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  • Don HRM

Ki Tetze: Divorce & Amalek

Updated: Apr 10, 2022

Ki Tetze Divorce and Amalek

{Don HRM}

Last shabbat in Re’eh Moses prophetically showed us the significant distinction between the paths we take today (choose life) with regards to the

I. Way we deal with things and people that have fallen beneath the Father’s fiercest judgements and

II. New way to worship our God and what fruit the ‘worship’ will produce in us and our world.

Last week in Shof’tim he took us a little deeper; in particular, showing us the way civil government would look like if we ‘chose life’ and how it would look if we took the other pathway.

Moses has continued the same look-down-the-road focus this week in Ki Tetze.


In Chapter 23 Jason talked about taking vows which really comes from these Hebrew words (Lo Tignov) which can be translated as you will not take /or appropriate for yourselves. If we vow something the commitment becomes ours. This makes the responsibility ours taking it away from Yehovah our Elohim and so replacing His right of control with ours. We can relate this to the sharing about worship in Re’eh. One of the conclusions drawn was: this diminishes Yehovah’s role to just blessing us and give us a little power boost. His job would then be to simply stand behind us, be the ‘wind beneath our wings’ and make us look really good. What a complete lack of reverence!


Many years ago, the subject of divorce became a spiritual interest for me. So much of it was happening in the world and it seemed the Christian world. I was so uncomfortable with the whole thing about people so freely divorcing that I sought the Father over it. I clearly was shown how much He hated it, and I shared widely about it. As soon as this happened people would then share the hopelessness of their marriage situation that divorce was the only answer. NOW I WAS PERPLEXED! Sadly, at that stage I was not Torah observant. The journey I went on with is part of my sharing today.

Deuteronomy 24: 1 – 5 starts with DIVORCE.

1 “When a man takes a wife and marries her, and it happens that she finds no favour in his eyes because he has found some uncleanness in her, and he writes her a certificate of divorce, puts it in her hand, and sends her out of his house,

2 when she has departed from his house, and goes and becomes another man’s wife,

3 if the latter husband detests her and writes her a certificate of divorce, puts it in her hand, and sends her out of his house, or if the latter husband dies who took her as his wife,

4 then her former husband who divorced her must not take her back to be his wife after she has been defiled; for that is an abomination before the Lord, and you shall not bring sin on the land which the Lord your God is giving you as an inheritance.

5 “When a man has taken a new wife, he shall not go out to war or be charged with any business; he shall be free at home one year and bring happiness to his wife whom he has taken.”

Malachi 2:16 says “For I hate divorce,” …

This is probably a scripture which needs elaboration. I have listed below some challenges to us just saying God hates divorce. These are only some examples, but they do clarify clearly the Father’s thoughts.

Malachi 2: 13 – 16

13 And this is the second thing you do: You cover the altar of the Lord with tears, With weeping and crying; So, He does not regard the offering anymore, Nor receive it with goodwill from your hands. 14 Yet you say, “For what reason?” Because the Lord has been a witness between you and the wife of your youth, With whom you have dealt treacherously; Yet she is your companion And your wife by covenant. 15 But did He not make them one, Having a remnant of the Spirit? And why one? He seeks godly offspring. Therefore, take heed to your spirit, And let none deal treacherously with the wife of his youth.

16 “For the Lord God of Israel says that He hates divorce, for it covers one’s garment with violence,” says the Lord of hosts. “Therefore, take heed to your spirit, That you do not deal treacherously.”


I. The Lord witnessed the vows man and his wife made when you were young. But he has been unfaithful to her, though she remained his faithful partner, the wife of his marriage vows. This is clearly shown in verse 15 of the above scripture - Therefore take heed to your spirit, and don’t break faith with the wife of your youth. A clear instruction to change and not divorce.

II. This passage was written during a time when men, mostly leaders were divorcing their wives without reason. Yehovah is clearly talking to the throw-away-wife man and telling him what he was doing was wrong and He despised it.

III. God knows that divorce deeply wounds and attempts to destroy his precious Beloved. Divorce endeavours to steal, kill, and destroy God’s creation. Divorce tries to assassinate people. That’s why God hates divorce.

  1. Proverbs 6:16-19 lists off seven things that God hates: “A proud look, a lying tongue, hands that shed innocent blood, a heart that devises wicked plans, feet that are swift in running to evil, a false witness who speaks lies, and one who sows discord among brethren.” For some women this is a description of their entire marriage. I believe God hates abuse of every kind, including – or perhaps especially – in marriage, and if the husband refuses to stop and get help, that’s where grace must step in and cover over when the husband won’t do what he’s supposed to be doing.

