Sunday, March 29, 2015

To Life - one man's vision; who will join me?

…To Life  :  A Vision for Recovery… [1] [2] [3]

L'Chaim: long held as a toast offered before drinking, the phrase l’chaim has become analogous with the English rendering “Here’s to life!” Whether or not the expression is correct (some would say la’chaim is the grammatically correct way), or as just a Yiddish idiom used to toast a drink, the sentiment of “to life” is an appropriate one in the context of recovery from addiction.  For what is an addiction? Simply put, it is a “pleasure” that becomes an obsession, an obsession whose main goal is to maim, kill and destroy.  Whatever form this obsession takes, be it drugs, alcohol, gambling, whether it manifests itself in some form of a sexual nature or any of the other myriads of practices it can assume, the end result is always the same – lives are ruined, families are destroyed and the one who suffers from the addiction is physically, emotionally and spiritually maimed. 

I know this first-hand; for forty years I walked in the wilderness of addiction.  It is because of my experiences, because my Father in Heaven allowed me to go down this path for His glory, that I am seeking to reach out to those men and women who have found themselves trapped in their addictions, and to show them the way they can also be free, as I have been freed.  It is only in the power of God that this freedom can be found; it is my fervent prayer that the vision He has given me is His also, to show others the way to His freedom.

Any vision though has to have a beginning.  To understand my compassion for those lost and caught in the web of addiction, you have to know where I came from, what depths the Father rescued me from.  May this part be brief, but it must be touched upon.  This one has a story, a humble beginning in Wichita Kansas; molested by a stranger at the age of 13, this act transformed a boy and took away all he had ever known and turned him toward what would become a four decade spiral of rage and drug abuse. At the time though, I was too young to truly understand what had occurred and too ashamed to speak of it. Therefore, I at first reasoned that somehow I was the cause of this incident, regardless of the fact that I had done nothing instigate it except by being a target of opportunity. Unable to process the gamut of emotions that this event created, I turned my rage outward, passed the blame to my parents and eventually God. By the age of sixteen I was addicted, a user of every type of drug you could possibly name and that I could get access to.  I enlisted in the militar; by the time of my twenty-first birthday I was totally lost to the ways of the world and the adversary of God. I joined an outlaw motorcycle club, became a “cook” (manufacturing meth) and the cycle of destruction escalated and was unrelenting. In an effort to change my life, I got married, had a child but my behavior led to divorce. Several brushes with the law in subsequent years eventually landed me in prison in 1978; what could have been a wake-up call went unheeded and my life continued to spiral downhill at breakneck speed.

 The one bright spot in all this darkness was that I married again in 1983. I have four sons (all men now) but my addiction marred their childhoods. Things got so bad that I abandoned my new wife and children and took to living on the streets for almost two years. I justified it with lies so I could feed my addiction unimpeded, and became detached from life and reality, without hope and truly, I just didn’t care anymore.  The drugs had ravaged me – they turned my life upside down and all I wanted was for the source of my pain, the addiction itself, to be the means to end my pain, to end my life. 

Then something happened. After a particularly brutal binge, I contemplated suicide. I attended a “homeless feed” under a bridge in Tacoma Washington, ready to eat my “last meal” and meet my fate, someone spoke to me three words, three words that broke a dam in the heart.  At the feed a young boy, maybe ten or eleven years old, ran up to me with a can of soda and a blueberry muffin and smiled, and spoke these words:

“Jesus loves you.”

Those three words led to the next three words that saved a soul.  In the darkness, surrounded by pain, despair and no hope, three simple words led me my knees to cry out three more:

“God help me.”

Six words changed a life.  A life that wouldn’t have been moved if the Ruach hadn’t caused a young boy to speak the first three.  In that moment, I believe the heavens opened and the right hand of God descended and touched a broken lost heart.  Those that do God’s work do not always know if what they do has an impact.  I’m here to say what each of us do has the potential to change a life, by bringing with us a touch the Eternal. Words that sometimes we speak just as an afterthought have the ability to carry with them power and life, with which God can extend His hand in that moment those we speak to.   

