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Torah, Prashat, Commentary

Havdalah Ceremony

From: Daniel Rendelman <danielr@innova.net>
To: Hebraic Roots Newsgroup
Subject: Havdalah Ceremony


This is a copy of the Havadalah Service my family will have tonight. We have a few friends and family joining us for this time of celebration. May I encourage you to host your own Havadalah
Service. Feel free to use this as a Messianic Israel Guide. The words in bold are to be spoken out loud. "Havdalah" is the Hebrew word for separation or division. And this ceremony highlights the separation between Shabbat and the rest of the week. For more on Havdallah reply to this e-mail and I will forward you my notes and a few articles. If you have anything about Havdallah please send it to me! Thanks!


Daniel Rendelman


Havdalah is a ceremony for concluding Shabbat It is mentioned in
Acts 20:7-8 where it says that there were "many lights in the upper
chamber where they were gathered together".

KJV Acts 20:7 And upon the first of the week, when the disciples
came together to break bread, Paul preached unto them, ready to departon the morrow; and continued his speech until midnight.

KJV Acts 20:8 And there were many lights in the upper chamber, wherethey were gathered together.


Havdalah Ceremony

1. Lighting and Blessing the Candle:

The Havdalah candle is lit before the Havdalah ceremony begins. A
child or adult holds the candle, as all present gather around a table.


"The candle with many wicks, stands tall and bright. Together as
one, we stand gazing at the blaze of light. In the light of Shabbat we
have learned more of what it is to love one another, not withholding and holding back who we are from the other. In so doing, we stand up as one into the fullness of who we are as the body of Messiah, lifting up the head, the Light of the world. It is He that brings Light into the darkness of life. It is as He said, they shall know who He is by the way we love one another! If instead, we the body of Messiah live under our choosing to walk in the flesh then how can He be seen in our world for who He really is? We would be covering over the Light of the World who lives in us, veiling Him from view! Our prayer is that we be reminded that we are children of the Light. Let us walk in the light as He is in the light."

A blessing is now recited over the light of the Havdalah candle.

Baruch ata Yahweh eloheynu melech ha-olam borey m'orey ha-eysh

 Blessed are You, Yahweh our Elohim, King of the universe, Who creates the light of the fire.

(While this blessing is recited, the head of the household and
Messianic believer it would seem good to examine a passage from the Bible in the light of the candle and then read it.)

2. Scriptures:

The head of the household recites the following prayer based on the

"Behold, Yahweh is my salvation; I will trust, and will not be afraid
for Yahweh Elohim is my strength and song, and He is become my
salvation. Therefore with joy shall you draw water out of the wells
of salvation. Salvation belongs to Yahweh: Your blessing be upon your people. Yahweh of hosts is with us. The Elohim of Jacob is our refuge.

The Jews had light and joy and gladness and honor. So be it with us. I will lift the cup of salvation, and call upon the Name of Yahweh."

This Week's Scripture Reading: Genesis 2:1-3 / Isaiah 57:13-14 /
Hebrews 4

3. Blessing Over The Wine:

The wine is poured until it overflows the cup. Then it is held in the
right hand and blessed as follows:

Baruch ata Yahweh eloheynu melech ha-olam borey p'ri ha-gafen.

Blessed are you Yahweh our Elohim, King of the universe, Who creates the fruit of the vine.

4. Blessing Over the Bread

The bread is presented, covered on a plate decorated with birds. The birds symbolize the freedom Messiah Yahshua has given us to live Torah. The bread is taken from the Shabbat table from the night before. It is eaten in remembrance of the rest of Yahweh.


"As at the Shabbat table we celebrated and thanked Abba for His every provision during the week, so at Havdalah we look to this new week ahead of us now by faith. Abba Yahweh has faithfully provided everything that we need in order to serve Him each new day. One such provision is the Ruach-given strength to let the Messiah's life flow from us in order to meet any given situation that we may encounter. In addition, Yahweh has already provided what we need to obey His call in any one moment by virtue of Yahshua's life in us and in our being His new creation. Anything that He would ask of us is not complicated nor is it beyond our reach. Each moment of this coming week can be met in the place of faith on the basis of this truth. It is this portion of the Shabbat challah that we now partake and choose to help us remember this fact as this is the bread from the Shabbat table."

The bread is blessed as follows:

Baruch atah Yahweh Eloheinu melech ha'olam hamotizie lechem min ha'aretz.

Blessed are You, O Yahweh our Elohim, King of the universe Who brings forth bread from the earth.

5. Blessing over Spices:

The spice box is taken and the following blessing is said:

Baruch ata Yahweh eloheynu melech ha-olam, borey miney b'samim. Blessed are You, Yahweh our Elohim, King of the universe, Who creates various kinds of spices.


