Parshas Matos
Numbers 30:2 - 32:42

Sins, Sexual Sins, Leadership and Rabbium ©

By Dr. Akiva G. Belk

Gematria is a particular study of Jewish mysticism based on the numerical value of Hebrew letters in the Aleph Bais (Hebrew alphabet) as inscribed in the Torah. Jewish Gematria has many disciplines.

This study of mysticism in Hebrew Gematria is dedicated in the loving memory of Mrs. Ethel Belk, may she rest in peace.

If you would like to dedicate a Gematria lesson for our cyberspace class in the memory of a dear friend or loved one we will do this for a gift of Chai, $18.00 American dollars.


Daniel Kravitz and I authored an article sometime back entitled Questions to Ask Before Placing Your Child in a Private School. Along with this article we provide our readership with a "Question List" to send to prospective schools that their children might be attending. We did this as a reminder for parents and the Jewish Community as a whole. Parents MUST NOT take the safety of their young children and adult children for granted! Religious schools, leadership of religious schools, rabbium of religious schools do have problems. Parents must be careful!

We read in this week's parsha, "Moshe was angry with the commanders of the army, at the officers of the thousands {12} and at the officers of the hundreds {120} who had returned from the army service of the war. Moshe said to them: 'Did you let every female live? They were the very same ones who, on Bila'm's advice were involved with B'nei Yisroel to cause them to commit a betrayal against Hashem regarding the matter of Pe'or, so that the plague broke out within the community of Hashem.'" Numbers 31:14-16

Dear reader, holy reader, the 132 leaders of the army of B'nei Yisroel spared the women whom they were sent to revenge against. It was these women who used sexual enticements, sexual advances and sexual acts to attract, charm and disarm the men of B'nei Yisroel. They used their physical attraction as a device to turn men of B'nei Yisroel away from worshiping Hashem. At Bil'am's direction they engaged leadership and other men from B'nei Yisroel through promiscuousness to sacrifice and prostrate themselves before Ba'al Pe'or.

The Torah states, "Yisroel became united with Ba'al Pe'or; and the rage of Hashem flared against Yisroel." Numbers 25:3 It was for these actions that Hashem ordered revenge be taken. Hashem said to Moshe: 'Take all the leaders of the people and hang them before Hashem, facing the sun; thereby removing the rage of Hashem against Yisroel.'" Numbers 25:4

It was at this time that Zimri, son of Salu, leader of the Shimonitesand Kozbi, daughter of Tzur, the national leader of a patriarchal house of Midian, appeared before Moshe and "...before the eyes of the Yisroelite community who were weeping at the entrance to the Tent of Meeting. Numbers 25:6

Hashem spoke to Moshe, saying, 'Take revenge for B'nei Yisroel against the Midianites..." Numbers 31:1,2

The judges of Yisroel hung the leadership united with Ba'al Pe'or.

The judges of Yisroel hung the men united with Ba'al Pe'or.

Pinchas speared Zimri and Kozbi in an act of devotion to Hashem thus ending the plague that killed 24,000.

The army of B'nei Yisroel was set to end the lives of these problem makers. Instead they back packed the problem home with them. For some reason the leadership of the army chose to spare these women knowing what they had done. Moshe was angry!

Holy reader, the potential danger that these women presented to B'nei Yisroel was serious. It could not be overlooked. They could not remain a part of B'nei Yisroel in any capacity. They had to be removed.

Recently the Intermountain Jewish News carried a story with follow up regarding leadership, powerful leadership that somewhat fits into a category like this. There was a rabbi that should have been removed from his position by other leadership. He should have been forced to step down because of his actions yet he remained. His actions were exposed to public view. The public was outraged! Leadership was backed into a corner. They were forced to do something.

How unfortunate!!

Yet this is not the only known case of a powerful rabbinic leader's inappropriate behavior. There are rabbium that still remain in power despite their extremely serious actions, despite the potential danger they present to our young children, adult children and B'nei Yisroel as a whole. They grasp their positions like a dandelion grasps the earth. The leadership surrounding them has spoken with them, slapped them on the hand, so to speak. The community in which they live fears them...

Like the Midianite women they need to be removed! That is why I co-authored the article Questions to Ask Before Placing Your Child in a Private School. This article acts as a RED FLAG to every parent warning them to BE CAREFUL with the lives of their children. One cannot take for granted that such evil people do not exist within Jewish schools. THEY DO! Yet they cling to their powerful positions like leeches...

