Connecting to the Word of God
Yael Eckstein | February 17, 2021
Earlier this week the first episode of my new podcast, Nourish Your Biblical Roots, made its debut. This is the fulfillment of a dream that I’ve had for a long time – a dream of connecting Christians to the Jewish roots of their faith by sharing the rich teachings and traditions of Judaism through a weekly podcast.
The framework of my podcast follows the Jewish Bible reading cycle that assigns a portion of the Bible — called the parsha — to each week and goes through the Five Books of Moses (the Torah) each year. The tradition of reading a designated portion of the Bible, in coordination with the entire nation of Israel, was first established by the biblical figure Ezra in the 6th century BCE. In fact, this practice was already well-established in the time that Jesus lived. Every week, for thousands of years, millions of Jews around the world have read and studied the exact same portion of the Bible. And now, through my podcast, I invite you to be a part of this ancient tradition too.
Guidance and Inspiration
For millennia, the weekly Torah readings ensured that the Jewish people remained connected to the word of God and to each other, even as the nation was scattered to the four corners of the earth. The Jewish sages taught that each Torah portion provides timely guidance and inspiration that is particularly relevant to the week on which it is read. The rabbis called studying the weekly parsha and applying the lessons to our lives “living with the times.” As we explore the parsha together each week, we will tap into these timely insights.
Like the cycle of the seasons, the cycle of the Torah reading influences our thoughts and habits. As we revisit the same stories and lessons at the same time every year, the Bible is established as a constant in our lives. At the same time, while the stories stay the same, we change. Every year when we revisit the Torah portions, we learn new lessons and apply them in new ways to our lives.
Bless and Be Blessed
I hope that you will join me on this ancient Bible reading journey and that it will richly bless your life. As Christians, with roots in the Jewish faith, they are your heritage too. And a tree is only as strong as its roots.
I am looking forward to studying the word of God with you and growing together a bit more each week. I am so grateful for all the blessings that Christians have bestowed upon Israel and the Jewish people. I pray that my podcast is one way that the Jewish people can bless you too.
With blessings from the Holy Land,