The journey for me did not stop there. It took God and 6 more years to lead the way, but finally on my fifty-third birthday, forty years to the very day in the wilderness ended when God gave me these words:

Deuteronomy 8:1-3 (NKJV)
8     “Every commandment which I command you today ayou must 1be careful to observe, that you may live and bmultiply, 2and go in and possess the land of which the Lord 3swore to your fathers.
2 And you shall remember that the Lord your God cled you all the way these forty years in the wilderness, to humble you and dtest you, eto know what was in your heart, whether you would keep His commandments or not. 3 So He humbled you, fallowed you to hunger, and gfed you with manna which you did not know nor did your fathers know, that He might make you know that man shall hnot live by bread alone; but man lives by every word that proceeds from the mouth of the Lord. [4]

From these Scriptures comes the vision of hope, recovery and the way to L'Chaim – to life.

 …The Problem…
Throughout the years I sought a way out of the morass of addiction; I tried the twelve steps of AA and NA; I studied the major religions, tried the exotic as well as the mundane.  I checked myself into and out of different rehab programs, psychiatric programs, took all the anti-depressants and psycho-tropic cocktails the doctors push. I then turned toward the faith based programs, ones I won’t name here because while aspects of each have merit, the main reason they failed me was - me. That being said though, there was another problem in these programs, a common one that would take the Spirit to reveal. 

In each of these programs, the men (and depending on the program, women) that entered into these programs came in broken and lost.  This was to be expected. What wasn’t expected was what happened next.  After a brief period of detox, all who come into these type of faith based programs are expected to work – it is the way that these programs survive, a kind of “Christian Labor – Ready[5]” if you will.  How it works is that those in the program give of their efforts and time to working in and around the community for donations to help keep the ministries afloat.  Structure is something an addict needs – yet this type of program only enjoy at best a 20% success rating: only one or two out of ten will find God and be able to return to a functional life. This is backed up by studies done by some of the group’s themselves:   

“…AA's own data indicate that the success rate is no higher than 5%. Only one of every 20 members is sober at the end of one year. Drug oriented 12 step programs appear to just as ineffective…” [6] 

While there are several faith based rehab programs out there, most are out of the reach of the addict on the street, and truthfully? Most are not working for those in the pews either.  I speak this from experience.  In the twelve years I spent trying to “get free” through all the different resources available, all I saw was a revolving door.  Perhaps the best model out there is the late David Wilkerson’s “Teen Challenge” which in 1976 had a 67% success rate – yet that number has not changed: in studies conducted in 2007 and 2011, Teen Challenge© had essentially the same numbers : 60-74% were clean in the six months following their treatment.  This would seem to indicate a success story, yes? My own life speaks of the reality.  In the twelve years I tried, I had many “six month” experiences. I would stay clean and sober for six, seven, eight months – then go back to my own vomit again.  Others I spent time with had the same experiences – in and out within six to eight months.  Something was wrong – something was missing.  I learned that a person who says he is 30, 60, 90 days clean and sober is one who has only that – a period of sobriety. I had to learn that I had 30, 60, 90 days with the Lord – then I had something, yet I kept falling.  Why?

It would take God to answer that question.  All the programs were run basically the same way: come in, detox, go to work, have bible studies three times a day (between work), and be led and taught by men just as broken as you were.  To top it off, we were always immersed in New Testament studies – only.  I saw men and women in and out, in and out and I asked God – “Why the same Lord? What is it that I need to do, to learn?”  His answer was always the same:

You are here to learn what NOT to do.”

I thought that meant my behavior: it was because I had my flaws, but it was the program that also had the flaws.  Yahveh Elohim wants something different.  This is the vision.
…The Vision…
                All these programs lacked the one essential: a foundation.  A foundation, firm, biblical, rooted in truth. This foundation is only found in one place: the foundation of our faith, the bed rock of God, His instructions, His Torah.  Most of these programs have some sort of basis in the twelve steps and not the Torah. While the twelve step program has undoubtedly been the most copied program ever for dealing with the addict, there is another way of looking at it and that is from a Hebraic perspective.  I know that what follows is a long explanation but we to see the vision is to truly understand what it is meant to be.