  2. “Enough is enough!” Enough of women suffering untold abuse in the name of keeping a marriage together! Enough of the church valuing an institution over a person! Enough of women sacrificing their God-given purpose for a man who doesn’t value them! Enough of this shame, guilt, and condemnation being heaped upon women for walking away from abusive marriages!

The key in walking away is to separate and not divorce. Then it is the time to pull her life together, and work to get closer to Him. Then she can hand it all over to Him. What happens next then comes from the Elohim of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.

So, we must put this passage into context. It is not instructing or encouraging anyone to get a divorce or ‘put away a wife’. When read in proper context it is meant to deal specifically with a man returning from combat and sees his wife doing ‘something unseemly.’ We could let our imaginations flow, but as we meditate on these words from the Father (as given by Moses), we can turn to Yeshua’s teaching in Matthew 19:8, 9:

8 He answered, “Moshe allowed you to divorce your wives because your heats were hardened. But this is not how it was at the beginning.

9 Now what I say to you that whoever divorces his wife, except on the ground of sexual immorality, and marries another woman commits adultery.

and Matthew 5:31 – 32

31 It was said ’Whoever divorces his wife must give her a get (certificate of divorce)

32 But I tell you that anyone who divorces his wife, except on the grounds of fornication , makes her an adulterous and anyone who marries a divorcee commits adultery.

Yeshua did not change Torah instruction. He was simply correcting a common area of misinterpretation – an error perpetrated by the religious mainstream to give themselves a greater sphere of influence. This appears to continue the theme of decreasing Yehovah’s influence and increasing man’s. It has got to the ludicrous situation where special courts have been set up to grant divorces. {The Family Court now averages a cost of > $100 000 cost per divorce} – source Herald Sun last week.

God does not break His covenants. When a man and a woman marry before God they make a covenant between each other and with God. A covenant marriage is intended by God to be a lifelong relationship exemplifying unconditional love, reconciliation, sexual purity, and growth. A covenant is an eternal commitment with God. The heart of covenant marriage is “the steadfast love of the Lord,” which comes from the very heart of God and “never ceases” (Lam. 3:22, RSV).

Compare a covenant with a contract. A contract is an agreement between two or more parties, especially one that is written and enforceable by law. Contracts are based on protection and mistrust. They allow the parties involved to look for loop holes and exit clauses and are centred on your rights and protection. People can negotiate out of contracts, but not out of a covenant. In fact, the Bible doesn’t say anything about “contracts” anywhere in scripture!

The essence of Torah’s instruction concerning divorce is that the man – even if he finds her committing adultery - must give the wife something. That something is, in Hebrew, called a ‘get’. It is translated into English as ‘bill of divorcement’. It is something like a ‘release of lien’ (a release from any contractual obligations the bank gives you when the debt you owed is paid in full). It means ‘you do not owe me anything else’. If you will receive it, it means “I forgive you.”

We can look at divorce in terms of what would our Father do – He does not, and will not divorce His Betrothed. If she commits adultery – with foreign political or religious systems, for instance, - He remains faithful! Yehovah is calling us back to Him, away from our inferior pleasures and illicit lovers and to come home to Him where we belong. The Father gives us many promises in His word:

Ezekiel 26:25 Then I will sprinkle clean water on you, and you will be clean; I will cleanse you from all your uncleanness and from your idols.

Isaiah 55:1 “All you who are thirsty, come to the water! You without money, come, buy, and eat! Yes, come! Buy wine and milk without money – it’s free!”


Matthew 19:3 – 6

3 Some Pharisees came and tried to trap Him by asking, “Is it permitted for a man to divorce his wife on any ground whatsoever?

4 He replied, “Haven’t you read at the beginning the Creator made them male and female,

5 and he said, ‘For this reason a man should leave his father and mother and be united with his wife, and the two are to become one flesh?

6 Thus they are no longer two, but one. So then, no one should split apart what God has joined together.”

God's plan for marriage is perfect! A Covenant between two people made in His presence. The problem is we, as a nation or, in fact, the world have strayed away from the Father’s perfect plan. I cannot be too definitive here as situations differ. However, if a man and a woman marry and really be Torah observant then there will be NO REASON FOR DIVORCE WHATSOEVER! It is only when we become worldly that problems arise.


The second part of this Torah portion I want to look at.

