Pesach Seventh Day
Exodus 13:17 - 15:26

Pesach Eighth Day
Deuteronomy 15:19 - 16:17

Between Pesach and Chometz ©

By Dr. Akiva G. Belk

This study of the Holy Days is dedicated in the loving memory of Mrs. Ethel Channah Sakash Belk may she rest in peace.

{from right to left}

148 = Ches = 8 + Samech = 60 + Pey = 80

138 = Tzaddi = 90 + Mem = 40 + Chess = 8

10 = 148 - 138

When I think of ten I think of the TEN COMMANDS which like Pesach represent elevation to higher levels of righteousness.

When I think of ten I think of the TEN PLAGUES Hashem used to deliver B'nei Yisroel from Mitzriam. The plagues were a judgment on Mitzriam for their sinfulness, for their harsh treatment of B'nei Yisroel.

When I think of ten I think of the TEN TRIALS OF AVRAHAM AVEINU which represent most of us between Pesach and Chometz. That is where we are today. We are engulfed in a struggle. The struggle will not get the best of us! The struggle will not succeed! Yet the struggle will surely try us as our father Avraham was tried. We are no better. We must also face trials. However our trials will be easier. Remember, Avraham blazed the trail; all we have to do is follow.

As we consider the Gematria TEN it helps to remember that the words "for / that I am Hashem Your G-d" occur only ten times in all the Tenach. Each occurrence represents a struggle, a test.

The Trial of Slavery
Exodus. 6:7 And I will take you to me for a people, and I will be to you a G-d: and you will know that I am Hashem your G-d, who is bringing you out from under the burdens of Mitzriam.

The Trial Hunger and Selfishness
Exodus. 16:12 I have heard the complaints of the B'nei Yisroel: speak to them saying, 'Between evenings {in the afternoons} you will eat flesh, and in the morning you will have your fill of bread; and you will know that I am Hashem your G-d. B'nei Yisroel did need bread but they had vast herds that could have supplied meat. {The complaint for meat was improper according to Rashi.}

The Trial of Learning What is NOT Kosher And Observing Kashrus
Lev. 11:44 For I am Hashem your G-d: you shall sanctify yourselves, and you shall become holy; for I am Holy: and you shall not defile yourselves with any creeping creatures that crawls on the ground.

The Trial Of Separation Of Holiness
Lev. 20:7 You shall sanctify yourselves and be ye holy: that I am Hashem your

The Trial Of Fairness
Lev. 24:22 One rule shall apply for all of you just as it is for the stranger, so it shall be for one native born: for I am Hashem your G-d.

The Trial Of Offering Partial Advice
Lev. 25:17 You shall not cheat one another; and you shall fear your G-d: for I am Hashem your G-d. One should not offer advice which is only to the advantage of the advisor...

The Trial of Creating and Bowing to Idols, Graven Images and Memorial Stones
Lev. 26:1 You shall not make idols for yourselves and graven images and memorial stones you shall not raise up for yourselves, and a prostration stone you shall not set in your land upon which to prostrate oneself, for I am Hashem your G-d.

The Trial Of Limited Understanding Benevolence to Hashem
Deut. 29:2-5 The great miracles that you witnessed, those great signs and wonders. Yet Hashem did not grant you a knowledgeable mind and eyes to see, and ears to hear until this day. I have led you forty years in the wilderness: your clothes have not worn out on you, and your shoes have not worn out on your feet. Bread have you not eaten, neither fresh nor aged wine have you drunk, in order that you know that I am Hashem your G-d. {This is when Yisroel united, when B'nei Yisroel became a nation.}

The Trial Of Shabbos Observance
Ezek. 20:20 And hallow my Sabbaths; and they shall be a sign between Me and you, that ye may know that I am Hashem your G-d.

The Trials Of The End Of Days
Joel 3:17 So shall ye know that I am Hashem your G-d dwelling in Zion, my holy mountain: then shall Jerusalem be holy, and there shall no strangers pass through her any more.

Now, dear reader, half of these struggles, these tests, these trials center on us knowing "that I am Hashem your G-d", the other half focus on separation: You shall not make idols, You shall fear your G-d, One rule shall apply, You shall sanctify, You shall become holy. So from this we learn the purpose of trials. Trials teach us that it is Hashem that is our G-d. Trials are intended to create strength like an athlete who works out. Trials are designed for success not failure. Trials are intended to empower us with whatever it takes for us to separate from areas, things deemed unholy.

We find this to be the situation that whenever a Yud is added to a word it adds strength, and whenever a Yud is removed from a word it removes strength. So, like Avraham, we each have this Yud of trials to face in life. See Reaching Towards Hashem At Pesach

Wishing you the best,

Dr. Akiva G. Belk


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