In review, what are the twelve steps?
 Here are the steps we took, which are suggested as a program of recovery:

  1. We admitted we were powerless over alcohol—that our lives had become unmanageable.
  2. Came to believe that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.
  3. Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understood Him.
  4. Made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.
  5. Admitted to God, to ourselves, and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs.
  6. Were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character.
  7. Humbly asked Him to remove our shortcomings.
  8. Made a list of all persons we had harmed, and became willing to make amends to them all.
  9. Made direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others.
  10. Continued to take personal inventory and, when we were wrong, promptly admitted it.
  11. Sought through prayer and meditation to improve our conscious contact with God as we understood Him, praying only for knowledge of His will for us and the power to carry that out.
  12. Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these steps, we tried to carry this message to alcoholics, and to practice these principles in all our affairs.” (Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 59)[7]
Simplified, they are:
The Twelve Steps Made Simple

  1. There’s a power that will kill me.
  2. There’s a power that wants me to live.
  3. Which do I want? (If you want to die, stop here. If you want to live, go on.)
  4. Using examples from your own life, understand that selfishness, dishonesty, resentment and fear control your actions.
  5. Tell all your private, embarrassing secrets to another person.
  6. Decide whether or not you want to live that way anymore.
  7. If you want your life to change, ask a Power greater than yourself to change it for you. (If you could have changed it yourself, you would have long ago.)
  8. Figure out how to make right all the things you did wrong.
  9. Fix what you can without causing more trouble in the process.
  10. Understand that making mistakes is part of being human. (When you make a mistake, fix it, immediately if you can.)
  11. Ask for help to treat yourself and others like you the way you want your Higher Power to treat you.
  12. Don’t stop doing 1 through 11, and pass it on. [8]
Now, here is the addict’s take on the twelve steps:
The Twelve Steps Of Insanity

  1. We admitted we were powerless over nothing—that we could manage our lives perfectly and those of anyone who would let us.
  2. Came to believe that there was no power greater than ourselves, and the rest of the world was insane.
  3. Made a decision to have our loved ones turn their wills and their lives over to our care, even though they could not understand us at all.
  4. Made a searching and fearless moral inventory of everyone we knew.
  5. Admitted to the world the exact nature of everyone else’s wrongs.
  6. Were entirely ready to make others give us the respect we so rightfully deserved.
  7. Demanded that others do our will, because we were always right.
  8. Made a list of all persons who had harmed us, and became willing to go to any lengths to get even with them.
  9. Got direct revenge on such people wherever possible, except when to do so would cost us our lives or, at the very least, a jail sentence.
  10. Continued to take inventory of others, and when they were wrong, promptly and repeatedly told them about it.
  11. Sought, through complaining and medication, to improve our relations with others, as we would not understand them at all, asking only that they do things our way.
  12. Having had a complete physical, emotional and spiritual breakdown as a result of these steps, we blamed it on others and tried to get sympathy and pity in all our affairs.[9]
Now as entertaining as all this is, you can see the differences in one’s perspective.  The addict’s view of the twelve steps describes every addict in recovery – his/her ego walks tall, while their soul is dying.  Addicts are tough nuts to crack – just as lost souls are.  It takes the breaking of a man’s heart for God to be able to save them.  How can you break their heart if they don’t know sin? Who will tell them of sin if we don’t return to the foundation?

Following here is one person’s take on the twelve steps that gets us a bit closer to the vision of God:
Each Step in a Word

1.       Honesty
2.       Hope
3.       Faith
4.       Courage
5.       Truth
6.       Willingness
7.       Humility
8.       Accountability
9.       Justice
10.   Integrity
11.   God-consciousness
12.   Service[10]

Just as six words saved me, God’s vision can be broken down to six words (attributed to AA cofounder Dr. Bob Smith):
Trust God
Clean House
     Help Others [11]
Correspondingly, then, this is the vision of the program:
“…In Jewish tradition, trust in God is called bitachon, which literally means “confidence” or “security.” It means that one trusts in God to the extent that one feels certain that everything will be taken care of in the best possible way.

Housecleaning is known as cheshbon ha-nefesh—literally, “spiritual stocktaking.” This includes the process of honestly appraising one’s character and becoming willing to rectify one’s faults.

Helping others is the concept of tzedakah—often mistranslated as “charity,” but really meaning “justice.” Acting charitably means doing something you really don’t have to do, whereas justice means fulfilling a duty.