In Exodus 17:16 the Father makes it very clear à Because their hand was against the throne of Yah, ADONAI will fight Amalek generation after generation. It is an eternal reality. One of the things that we should always “see the Father doing”, therefore, is making war with Amalek. Since the Holy One is our covenant partner, it naturally flows that not only are our enemies His enemies, but also that His enemies are our enemies.

Deuteronomy 25:17 – 19

17 Remember what Amalek did on the road as you were coming out of Egypt,

18 how he met you by the road, attacked those who were at the rear, those who were exhausted and struggling behind when you were tired and weary – he did not fear God.

19 Therefore when ADONAI your God has given you rest from the surrounding enemies in the land ADONAI your God is giving you as your inheritance to possess, you are to blot out all memory of Amalek from under heaven. Don’t forget!


Genesis 36:12 Timnah was the concubine of Elifaz Esav’s son, and she bore Elifaz ‘Amalek’. Edom is therefore the ‘mainstream’ of peoples descended from Esav; Amalek, on the other hand, is a wild branch off of Edom. He is the absolute worst of what Esav has to offer. He is Esav’s ‘dark side’ in its fullest, most hideous, human form. We know Esav to be unspiritual. to be driven completely by physical and sensual/emotional motivations, and by sentimentalism, rather than by the word of the Holy One.

Genesis 25:29 – 34,

29 Now Jacob cooked a stew; and Esau came in from the field, and he was weary.

30 And Esau said to Jacob, “Please feed me with that same red stew, for I am weary.” Therefore, his name was called Edom.

31 But Jacob said, “Sell me your birthright as of this day.”

32 And Esau said, “Look, I am about to die; so, what is this birthright to me?”

33 Then Jacob said, “Swear to me as of this day. “So, he swore to him, and sold his birthright to Jacob.

34 And Jacob gave Esau bread and stew of lentils; then he ate and drank, arose, and went his way. Thus, Esau despised his birthright.

Genesis 27:1 – 4, and Genesis 33 add further for insight into the unspiritual Esav. Esav/Edom does not want Yaakov’s destruction. Esav/Edom merely covets Ya’akov’s wealth, influence, favour, and material blessings – i.e. the physical, tangible, worldly part of the Patriarchal birthright.

On the other hand, Amalek is really the prototypical terrorist. Perhaps we can see that in the Middle East at the moment.

Exodus 17: 8 – 13 and Deuteronomy 25:17 talk about them coming to attack the Israelites at Refidim.

Amalek thinks he will find great delight – and perhaps some form of make-believe state of nirvana – if he can just find a way to kill you.

He thinks he hates us and teaches his children to hate us and blame us for all the bad things happening in the world. He teaches his children that famine and pestilence and war are our fault. Anything he doesn’t like are our fault. He is so deceived that he believes these things with all his heart. But it is not really us he hates but our Father in Heaven.

I say us here as we have been grafted into the olive tree.

Romans 11:11 – 31

11 I say then, have they stumbled that they should fall? Certainly not! But through their fall, to provoke them to jealousy, salvation has come to the Gentiles. 12 Now if their fall is riches for the world, and their failure riches for the Gentiles, how much more their fullness! 13 For I speak to you Gentiles; inasmuch as I am an apostle to the Gentiles, I magnify my ministry, 14 if by any means I may provoke to jealousy those who are my flesh and save some of them.

15 For if their being cast away is the reconciling of the world, what will their acceptance be but life from the dead? 16 For if the firstfruit is holy, the lump is also holy; and if the root is holy, so are the branches.

17 And if some of the branches were broken off, and you, being a wild olive tree, were grafted in among them, and with them became a partaker of the root and fatness of the olive tree,

18 do not boast against the branches. But if you do boast, remember that you do not support the root, but the root supports you. 19 You will say then, “Branches were broken off that I might be grafted in.” 20 Well said. Because of unbelief they were broken off, and you stand by faith. Do not be haughty, but fear.

21 For if God did not spare the natural branches, He may not spare you either.

22 Therefore consider the goodness and severity of God: on those who fell, severity; but toward you, goodness, if you continue in His goodness. Otherwise you also will be cut off. 23 And they also, if they do not continue in unbelief, will be grafted in, for God is able to graft them in again.

24 For if you were cut out of the olive tree which is wild by nature, and were grafted contrary to nature into a cultivated olive tree, how much more will these, who are natural branches, be grafted into their own olive tree?

