Parsha Tzav
Leviticus 6:1 - 8:36
Ten Steps of Holiness ©
By Dr. Akiva G. Belk

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

"Speak to Aharon and to his sons saying, 'This is the law of the sin offering, In the place that is designated to slaughter the burnt offering, slaughter the sin offering before Hashem, it is holy most holy.'" Leviticus 6:18

We read, Ko Dehsh - Kaw Daw Sheem - Hee, meaning "it is holy most holy." The Gematria for Ko Dehsh - Kaw Daw Sheem - Hee is 870. Ko Dehsh - Kaw Daw Sheem - Hee occurs ten times in Tenach. If we divided 10 into 870 we arrive at the Gematria of 87. Ten represents stages as in the ten commands with which G-d created the world. Ten represents the ten trials of Avraham. Ten represents the ten righteous needed to spare Sodom.

The story of Lot as portrayed in Genesis 19 is especially interesting because it deals with the issue of righteousness. It pounds heavily on the issue of holiness. I am referring to Ko Dehsh - Kaw Daw Sheem - Hee which is the Torah expression for the fulfillment of holiness, not the election to holiness! The Torah expresses completion! Not progress! Not improvement! In Ko Dehsh - Kaw Daw Sheem - Hee, the Torah is acknowledging accomplishment! We the Jewish people are elected to holiness by Hashem. We are supposed to be consecrated! Hashem intends for us to be dedicated to His holy purposes. We have been chosen to a high office. YET FEW OF US ACTUALLY REALIZE THE SUMMIT OF OUR 'HOLY RESPONSIBILITY.'

Chassidim, it is one thing to be elected to holiness and entirely another thing to fully realize, to fully accomplish that election.

Now for a few sentences, let's observe that the potential for ten righteous did exist within Sedom.

Your sons - Rashi states that Lot's daughters were engaged, thus the phrase, your sons. Gen.19:12
Two virgin daughters - Genesis 19:8
Sons - in - law - Plural, at least two, maybe many more. Genesis 19:14
At least two married daughters. Genesis 19:14
Lot and his wife - Genesis 19:6

THIS REPRESENTS THE MINIMUM REQUIREMENT OF 10 People. Yet Avraham said, 'Suppose there are ten.' {Genesis 18: 32} Does this mean ten or ten righteous? The reference clearly is to ten righteous. Avraham being a wise man stopped at ten. Why? Because Avraham knew Lot and his wife. Avraham knew his older daughters. Avraham knew Lot's righteous sons-in-law. Avraham knew Lot's younger daughters. This is only a total of eight. Two are missing! This means that either the older daughters had righteous children or that the engaged daughters were engaged to righteous men.

Now, holy reader, the point is that the righteous deserted their position... their guard... their observance as taught by our forefather Avraham. That being the situation, Sedom was destroyed! The emphasis was and is on "Ten Righteous!"

Now when we reconsider Ko Dehsh - Kaw Daw Sheem - Hee, we MUST consider ten because ten is the number of times Ko Dehsh - Kaw Daw Sheem - Hee is repeated and because ten represents righteousness!

1) The first step of holiness is founded on purity. Purity is represented by Paz, the purest gold. Each step afterward is elevated by an additional 87.

Paz {pure gold}
87 = Zion = 7 Pey = 80

2) The second step of holiness is "to mourn"

Lees Pod {to mourn}
174 = Dalet = 4 Pey = 80 Samech = 60 Lamid = 30

3) The third step of holiness is a renunciation of the past and shackling oneself to different values, higher values...

Ee Sawr {connecting / shackling}
261 = Reish = 200 Samech = 60 Aleph = 1

4) The fourth step of holiness is a place for holiness to exist. Holiness mush have a place to dwell.

Moh Shahv {a dwelling [place]}
348 = Bais = 2 Shin = 300 Vav = 6 Mem = 40

5) The fifth step of holiness is establishing boundaries that one will not cross and that one will not allow others to enter.

Gi Voo Lohs {boundaries}
435 = Sav = 400 Lamid = 30 Bais = 2 Gimmel = 3

6) The sixth step to holiness is service to Hashem. "You shall serve Hashem your G-d, and He will bless you..." Exodus 23:25

Vah Ah Vahd Tehm {you shall serve [Hashem your G-d]}
522 = Mem = 40 Sav = 400 Dalet = 4 Bais = 2 Ayin = 70 Vav = 6

7) The seventh step of holiness is Favor. "...and you shall not show favor to a great [man]..." Leviticus 19:15

Seh Dahr {favor}
609 = Reish = 200 Dalet = 4 Hey = 5 Sav = 400

8) The eighth step of holiness is solving problems.

Vah Yeef Tawr {and he solved [interpreted / understood / explained] our problems}
696 = Reish = 200 Sav = 400 Pey = 80 Yud = 10 Vav = 6

9) The ninth step of holiness is being clothed with holy garments. The black hats, the white shirts and the black slacks ALL COME AFTER the first eight steps have been obtained! NOT ELECTED! NOT HOPED FOR!

Vi Heel Bahsh Tawm {and clothe them}
783 = Mem = 40 Sav = 400 Shin = 300 Bais = 2 Lamid = 30 Hey = 5 Vav = 6

10) The final step is the summit, Ko Dehsh - Kaw Daw Sheem - Hee, meaning "It is holy, most holy."

Ko Dehsh - Kaw Daw Sheem - Hee {It is Holy, Most Holy}
870 = Aleph 1 Vav 6 Hey 5 - Mem 40 Yud10 Shin 300 Dalet 4 Kuf100 - Shin 300 Dalet 4 Kuf100

So, dear reader, through the progression of 87 x 10 steps, holiness is eventually reached like a great summit! Reaching the summit is more than being chosen to climb. It is accomplishing... it is mastering... you are standing at the summit! On the other hand We MUST be extremely careful not to desert our position of righteousness as some of Lots descendants did. When they needed to be counted they were not there!! Sedom would have been spared had they remained righteous!

This is one part of a three part series:

The Costume of Holiness

Ten Steps of Holiness

The Eighth Day of Pesach {Passover}


Good Shabbos! Good Yom Tov!

Dr. Akiva G. Belk

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