Fulfilling commandments such as “You shall surely open your hand to your brother” (Deuteronomy 15:11) or “Do not stand idly by your neighbor’s blood” (Leviticus 19:16) is not simply a nice thing to do. It’s an obligation…”[12]

Truly, only a program based in the fundamentals of our faith will work to set the addict free, for the fundamentals lead to God.  It is as my life verse spoke:

3 So He humbled you, fallowed you to hunger, and gfed you with manna which you did not know nor did your fathers know, that He might make you know that man shall hnot live by bread alone; but man lives by every word that proceeds from the mouth of the Lord.[13]

It is by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God that a man lives – and is set free.

The vision is then:

·         to bring those who desire to be free to the knowledge of God, to trust, believe and commit to Him
·         to be fearless in their recognizing their flaws and the courage to make amends
·         to fulfill their duty to God by helping others

I believe this can be done for it is His will it be done, for He says in His word:

Proverbs 29:18 (NET)
29:18 When there is no prophetic vision56 the people cast off restraint,57
but the one who keeps the law,58  blessed is he!59 ([14])

[Author’s Note]: In Hebrew, the word translated as law is:
 - Original: תּרה תּורה - Transliteration: Towrah - Phonetic: to-raw'
- Definition:
1. law, direction, instruction
a. instruction, direction (human or divine)
1. body of prophetic teaching
2. instruction in messianic age
3. body of priestly direction or instruction
4. body of legal directives
b. law
1. law of the burnt offering
2. of special law, codes of law
c. custom, manner
d. the Deuteronomic or Mosaic Law
- Origin: from H3384
- TWOT entry: 910d
- Part(s) of speech: Noun Feminine
- Strong's: From H3384; a precept or statute especially the Decalogue or Pentateuch: - law.
Total KJV Occurrences: 219   (From F. Brown, S. Driver, C. Briggs; J. Strong; J.H. Thayer. Brown Driver Briggs Hebrew Lexicon, Thayer’s Greek Definitions, and the Strong’s King James Concordance. Vol. Electronic Edition, e-Sword ver. 10.3.0 ©2000–2014 e-Sword by Rick Meyers, n.d.)

Ezekiel 18:23 (NET)
18:23 Do I actually delight in the death of the wicked, declares the sovereign Lord? Do I not prefer that he turn from his wicked conduct and live? [15]

So we see a correlation in God’s word, with the Torah and t’shuvah (repentance), turning from sin toward life – which is simply returning to God, though this process is not at all simple... 

It is in the three concepts of bitachon, cheshbon ha-nefesh, and tzedakah that the program will be based with the love of Messiah Yeshua and the Torah the foundation.

…The Goals…

                There has to be a set of goals established, a plan for success.  Such a program cannot be a copy of others, it has to find its path along the streams of living water that flow from the heart of God.  Therefore these are the main goals that must be met:

·         Bitachon: How does one come to trust God? It is all in the learning of Him, in seeing Him not only in the physical but the spiritual, and this takes study.  The program must be focused on study.  The primary goal is to create a place of safety and worship, a place the soul in torment can take a deep breath and rest.  My vision is a group home, for those coming in off the street, and for those who need the place of study.  Remember, some addicts are functional – they hold down jobs, they hide their addictions, but they still need to learn to trust God.  The addict has a God sized hole in their souls; they fill it with everything but God – that is what we want to change.

o   This takes a home
o   This takes resources
o   This involves all the community
o   This is only the start

·          Cheshbon ha-nefesh: The hard work begins here.  The nut and bolts of any recovery program lies within the realm of the individual “cleaning house”; the tricky part is knowing how to get there and keep those in recovery focused upon an honest assessment of their condition, the good as well as the not-so-good.

On this point, Rabbi Ben A.[16] says:

“…The purpose of this inventory is not only to be able to identify the character defects that we wish to have removed, but also to become aware of our assets. A truly honest self-appraisal will reveal our positive qualities as well. As someone once put it, "It's not called an immoral inventory."

It may be said that the difference between a character defect and a virtue is in how it is used. Each of us has been given unique characteristics. When those traits are channeled toward the service of G‑d, they are positive. When, however, our G‑d-given character traits are in breach of the purpose intended for them by the Creator, they become liabilities. The purpose of an accounting, therefore, is to discover not only what we have been given, but how we are using what we have and whether or not that use is in line with G‑d's will for us or our own. If our inventory is comprehensive and followed by action, we will have made ourselves ready to receive the Presence of G‑d…”[17]

To help re-align one’s heart and thinking is the goal of Cheshbon ha-nefesh and thus this is the purpose and main goal of our program.

