Meriting Blessings – Ki Tissa 5780

The consensus among all political analysts today is that the critical problem that Israel will face in the future is securing enough potable water. Competition for water resources among Israel, Jordan, and Syria complicates an already complex situation. While Israel...

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Who Gets Our Best -Tetzaveh 5780

The cultivation and refining of olive oil is very ancient. In her classic study of Food in History, Reay Tannahill highlights the fact that while the Greeks may have advanced the technology, it was the especially suitable soil of Israel and skill of native farmers...

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Portable Sinai – Terumah 5780

It is not just Bible critics who question the value of the many chapters describing in detail the construction of the Tabernacle. Thirteen of the forty chapters of the Book of Exodus are devoted to this topic (as well as substantial sections of the Book of Leviticus...

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The Unique Torah – Mishpatim 5780

Sometimes the structure of the Biblical text is just as important as the content. Consider the description of revelation prior to the Decalogue (Exodus 19) followed by the Decalogue itself (Exodus 20:1-14), which is followed by a description of the revelation (Exodus...

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Truth or Consequences – Yitro 5780

Donald Trump’s presidency has fostered a cottage industry of fact checking. No president in the history of the United States – probably no politician in world history – has been caught deceiving and lying as frequently as Trump. Only in his third year of his four-year...

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Oral Tradition – Bo 5780

In the follow-up to his remarkably successful book The Know-It-All, in which he spent a year reading the entire Encyclopedia Britannica, A. J. Jacobs decided that he would test what is required of observant Jews in A Year of Living Biblically. While the idea is...

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Words to Live By

What lies behind you and what lies ahead of you pales in comparison to what lies inside you.

– Ralph Waldo Emerson

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