Archive for half shekel

There Shall Be Seven Weeks: The Temple Tax

Posted in #PaulthePoke, Angels, Prophecy with tags , , , , , , , , , , on April 18, 2021 by paulthepoke

Daniel 9:25b …there shall be seven weeks…

The context of this series of posts is the course of the Jewish people for the initial 49 years of the 483 year period communicated from the angel Gabriel to the prophet Daniel. The city of Jerusalem has been rebuilt post exile. These events are covered in Nehemiah 8-13. Israel is returning to God’s Law. The Shemitah has been revived. Up next is the reinstatement of the Temple Tax.

Nehemiah 10:32 We also take on ourselves the obligation to give yearly a third part of a shekel for the service of the house of our God:

Under the leadership of Nehemiah, the Temple Tax was reinstated. Let’s look at what Nehemiah is proposing compared to what Moses states in the law.

Exodus 30:13-16 This is what everyone who is numbered shall give: half a shekel according to the shekel of the sanctuary (the shekel is twenty gerahs), half a shekel as a contribution to the Lord. Everyone who is numbered, from twenty years old and over, shall give the contribution to the Lord. The rich shall not pay more and the poor shall not pay less than the half shekel, when you give the contribution to the Lord to make atonement for yourselves. You shall take the atonement money from the sons of Israel and shall give it for the service of the tent of meeting, that it may be a memorial for the sons of Israel before the Lord, to make atonement for yourselves.”

Here are the specifics of the Temple Tax for service.

  1. Tax of 1/2 Shekel is cost.
  2. Men 20 years of age and older shall pay.
  3. No sliding scale of taxation. Rich and poor pay the same.
  4. Yearly contribution required.
  5. Purpose is for atonement of personal life.

Everything appears to be in alignment with one exception. Moses said 1/2 shekel and Nehemiah says 1/3 shekel. Why the difference? Is Nehemiah being disobedient or cheap?

There are many theories and conjectures as to why the difference. The most reasonable explanation may come from Ridgeway’s Origin of Currency and Weight Measures.

In Moses’ day, Jews contributed a beka or a half shekel.

Exodus 38:26 a beka a head (that is, half a shekel according to the shekel of the sanctuary)…

One beka or a half shekel equals 5.67 grams or about 65 grains.

Roughly one thousand years had passed from the Exodus and Moses (1440 BC) to Nehemiah’s return to the Promised Land (440 BC).

In Nehemiah’s day, the Babylonian Empire standard was the stater or shekel. This would have been the relevant currency for the Israelis of the time. The stater weighed about 173 grains. One third of a stater or shekel would be 58 grains.

One beka or a half shekel equals 65 grains verses one third stater or shekel equals 58 grains. These two measurements relative to their time and cultural influence are essentially equal.

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Fast forward about another 470 years to the time of Jesus. The Roman Empire is in control over the region of Israel and the city of Capernaum. The Jewish historian Flavius Josephus made the following observation.

‘The emperor commanded every Jew to pay the two drachma annually to the Capitol which they had before been accustomed to pay to the Temple at Jerusalem.’

Matthew 17:24 When they came to Capernaum, the collectors of the two-drachma tax went up to Peter and said, “Does your teacher not pay the tax?”

This had to really irritate the Jews, specifically Peter and the apostles. The trap had been set. The Roman tax collectors knew who Jesus claimed to be. Jesus was the Jewish King and Messiah. Would Jesus bow to the Romans and pay the tax?

The two-drachma tax is known as the δίδραχμον/didrachma in the original Greek text. The didrachma was a silver coin during the life and times of Jesus that was equal to one half shekel.

We know how the rest of the story goes. Jesus had Peter go fishing. No problem, Jesus and Peter’s tax was paid.

Historical research provided by Cambridge Bible for Schools and Colleges via Bible Hub.

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So here we are roughly 2,000 years later from the time of Christ. Israel is back in the land. Jerusalem is their capital. The modern day Sanhedrin has reconvened. The Temple Tax and the beka are back in the news.

The modern day Sanhedrin issued a Temple Tax back in February 2017. They even minted 1,000 coins with the images of Cyrus the Great and President Donald Trump. They are raising money for the promised third Temple.

