. In Torah:

Gold is the metal of Divinity;
Silver is the metal of redemption; and
Copper (or bronze) is the metal of judgment.

Disclosure #2.  Jacob, in the name of father Abraham, used a silver coin of significant value to redeem an important plot of land that was located adjacent to Shechem. This sacred plot of land was located between Mount Ebal and Mount Gerizim.

Disclosure #3.  Moses instituted a temple tax that was used to build a silver foundation for the portable Tabernacle. This tax is referred to as the “atonement of the soul.” This atonement (ransom) of the soul offering indicates the importance of the (sacrificial) shedding of blood. The Machatzit HaShekel (מחצית השקל-Half-shekel) is made out of silver and this silver coinage represents the currency of our redemption. It represents the sacrifice of the shedding of blood for our redemption. For it is written:

“Without the shedding of blood (the sacrificed life) there can be no remission of sin.”

Disclosure #4.  The silver obtained by Moses from the 603,550 men who were counted as members of the Israeli exodus community was 100 talents and 1,775 shekels, according to the Tabernacle shekel (Exodus 38:25). The amount required was one “beqa” (or beka) per person; one ancient Jewish half a shekel or one ancient Greek drachma.

This ransom of the soul tax was assigned to every male over the age of twenty (Exodus 38:26). The 100 talents of silver were used to cast the bases for the Tabernacle and for the curtain. 100 bases of silver were made from the 100 talents, one talent for each base (Exodus 38:27). Moses also used the remaining 1,775 shekels to make the hooks for the Tabernacle posts, to overlay the tops of the posts, and to make their bands (Exodus 38:28).

Disclosure #5.  However, in the last nineteen centuries, due to the destruction of the Temple (70 CE), the atonement of the soul offering has become a charitable contribution designated to help those who are poor and in need. Since the atonement of the soul money is supposed to be used for the maintenance of the Temple, and we are His Temple not made ‘out of human hands,’ it is right that these half-shekel contributions be used to support the lives of the poor and needy.

Therefore, the silver Machatzit HaShekel (temple tax) speaks of the Redemption of our Souls that is collectively represented in Moses’ using the individual and corporate atonement of the soul (beka) offering  that symbolizes the redemptive foundation of the tabernacle (cf. Exodus 30:11-16).

The Silver Coin of Father Jacob – 4 Explanations:

Explanation #1.  When Jacob returned to Israel he came to the City of Shalem in Shechem (modern Nablus). Shalem means “Complete” and “Peace” In an act of prophetic role play this plot of land was purchased by Jacob for 100 pieces of silver called a “kesitah.” The kesitah is an ancient form of silver coinage that was stamped with the likeness of a Lamb. It represented the value of a flock of 100 sheep.

Explanation #2.  This sacred location is the first place where Abraham camped when he originally arrived in the promised land of Canaan (Genesis 12:6). The site was marked by an “Oak Tree at Moreh.”

Explanation #3.  The name Shechem is prophetic. It literally means “Shoulder” and it speaks of “Governance.” The governance of the (International) Kingdom of Adonai our God rests upon the Shoulders of His Messiah:

“For unto us a child is born, unto us a Son is given: and the Government shall be upon his Shoulder: and his Name shall be called Wonderful, Counselor, the Mighty All-powerful One, The Everlasting Father, The Prince of Shalom” (Isaiah 9:6).

Explanation #4. The Messiah purchased our peace (Shalem) through his blood. Redemption comes through the shedding of blood (the sacrificed life of the Messiah). This shedding of blood for the redemption of the people and land of Israel is indicated in the symbols of the silver kesitah shekel, and drachma coins.

The Mystery of the Ten Silver Coins:

Mystery #1.  There is one reference to the word drachma in the Tanakh (in the Septuagint). In this reference a drachma is treated as being equivalent to the temple half-shekel. Therefore, in the Scriptures an amount of ten drachma would be equivalent to five shekels.

