by Brad Scott
Bere’shiyt (Genesis) 30:8And Rachel said, With great wrestlings have I wrestled with my sister, and I have prevailed: and she called his name Naphtali.
Ya’aqov's (Jacob) sixth son was prophetically called Naphtali (נפתלי). This word is found in the wrestling of Rachel with her sister. The word comes from the root patal, which means to twist, turn and move with swiftness. It is the area of Zebulun and Naphtali that Yeshua‘ is to begin His ministry. The majority of His disciples come from these regions. The tribe of Zebulun means to settle or dwell and Naphtali means to aggressively and swiftly move. Peter was an excellent representative of the characteristics of this tribe. Yeshua‘ choose those who, although were settled as fishermen in this area, would also aggressively respond to His calling.
Ya’aqov's prophecy over Naphtali in Bere’shiyt 49 has an interesting twist to it. The destiny of Naphtali is also found in words of shepher (שפר), or beauty and goodness.
Bere’shiyt 49:21Naphtali is a hind let loose: he giveth goodly words.
The hind is a swift deer. Mattityahu (Matthew), Kefa (Peter), and Yochanan (John) wrote much of the New Testament. It is these men that are directly responsible for giving us the "good news" of the Messiah and the first to go out into the uttermost parts of the earth.
Romans 10:15And how shall they preach, except they be sent? as it is written, How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things!
Shalom Alecheim! ◊