So a tax written by Moses as told to him by God over 3,400 years ago, still relevant…

Ancient Beka Found Near Temple Mount in Jerusalem

Posted in Temple, Trend Update with tags , , , , , , , , on November 25, 2018 by paulthepoke

Exodus 30:13-16 This is what everyone who is numbered shall give: half a shekel according to the shekel of the sanctuary (the shekel is twenty gerahs), half a shekel as a contribution to the Lord. Everyone who is numbered, from twenty years old and over, shall give the contribution to the Lord. The rich shall not pay more and the poor shall not pay less than the half shekel, when you give the contribution to the Lord to make atonement for yourselves. You shall take the atonement money from the sons of Israel and shall give it for the service of the tent of meeting, that it may be a memorial for the sons of Israel before the Lord, to make atonement for yourselves.”

beka Eliyahu Yanai David TOI

Photo: Eliyahu Yanai, City of David, Times of Israel

November 2018: An ancient weight from the first Temple era has been discovered in Jerusalem. The “beka” has been found in an archeological dig. A “beka” was used by Jews to pay the half-shekel Temple tax as mandated by the Law in Exodus 30 as noted in the verses above.

The term “beka” is noted two places in the Bible. The first notation is with Rebekah and Abraham’s servant Eliezer.

Genesis 24:22 When the camels had finished drinking, the man took a gold ring weighing a beka and two bracelets for her wrists weighing ten shekels in gold…

The second and last mention is in regards to the individual payment of the Temple tax.

Exodus 38:26 a beka a head (that is, half a shekel according to the shekel of the sanctuary), for each one who passed over to those who were numbered, from twenty years old and upward, for 603,550 men.

A Biblical shekel weighs 11.33 grams. Two beka equal one shekel. One beka equals 5.67 grams. Ten gerah equal a beka.

The “beka” was located in Jerusalem’s Emek Tzurim National Park. Specifically, it was found at the foundation of the Western Wall. The pebble was found during 2013 excavations under Robinson’s Arch. The dirt came from a drainage canal under the foundation of the Western Wall. This location would be next to Solomon’s Temple.

Eli Shukron was in charge of the dig on behalf of the Israel Antiquities Authority. Shukron made the following statement.

“When the half-shekel tax was brought to the Temple during the First Temple period, there were no coins, so they used silver ingots. In order to calculate the weight of these silver pieces they would put them on one side of the scales and on the other side they placed the beka weight. The beka was equivalent to the half-shekel, which every person from the age of 20 years and up was required to bring to the Temple.”

“This three thousand-year-old beka weight, inscribed with ancient Hebrew was likely used in the First Temple, anchoring once again, the deep historical connection of the Jewish People to Jerusalem,” said Doron Spielman, Vice President of the City of David Foundation which funded the excavation.

https://www.timesofisrael.com/straight-from-the-bible-tiny-first-temple-stone-weight-unearthed-in-jerusalem/

 

In the 21st century, the modern-day Sanhedrin has revived the law or mitzvah for the half-shekel levy (roughly $4 in today’s economy). The cause is to rebuild the third Temple.

Here is today’s version of the half-shekel Temple tax…

Temple Coin Sputnik

Photo: Sputnik News

https://paulthepoke.com/?s=half+shekel

 

Trend Update: Temple Coin with Trump Likeness in High Demand, March 2018

Posted in Prophecy, Sanhedrin, Temple, Trend Update with tags , , , , on March 8, 2018 by paulthepoke

The Sanhedrin is putting their money where their mouth is. Along with the Mikdash Educational Center, the two groups have minted 1,000 coins with the likeness of King Cyrus and Donald Trump. The coins represent the half shekel Temple tax as noted in Exodus 30.

Exodus 30:13-16 This is what everyone who is numbered shall give: half a shekel according to the shekel of the sanctuary (the shekel is twenty gerahs), half a shekel as a contribution to the Lord. Everyone who is numbered, from twenty years old and over, shall give the contribution to the Lord. The rich shall not pay more and the poor shall not pay less than the half shekel, when you give the contribution to the Lord to make atonement for yourselves. You shall take the atonement money from the sons of Israel and shall give it for the service of the tent of meeting, that it may be a memorial for the sons of Israel before the Lord, to make atonement for yourselves.”

People from all over the world are making contributions to get the coin. Demand has exceeded expectations. Mordechai Persoff of the Mikdash Educational Center has made the following statement.

“It is clear that interest in the Temple is much stronger and much more universal than previously thought. This goes beyond political boundaries.”

Coins are being sent to the following countries: Hong Kong, Ireland, Poland, China, Brazil, Australia, Germany, and Belgium. The majority of the orders are from the United States.

Sanhedrin Spokesman Hillel Weiss believes there is global support for construction of the third Temple because of the coin demand. He also made the following incredible comments.

