Living the Torah Portions: Ekev

Living the Torah Portions: Ekev - ideas, crafts, recipes, and more for studying the Word | Land of Honey

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Ekev - Consequence - Deuteronomy 7:12-11:25
Study the 10 Commandments
The consequences in question are what happens when we obey or disobey YHWH's instructions, so here is a chance to refresh yourself on what those are. It's also inspiring, for our obedience this passage says that YHWH will bless our children, our land, and remove sickness from us.
Free Ten Commandments Printable | Land of Honey

Re'eh - See - Deuteronomy 11:26-16:17
Learn about clean and unclean foods from Torah Sisters Magazine
This week talks about the foods that we are permitted to eat and the animals that are not. Even if you are familiar with this you can take things a step further and learn where some of these forbidden substances appear in unassuming food items. Like did you know maple syrup is sometimes made with pork? Here's a free list to learn more.
Clean and Unclean food products - free printable | Land of Honey

Shoftim - Judges - Deuteronomy 16:18-21:9
Lemony White Wine Cappelini from Love and Lemons
Shoftim instructs us to set apart the first fruits of our grain, wine, olive oil, and the fleece of sheep for YHWH. Most of us don't have these in the agrarian society sense, so make a meal of three of those things and talk about what it looks like to set apart a portion for YHWH in your life.
Lemony White Wine Cappelini | Land of Honey

Ki Tetze - When you go forth - Deuteronomy 21:10-25:19
Natural Shower Cleanser from A Beautiful Mess
This week we touch on some of the laws regarding cleanliness and hygiene. While YHWH never commands that our homes need to be spotless museum showcases, he does tell us how to be clean if mold or disease were to set in. Moreover we don't need to depend on harsh, synthetic chemicals for hygiene but he gave us natural antiseptics, antifungals, and so on. Here's a recipe to naturally keep your shower mold free.
DIY Natural Shower Cleanser | Land of Honey

Not sure where we are with the Torah Portions? Find out here.

14 Make Ahead Meals for Shabbat

Lots of ideas for healthy Shabbat meals that you make ahead of time and serve later. Lots vegetarian and gluten free ideas too! | Land of Honey

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"Tomorrow is Shabbat to YHWH; bake what you'd like today, and cook what you'd like to cook; and what is leftover save for tomorrow." -Exodus 16:23

This verse has really inspired me to stop cooking on Shabbat. Even those of us who enjoy kitchen work need a break so that we can rest and enjoy YHWH's set apart day. This is a clear instruction that we should plan to have food leftover that we can eat on Shabbat. 

I've put together a few recipes that you can make ahead of time and then eat on the Sabbath. Many of them actually recommend making a day or two prior to let the flavors come together more. All of these recipes can be served cold or at room temperature. This isn't because I think it's wrong to reheat a casserole in the oven or run a slow cooker on Shabbat (though some believe it is). With the warmer days at this time of year the cool food is welcome, at least for me! Plus your kitchen doesn't need to be heated up.

These meals start with fresh veggies, beans, quick cooking grains like lentils and quinoa, and pasta so they come together quickly - perfect for hectic Fridays! You can save yourself even more time by doubling the recipe and enjoying it for Friday (or Thursday) dinner and then again on Shabbat. The recipes are each pretty well rounded in my opinion so they really don't need any accompaniments, but if one dish dinners aren't your thing you could serve any of these with bread, sliced cheese, salad greens with vinaigrette, and fresh or frozen fruit for dessert.

14 Make Ahead Meals for Shabbat:

Summer Green Bean Salad from Making Thyme for Health
This is great cold or at room temperature. In lieu of the chickpeas, I like to eat this with hummus.
Summer Green Bean Salad

Greek Lentil Salad from Cookie and Kate
Go ahead and dress the lentils and veggies the day before but leave out the spinach until just before serving so it doesn't wilt.
Greek Lentil Salad

Farro Tabbouleh with Burrata and Hummus from Half Baked Harvest
If you don't have burrata this will still make for a filling meal served with pita bread and lots of fresh veggies.
Farro Tabbouleh with Burrata and Hummus

Broccoli Tahini Pasta Salad from Love and Lemons
This salad stores really well for a few days in the fridge. Add a green at the last minute for even more veggies.
Broccoli Tahini Pasta Salad

Quinoa Gado Gado Bowl from Minimalist Baker
You can steam the veggies in this or leave them raw. I would leave the quinoa, veggies, and dressing separate and then let everyone assemble their own combination on Shabbat.
Vegetarian Quinoa Gado Gado Bowl

Roasted Asparagus Wheat Berry Salad with Pesto from A Beautiful Plate
This recipe can be completely finished a few days before Shabbat. Just pull it out of the fridge when you're ready for lunch or dinner.
Roasted Asparagus Wheat Berry Salad

