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The Red Heifer

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The Red Heifer - Numbers 19:1-10

Hundreds of posts have probably already been uploaded to YouTube on the subject of the "Red Heifer". In one of the videos, a certain Adam Eliyahu Berkowitz expresses surprise that evangelicals in particular are on the side of Israel, but the majority reject the construction of the Third Temple. So what does the Red Heifer have to do with the construction of the Jewish Third Temple and is it God's will to have this temple built? We want to investigate these and other questions and use the texts of Scripture which alone give us the right answers.   
The Red Heifer in Numbers 19:1-10  

Now the LORD spoke to Moses and to Aaron, saying,
This is the statute of the law that the LORD has commanded: Tell the people of Israel to bring you a red heifer without defect, in which there is no blemish, and on which a yoke has never come.
And you shall give it to Eleazar the priest, and it shall be taken outside the camp and slaughtered before him.
And Eleazar the priest shall take some of its blood with his finger, and sprinkle some of its blood toward the front of the tent of meeting seven times.
And the heifer shall be burned in his sight. Its skin, its flesh, and its blood, with its dung, shall be burned.
And the priest shall take cedarwood and hyssop and scarlet yarn, and throw them into the fire burning the heifer.
Then the priest shall wash his clothes and bathe his body in water, and afterward he may come into the camp. But the priest shall be unclean until evening.
The one who burns the heifer shall wash his clothes in water and bathe his body in water and shall be unclean until evening.
And a man who is clean shall gather up the ashes of the heifer and deposit them outside the camp in a clean place. And they shall be kept for the water for impurity for the congregation of the people of Israel; it is a sin offering.
And the one who gathers the ashes of the heifer shall wash his clothes and be unclean until evening. And this shall be a perpetual statute for the people of Israel, and for the stranger who sojourns among them.
English Standard Version 2011
The passage tells us that the ashes, mixed with water, served as a means of cleansing. It is also important to know that anyone who came into contact with this water of purification, even if he was previously clean, became unclean, unclean until the evening of the same day. The ashes of the Red Heifer therefore served the purpose of purification.

If we are talking about the priests' cleansing and their holiness, then we need to read Exodus 8:30. It is the chapter of the consecration of the high priest and his sons. After Moses had bathed his brother Aaron and his sons in front of all the people and clothed them, a bull and two rams were slaughtered. Moses took some of the blood of the altar and the anointing oil and sprinkled it on Aaron and his clothes and on Aaron's sons and their clothes. They had to remain in the courtyard for a total of seven days until their sanctification was complete.  

The sanctuary, that is the tent of meeting, was also "sanctified" with the anointing oil, as described in verse 10 in a few words: "And Moses took the anointing oil and anointed the tabernacle (that is the tent) and all that was in it, and sanctified it." He then sanctifies the court with all its utensils: "And he sprinkled the anointing oil seven times on the altar, and anointed the altar and all its utensils and the laver and its stand, to sanctify them" (i.e. to reserve them solely for service before God. Any other use would make everything unclean again).

This procedure can no longer be repeated today because a man like Moses does not and cannot exist. What qualities would this second Moses have to have and what requirements would he have to fulfill? Firstly, he would have to have previously proven himself to be a reliable prophet, secondly, he would already have to lead the people as a faithful and truthful leader and thirdly, he would have to practise a completely different priesthood. It should also be borne in mind that Moses was around 80 years old when God chose him to lead Israel. A long training period, isn't it?  

But how can it be that the Temple Institute presents us with a teenager who is pure according to their criteria, purely because he was not born in a hospital but at home, when the great King David finds completely different words for his birth and clearly expresses it in Psalm 51:5: "Behold, I was born in iniquity, and in sin did my mother conceive me." (Certainly not in a hospital). Consequently, David pleads in verse 7: "Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean; wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow." (Verse count may vary.)

