He went into the Temple area; and as he was teaching, the head cohanim and the elders of the people approached him and demanded, "What s'mikhah do you have that authorizes you to do these things? And who gave you this s'mikhah?" Yeshua answered, "I too will ask you a question. If you answer it, then I will tell you by what s'mikhah I do these things.The immersion of Yochanan/John -- where did it come from? From Heaven or from a human source?" They discussed it among themselves: "If we say, `From Heaven,' he will say, `Then why didn't you believe him?'But if we say, `From a human source,' we are afraid of the people, for they all regard Yochanan as a prophet." So they answered Yeshua, "We don't know." And he replied, "Then I won't tell you by what s'mikhah I do these things. (Mattiyahu/Matthew 21:23-27)
Hello beloved of Messiah,
It's nice to be back with you and on to the next section of our topic on the Ministry Hierarchy and the Spirit. We've been hinting at the above scriptures all the way through the parts of this message. Hope you have taken time to meditate on it a little. It's these times of studies of why the hebraic side of things feeds my spirit so. My advice to the student of scripture studies is that it is always pertinent to our dividing of scripture in research that we not only are moved and fed by the spirit, but to also feed our souls intellectually. This is done by checking a couple of things as the history and ethnic background of a people.Hopefully as we continue with this part of our study in "authority" you'll see why.
So lets get right to it!
S'mikhah in the bible is the transliterated word for "authority", but it's theapplication it self that is of much interest. Though the word is explanatory, the action of s'mikhah which means to " lay hands on " or " the laying on of hands ", may very well remind us that faith without works is dead.
When the head cohanim (priest) and elders went to Yeshua as he was in the temple. Mind you the place they felt was in their authority, they knew very well that the things that he had done in miracles of healings were not earthly but spiritual. They were aware of recorded historical evidences that gave them the audaciousness to ask such a question. There was previous applications of interest applied to the laying on of hands and it starts as far back as Yitzak/Issac blesses Yacov with his right hand and Yacov/Jacob in turn blesses Ephraim and Manasseh, laying his hands in an appropriate fashion on their heads. Berepooh/Genesis 27 and 48: 18-20, and many more examples are given.
When Moses couldn’t handle all the daily requests of the people and act as arbiter for them, his father-in-law gave him some advice. And so in Shemot/Exodus 18:13-27 we find Moses appointing judges and passing his authority to make rulings to them. The Biblical account does not give a number of how many judges were appointed, but the Jewish tradition places it at 70, probably linking it to the 70 elders in Numbers 11.
Another special occasion where s’mikhah is given out is when Moses named his successor, and passed on his authority to him.
“So YAHWEH said to Moses, ‘Take Joshua son of Nun, a man in whom is the spirit, and lay your hand on him. Have him stand before Eleazar the priest and the entire assembly and commission him in their presence. Give him some of your authority so the whole Israelite community will obey him.’”
And so the practice developed that if you wanted to pass on your authority to someone, you laid your hands on them and pronounced that authority.
But there is more than meets the eye about s’mikhah. It’s not just passing on authority – there is a deep symbolism behind it. Not only would you transmit your authority to someone by laying your hands on them, but you were also required to do the same thing before killing an animal for sacrifice to G_d (Shemot/Exodus 29:10, Vayiqra/Leviticus 16:21, Bemidbar/Numbers 8:12, etc). Before you slit the throat of the animal in sacrifice to G_d you were required to lay your hands on its head and confess your sins (the reason for the sacrifice).
“In his explanation of the meaning behind animal offerings, Rambam (commentary to Vayyikra/Leviticus 1:9) suggests that the person bringing the offering should view himself as if he were on the altar. The catharsis of Korbanot is achieved when the owner experiences his own sacrifice vicariously through the offering. S’mikhah, performed immediately before the offering is slaughtered, is the process by which the owner transmits his energy into the animal in order that the offering truly represent him on the altar.”
–Rabbi Yitzchak Etshalom
Since S'mikhah with the hand focuses the spirit toward the object upon which it is placed, like he placed his hands upon him [referring to Mosheh's s'mikhah of Yehoshua - Bamidbar/Numbers 27:23] and the right hand is [generally] stronger than the left, therefore the s'mikhah of the right [hand] will focus more than the s'mikhah of the left.
Our point here behind this, is that when the powers that be confronted the Adonai Yeshua, they weren't asking him if he had authority but instead it was more important to them to find out whom it was he received it from. Mattiyahu/Matthew 7:28-29, is just one example that lets us know the people knew he had been granted it also,,,,,
When Yeshua had finished saying these things, the crowds were amazed at the way he taught, for he was not instructing them like their Torah-teachers but as one who had authority himself.
We'll also note that he passed it on to the disciples,,,,,
Yeshua came and talked with them. He said, "All authority/mikhah in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore, go and make people from all nations into talmidim/disciples, immersing them into the reality of the Father, the Son and the Ruach HaKodesh/Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything that I have commanded you. And remember! I will be with you always, yes, even until the end of the age." (Mattiyahu/Matthew 28:18-20)
We can also make a note that this b'khorah is also the right of the first born. A father would pass his blessings of strength, finance, spiritual leadership and even political well being unto the one qualified by birth right.