Sweet Potato Quinoa Salad from Well Plated
Sweet potatoes, black beans, and quinoa makes for a very filling salad. I like to set this out on the counter in the morning so it's at room temperature for lunch.
Sweet Potato Quinoa Salad

Everything But the Kitchen Sink Pasta Salad from Half Baked Harvest
Make this delicious pasta salad when your fridge is full of odds and ends that need used up. Tieghan says this salad is actually best made a few days ahead of time making it perfect for a Shabbat meal.
Everything but the kitchen sink pasta salad

Chickpea Salad Stuffed Avocado from Making Thyme for Health
In lieu of stuffing avocados you could serve this salad in sandwich form.
Chickpea Salad Stuffed Avocados

Roasted Beet Lentil Salad from Oh My Veggies
I would combine all the ingredients the day before eating. Lentils and beets are a great combination. A little goat cheese in here would be good too.
Roasted Beet Lentil Salad

California Chicken, Avocado, and Goat Cheese Salad from Half Baked Harvest
Prepare your ingredients ahead of time but don't combine them until you're ready to eat to keep your lettuce nice and crisp.
California Chicken, Avocado, and Goat Cheese Salad

Black Bean Sweet Potato Salad with Jalapeno Lime Vinaigrette from Vanilla and Bean
Mix everything including that tasty vinaigrette the day before then add the spinach at meal time.
Black Bean Sweet Potato Salad with Jalapeno Lime Vinaigrette

Summer Abundance Bowls from Half Baked Harvest
How fresh do these look? Use any type of grain to go with whatever fruit is in season, veggies, greens, a sprinkle of nuts or seeds, and cheese if you like.
Summer Abundance Bowls

Grilled Corn and Zucchini Salad with Sundried Tomato Vinaigrette from Minimalist Baker
This salad is one of my favorites! When I have fresh tomatoes I roast them and use instead of the sundried tomatoes and water. So good!
Grilled Corn and Zucchini with Sundried Tomato Vinaigrette

What's your go to recipe for Shabbat?

5 Things The Messiah Taught About Shabbat

Here are five things the Messiah taught us about the Sabbath day | Land of Honey

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The belief that the Sabbath day of rest was "done away with" is a common one. But that doesn't make it true. Did you know the Messiah always kept and honored Shabbat? We see him eating in someone's home, instead of buying food in the marketplace. We see him teaching, in place of doing his carpentry work. We see him going to congregation, as opposed to staying home by himself. He walks with his disciples, instead of saddling up a horse or hiring a chariot for transportation. All of these things he did to honor YHWH's set apart day. He also talked about the Sabbath.

Here are five things the Messiah taught about the Sabbath day:

1. "Shabbat was made for mankind." -Mark 2:27 
Yes, YHWH created Shabbat for us. Not for his own benefit. Not for the angels. Not just for the sake of having rules. Not only for the people who lived 3,000 years ago. He made it for us, as a gift. A custom gift; this is not liking trying to squeeze into your little sister's jeans. This is a tailor made jacket that fits perfectly. It suits us. Yahusha taught that Shabbat was a gift from YHWH especially for us.

2. "The Son of Man is Master of Shabbat." -Luke 6:5
Yahusha chose to describe himself in relation to Shabbat, and that shows us part of his identity that he values. Mastering something doesn't make it null and void. On the contrary, when someone says they have mastered something - whether that's organic chemistry, croissant baking, or a second language - it means they have purposefully spent a lot of time on it and it's important to them. Why would we treat Yahusha's declaration of Shabbat differently? He was speaking of Shabbat because it's something he cares about.

3. He made a practice of teaching people on Shabbat. -Luke 4:31
Many of us have been told that it doesn't matter what day of the week we worship YHWH, but isn't it worthwhile to see that our Savior made it a point to do this on the seventh day of the week? He didn't limit himself to teaching one day a week but his habit was teaching on Shabbat. Yahusha organized his life with respect to this day. We can also see that he expects his people to learn on Shabbat.

4. "It is permitted in Torah to do mitzvoth on Shabbat." -Matthew 12:12
Many have taken the accusations of the Pharisees to mean that Yahusha violated Shabbat. Truthfully they were only accusing him of breaking their own traditions, not commandments of YHWH. Yahusha teaches that it's okay to disregard man made rules or expectations for what the Sabbath day looks like, as long as we honor YHWH's instructions. He also tells us here that Shabbat contradicts nothing that YHWH has said because we are free to keep all of his commandments on this day.

5. People get healed on Shabbat. -Mark 3:5
Whoa. The number of times Yahusha healed someone on Shabbat show that YHWH is trying to communicate something with us. While healing is certainly possible any day of the week it is worth noticing that Yahusha consistently healed those who came to him on Shabbat.

