Saturday, October 23, 2010

40-less-1 activities prohibited on Sabbat

And the LORD spoke unto Moses, saying: 'Verily ye shall keep My sabbaths, for it is a sign between Me and you throughout your generations, that ye may know that I am the LORD who sanctify you. Ye shall keep the sabbath therefore, for it is holy unto you; every one that profaneth it shall surely be put to death; for whosoever doeth any work therein, that soul shall be cut off from among his people. Six days shall work be done; but on the seventh day is a sabbath of solemn rest, holy to the LORD; whosoever doeth any work in the sabbath day, he shall surely be put to death. Wherefore the children of Israel shall keep the sabbath, to observe the sabbath throughout their generations, for a perpetual covenant. It is a sign between Me and the children of Israel for ever; for in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, and on the seventh day He ceased from work and rested. '

Exodus 31:12-17

Jewish law (halakha), especially the Mishna Shabbat 7:2 identifies 40-less-1 (=39) categories of activity prohibited on Shabbat.  Many rabbinical scholars have pointed out that these regulations of labour have something in common : they prohibit any activity that is creative, or that excercises control or dominion over one’s environment.

Many of these activities are also prohibited on the Jewish holidays listed in the Torah, although there are significant exceptions permitting carrying and preparing food under specific circumstances.

Mishna is a Jewish oral traditions believed to be received by Moses at Mount Sinai in parallel with the Torah.  Thus it itself is authoritative, and does not cite a written scriptural basis for its laws.  By 220CE, much of the Oral Law was redacted by Rabbi Judah HaNasi.

Meaning of “Work”

“Work” in English is translated from Hebrew word “melakha”, but the word does not correspond to Hebrew definition.

The Rabbis notted that in Genesis 2:1-3, God was ‘ceasing from creation’.  The same word “melakha” is used in Exodus 31:1-11 (making of the Tabernacle) and 31:12-17 (keep Shabbat as a day of rest), which has a stong element of ‘creation’ or ‘creativity’.


There are 2 main ways to divide the activities into groups: one is according to work needed to make the Tabernacle; the other according to the work needed for the man himself.

1. Planting זורע
2. Plowing חורש
3. Reaping קוצר
4. Binding sheaves מעמר
5. Treshing דש
6. Winnowing זורה
7. Selecting  בורר
8. Grinding  טוחן
9. Sifting מרקד
10.Kneading לש
11.Baking אופה
12.Shearing wool גוזז צמר
13.Scouring/Laundering/Washing wool  מלבנו
14. Beating/Combing wool מנפצו
15.Dyeing צובע
16.Spinning טווה
17.Weaving מיסך
18.Making two loops עושה שני בתי נירין
19.Weaving at least two threads אורג שני חוטין
20.Separating two threads פוצע שני חוטין
21.Tying קושר
22.Untying מתיר
23.Sewing at least two stitches תופר שתי תפירות
24.Tearing for the purpose of sewing  קורע על מנת לתפור שתי תפירות
25.Trapping צד צבי
26.Slaughtering שוחט
27.Flaying מפשט
28.Salting/curing hide מעבד
29.Scraping hide ממחק
30.Scoring משרטט
31.Cutting hide indo pieces מחתך
32.Writing כותב
33.Erasing מוחק על מנת לכתוב שתי אותיות
34.Building בונה
35.Tearing something down סותר
36.Extinguishing a fire
37.Igniting a fire
38.Applying the finishing touch מכה בפטיש
39.Transferring between domains מוציא מרשות לרשות / הוצאה

Thursday, October 14, 2010


Matthew 10:2-4 ; 
Mark 3:16-19
Luke 6 :13-16
Simon Peter
Simon Peter
James, son of Zebedee
John, son of Zebedee
James, son of Alphaeus
James, son of Alphaeus
Judas, son of James
Simon the Zealot
Simon the Zealot
Judas Isacariot
Judas Iscariot

The term “Apostle” is derived from the New Testament’s Greek word “πόστολος (  apostolos ) ”, meaning ‘one who is sent forth as a messenger’. 

Traditionally, Jesus is said to have 12 Apostles who spread the Gospel after his Crucifixion.  

The 4 Gospels give varying names of the 12 Apostles.   

Gospel of Luke lists differently the 12 Apostle from Gospels of Mark and Matthew.  Gospel of Luke lists “Judas, son of James” instead of “Thaddeus”. 

Gospel of John never offers a complete list of Apostles, although it did mention about “the Twelve”. 
James son of Alphaeus, Matthew and Simon the Zealot are not mentioned at all in Gospel of John.
Nathanael was mentioned in Gospel of John, yet not in other gospels.  He has traditionally identified with Bartholomew, “Nathanael Bar-tholomew”, but this identification is disputable.  
There is also no separation of “apostle” and “disciples”.   

After Judas Iscariot betrayed Jesus and then in guilt committed suicide, the Apostles numbered 11.  Between the Ascension of Christ and Pentecost, the 11 Apostles elected Matthias as replacement, by casting lots.

Paul, although was not of the 12 Apostle, described himself as an apostle ( Roman 1:1 ).  He referred himself as the Apostle to the Gentiles ( Romans 11:13 ), and often defend his apostolic authority ( 1 Corinthians 9 )

Other NT’s apostles :
Andronicus and Junia ( Romans 16:7 )
Silas & Timothy ( 1 Thesalonians 2 :6 )
Apollo (  1 Corinthians 4:9 )

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Ichthys - Sign of the Fish

Ichthys ( more commonly spelt  Ichthus, or sometimes Ikhthus, is from Greek word χθύς
, capitalized ΙΧΘΥΣ or ΙΧΘΥC ) is ancient word for ‘fish’.  It was used by early Christians as a secret symbol.

Ichthys can be read as an acrostic, a word formed from the first letters of several words.  It complies to “ Jesus Christ, God’s son, savior”,
in ancient Greek "ησος Χριστός, Θεο ͑Υιός, Σωτήρ",
which reads as Iēsous Christos, Theou Huios, Sōtēr.

An ancient adaptaion of ichthys is a wheel which contains the letters ΙΧΘΥΣ superimposed such that th result resembles an eight-spoked wheel.

According to traditin, ancient Christian, during their persecution by Roman Empire in the first few centuries after christ, used the fish symbol to mark meeting place and tombs, or to distinguish friends from foes.