Sunday, April 19, 2015 Nisan 30, 5775
VAYISHLACH, Genesis 32:4-36:43
By:
Rabbi Joshua Runyan
Rabbi Joshua Runyan "Diplomacy," Henry Kissinger once said, "is the art of restraining power." No one lived that maxim more than Jacob, whom we see at the beginning of this week's Torah portion girding himself for war with his twin brother, Esau. Jacob's first move, before he strategically splits his camps and sends a peace offering, is to send messengers...
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VAYETZEI, Genesis 28:10-32:2
By:
Rabbi Danielle Stillman
Angels are popular, their winged images appearing in art, literature and pop culture. They are other-worldly beings from the heavenly realm, yet we imagine them coming down to earth and interacting with humans. They are one way that the transcendent divine is made immanent, or brought closer to home, in our everyday lives. The portion Vayetzei opens and closes with...
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TOLEDOT, Genesis 25:19-28:9
By:
Rabbi Howard A. Addison
An old adage states: Be careful what you wish for, you just might get it. The story most associated with this dictum is, of course, that of King Midas and the Golden Touch. Being granted his heart's desire, Midas experiences the shadow of his request when his food turns into metal and his daughter into a gleaming statue. What had...
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Chayei Sarah, Genesis 23:1-25:18
By:
Rabbi Sue Levi Elwell
"Sarah lived to be 127 years old -- such was the span of Sarah's life. Sarah died ... " There is no record of her aging, her decline or her final illness. We simply read that "Sarah died." Throughout the centuries, scholars have speculated that Sarah's demise was a response to the trauma of Abraham's attempted sacrifice of their son,...
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VAYEIRA, Genesis 18:1-22:24
By:
Rabbi Joshua Runyan
This week, we read of the Binding of Isaac, one of the most difficult narratives to square with what we rightly regard as a religion of peace whose primary goal is to perfect the world. Rabbinic sources identify the attempted sacrifice of Abraham's heir as the patriarch's 10th and final test inflicted by the Almighty. Ever since uprooting himself and...
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