"As we pass the box let us inhale deeply and savor the sweet, pungent aroma. Let us hear the words of Romans 12:1 & 2 "Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of Yahweh's mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to the Ruach HaKodesh-this is your spiritual act of worship. Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what Yahweh's will is-his good, pleasing and perfect will." Our new creation lives should be lived out consistently before the throne of Yahweh like a sweet smelling aroma rising to His nostrils. Our life should be as the burn offering of the Mishkan. Again, let us yield our life as a living sacrifice, not going the way of our flesh and thereby withholding who we really are from one another. Let us pass the spices and offer a prayer of thanksgiving to Yahweh for this past Shabbat and this new week."

(The spice box is passed around so that everyone can smell the
fragrance. A spontaneous prayer can be offered at this point that
Yahweh would help each one present to carry the fragrance of Messiah into the new week. A prayer that our Shabbat rest in Messiah might be a reality each and every day would be appropriate here, as well as a petition that our lives might be a love song to the Messiah.)

6. Havdalah Blessing:

The cup of wine is taken again in the right hand as the Havdalah
ceremony concludes with a special blessing that emphasizes the
separation theme as follows:

"Blessed are You Yahweh our Elohim, King of the universe, who makes a distinction between holy and profane, between light and darkness, between Israel and the heathen nations, between the seventh day and the six working days. Blessed are you, Yahweh Who makes a distinction between holy and profane."

(All present now partake of the "fruit of the vine." The Messiah
desires that each of us have fullness of joy.)

7. Candle Extinguished:

The Havdalah candle is extinguished in the wine that spilled over
into the saucer. The following is said as a remembrance to what has taken place:

... we have seen the symbols of Havdalah.

... we have tasted the wine.

...we have smelled the fragrant spices.

... we have felt the flame.

... and we have heard the Word of Yahweh

In this way we consecrate our five senses to Yahweh as we return to the labor of the coming week.

8. Prayer for the Coming Week:

A prayer for the coming week is usually said at this time. A
suggested prayer might be as follows:

"Blessed are You, our Father, our King who has given us this holy
day, a holy calling and Your Holy Spirit (Ruach HaKodesh) within us. We thank you, Father, for calling us out of darkness into Your marvelous Light. We give You praise for separating us from our sin through the atoning sacrifice of our Messiah Yahshua. Help us, Yahweh our Elohim, to follow You in this new week, to walk in the light, to walk in love and to glorify You in our lives. In Yahshua's Name we pray. Au mein"

(At this point it is totally appropriate for anyone who feels led to
pray spontaneously about the coming week, asking for specific
guidance, wisdom, blessings, etc. We serve Yahweh who is concerned about each and every detail of our lives. HE HEARS AND ANSWERS PRAYER.)

Reading of traditional scripture for this time:

"How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of him who brings good news, who proclaims peace, who brings glad tidings of good things, who proclaims salvation who says to Zion, Your Elohim reigns!" (Isaiah 52:7) Au mein. This is an appropriate verse for Messianic Israel as well, as we go forth this week to tell our people the Good News of Yahshua HaMashiach.

9. Worship:

This is a time to life your song to Yahweh! This should include a
time of praise, dance, prayer, and worship to Yahweh.

10. Conclusion and Blessing:

The Havdalah ceremony ends with a wish for SHAVUA TOV (have a good week).

Reading: Psalm 91.

"You who live in the shelter of 'Elyon, who spend your nights in the shadow of Shaddai, who say to Yahweh, "My refuge! My fortress! My Elohim, in who I trust!" - he will rescue you from the trap of the hunter and from the plague of calamities; he will cover you with his pinions; and under his wings you will find refuge; his truth is a shield and protection.

You will not fear terrors of night or the arrow that flies by day, or
the plague that roams in the dark, or the scourge that wreaks havoc
at noon. A thousand may fall at your side, ten thousand at your right hand; but it won't come near you. Only keep your eyes open, and you will see how the wicked are punished.

For you have made Yahweh, the Most High, who is my refuge, your dwelling place. No disaster will happen to you, no calamity will come near your tent; for he will order his angels to care for you and guard you wherever you go. They will carry you in their hands so that you won't trip on a stone. You will tread down lions and snakes, young lions and serpents you will trample underfoot.

Yahweh says, "Because he loves me, I will rescue him; because he
knows my name, I will protect him. He will call on me, and I will answer him.

I will be with him when he is in trouble. I will extricate him and
bring him honor. I will satisfy him with long life and show him my
salvation." This verse is said to thank Yahweh for His protection
during the coming week."

(The Aharonic blessing and the blessing of the children may also be

11. Oneg:

All Israel eats. So, enjoy a light dessert and delight in Yahweh.
Taste and see that He is good.

This is an adaptation of the booklet, HAVDALAH by Neil and Jamie Lash, Ft. Lauderdale, FL and from an article from First Fruits of Zion Issue 58 pages 7 and 16.


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