The Temple System, Episode 2

EPISODE 2 of 5: The Holy Hospital

This week (July 7) on Shabbat Night Live When you think of the Temple in ancient Jerusalem, do you envision a hospital? There was more healing going on in the Temple than we realize, and there’s plenty of evidence of it in the Bible.

Steve Siefken leads us through scriptural references that show us how the Almighty intended us to heal each other.  

Watch the episode — included on this blog post.

While you watch, consider the questions below. The timeline for each discussion topic in the video is noted on each question. Post your answers in the comments section and let’s get some discussion going!

  1. (VIDEO TIMELINE: 16:00) How does Israel, in either its ancient or modern demarcation, transcend our current definitions of “nation,” “ethnicity,” or “theocracy”? Has this venerable civilization of people, through its longevity over several millennia, effectually outlived these conventional categories and exceeded the capabilities of the English language to characterize the scope of its identity?
  2. (VIDEO TIMELINE: 20:00) Similarly, how do the Tabernacle Offerings demonstrate a comprehensive range of service to YeHoVaH, whether voluntary or compulsory? How does this dynamic between material giving and spiritual appeal serve to acknowledge both the civilizational capacity of the Hebrews and its delimitation?  How has this ritual significance become almost trivialized throughout the growth of denominational religion?
  3. (VIDEO TIMELINE: 24:00) How has the Tabernacle’s function as a place for healing of the sick become another casualty of the minimalism and oversimplification of much evangelical Christianity throughout the centuries? How has this important facet of charity been further obscured by the politicization and controversy generated over historical movements like the Crusades or various fraternal organizations that were founded to help the poor? 
  4. (VIDEO TIMELINE: 28:00) How does the contemporary distrust of the pharmaceutical industry serve to dramatize the spiritual ethos behind medicinal remedies drawn from nature, in the prescribed manner of the ancient Hebrews? How likely is today’s reflex toward holistic health to encourage a reappraisal and interpretation of the “tree of life” whose leaves are “for the healing of the nations” (Revelation 22:2)?
  5. (VIDEO TIMELINE: 32:00) Similarly, how does the breadth of the Hebrew term “leprosy” and the cultural practice of quarantining the sick underscore the general public’s confusion and even hysteria over the official mandates of prevention during the pandemic? How do the references to treatment in Leviticus indirectly reveal the ignorance and lack of personal resourcefulness behind the mantra of “follow the science”?
  6. (VIDEO TIMELINE: 37:00) How might our contemporary culture of holistic health also revitalize and redefine the concept of the apothecary as a figure of medical expertise? How does the range of meaning in this term, long relegated to the status of an archaism, demonstrate the importance of anointing as a venerable practice for healing with materials whose efficacy is becoming increasingly corroborated?
  7. (VIDEO TIMELINE: 40:00) Similarly, how could scriptural references to the interconnectedness of the human body’s various systems serve to bolster the reputation of such practices as chiropractic or complementary and integrative medicine? Has the skepticism toward conventional medicine that resulted from the pandemic ironically reversed our definitions of “pseudoscience”?
  8. (VIDEO TIMELINE: 44:00) How has the ritual burning of incense been poorly understood or trivialized in our postmodern culture? In light of the recognition of its health properties by the ancient Hebrews, what is the ironic common ground of both its utilization in Christian rites of worship and its questionable, short-lived appropriation by the secular pop culture of the 1960’s?
  9. (VIDEO TIMELINE: 48:00) How does the ambivalent meaning of epitithemi serve to enlighten today’s believers regarding the inherent aggressiveness of Yeshua’s benevolent gestures of healing during his ministry? How does the absence of this connotation in the phrase “laying on of hands” often fail to remind us about both the constant need for our own chastisement as sinful creatures and the power of YeHoVaH’s love for his creation in the restoration of health?
  10. (VIDEO TIMELINE: 52:00) Similarly, how do the various terms used to describe Yeshua’s methods of healing offer distinctions that are lost in tedious and enduring arguments about whether or not these actions constitute miracles that prove his identity as the Messiah? What is the essential difference between therapeuo and iaomai with regard to Yeshua’s ministry as part of the divine plan for our salvation?

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