Mystery #2.  The amount of five shekels is the exact amount of silver that is specified in the Torah for the redemption of the firstborn (פדיון היבן-pidyon haben; redemption of the child). Three verses apply to this ransom of the firstborn:

[Torah of the Firstborn #1]  “But if they are from a month even up to five years old, then your valuation shall be five shekels of silver for the male, and for the female your valuation shall be three shekels [cf. 30 or 10 X 3 shekels] of silver” (Leviticus 27:6).

[Torah of the Firstborn #2]  “You shall take five shekels apiece, per head [for the ransom of the firstborn]; you shall take them in terms of the shekel of the sanctuary, the shekel is twenty gerahs” (Numbers 3:47).

[Torah of the Firstborn #3]  “As to their redemption price, from a month old you shall redeem them, by your valuation, five shekels in silver, according to the shekel of the sanctuary, which is twenty gerahs” (Numbers 18:16).

Mystery #3.  Originally the firstborn son (בכור-bechor, bekor, the eldest) was to be the priest (kohen) of the Hebrew-Jewish family. As the bechor he would be required to offer avodah (עבודה-service, worshi[) on behalf of his other family members. Adonai Eloheinu said (Exodus 13:2):

The first issue of every womb among the Israelites is Mine.

Thus firstborn sons (הבנים הבכורים-the eldest sons) were sanctified and obligated to serve as kohanim (priests) from birth. We see evidence of this in the lives of the early patriarchs (our fathers) Abraham, Isaac, and even Jacob. Father Ya’akov received the blessing of the firstborn through transfer from his older brother Esau. Because the firstborn sons were consecrated as kohanim during the Exodus from Egypt Adonai (our Father) spared them when He issued the Tenth plague (המגיפה העשירית) which resulted in the death of the firstborn (of Egypt).

Mystery #4.   After the Exodus from Egypt, however, the Israelites committed the grievous sin of the Golden Calf, of which only the tribe of Levi was not guilty. Consequently Adonai decreed that the Levites were to take the place of the firstborn sons of Israel (Numbers 3:11-12). But since a firstborn son is technically a (disqualified) Kohen, he had to be substituted with a Kohen from the tribe of Levi, and therefore Adonai required that all firstborn sons (who were not themselves Levites or Kohens) must be redeemed from service to the Holy One by means of paying five shekels of silver (cf. Numbers18:15).

Mystery #5.  In the The Pidyon HaBen (פדיון הבן) Ceremony it is customary for a firstborn male (whose father or mother are not a Kohen or Levi) to undergo Redemption of the firstborn son.

The ceremony of redeeming the firstborn occurs on the *31st day after birth (Exodus 13:13; Numbers 18:16). Though the ritual cannot be performed on Shabbat because it involves the exchange of money.

[*Today is “Day #31” in the forty-nine day Countdown to Shavuot.]

When the son has established a claim to viability, the father is obligated to “redeem” him by giving five shekalim to a Kohen. This ritual symbolically relieves the child from service in the priesthood because Yehudim who are descendants of Aaron were given the responsibility in his place (Numbers 3:12-14). In conclusion:

The ten silver drachma coins are a veiled reference to the Redemption of the Firstborn.

The redemption of the firstborn is in view here because the Scriptures make the drachma equal to the half-shekel. Consequently, this in fact makes the ten drachmas (sanctification) of the dowry equal to the five shekels (by grace, His chesed) that is required for the redemption of the firstborn (Israel).

Interpretation (PaRDeS):

“What woman, if she has ten silver coins and loses one coin, does not light a lamp and sweep the house and search carefully until she finds it? When she has found it, she calls together her friends and neighbors, saying, ‘Rejoice with me, for I have found the coin which I had lost!’”

In our search for the meanings of the mashal of the Lost (Silver) Coin we have learned to study scripture with scripture.

We have studied the mashal in this manner because we believe that if we take one part out and remove that part from all of the other parts we’ll miss something. Therefore, with the help of the lamp of the Presence of the Spirit of Grace and Truth we have attempted to sweep the whole of the House of Scripture that we might carefully search out and find the obvious and hidden meanings of the silver coin that was lost. Therefore we have thoroughly searched out (as best we can) all of the redemptive and worshipful meanings of the words (d’varim):

Coin
Drachma
Half-shekel
Dowry (Endowment)
Sanctification
Silver
Ten
Three
Five

This search has led us to the Pardes (הפרדס-the Grove, the Orchard) – the four part (levels) of biblical discovery: Peshat (פשט), Remez (רמז), Derash (דרש), and Sod (סוד).