“This is enormously popular among America’s friends and very unpopular among the people who hate America.”

“Obama hated Israel and Jerusalem, and as a result, America’s enemies became stronger while he was president, many acquiring or developing nuclear weapons. It is important to realize that the most powerful and enduring hope America has is to side with Hashem (God). The only hope for this is to support Jews taking their place as a Nation of Priests and a Light unto the Nations.” -Hillel Weiss, Sanhedrin Spokesman

The Sanhedrin and Mikdash Educational Center are considering printing more coins with the current design.

Passover is about three weeks away. These two groups will be performing the Passover Sacrifice. The Lamb will be sacrificed and burned according to the Mosaic Law. Priests will be dressed accordingly in the appropriate garments. Silver utensils will be utilized. Eventually, all of these items are intended to be used in the newly built third Temple for service and worship.

Read more at https://www.breakingisraelnews.com/103700/global-support-third-temple-coin/#o4i4p5Qz2o83gbVV.99

http://en.hamikdash.org.il/about/we-need-your-support/the-temple-coin/

 

 

Trend Update: Trump to be Minted on Temple Half Shekel, February 2018

Posted in Fake News???, Sanhedrin, Temple, Trend Update with tags , , , on March 1, 2018 by paulthepoke

Jewish Temple Coin has been minted with likeness of US President Donald Trump.

Temple Coin Sputnik

Photo: Sputnik News

Trend Update: Sanhedrin Issues Temple Tax, February 2017

Posted in Prophecy, Sanhedrin, Temple, Trend Update with tags , , , , , on February 1, 2017 by paulthepoke

Exodus 30:13-16 This is what everyone who is numbered shall give: half a shekel according to the shekel of the sanctuary (the shekel is twenty gerahs), half a shekel as a contribution to the Lord. Everyone who is numbered, from twenty years old and over, shall give the contribution to the Lord. The rich shall not pay more and the poor shall not pay less than the half shekel, when you give the contribution to the Lord to make atonement for yourselves. You shall take the atonement money from the sons of Israel and shall give it for the service of the tent of meeting, that it may be a memorial for the sons of Israel before the Lord, to make atonement for yourselves.”

For the first time in roughly 2,000 years, the Sanhedrin has issued the call for a Temple tax. The tax is per the law. If you are 20 years old or older, you owe one half shekel to God. It does not matter how much money you have. There is no sliding tax scale with God. The purpose for the money is maintenance for the Temple.

The Sanhedrin has revived the law or mitzvah for the half shekel levy (roughly $4). The cause is to rebuild the Temple.

Back in Temple days, this was not a problem. Every Hebrew man was required to make three trips to Jerusalem every year for the God Appointed Holidays. The men could come to Jerusalem and pay the tax in person, no problem. In our world today, a half shekel coin has been minted for the tax occasion for those in Israel.

Now in the 21st century, not every Jew lives in Israel. It is the duty of every Jew to pay the tax, even if one does not live in Israel. But in September 2016, the Sanhedrin issued a medallion as a substitute for half shekel tax. The Sanhedrin issued the medallion because of the completion of a 50 year Jubilee cycle. This was completed on Rosh Hashanah.

The most recent Jubilee year was proclaimed illegally. The Jubilee year is to be proclaimed on the Day of Atonement, one of God’s fall appointments.  The Sanhedrin made the call in July 2016. The Gregorian month of July is not consistent with the seventh Hebrew month of Tishri.

Leviticus 25:10 Then you shall sound the loud trumpet on the tenth day of the seventh month. On the Day of Atonement you shall sound the trumpet throughout all your land. 

As an outside observer, there seemed to be some latitude taken by the Sanhedrin with the law and dates regarding the matter of the jubilee proclamation.  

“The half shekel was a tax intended to be used for a specific purpose. As such, it was dynamic and not simply stored away. As the preparations for the Temple move forward, the need for that tax is reemerging. The medallion itself is not sanctified to the Temple, but any money raised by the medallion is sanctified and cannot be used for any other purpose.” Rabbi Hillel Weiss, spokesman for the Sanhedrin.

And by the way, the Sanhedrin is looking to reinstitute three yearly road trips to Jerusalem on God’s Appointed Holidays per the Mosaic Law…

Exodus 23:14 “Three times a year you shall celebrate a feast to Me…

https://www.breakingisraelnews.com/82827/half-shekel-temple-tax-reinstated-sanhedrin/#ZZD397qW0BB6TWzl.99

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