Parshat Vayikra- Missing the Message of “Mikreh”

When starting a new sefer of the Pentateuch, it’s always interesting to try to get a feel for the book- what its main message is, what types of stories it contains, and why they are all together. However, before reaching that deeper level, a good starting point is the name of the sefer. Ours is called “ויקרא,” literally […]

Ki Tetze- Annihilating Amalek

As we enter פרשת כי תצא, the topic of Moshe’s speech switches to the rules of war and captivity and eventually civil law. Then, the parsha concludes: זָכוֹר, אֵת אֲשֶׁר-עָשָׂה לְךָ עֲמָלֵק, בַּדֶּרֶךְ, בְּצֵאתְכֶם מִמִּצְרָיִם. אֲשֶׁר קָרְךָ בַּדֶּרֶךְ, וַיְזַנֵּב בְּךָ כָּל-הַנֶּחֱשָׁלִים אַחֲרֶיךָ–וְאַתָּה, עָיֵף וְיָגֵעַ; וְלֹא יָרֵא, אֱלֹהִים.  וְהָיָה בְּהָנִיחַ ה’ אֱלֹקיךָ לְךָ מִכָּל-אֹיְבֶיךָ מִסָּבִיב, בָּאָרֶץ […]

Shoftim- Kingship Quandaries

This week’s parsha continues Moshe Rabeinu’s monologue of issues that the Jewish People will face when entering Israel, but shifts to more political topics, discussing leadership, wars, and responsibilities. Within the leadership section, a very unique situation comes up, one which anyone could’ve seen coming but hoped wouldn’t: כִּי-תָבֹא אֶל-הָאָרֶץ, אֲשֶׁר ה’ אֱלֹקיךָ נֹתֵן לָךְ, […]

Re’eh- The Missing Municipality

In our parsha, Moshe Rabeinu’s monologue begins to shift topics, transitioning from a philosophical discussion into more practical laws that will affect the Jewish People as they enter Eretz Yisrael. Despite the fact that many of these laws center around Jerusalem, the eternal capital of Israel, the word ירושלים is never actually mentioned in our portion. Instead, […]

Naso- Apart, Yet Together

In this week’s פרשה, we learn of the הלכות of נזירות, where a man can voluntarily abstain from several physical pleasures, including drinking wine or other grape products, cutting his hair, and more spiritual abstentions like becoming טמא מת. There is a lot of debate amongst the מפורשים on whether becoming a נזיר is good […]

Parshat Ki Tisa/Para- A Strong Spirited People

Printer-friendly version: KiTisa73 (כי עם קשה עורף הוא וסלחת לעוננו ולחטאתנו ונחלתנו”  (שמות ל”ד:ט” This week’s פרשה centers around one of the Jewish People’s greatest fallings- the חטא העגל. There are some מפרשים who believe that had בני ישראל not committed the Sin of the Golden Calf, משה would have descended from the mountain with the […]

Parshat Tetzave/Zachor- Being There is Half the Battle

Printer-Friendly Version (‘וְאַתָּה תְּצַוֶּה אֶת-בְּנֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל, וְיִקְחוּ אֵלֶיךָ” (שמות כ”ז:כ” This d’var torah includes Torah heard from Rav Mordechai Machlis, one of my rabeim from Lev Hatorah, and Rav Joel Cohn, one of my rabeim at Machon Lev. This week’s פרשה, which mainly discusses the  garments of the כהנים and the עבודה of the משכן, […]