Level #1.  The plain, simple and direct discovery (פרשנות הפשט למקרא-Peshat). The women in the mashal is a common Jewish peasant. She lives in a small dwelling with a dirt floor. She has ten very small silver coins (drachmas). She lost one of the coins. She then thoroughly searched her house by an oil lamp and discovered her lost coin. The Jewish peasant woman then *enlisted her (family) friends and neighbors to celebrate with her over her good fortune in finding the valuable coin that she had previously lost.

*Her entire Jewish community.

Level #2.  The contextual discovery beyond just the literal sense (פרשנות טיפולוגית, דהיינו פרשנות שאינה מקישה מכתובים על כתובים-Remez). The women in the mashal is married. The ten coins are a part of the married woman’s dowry. They are a symbol of the the sanctity of her marriage (את קדושת נישואיה). Each drachma is equal to about one day of pay. So this Jewish peasant woman possessed a life savings that is worth about ten days of emergency funds.

The ten coins were insurance for her, her husband and her present (or future) children to exist in a higher state of safety and security than would otherwise be the case if she had no economic resources at all. The ten little silver coins, therefore, represent a life or death cushion of safety and security for the woman to ensure her family’s day to day survival. This means the woman’s finding her lost coin was more than an exercise in the mere vanity of preserving her dowry.

Finding her lost coin was the woman’s most effective means of insuring the continued health, safety, and welfare (שלם-Shalem) of her children.

Losing even one coin was completely unacceptable to the women because it meant the erosion of her complete provision for her husband and children.

Level #3.  The midrashic (מדרש-Midrash) metaphorical (comparative) meaning of these discoveries (דרש, “מדרש” מתייחס לשיטה של פירוש של פסוק מקראי ומעט גם ברמז-Derash).

In contrast to the shepherd’s stoic unemotional love of his lost sheep that principally focused on his doing his duty (cf. Mashal #30), the woman’s love of her family was the singular motivation for finding the coin that she lost.

The Jewish peasant (humble; poor in spirit) woman’s love of her family was not a love that was primarily born out of her duty (relevant as that may be). Rather the woman’s love was imbued with high emotion (passionate commitment) because of the immense relational importance and worth of what the coins meant to her.

In the emotional-relational lens of the woman’s love of her family we see the perspective of the love and compassion of our heavenly Parent (Avinu Shebashamayim). The cardinal focus of the female psyche (mind, soul, brain) is the safety and security of  her offspring. Women are innately hard-wired by El Shaddai (אל שדי-God the All-Sufficient One) for the task of successfully sustaining and nurturing the lives of their [Adonai our God’s) זֶ֣רַע אֱלֹהִ֑ים-zera Elohim] children.

The Divinely inspired sacrificial love of a mother is subtly and masterfully used to convey the all-surpassing love of El Shaddai.

Messiah’s midrashiac depiction of Abba Avinu (Abba our Father) as being loving and compassionate is well represented in the Tanakh. The word compassionate (רַחוּם-rachum) is derived from its root “womb” (רָ֫חֶם-rachem).  This is very much an affectionate term. The generous care of Abba Avinu for His children (Israel) is one that cherishes and attends with tenderness. The love of the All-Sufficient One is strong in its emotional content.

The emotional bond Adonai has with us is a natural bond that is stronger than that which a nurturing mother feels toward her babies.

Our heavenly Parent is compassionate toward all.  [He is compassionate even to His enemies (I Kings 8:50; Jeremiah 42:12).] Therefore, with His adopted people Israel, Abba Avinu affectionately looks upon us as a watchful mother caring for her children (I Kings 3:26; Micah 7:19).

El-Shaddai possesses a nurturing and affectionate nature.

