Pinchas (Phinehas)

The Zeal of Phinehas

Numbers 25:10 And יהוה spoke to Moses saying, 11 Phinehas, the son of Eleazar, the son of Aaron the priest, has turned away את־ My wrath from the Children of Israel, because while he was zealous for את־ My sake among them, so I did not consume את־ Children of Israel in My jealousy. C-MATS

Question: How did Phinehas turn “away את־ wrath”?  The righteous act by Phinehas the Levite actually became responsible for turning away יהוה Father’s zealous את wrath from את Children of Israel and goes on to say that Phinehas, “he was zealous for את־ My sake among them.” As a reward to Phinehas יהוה Father enters into a את Covenant of Peace and a Covenant of Everlasting Priesthood with him and his descendants forever. It is interesting to note that in 1 Chronicles 6:4-14 in listing the priestly descendants of Phinehas all of them have a Aleph/Tav את Symbol in front of their name signifying the את Covenant of Peace with יהוה Father and ends only with their going into captivity into Babylon. C-MATS

Question: What does “in my jealousy” mean in verse 11? In this context, the word jealousy refers to a display of anger that results in vengeance. “Jealousy” is a person’s reaction when he finds that another is taking something that is rightly his. יהוה is “jealous” when the Israelites served idols, because they transfer their allegiance from Him to something else. The Torah indicates that even when drastic action is necessary, as it was in the case of Phinehas, the zealot should regard himself as among the people; he should act out of love rather than anger and hatred. Chumash

Question: How did David describe Phinehas?Psalms 106:28 They joined themselves also to Baal-peor and ate the sacrifices made to the dead. 29 So they provoked Him to anger with their doings; and the plague broke in upon them. 30 Then stood up Phinehas and executed judgment; and so the plague was stayed. 31 And that was reckoned to him for righteousness, to all generations forevermore.          C-MATS

Question: How did the Israelites react to Phinehas killing another Israelite? Phinehas had put an end to a devastating plague that had taken 24,000 lives in retribution for the orgy of immorality with the Moabite and Midianite women. Instead of applauding him, however, the people accused him of wanton murder. In response, יהוה declared that, far from murder, Phinehas had committed an act that had saved countless lives. Indeed, יהוה called him a descendant of Aaron, who was distinguished for his love of mankind and the pursuit of peace. And what was more, יהוה rewarded him (v. 12) by appointing him a Kohen, which denoted a covenant of peace, not death. Chumash

Numbers 25:12 Therefore, I will give to him את־ My Covenant of Peace: 13 And he will have it and his descendants after him, also a Covenant of Everlasting Priesthood; because he was zealous for his Elohim and made atonement for the Children of Israel. C-MATS

Question: What is a covenant of peace? The “Covenant of Everlasting Priesthood” (v. 13) will demonstrate My gratitude and goodwill toward Phinehas. The pledge of My covenant should be seen as the greeting one sends to a person to whom one is indebted. Alternatively, this covenant of peace was a pledge that Phinehas would be protected from the anger of Zimri’s kinsmen and supporters. Although the priesthood had already been given to the descendants of Aaron, it was given only to Aaron and his four sons who were anointed together with him and to the children they would father after their anointing. Phinehas, however, who was born before that time and was not himself anointed, did not enter the priesthood until now. Thus we have learned “Phinehas did not attain the priesthood until he slew Zimri.” Chumash