Wednesday, 3 January 2018
Psalm 76:12(11) "Make vows to Adonai your God and fulfill them. Let all around Him bring tribute to the One who is to be feared." (TLV)
Kol Nidre (All Vows) is the first service of Yom Kippur (the Day of Atonement). That same word, Nidre, is the basis for the first word of our verse of the day. The second word is based on Shalem (similar to "Shalom") meaning "pay".
What is the connection between Shalom and pay? Shalom means complete, whole, perfect, lacking nothing. Shalem is when payment is made. At that point the exchange is complete, whole, perfect, lacking nothing.
So another look at these words might mean, "Vow and be complete" to the Lord, your God, all you who surround Him. While we think of the marriage covenant as the best example of covenant, the kingdom of God is based on covenant.
After the etnakhta we find the phrase, "Those who fear (God) should bring gifts." What gift do we offer to the Lord? Is it tithes and offerings? Is there anything in this world that God does not already own? Whatever we have, if we give it to God, we are only returning to Him what He had in the first place, with one exception.
Believe it or not, God does not own your heart. It is the only part of this earthly creation that he has given free will. Let us willingly lay our hearts on His altar and call upon Him to remove that which is not submitted to His perfect will. Then (and only through the ministry of Yeshua) will our vows be complete.
Rabbi Michael Weiner,