·         Tzedakah: One definition given for tzedakah (what some call righteousness) is thus:

“The word tzedaka derives from the Hebrew word tzedek, "justice." Performing deeds of justice is perhaps the most important obligation Judaism imposes on the Jew.

"Tzedektzedek you shall pursue," the Torah instructs (Deuteronomy 16:20).

Hundreds of years later, the Talmud taught:

"Tzedaka is equal to all the other commandments combined" (Bava Bathra 9b).

From Judaism's perspective, therefore, one who gives tzedaka is acting justly; One who doesn't, unjustly.” [18]

What does it mean to act “justly”? To the Jew, this is seen as acts of charity, done because we are commanded, not because we want to follow our heart. 

Do the deed, they say, if your heart catches up, fine – what is important that the duty is performed.

In one way, this makes sense.  Is doing justice or mercy or living righteously something that comes naturally?  Is it something we just do, or is there something else that compels us to do the next right thing? 

Joseph Telushkin tells us about the way Dennis Prager, a nationally syndicated radio talk show host and author, suggested a hypothetical case, which has since been presented to several thousand Jewish and non-Jewish high school students:

‘…Suppose two people who have the exact same earnings and expenses are approached by a poor man in desperate need of food and money for his family. The first person, after listening to the man's horrible experiences, cries and then out of the goodness of his heart gives him five dollars. The second person, although concerned, does not cry, and in fact has to rush away. But because his religion commands him to give 10 percent of his income to charity, he gives the poor person a hundred dollars. Who did the better thing­­ - the person who gave five dollars from his heart, or the one who gave a hundred dollars because his religion commanded it? We discovered that 70 percent to 90 percent of the teenagers we questioned asserted that the person who gave the five dollars from his heart did the better deed.

This response suggests that in secular society, even charity is becoming a somewhat selfish act. Many people care less about the good their money is doing than about how they feel giving it. When we asked these same students who they would think had done the better deed if they were the ones who needed the money, many of them were brought up short…’

                I think Dennis Prager has expressed the issue very well: "Judaism would love you to give 10 percent of your income each year from your heart. It suspects, however, that in a large majority of cases, were we to wait for people's hearts to prompt them to give a tenth of their money away, we would be waiting a very long time. Ergo, Judaism says, Give ten percent-and if your heart catches up, terrific. In the meantime, good has been done…" [19]

So what does this have to do with the program?  Broken people can only help other broken people if the ones helping have gone all the way and let themselves be set free.  The addict only senses self – his/her needs, wants and desires.  We, in our addicted state, can only concentrate on self – nothing else exists.  This is where tzedakah comes into play. When we have worked the steps necessary for Bitachon and Cheshbon ha-nefesh, then we are ready for the next step – to be of service to our God, and to our fellow man.  We have to face two realities: the first is that addiction is self-help, self-medication if you will,  for the God-sized hole in our soul. The second is the converse to the first: recovery is God-help, for recovery only comes from God filling in the gaps within ourselves.

“We learn in order to teach, we learn in order to do.”

 Father YHVH sets us free by the blood of His Son, Messiah Yeshua; Messiah sets us free by teaching us the right way to live, by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God. Messiah sets us free by truth.

These goals are seemingly vague – not much substance or detail.  To flesh out the program isn’t the purpose of this epistle – the purpose is to see if there are those willing to participate. The programs main goal is also its main objective: to fill a hurting soul with the truth and the knowledge of the Living God – through the study of Torah and coming into the saving knowledge of Messiah Yeshua.  The Scriptures give us the details – we just need to get them into the hands and hearts of the afflicted. 