Leadership MUST be very careful NOT to unite with Li Vah Ahl Pi Oor, meaning Ba'al Pe'or. We see the connection simply in opening the door to possibilities that the Torah does not permit... to behavior the Torah neither empowers nor tolerates.... even just opening the door to the possibility of another view other than the Torah... The point is we must be careful NOT to open the door to create an entrance BY DOING NOTHING about inappropriate behavior among our leadership, among the rabbium. Moshe could have done nothing when the army leadership returned from battle with the Midianite women. Yet he knew that letting such an action as this go unchallenged would create an opening to more problems, to more sin among B'nei Yisroel. He immediately challenged the leadership's action!

The Gematria of 488, Paw Swish or Peh Swish, meaning to open, to throw open, to untie, to loosen {as in relax Torah} or opening, entrance, doorway, gate, portal, etc. is the same Gematria as Li Vah Ahl Pi Oor, meaning Ba'al Pe'or.

From right to left:

Paw Swish or Peh Swish
488 =
Ches = 8 + Sav = 400 + Pey = 80
Li Vah Ahl Pi Oor

Li Vah Ahl
132 =
Lamid = 30 + Ayin = 70 + Bais = 2 + Lamid = 30

Pi Oor
356 = Reish = 200 + Vav = 6 + Ayin = 70 + Pey = 80
488 = 132 + 356

In Parshas Masei we see the connection with Hashem's command to again remove the potential opening: "Hashem spoke to Moshe in the plains of Moav along the Yarden [near] Yereicho, saying: 'Speak to B'nei Yisroel and say to them: 'When you cross the Yarden to the land of Canaan, you must drive out all of the inhabitants of the land before you. You must destroy all their carved stones, and demolish all their cast metal idols and tear down all their altars.'" Numbers 33:50-52

Simply driving out the inhabitants was not sufficient. Destroying their carved stones was not adequate. B'nei Yisroel also had to remove, tear down, eliminate the Baw Moo Sawm, meaning high places, altars.

From right to left:

Baw Moo Sawm
488 =
Mem = 40 + Sav = 400 + Vav = 6 + Mem = 40 + Bais = 2

This means that there is only one way for the Jew to worship Hashem. There is only one direction for the Jew: the Torah. This means that each of us must be held to the same high standard including the leadership and the rabbium This means that we are all prohibited from leaving even the slightest possibility of an opening or consideration other than that of the Torah!

In a few weeks Parshas Re'ey cautions us against such Hah Toh Ay Vaw, meaning abominations.

From right to left:

Hah Toh Ay Vaw
488 = Hey = 5 + Bais = 2 + Ayin = 70 + Vav = 6 + Sav = 400 + Hey = 5

"If you hear in one of your cities that Hashem, your G-d, is giving you in which to settle, the following: 'Men have gone out - unscrupulous - from among you, and they have misled the inhabitants of their city by saying, 'Let us go and serve other gods' that you do not know.' You must investigate, inquire, and interrogate thoroughly; and if in fact the report is true and accurate - this abomination was committed among you. You must surely strike down the inhabitants of that city by the sword; annihilate it and everything that is in it, and its livestock by the sword." Deuteronomy 13:13-16

Dear reader, the point is that G-d does NOT accept unscrupulous people who lead Jews astray regardless of the means they use! Opening the door to any such actions is wrong and is prohibited! That is why Jews must cling only to the Torah. The Torah is all that we have to rely on!

In our Gematria we observe several connections. During Parshas Balak we discussed Baw Lawk Behn Tze Pi Oor, meaning Balak, son of Zippor. However we did not make the connection between Balak and Ba'al. Both share the Gematria 132. Balak was the King of Midian who hired Bila'm to curse B'nei Yisroel and who through the women of Midian introduced Ba'al Pe'or to B'nei Yisroel. The Gematria for Baw Lawk and Li Vah Ahl {meaning to Ba'al} are both 132.

From right to left:

Baw Lawk
132 =
Kuf = 100 + Lamid = 30 + Bais = 2

Li Vah Ahl
132 =
Lamid = 30 + Ayin = 70 + Bais = 2 + Lamid = 30

Also one should note that Parshas Masei has exactly 132 verses. Also the total number of leaders of thousands and hundreds is 132. Each of these numbers returns our focus to the Gematria of 132.

The meaning for Ba Ahl {besides that of being defined as a Canaanite deity} means husband, owner, possessor, master, lord. Baw Ahl with the lamid means to marry, to have sexual intercourse with, to rule over, to be master of... The Lamid represents the "to". l j

Taken in this context one better understands the object, the focal point of our enemies.

Understanding this we must do all within our power NOT to allow any opening that leads in any direction other than the Torah. So when any Jew, especially leadership, misbehaves in such a way as to create an opening that has the potential to injure even one Jew, to destroy even one Jewish Soul, it MUST BE DEALT WITH! Rabbium with sexual perversions of any kind cannot be trusted in powerful positions. It G-d forbid opens the door to destruction..

Wishing you the best,

Dr. Akiva G. Belk

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