Simchat Torah means “joy of the Torah.” Week after week throughout the year, Jewish people the world over are reading the “parasha”, the weekly Torah portion. Scattered around the world, they are united together by reading the same Scripture passages each week. Simchat Torah marks the completion of these annual Torah readings.
This year, Simchat Torah begins at sunset on Monday, October 24th.
In the morning service of Simchat Torah, celebrants read from Deuteronomy the last Torah portion of the annual reading cycle. In the afternoon, the Torah portions begin again for another year with the first reading from Genesis.
Simchat Torah is a celebration that God has spoken to mankind through His Torah – His instructions. With festive dancing and joyful singing, participants carry the Torah scroll around the synagogue or public squares, and as many people as possible are allowed to carry it. It is truly a celebration of God’s Word to mankind.
What a vivid reminder to us of how precious God’s Word is. He has spoken to us not only in the Torah but also through the prophets, the psalmists, the New Testament writers, and ultimately through Yeshua Himself (Hebrews 1:1-2) who is the Word made flesh (John 2:14).
The One who created all things, who loves us perfectly, and who sent His Son Yeshua to take upon Himself the penalty for our sin, has spoken to us! We have a whole book of His words! With Bibles available nearly everywhere books are sold in the West, we can easily take God’s Word for granted. In other places of the world, persecuted Believers don’t have the privilege of owning a Bible, and they have an insatiable hunger for His Word.
When we hold God’s Word in our hands, we hold messages of hope, redemption, love, strength, comfort, purpose, courage, and so much more. His Word meets us in our need and tells us we have an eternal inheritance waiting for us to which this world cannot be compared (Ephesians 1:18, 1 Peter 1:4). It tells us that He loves us (Romans 5:8) and we can do all things through Yeshua who strengthens us (Philippians 4:13). It lifts our spirits when life is hard, reminding us that God has overcome the world (John 16:33) and is with us always (Matthew 28:20), that He has good plans for us (Jeremiah 29:11), and He is for us (Psalm 56:9, Romans 8:31). His Word speaks to our hearts inviting us to rest in His love (Matthew 11:28, 1 John 4:18) and know that with Him, all things are possible (Matthew 19:26) – even getting through your present difficulty with peace (Philippians 4:6-7). His Word is our sustenance (Deuteronomy 8:3, Matthew 4:4).
This Simchat Torah, let’s celebrate the gift of God’s Word! May you rejoice and dance to overflowing in your heart at God’s amazing gift to us – His Word!
At many times and in many ways, God spoke long ago to the fathers through the prophets. In these last days He has spoken to us through a Son, whom He appointed heir of all things and through whom He created the universe.
- Hebrews 1:1-2
In the Temple, He found the merchants selling oxen, sheep, and doves; also the moneychangers sitting there.
- John 2:14
I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened, so that you may know what is the hope of His calling, what is the richness of His glorious inheritance in the kedoshim,
- Ephesians 1:18
An incorruptible, undefiled, and unfading inheritance has been reserved in heaven for you.
- Peter 1:4
But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Messiah died for us.
- Romans 5:8
I can do all things through Messiah who strengthens me.
- Philippians 4:13
These things I have spoken to you, so that in Me you may have shalom. In the world you will have trouble, but take heart! I have overcome the world!”
- John 16:33
Teaching them to observe all I have commanded you. And remember! I am with you always, even to the end of the age.”
- Matthew 28:20
For I know the plans that I have in mind for you,” declares Adonai, “plans for shalom and not calamity—to give you a future and a hope.
- Jeremiah 29:11
You have recorded my wanderings. You put my tears in Your bottle. Are they not in Your book
- Psalm 56:9
What then shall we say in view of these things? If God is for us, who can be against us?
- Romans 8:31
Come to Me, all who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.
- Matthew 11:28
There is no fear in love, but perfect love drives out fear. For fear has to do with punishment, and the one who fears has not been made perfect in love.
- 1 John 4:18
And looking, Yeshua said to them, “With men this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.”
- Matthew 19:26
Do not be anxious about anything—but in everything, by prayer and petition with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God. And the shalom of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Messiah Yeshua.
- Philippians 4:6-7
He afflicted you and let you hunger, then He fed you manna—which neither you nor your fathers had known—in order to make you understand that man does not live by bread alone but by every word that comes from the mouth of Adonai.
- Deuteronomy 8:3
But He replied, “It is written, ‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.’”
- Matthew 4:4