"Behold, My Servant, whom I uphold; My chosen one in whom My soul delights. I have put My Spirit upon Him; He will bring forth justice to the nations. (Yitzak 42:1)
"BEHOLD, MY SERVANT WHOM I HAVE CHOSEN; MY BELOVED IN WHOM MY SOUL is WELL-PLEASED; I WILL PUT MY SPIRIT UPON HIM, AND HE SHALL PROCLAIM JUSTICE TO THE GENTILES. (Mattiyahu/Matthew 12:18)
,,,,,,and the Holy Spirit descended upon Him in bodily form like a dove, and a voice came out of heaven, "You are My beloved Son, in You I am well-pleased." (Luke 3;22)
There is so much more we can enter into for instance there are different parts of the s'mikhah and it all pertains to speaking and touching. Take note of action of the Father speaking and the word upon or overshadowing cloud in many renditions. Preaching in itself is a form of laying on of hands. As we speak, we too transfer the good news of the Besorah/Gospel a form ofB'rakhah (blessing of well being) unto the people.
But how can they call on someone if they haven't trusted in him? And how can they trust in someone if they haven't heard about him? And how can they hear about someone if no one is proclaiming him? And how can people proclaim him unless G_d sends them? - as the Besorah puts it, "How beautiful are the feet of those announcing good news about good things!" The problem is that they haven't all paid attention to the Good News and obeyed it. For Yesha'yahu says, "YEHOWAH, blessed be His name, who has trusted what he has heard from us?" So trust comes from what is heard, and what is heard comes through a word proclaimed about the Messiah. (Romans 10:14-17)
A call is a spoken assignment, and the touch comes from the Ruach Ha'Kodesh/Holy Spirit. We are not in our own authority/mikhah but in that of the only begotten Son, who received His B'khor from His Father. As we'll soon witness this is to be done with much care, as we carry one of the greatest weapons recorded in the scriptures,,,that two edged sword that penetrates and is able to cut asunder soul and spirit, joints and marrow and judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart. How many will be held accountable of wielding the mikhah we've been endowed the wrong way?
Therefore with this knowledge we now know that they (the cohanim) were asking him who was it that layed hands on Him and gave him the authority to lay hands on others with such power. Remember they believed it was one that had been touched by Yacov, or Moshe. They questioned His Hierarchy and Spirit. Therefore Messiah trying to get them to realize what it is there asking because truly it was of great importance, turn and asks them a question,,," The immersion of Yochanan -- where did it come from? From Heaven or from a human source?"
This should have been simple for such an elite sect of scholars well versed and taught daily of the scriptures, these teachers of the Law and Prophets. The mikhah was never to represent human authority. But heavenly authority in a human. Yochanan/John received his B'khorhah for mikhah to baptize and preach in the womb, as did Samson, Samuel, Yiremiyah and of course the Messiah Yeshua. But to acknowledge this would take total acknowledgement and surrender of the true chain of command and cast another light on who He was. Simply the powers that be would have to humble themselves under true priestly authority.
We must never forget whom it is our B'korhah for mikhah has come from and that it must therefore be applied to Hierarchy as well as our Spiritual walk as well unto the well being of those we are put in charge for. How do we adhere to this we have an example of course,,,,,
But if it is from G_d, you will not be able to overthrow them. You may even find yourselves fighting against G_d!" Acts 5:9)
And I remembered that Adonai had said, 'Yochanan used to immerse people in water, but you will be immersed in the Ruach HaKodesh.' Therefore, if G_d gave them the same gift as he gave us after we had come to put our trust in Yeshua the Messiah, who was I to stand in G_d's way?" (Acts 11:16-17)
This is where we pick up in Acts where we see the Apostles laying their hands on people and giving authority (Acts 6:6), the Holy Spirit (Acts 8:17), or even gifts of the Holy Spirit (Acts 19:6). And we even see Paul warning Timothy to be careful about who he lays his hands on.
Do not be hasty in the laying on of hands, and do not share in the sins of others. Keep yourself pure.
–1 Timothy 5:22
I find it highly interesting that in the same breath Paul warns Timothy not to lay his hands on just anyone and also not to share in the sins of others. Paul here makes a fascinating connection between giving of s’mikhah and the sin offerings of the temple. The laying on of hands, Paul writes, is too important to be given to anyone. Why? Because all s’mikhah came from Yeshua, and it was passed down by his disciples. First the Apostles, then others, and on down the line it went – but it all linked back to the Messiah, just like the old s’mikhah had linked back to Moses. Now you, the believer of today, have a link back to the Messiah, passed down through the generations. And it’s not just a mental link. When Yeshua gave s’mikhah to his Apostles, he put into them a piece of himself as you would before slaughtering an animal for sacrifice at the temple. And the Apostles did the same thing when they passed it on. Now you, the believer of today, have a piece of the Messiah’s s’mikhah in you. I think that’s incredible!
We therefore thank Messiah for telling us whom ask, with a desire to hear the truth and receive it gladly. Here we can surely see a Hierarchy of the Spirit that surely higher than what we sometimes give it credit for. As we said there is truly so much more to understanding the knowledge of this. If the Spirit says the same maybe next time. We will leave you today with these words from the Apostle Sha'ul/Paul and of course speaking blessings from on high with the mikhah we have been endowed of knowledge , wisdom and the understanding thereof and to know the love and shalom of Messiah,,,,,,
From: Sha'ul, G_d's slave and an emissary of Yeshua the Messiah, sent to promote among G_d's chosen people the trust and knowledge of truth which lead to godliness and which are based on the certain hope of eternal life. G_d, who does not lie, promised that life before the beginning of time but made publicthis word of his in its own season through a proclamation with which I have been entrusted by order of G_d, our Deliverer. (Titus 1:1-3)