Many people studying Torah do not realize the beautiful significance of the coverings and details of the Torah scroll and their amazing symbolism pointing to a reflection of our High Priest and Living Torah and the spiritual coverings/armor we must cover ourselves with if we are to be victorious in our spiritual battle against principalities and powers of darkness (Eph. 6:12) .
The Torah Scroll:
From the linen colored k’laf/parchment on which the Torah scroll is written representing the linen garments and purity of the Priest, to the hair or sinew with which the panels of parchment are sewn together representing the intercessory nature of the priest in unity with Israel, to even the kosher quill pen with which the text is written which comes from a clean bird representing how Hashem want to cover us with His wings (Ps. 91:4) and desires to write upon our heart his Torah (Jer. 31:31)… everything represents the deep symbolism with which God instructed the High Priest to dress!
We see from the top of the Torah to the bottom legs on which it stands, everything is reminding us of the wonderful significance of the spiritual elements with which every Priest is endowed. The Torah has a crown, and royal blue robe, a sash underneath holding it together, and a breastplate. The torah has a yad (hand) and legs known as the etz chaim (like the trunks of the tree of life which are on each side of the river of life… “And on this side and on that side of the river was the tree of life,” – Rev. 22:1-2)! This truly is amazing symbolism!
Now look at the High Priest:
The sacred clothing worn by the High Priest consisted of linen undergarments, and a richly decorated outer garment. The undergarments were a two part white linen suit consisting of a long sleeved shirt and breeches “to cover their nakedness.” (Exodus 28:42) Above that he wore a solid blue robe with a fringe of alternating golden bells and pomegranates that were made of blue, purple, and scarlet threads. His breastplate was a kind of pouch which held the Urim and Thummim. It was supported by shoulder straps attached to an apron called the ephod. The crown was a miter, a flat hat made of fine linen with a gold plate attached. Engraved on the plate were the words “Holiness to the Lord.” Around the waist was a sash woven from the same kind of thread and in the same colors as the veil that separated the Holy of Holies from the rest of the Tabernacle. (Exodus 28:4 – 42).
This same ritual clothing is referred to by Rabbi Shaul (Paul) in describing the sacral garments as protective armor of G-d in Ephesians 6: 11-18. Unfortunately, many with a greko/roman mindset have promoted an image of physical armor of a Roman soldier, when in fact Paul was teaching a spiritual lesson with a Hebraic mindset about spiritual warfare using a very common Hebrew picture of the Priestly Garments of the High Priest!
“Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.” (v. 11-12)
That is why one needs protection. The body is the temple we are to protect housing the Spirit of G-d and we all are called to be holy priests (Rev. 5:10) taking care of mind, body and Spirit to the glory of God, and Paul uses the idea of being protected and being victorious by the sacred clothing and coverings!
“ Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. Stand therefore,” (v. 13)
[One always stands to make a covenant. (2 Kings 23:1-3) and the Priest always stood in the temple and the Torah scroll is always standing when in the ark]
“having your loins girt about with truth…”(v. 14)
This is probably a reference to the sash which was woven from the same colors as the veil – and known as the belt of truth. The idea that the sash represented truth comes easily when one remembers that behind the veil the Spirit of God dwells above the Ark of the Covenant encapsulating the Torah of Truth! John 4:24 says, “God is Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth.”
“and having on the breastplate of righteousness; (v. 14)
The High Priest wore a breastplate in which he kept the Urim and Thummim – the source of revelation. It worked only on the principles of righteousness – “tzedek” – temple correctness: doing the right things, saying the right words, dressed the right way, etc. (See “Righteousness” below.)
“And your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace;” (v. 15)
“Preparation of the gospel of peace” is a key idea. The gospel of peace is a foundational principle of the character of God – for “blessed are the peacemakers” Messiah Yeshua said in Matthew 5:9, “for they shall be called the children of God.” and in Romans 12:18 Rabbi Shaul says as far as possible to “be at peace with all men” as this is a reflection of the Prince of Peace who will be teaching the principles of Peace during the Millennium of peace from the city of peace!
“Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked.” (v. 16)
The shield of “faith” is the shield of “pistis” – the tokens of the covenants.
“And take the helmet of salvation,” (v. 17)
The turban by the High Priest was his crown representing his priesthood. A similar crown was probably worn by the king as a symbol of his kingship.
The Hebrew word for salvation is Yeshua, thus it takes on more significance to realize that in donning the helmet of salvation we are covering our head with the Messiah to think as a Priestly intercessor for our brethren!
Rabbi Shaul wrote, “let this same mind be in you which was in Yeshua HaMashiach!”
“and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God:” (v. 17)
“Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints.” (v. 18)
The sword is often symbolic of the words of ones mouth when those words are spoken in the power of the Lord: “He made my mouth like a sharpened sword…” (Isa. 49:2) and the Lord’s word is sharper than a two-edged sword
Here are Paul’s words again, without the interruptions:
Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with the sash of truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness; And your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace; Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked. And take the crown turban of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God: Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints; (Ephesians 6: 10-18). (John says, “Here is the perseverance of the saints, those who keep the commandments [Written Torah] and have the testimony of Yeshua HaMashiach [The Living Torah] ” our High Priest!
Dedicated to my dear spiritual sister Mary Ellen for her interest in this subject when this was first taught and her encouragement for me to share it with others on this blog.
Study by Rabbi Isaac. © 2019 Assembly of Called-Out Believers. Website: CalledOutBelievers.org. Use by Permission.