An even Higher Calling yet
Psalm 78 gives a lengthy overview of the history of Israel’s provoking of God (read the entire Psalm) and concludes with God’s election of Judah in preference to Israel (Ten Tribes) Yet, in this He provided a Way of Escape for 10-Israel:
Ps. 78:67 “ Moreover He refused the tabernacle of Joseph, and chose not the tribe of Ephraim (10-Israel): But chose the tribe of Judah, the mount Zion which he loved. And He built His Sanctuary, a copy of High Heaven, founding it firm like the earth which He established for ever. He chose David also, His servant, and took him from the sheepfolds: From following the ewes great with young, He brought him to feed Jacob His people, and Israel His inheritance / heritage.”
Judah would oversee His Sanctuary on Mount Zion, where His Holy City Jerusalem is built. By maintaining the Sanctuary of YHVH and its inherent religious ‘System’, Judah would spiritually lead, feed, teach and care for 10-Israel – His heritage or dominion.
This is also confirmed in Ps. 114:2 “Judah was His sanctuary, and Israel His dominion.” This is a much quoted portion in the Jewish Pesach ceremony, saying that at the sight of the 12 Tribes leaving Egypt during the Exodus, “the mountains and hills skipped like rams’ (verse 6). at the sight of the Purpose of God, to rule through His elect over the world, was being set in process.
Of course, we know today, that the final fulfilment would be achieved in the 2nd Exodus, at the Return of all 12 Tribes from across the world where they have been exiled and dispersed amongst the nations – Jeremiah 16:14; 23:7 “However, the days are coming, declares YHVH, when men will no longer say, ‘As surely as YHVH lives, who brought the Israelites up out of Egypt, but they will say, ‘As surely as YHVH lives, who brought the Israelites up out of the land of the north and out of all the countries where he had banished them.’ For I will restore them to the land I gave to their forefathers.”
Just as in any country, kingdom or domain, there has to be a legal judicial body. In the Kingdom of YHVH on earth, it is Judah. In the future Kingdom it will be His elect, under direct leadership and guidance of Messiah (God) Himself.
Just as the citizens of any country will always have criticism and dislikes with certain issues of the ruling law system, so, in the Kingdom of YHVH there is a majority of professing citizens who criticise, object and even reject the judicial rule instituted by YHVH Himself. Just as citizens in any country take the rule of law in their own hands, so the citizens of YHVH’s Kingdom do try and temporarily get away with making their own adaptations of the law of the country.
“Judah his sanctuary” – God set up and mandated His true System of worship under the guidance of His Mechoqeck, the Jews. He made them His peculiar people who would be settled in the Land of Israel, controlling the City which bears His Name and His favour – Jerusalem. His Temple would be in Jerusalem, controlled by Judah. This would be His abode; His sacred dwelling-place. While the Temple was there. Judah was the principal or leading tribe, recognized as the tribe where power and leadership was to be concentrated, and from which the ruling Messiah was to proceed.
“Judah was his Sanctuary.” – the verb “was” in the original Hebrew is in the feminine conjunction. Judah is therefore here personified as a virgin (Isaiah 22:4), “the daughter of My people” (Ps 45:12). The choice of Judah as “His sanctuary” or holy dwelling, denotes the elect nation’s separation from the world and consecration as “holy unto YHVH her God” (Deut 7:6; Ex 19:5-6). Judah is chosen as being, from the time of the carrying away of the Ten Tribes, the surviving heir of the ancient Divine Promises belonging to it (Ps 76:1).
Blessed are the people who have God’s Sanctuary among them (Ex 25:8; Ezek 37:26).
Ezek 37:26-28 “I (YHVH) will put My sanctuary among them forever. My dwelling place will beabove them; I will be their God, and they will be My people. Then the nations will know that I, YHVH, make Israel holy, when My Sanctuary is among them forever.'”
While it is generally accepted that this Sanctuary refers to God’s Personal Physical Presence and Rule in His Kingdom, the question may now arise whether this ‘Sanctuary’ could refer to Judah in any way. There may be a hint in favour of this reasoning by the emphasis in the Hebrew word meanings represented in bold above, viz.
Among them – Hebrew b’tochem – literally ‘within their midst’.
Above them – Hebrew ‘uleihem’ – ‘Over above’ them, as in the Israeli airline El-Al (lit. ‘to and above’) This text is generally translated as ‘with them’.
Our next section further down will shed some further light on this probability.
“and Israel His dominion” – over whom, or through whom, He would rule His Kingdom. The Hebrew word used here for dominion, is memshalot, i.e. the plural form – ‘and Israel His dominions.’ The plural denotes them being ‘many nations’ according to the Promises to the patriarchs: Abraham, Yitzchak and Ya’acov.