The Objective

I was asked as I was formulating the basics of this plan “What do you want to achieve out of this program?”  The only answer I can give is what I have found: the knowledge of God, His Son, and freedom.  Freedom comes from the pursuit of truth by a fearless searching of God’s word. Scripture tells us that the Torah is true, Yeshua says He is truth, so this tells me this path is right.  That is what I have learned.  I have heard from God during the last sixteen years about what I was not supposed to do – don’t try to help others in the same manner that had been laid before me.  The programs I was involved in did accomplish one thing – they gave me time and a safe place to hear the voice of God and that has to be one of the objectives of a recovery program based on the principles of God as taught in the Torah: those in need have to have the time and a safe place to hear the whole truth from the full counsel of God’s word, not just a hand-picked, man-made theology.  The God of the Word must be revealed not just the word of God. A foundation must be laid upon the rock of truth so that the house can be built upon solid ground.

 I know how it works – the why it works is because God, if the program is run according to His statues, precepts and ordinances will be in it.  That is a bold statement to make I know – but He has shown me the vision, so I know it is true.  I am not naïve though – it will take the help and counsel of other likeminded believers to work out the fullness of this vision and build the infrastructure required.  That is the easy part – the hard part is working the harvest.  To go where the lost are, to build up trust, to forge relationships and to show genuine love to the lost;  this is working the fields and it will take dedication and courage.  The fields are not just in the streets though. The pews and the offices cubicles hold just as many who are lost and bound by various addictions also.  All need to feel that they are welcome, and that healing can and will happen.  My only objective is to be able to get under another and lift them up, help them to understand that who the Son sets free is free indeed.  I am also realistic enough to understand it will take more than myself – it will take God’s blessing and the time, talent and resources of the Christian and the Hebraic Roots community. This is why I come to you, my brethren, and ask for your counsel.  We know that a great need is there – what is not known is if the will to do something about filling that need is just as strong.  May God, in His infinite glory and wisdom, make it so.ask you all to pray and support this vision if you feel led.