This powerful truth is further communicated in the next Mashal of the Lost Son. In this way we discover that our heavenly Parent is as compassionate and tenderhearted as any concerned parent who completely loves his or her children; whether they are wayward or not. Just as a mother has tender love “for the child she has born,” our heavenly Parent  yearns to  affectionately love each and every person whom He has adopted as ‘His’ child. Moses taught us that our adoptive Parent (Adonai Avinu) abounds in loving-kindness.

The abundance of His loving-kindness (chesed) is incomparable in measure to anyone. His love does not end. His love is an everlasting love.

Abba our Father alone possesses a love that can deliver mercy and the forgiveness of sins. His eternal love is covenantal (ברית-a binding agreement between God and us) and we are the object of His love. He has pledged His irreversible and eternal fidelity to us. This focus on the covenantal love of Abba Avinu, therefore, leads us on into a discussion about the institution of Marriage itself. In Torah the Jewish marriage is never seen as just a matter between two people.

In Torah our Jewish weddings are always considered a participation in the larger marriage of Adonai to the entire congregation of Israel.

Furthermore, in the covenant with Adonai Eloheinu the “central purpose” of establishing the institution of marriage was not to fulfill the relational needs of the husband and the wife (as necessary as that is) but it was so that the Holy One might raise up before Him many children of His own (זֶ֣רַע אֱלֹהִ֑ים) from His own Seed (cf. Malachi 2:15).

The central purpose of Marriage then is the sanctification of the children of Adonai Avinu. The children are set apart to be the Seed of Adonai Avinu (His own spiritual DNA) that is in the world but not of it.  For this reason all three of the meshalim that we are presently studying (of the lost sheep, coin, and son) directly have to do with Adonai seeking to provide (as a shepherd, mother, and father) for the health, safety, and welfare of the lives of His family.

So in this mashal of the Lost Coin what is the most effective means that this dedicated Jewish peasant woman uses to achieve the noble end of providing for the (sanctification) of her children? The Answer:

Preserve the Dowry!

For preservation of  the dowry symbolizes the woman protecting and preserving the lives of her children; who are the offspring of Adonai Avinu. Therefore, since the dowry is of such great importance as to speak of the very preservation of the offspring of Adonai our Father and our God, what is it that the Messiah is inferring to us (at a deeper midrashic level) about  the sanctifying powers of the dowry specifically as it applies to the greater truth of Abba Avinu’s love for His adopted children of Israel? [Two points:]

First, we know that in the ancient practice of the dowry (Aramaic, Nedunya) a price or ransom (mohar) had to be paid by the groom for the bride (1 , 23). This necessity for an a perpetual ransom and redemption to be paid for the children of Israel—so that they might exist in a state of perpetual sanctification (physical and spiritual communion) with Adonai—is, in fact, the central point of the entire Mashal of the Lost Coin.

Second, when we get the Jewish midrashic hint of the entire matter of our corporate marital ransom and redemption:  Then we can go into the deeper meaning of what specifically is meant by the “temporarily lost” and soon to be “found” redemption that is in view here. And the Messiah’s hint is the woman had temporarily lost the coin!

Level #4.  The mystery that is hidden deep within the metaphorical meaning (ביאור הפסוקים על פי המשיח-Sod). This “matter of sanctity” in the life of the children of Israel is most important. This leads us to our final discovery of the Mystery (לָדַעַת אֶת־סוֹדוֹת) of the Mashal of the Lost Coin that we believe is summarized in the following five (brief) conclusions.

נגשו התלמידים ושאלו: מדוע אתה מדבר אלויהם במשלים? השיב ואמר: מפני שלכם נתן לדעת את סודות מלכות השמים, אך להם לא נתן. כי מי שיש לו נתון ינתן לו ושפע יהיה לו, אך מי שאין לו, גם מה שיש לו ילקח ממנו. לכן במשלים אני מדבר אלויהם, כי בראותם אינם רואים ובשמעם אינם שומעים אף אינם מבינים. ומתקימת בהם נבואת ישעיהו לאמר: שמעו שמוע ואל-תבינו וראו ראו ואל-תדעו. השמן לב-העם הזה ואזניו הכבד ועיניו השע, פן-יראה בעיניו ובאזניו ישמע ולבבו יבין, ושב ורפא לו. פ

