Jews and Joes

Etymology of the word "Torah"

Torah LightWhat is the true sense or true meaning of the word "Torah"?

From the Hebrew Scriptures, we know that the Torah is "Light", "Light that shows the Way of Life".

Proverbs 6:23 "For the commandment is a lamp and the teaching [Hebrew: Torah] is light [Hebrew: Ore]; And reproofs for discipline are the way of life" Also see: Psalms 119:105-115; Isaiah 8:20 KJV.

If you were reading the above passage in Hebrew, you would immediately hear the word relationship between "Ore" and "Torah" (of course the connection can be heard in English as well), hence the word play between the words Lamp, Light, and Torah.

Hebrew words are formed or derived from two and three letter root words. By looking at root words and closely related words with the same root as 'Torah', we can begin to see the "root meaning" of the word 'Torah'.

The word depicts much more than what is generally perceived as just "Law" in Western cultures.

Torah = "instruction, teaching, law" (Hebrew: תּורה - Strongs#:H8451)

Moreh = "archer, teacher" (Hebrew: מורה - Strongs#:H4175)

Yarah = "to shoot, to point, to teach" (Hebrew: ירה - Strongs#:H3384)

Ore = "light" (Hebrew: אור - Strongs#:H216)

Ultimately, the word Torah could be defined as and/or perceived as this:

"the Light (ore) which the Teacher (moreh) casts in a direction (yarah) for us to walk in (halak)".

When regarding the Torah given to Moses, יהוה is Teacher and Giver of the Light, the Torah. He is the One who loves us so much that He wants us to walk in the pathway of Light and safety, not in ignorance and darkness, and He even sent Yeshua/Yehoshua/Jesus to live and walk in that PathWAY as an example for us to follow (Matthew 5:17-19).

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