25 For I do not desire, brethren, that you should be ignorant of this mystery, lest you should be wise in your own opinion, that blindness in part has happened to Israel until the fullness of the Gentiles has come in. 26 And so all Israel will be saved, as it is written: “The Deliverer will come out of Zion,

And He will turn away ungodliness from Jacob;’ 27 ‑ For this is My covenant with them, When I take away their sins.” 28 Concerning the gospel they are enemies for your sake but concerning the election they are beloved for the sake of the fathers. 29 For the gifts and the calling of God are irrevocable. 30 For as you were once disobedient to God, yet have now obtained mercy through their disobedience,

31 even so these also have now been disobedient, that through the mercy shown you they also may obtain mercy.

We, as believers, are totally joined with our Jewish brothers.

According to the sages, Esav is represented by the mindset and worldview of Rome – represented in today’s world by the Western culture. Esav is, therefore, the anti-Semitic worldview of Western Europe and America.

Some sages of Israel over the centuries have specifically associated Esav with organized Christianity – particularly in the form of the Catholic Church and its early offshoots. This showed up throughout the ages in:

· the crusades, the Spanish Inquisition and the collaboration with Hitler during the Holocaust.

Amalek is much worse than this. It is the darkest side of Rome gone berserk. Amalek is Western Europe’s ‘little horn’ – Daniel 7:8, 11

8 While I was considering the horns, another horn sprang up among them, a little one, before which three of the first horns were plucked up by the roots., In this form the eyes were like human eyes and the mouth speaking arrogantly.

11 I kept watching. Then, because of the arrogant words which the horn was speaking, I watched as the animal was killed; its body was destroyed; and it was given over to be burned up completely.

and the king who exalts himself Daniel 11:36 – 45:

36 “Then the king shall do according to his own will: he shall exalt and magnify himself above every god, shall speak blasphemies against the God of gods, and shall prosper till the wrath has been accomplished; for what has been determined shall be done. 37 He shall regard neither the [a]God of his fathers nor the desire of women, nor regard any god; for he shall exalt himself above them all.

38 But in their place, he shall honour a god of fortresses; and a god which his fathers did not know he shall honour with gold and silver, with precious stones and pleasant things.

39 Thus he shall act against the strongest fortresses with a foreign god, which he shall acknowledge, and advance its glory; and he shall cause them to rule over many, and divide the land for gain. 40 “At the time of the end the king of the South shall attack him; and the king of the North shall come against him like a whirlwind, with chariots, horsemen, and with many ships; and he shall enter the countries, overwhelm them, and pass through.

41 He shall also enter the Glorious Land, and many countries shall be overthrown; but these shall escape from his hand: Edom, Moab, and the [c]prominent people of Ammon.

42 He shall stretch out his hand against the countries, and the land of Egypt shall not escape.

43 He shall have power over the treasures of gold and silver, and over all the precious things of Egypt; also, the Libyans and Ethiopians shall follow at his heels.

44 But news from the east and the north shall trouble him; therefore, he shall go out with great fury to destroy and annihilate many.

45 And he shall plant the tents of his palace between the seas and the glorious holy mountain; yet he shall come to his end, and no one will help him.

He is coming indeed. Against him we have no choice but to make war. Peaceful coexistence with him is simply not an option that either he or the ADONAI will ever allow us to entertain.


In Exodus 17: 8 – Amalek came and fought Israel at Refidum The strategy to defeat Amalek is found in Exodus 17:11 When Moshe raised his hands, Israel prevailed, but when he let them, down, Amalek prevailed.

I believe the hands that are lifted to defeat Amalek are the mitzvot of YHVH that He taught us. So, let us lift up the mitzvot of YHVH – hold them high for the world to see! In so doing, we will put Moshe on a rock [remember, a rock is always a symbol of Messiah] - and in so doing we will hold up Moshe’s ‘hands’. But even that is not the real key to success. The real key to success is Y’hoshua.

Exodus 17:13 makes it clear: Y’hoshua overcame the Amalekites with the sword.

Y’hoshua [Joshua], son of Nun, was a real man, of the tribe and lineage of Ephraim. But his story is included in Torah because he is a forerunner to, and symbol of, Messiah. His name means the Holy One is salvation. His namesake – He that came after him but was before him – is Yeshua of Nazareth.

So, the way to defeat Amalek is to lift up Moshe’s hands – the mitzvot of the Father – for the world to see as we follow Yeshua. HALLELUIAH!!! Even in that context, it appears a sword will be involved . . .

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