Now Moses has bathed his brother Aaron and his sons and then clothed them. But who then cleansed and bathed David? David addressed his prayer to God, two verses from this prayer:

 חָנֵּ֣·נִי אֱלֹהִ֣ים כְּ·חַסְדֶּ֑·ךָ כְּ·רֹ֥ב רַ֝חֲמֶ֗י·ךָ מְחֵ֣ה פְשָׁעָֽ·י׃
Have mercy on me, O God, according to your goodness;
according to the greatnessyour mercy blot out my transgressions.

הֶ֭רֶב כַּבְּסֵ֣·נִי מֵ·עֲוֹנִ֑·י וּֽ·מֵ·חַטָּאתִ֥·י טַהֲרֵֽ·נִי׃  
 Wash me completely from my unrighteousness,
and cleanse me from my sin!

The LORD himself cleansed and bathed David. How did he do this? Through his word. After the prophet Nathan painted the guilt before his eyes in the form of an allegory, David already recognized the guilt and passed the righteous judgment. When Nathan held up the mirror to him and exclaimed: 'You are the man! David broke down completely and confessed his sin. The words he used to confess his sin can be found in Psalm 51, which Jesus calls the "Key of David".

Our Lord is therefore not only the door, he also has the key to this door. With this key you can enter the temple of God, the spiritual house. In Revelation 3:7, Jesus speaks of having the key of David; a few decades earlier, in the Gospel of Luke, in chapter 11:52, he accused the scribes of having taken away this very key (of David), the key of knowledge; they themselves did not go in and those who wanted to go in were prevented from doing so. This key was now given to Jesus.  

So where exactly is this key?
It is on the shoulder of the door called Jesus. (see also Isaiah 22:22) And because every reader now knows where the key is, he can go to the door and take it from the shoulder of this door and unlock it for himself. It is important to note what is written on the key. And what is written on the key? Psalm 51 - here too, the name says it all. With the key called "Psalm 51", anyone can enter through the door into the sanctuary with a pure heart and a burden-free conscience.

Our recommendation: Read Psalm 51 first to yourself, but then also with every person who is open to the good news of the open door, the Jew first and also the Greek; and please don't forget to explain to them the content of what you have read. You can find a few important suggestions here → Use the google translator. It can be found at the top of the page Der Schluessel_Davids

David addressed his prayer to the Lord, among other things he said: "Purify me with hyssop". He did not address this request to the high priest in office, but directly to the Lord. We note that Adonai personally cleansed David, which is why we can justifiably claim that Adonai himself acted as a priest for the sinner by completely cleansing David with a better water.

The ashes of the Red Heifer were not used for this, but they already served King David as a vivid shadow image of the fact that only Adonai - our High Priest - can completely cleanse us. God's sprinkling water consists of small drops, which we call Bible verses, and many people have been so deeply affected in their hearts by a single verse that they turned to God and prayed according to the pattern of Psalm 51. According to the allegorical story, Nathan only had to say one thing to King David: "You are the man!" 2 Samuel 12 (Select the translator here too)

Now we come to another important question: Do we still need a third temple? Let's read Revelation 3:17: "Him that overcometh will I make a pillar in the temple of my God, and he shall go no more out: and I will write upon him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, which is the new Jerusalem, which cometh down out of heaven from my God, and from my new name."

The Temple Institute can save themselves the trouble, because their temple would surely be destroyed again. Our recommendation: Give the money collected to the poor and believe in the Lord Jesus. In this way, each of you would accumulate a treasure in heaven and at the same time become part of the heavenly temple, which will then come down to earth in its own time and, we repeat, cannot be destroyed in eternity.  

As Christians, we serve our Jewish brethren for the good when we can explain to them in a well-founded manner why the Red Heifer and a third temple are useless, and will even prove to be counterproductive, because this undertaking is directed against God's plan of salvation.

Berlin, April 18, 2024


© Copyright by H. Randy Rohrer

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