Tuesday, September 1, 2015 Elul 17, 5775
BALAK, Numbers 22:2-25:9
In the midst of our book of wandering, a Moabite sovereign engages a seer from a distant land in the hopes of cursing and thus defeating the Israelites. In the central irony of this fanciful tale that opens with the verb " vayar " (he saw), neither king Balak nor the hireling Balaam are able to "see" the Israelites. Balaam...
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HUKAT, Numbers 19:1-22:11
By:
Rabbi Joshua Runyan
Some things in life are readily understood, while others have to be taken on faith. Through the principle of cause and effect, I know that if I accidentally spill boiling water on my arm, it will burn my skin. I walk carefully with my cup of coffee as a result. But I trust that doing the right thing -- whether...
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KORACH, Numbers 16:1-18:32
By:
Rabbi Danielle Stillman
Turn on the radio these days and you get an earful of the latest election news with the campaigns of President Barack Obama and his Republican challenger Mitt Romney trading barbs on a near-hourly basis. In this environment of political oversaturation, this week's Torah portion, Korach, provides us with some juicy material to help understand our own role in the...
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SHELAH, Numbers 13:1-15:41
By:
Rabbi Adam Zeff
Each week in synagogue, we read a portion from the Torah and, alongside it, a portion from the Prophets, the Haftorah, which picks up on some of the themes of the Torah reading. The ancient rabbis selected these Haftorah portions with care. Often, the very selection of a particular story from the Prophets can be seen as an ancient form...
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BEHAALOTECHA, Numbers 8:1-12:16
By:
Rabbi Sue Levi Elwell
This is the season of pageant and protocol, as we celebrate graduations and weddings. As we participate in such celebrations during this season, perhaps we wonder about the intention and the history that structures and guides each of these events, from the music, the processional, the rituals and words, the costumes -- all the parts that make up these ceremonies...
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