This list is not exhaustive but we can see that Shabbat was something important to both the Messiah and to the writers of the Besorah. Many of the teachings recorded in Scripture were spoken by Yahusha on the Sabbath day and then reiterated by Paul and others on the Shabbat. We can now make that same choice to honor YHWH's set apart day.

Here are five things the Messiah taught us about the Sabbath day | Land of Honey

How To Hang a Mezuzah

How to hang a mezuzah | Land of Honey

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This post is done in conjunction with the mezuzah giveaway from Turtle Lane Pottery. You still have a couple of days to enter to win a set of beautiful mezuzahs!

Let's talk mezuzahs. Deuteronomy 6:9 says that we should have the words of YHWH on the doorposts of our homes. A mezuzah is a case that holds a scroll of part of Scripture, usually the surrounding passage from Deuteronomy. Mezuzahs are one way to keep this commandment. Other ideas would be hanging a plaque on the door, writing a verse on the door frame, framing a verse for the entrance, or even painting or inscribing a verse on the door itself. Whichever you decide will serve as a reminder and encouragement when you go in and out.
Turtle Lane Pottery mezuzah | Land of Honey
Traditional Judaism has more than 2,000 laws on how to properly hang a mezuzah. If you are looking for those instructions, you will not find them here. The commandment that we have from YHWH regarding this is simply to do it, so I will be sharing one way of going about that.
Turtle Lane Pottery mezuzah | Land of Honey
When you purchase a mezuzah, what you are buying is the case. Typically it will not come with the scroll inside, though sometimes that is an option for an extra charge. Chances are, any sort of color or pattern you may be interested in is out there. You could also make your own using anything from clay to wood to Legos if you are so inclined. My Turtle Lane mezuzah did not come with a scroll so my first step in hanging it was to write out Scripture. Judaism teaches that this should be done by a qualified scribe who will hand write it, but I don't see that requirement in Scripture. In fact when Moses said, "You shall write this," he was speaking to all Israel, not just a group of qualified scribes. At our house we want to take responsibility for our faith so we wrote it ourselves instead of outsourcing that task.
DIY hang a mezuzah in your home | Land of Honey
We chose to write out Deuteronomy 6:4-6, which Yahusha of course described as the most important commandment. You could write more or less depending on what you feel is best. Feel free to write it in your native language; include Hebrew if you would like.
DIY hang a mezuzah in your home | Land of Honey
You will want to measure your mezuzah and trim down your paper as needed to fit.

Once your Scripture is written out, roll it tightly to fit into the mezuzah.
DIY hang a mezuzah in your home | Land of Honey
Turtle Lane Pottery's mezuzahs come with the two small screws you will need to affix this in your house. If you need to supply your own screws the ones we used were half an inch.

You will need to decide where your mezuzah is going. Inside or outside? Which side of the door? To the left or the right? On the door, the frame, or next to it? This really isn't complicated, though Judaism has rules for all these things. Pick what works best for the design of your home to showcase your mezuzah. If you would like to put one outside, be sure it can handle the elements.

If you are familiar with mezuzahs, chances are you have seen them at an angle. There's nothing wrong with this, but if you are going to do it you should learn the story behind it. Hundreds of years ago, in the 13th and 14th centuries there were conflicting opinions about how to hang a mezuzah. One school of thought was vertically, another was horizontally. In lieu of picking a side or letting homeowners make their own choice, rabbis began instructing that mezuzahs should be placed at a slant so that both sides would be placated. So there you have it.

When YHWH commanded us to have his words on the doorposts of our homes he was not very specific. He did not add, "at a 45° degree angle," or "in this font." It would be wrong to say otherwise. He gives us room for creativity. Make your own choice about this. We chose to hang ours vertically because we thought it looked the best. :)
Want to hang a mezuzah in your home? Here's how. | Land of Honey
With the scroll inside, use a drill to screw the mezuzah into your door/post/wall. Use a lighter hand when you drill as mezuzahs don't weigh much and you don't want to crack or break yours.
Turtle Lane Pottery Mezuzah | Land of Honey
It is traditional to say a blessing when you hang the mezuzah. You could say, "Blessed are you YHWH our Eloheinu, King of the Universe, who has sanctified us with his commandments and commanded us to have his words on our doorposts." You could also pray that your home would be a place where YHWH's commandments are kept and guarded, and that this mezuzah would be a reminder to turn to him each day.
How to hang a mezuzah in your home - easy commandment to keep | Land of Honey
There you have it: the mezuzah is up. This lovely thing has reminded me to say a quick prayer each time I see it. Who knew an object could help you to turn your heart to YHWH? I want to thank Corrine from Turtle Lane for this thoughtful gift. If you are in need of your own mezuzah be sure to head over to our giveaway post to win a set of your own!
How to hang a mezuzah in your home - easy commandment to keep | Land of Honey