The talmidin (ha-talmidim) came and asked, “Why do you speak to them in meshalim?” He (Mashiach) answered and said, “Because to you He {Adonai Avinu] has given knowledge of the secrets of the kingdom of Heaven, but to them it is not given.” [Those who do not “hear or see”] For to those who have it will be given and abundance will be for him, but he who has none, even what he has will be taken away. For in their seeing they do not see, and when they hear they do not hear; nor do they understand. The prophecy of Yeshayah (Isaiah) comes to them, saying: “Listen well (שמעו שמוע), but you will not understand (אל-תבינו). Look closely (ראו), but you will not know (ואל-תדעו). Fatten the heart of this people, and make its ears heavy and seal its eyes, so that it will not see with its eyes (פן-יראה בעיניו) or hear with its ears (ובאזניו ישמע) or understand with its heart (ולבבו יבין) or repent and be healed (ושב ורפא לו).”

 אשרי עיניכם הרואות ואזניכם השומעות. אמן. אומר אני לכם, נביאים וצדיקים רבים נכספו לראות את אשר אתם רואים ולא ראו, ולשמע את אשר אתם שומעים ולא שמעו. פ

[But as for you] “Happy (אשרי-blessed) are your eyes that see, and your ears that hear. Amen. I say to you, many prophets and righteous men longed to see what you see and did not see, and to hear what you hear and did not hear. “

Conclusion #1. The ten drachma coins are a reference to the corporate nature of the temporarily lost redemption. The requirement of the ten (a minyan) is a symbolic means of Messiah telling Israel that the redemption that has been lost (that must and will be searched for, found and reclaimed) is a corporate redemption and sanctification. This we know in the marital and worship context because neither activity is valid without a quorum of ten being present (cf. paragraphs above about the sanctifying presence of a minyan).

Conclusion #2. The missing silver (the metal of redemption) drachma coin is a sign that the corporate sanctification of the (worshiping) congregation and assembly of Israel is missing.

Conclusion #3. Since the missing drachma coin is identified in the Torah as being the half-shekel, we know that the redemption of the soul coin is what is specifically missing (cf. Septuagint version of Exodus 30:13; and paragraphs above about the redemption of the soul).

Conclusion #4.  We also know that when the lost meaning of the redemption of the soul is searched out, discovered and corporately restored to the people of Israel then the redemption of Israel will be complete and its full sanctification be restored.

Conclusion #5.  This truth is underscored by the fact that ten drachmas (in Greek silver coinage) converts exactly into the same amount that is specified as the required ransom amount for the redemption of the firstborn (i.e. five shekels:1, 2, 3).

It is important that we recall that in the Tanakh the number “five” is symbolic of the graciousness (chesed and chen) of Adonai.

Summary Conclusion:

So what does it mean, “the woman lost the coin?” In the Hebrew dualism the woman who is in view here is strongly associated to Adonai because she is His Bride. The woman is Israel. More specifically the woman in the context of this mashal is that assembly of men who are the stewards of the worship of Israel (sit in the seat of father Mosheh).

The missing Jewish silver coin is the redemption of our Messiah. When Israel finds her lost Messiah everything will be restored!

It is our contention that our past and present priests and rabbis of Judaism who are the ones [who live outside of knowing the sodit-mystery of Messiah] who have lost track of where the fulfillment of all redemption resides. It resides in the Individual Messiah of Isaiah 53.

National Israel (עם ישראל) is not the sinless Messiah because Israel is not without sin and, cannot redeem itself.

Therefore, only when we (Israel) find (see under the Light of the Hebrew Scriptures) our Messiah will our salvation, our redemption be fully restored; only then will we act as the redeemed, holy (fully sanctified) Firstborn Son-Nation and fulfill our Divine destiny to be the Servant-leader nation that is a blessing to all of the nations, peoples, and families of the world!

NEXT, PARABLE #32, LOST (PRODIGAL) SON…

Messiah in Yom HaBikkurim Chapter 51 >>