[1] Authors note: Use of information from Jewish-themed websites should not be construed as these sites endorsing or confirming any thesis introduced by the author of this epistle. I present the information from their respective sites for instructional purposes only and/or to aid in the readers understanding of the subjects discussed and in full respect of the sensitivity of the subject matter at hand.
[2]Author’s note:  Throughout this study I’ll be using the Net® Bible and  the Net® Notes: within the notes you’ll see symbols like this: ( א B Ψ 892* 2427 sys). These are abbreviations used by the NetBible© for identifying the principal manuscript evidence that they (authors and translators of the NetBible©)  used in translating the New Testament. Please go to and see their section labeled “NET Bible Principals of Translation” for a more complete explanation on these symbols and other items pertinent to the way the NET Bible uses them.
[3] Author’s Note: In these studies I have used the notes that come along with the passages I cite from the sources that I cite: these need a bit of a disclaimer though. As in all things, not everything that is footnoted is something that I necessarily agree with, especially if it contradicts what I believe pertains to any matters of the Torah or the commandments of God. I give you the notes as they are written by the authors of the material I cite from, so that you can see the information contained within them. It truly is not my place to edit or correct them; if they state anything that is in opposition to what I teach, then so be it. I will address these issues if requested, but for the sake of brevity (as if any of these posts of mine are brief ) I insert them and let them stand as they are. If I don’t agree with them, why do I include them you might ask? I don’t believe in censuring anyone’s opinions or scholarship; as I would not want mine censured, so I will not do to that to another. As Rabbi Hillel once stated, “What is hateful to you, do not do to another. That is the whole Torah. Go and learn it.” Torah leads me to respect others, even if I disagree; it leads me to present both sides of the coin, even if it could mean I’d lose part of the argument. That is not to say I should not challenge something I believe contradicts the truth of God’s word; that I will do in the main body of my epistles; that is where my gentle dissent belongs. Most (but not all) of the differences will come when I quote from the NET® Bible (but not exclusively); it has a decidedly Western/Greek mindset to it, but as a wise man once said “How do you eat chicken? Swallow the meat and spit out the bones..” I do though want to present the NET® notes because there is a wealth of information and research contained within them that I hope you find helpful.
a  Deut. 4:1; 6:24
1  observe to do
b  Deut. 30:16
2  increase in number
3  promised
c  Deut. 1:3; 2:7; 29:5; Ps. 136:16; Amos 2:10
d  Ex. 16:4
e  [John 2:25]
f  Ex. 16:2, 3
g  Ex. 16:12, 14, 35
h  Matt. 4:4; Luke 4:4
[4]  The New King James Version. 1982. Nashville: Thomas Nelson.
[5] Not intended as a statement on the secular temporary work program by the same name.
[7] Excerpted from God of Our Understanding—Jewish Spirituality and Recovery from Addiction, by Rabbi Shais Taub.  The content in this page is produced by, and is copyrighted by the author and/or If you enjoyed this article, we encourage you to distribute it further, provided that you do not revise any part of it, and you include this note, credit the author, and link to If you wish to republish this article in a periodical, book, or website, please email
[8] …Ibid…
[9] …Ibid…
[10] Excerpted from God of Our Understanding—Jewish Spirituality and Recovery from Addiction, by Rabbi Shais Taub.  The content in this page is produced by, and is copyrighted by the author and/or If you enjoyed this article, we encourage you to distribute it further, provided that you do not revise any part of it, and you include this note, credit the author, and link to If you wish to republish this article in a periodical, book, or website, please email
[11] …Ibid…
[12] …Ibid…
f  Ex. 16:2, 3
g  Ex. 16:12, 14, 35
h  Matt. 4:4; Luke 4:4
[13] The New King James Version. 1982. Nashville: Thomas Nelson.
  • [The following notes are taken from the NET Bible® footnotes, copyright (c) 1996-2006 by Biblical Studies Press L.L.C. All rights reserved. Used by permission from, n.d. Numbering system is unique to NET® Notes..  For more information see footnote #2 and 3.]
56 tn Heb “no vision.” The Hebrew word “vision” (from the verb חָזָה [khazah, “to see”]) refers to divine communication to prophets (as in 1 Sam 3:1) and not to individual goals or plans. C. H. Toy sees a problem here: The most calamitous period of Israel’s history was when prophetic vision was at its height, whereas people were often more obedient when God was silent. He also notes that in the book of Proverbs there is no mention of prophetic teaching with wisdom as a guide. So he emends the word to “guidance” following the LXX (Proverbs [ICC], 512). The TEV has “guidance”; the NIV retains “revelation.” It must be stated that the prophetic ministry was usually in response to the calamitous periods, calling the people back to God. Without them the downward rush to anarchy and destruction would have been faster than with these prophetic calls from God.
57 tn The verb פָּרַע (para’) means “to let go; to let alone.” It occurs here in the Niphal with the meaning of “[the people] are let loose,” meaning, they cast off restraint (e.g., Exod 32:25). Cf. NLT “run wild.”
58 sn The law here refers to scripture, the concrete form of revelation. So the two halves of the verse provide the contrast: When there is no prophetic revelation there is chaos, but those who keep the revelation contained in scripture find blessing.
59 tn There is a tendency among commentators and English versions to translate אַשְׁרֵהוּ (’ashrehu) as “happy is he!” (cf. KJV, ASV, NAB, NASB, TEV, NLT). But “happy” can be a misleading translation. The Hebrew word refers to a heavenly bliss, an inner joy, that comes from knowing one is right with God and experiencing his blessing. “Happiness,” on the other hand, depends on what happens.
·         End “NET®” notes
[14]  Biblical Studies Press. (2006; 2006). The NET Bible First Edition; Bible. English. NET Bible.; The NET Bible. Biblical Studies Press.
[15]  Biblical Studies Press. (2006; 2006). The NET Bible First Edition; Bible. English. NET Bible.; The NET Bible. Biblical Studies Press.
[16] Rabbi Ben A. is the most famous anonymous rabbi. Using his pen name, Ben A. draws from his personal experience in recovery to incorporate unique Chassidic philosophy into the practice of the 12 Steps.
[17] Excerpt from ; the content in this page is produced by, and is copyrighted by the author and/or If you enjoyed this article, we encourage you to distribute it further, provided that you do not revise any part of it, and you include this note, credit the author, and link to . If you wish to republish this article in a periodical, book, or website, please email:
[18] Sources: Joseph Telushkin. Jewish Literacy. NY: William Morrow and Co., 1991. Reprinted by permission of the author. (Formatting changes by author)
[19] …Ibid…

1 comment:

  1. You've provided some very useful information. I'm glad I came into this article because it provide a lot of important information. Thank you for sharing this story with us. Stocktaking apps for food and beverage