Parsha Ki Tavo 5772: Tachanon, Hashem’s 13 Attributes of Mercy and the Blessings and Curses

by Moshe Burt

That these Parshiyot HaShevua are seen online via this blog, sent out to email lists of subscribers and ocassionally posted on Israel National News, it’s inevitable that this author would receive inquiries both about a vort itself, as well as about other related topics. It is in this spirit, that this author wishes to discuss, as best he can, Hashem’s Hashem’s Attribute of Kindness within the Thirteen Attributes of Mercy (Rachmanot) and how it relates to our sins, the lack of a Beit Hamikdash (Temple) for nearly two milineum and what replaces it, as well as what appears as Hashem’s Attribute of Kindness, even from within the enunciation of the curses should we “not hearken to the voice of Hashem…, to observe and perform all of his commandments…” (Sefer Devarim, Perek 28, posuk 15) [...]  Click here to read more.

Parsha Ki Tavo 5772 — Bikkurim: Thanksgiving and Remembrance, and The Impact Of Intent in Mitzvot

by Moshe Burt

Ki Tavo opens by detailing the Halachot of Bikkurim — the first fruits which were brought to the Kohen as a thanksgiving as well as both remembrance of Pharaoh’s cruelty and Hashem’s deliverance of B’nai Yisrael from Mitzrayim to a land flowing with milk and honey.

The Stone Chumash on Parsha Ki Tavo (Sefer Devarim ,Perek 26, posukim 3, 5-10, page 1069) renders the posukim addressing the Halachot of Bikkurim:

When presenting Terumot to the Kohen: you shall come to whomever will be the Kohen in those days, and you shall say to him “I declare to Hashem, Your G’d, that I have come to the land that Hashem swore to our forefathers to give us.” ….Then you shall call out and say before Hashem: “An Aramean tried to destroy my forefather. He descended to Mitzriyim and sojourned there, few in number, and there he became a nation — great, strong and numerous. The Mitzrayim mistreated us and afflicted us, and placed hard work upon us. Then we cried out to Hashem, G’d of our forefathers, and Hashem heard our voice and saw our affliction, our travail and opression. Hashem took us out of Mitzriyim with a strong hand and outstretched arm, with great awesomeness, and with signs and wonders. He brought us to this place, and gave us a land flowing with milk and honey. And now, behold! I have brought the first fruit of the ground that you have given me, to Hashem!” [...]  Click here to read more.

Parsha Ki Teitsei 5772: Collective Kindness, Unity and Responsibility vs Acquiescense to Evil

by Moshe Burt

Parsha Ki Teitsei teaches numerous Mitzvot such as; returning lost items to their rightful owners, loaning money to one’s fellow Jew free from interest, what one is permitted to or prohibited from taking from another Jew as loan security, Shatnes (wool and linen together), Tzitzit, and dealing fairly and truthfully with one’s fellow Jews in business. We also learn of Mitzvot such as sending a mother bird away before taking the young or the eggs and helping one’s fellow Jew load and unload a burden, fencing in a roof area and not harnessing together different species of animals on the same yoke. [...]  Click here to read more.

Parshat Shoftim 5772: Justice in Judgement or, Sgt. Friday’s “The Facts… Just the Facts”

by Moshe Burt

The third posuk of our Parsha reads;

“Tzedek, Tzedek tierdof…” Righteousness, righteousness (also rendered Justice, Justice) you shall pursue that you may live and inherit the land which the Lord, your G’d gives you.” (Sefer Devarim, Perek 16, posuk 20)

This posuk follows immediately after the opening of our Parsha in which Moshe Rabbeinu urges the B’nai Yisrael;

“Judges and officers shall you appoint in all of your cities — which Hashem …gives you — for your tribes; and they shall judge the people with righteous judgement. You shall not pervert judgement, you shall not respect persons, neither take a bribe, for a bribe binds the eyes of the wise, and perverts the words of the righteous.” (Sefer Devarim, Perek 16, p’sukim 18-19) [...]  Click here to read more.

Parshat R’ei 5772 — The Kindness and Perceptiveness of Chessed vs the Neverending Plight of Our Expelled Brethren

by Moshe Burt

According to Rashi, Moshe Rabbeinu begins our Parsha R’ei by informing the B’nei Yisrael about the blessing and the curse to be pronounced to them from Mount Gerizim and Mount Eval upon their entry to Eretz Yisrael.

Moshe Rabbeinu continues his mussar saying:

“Behold, I set before you … a blessing and a curse; the blessing if you heed the commandments of Hashem, and the curse, if you will not observe his commandments. (Sefer Devarim, Perek 11, posukim 26-27)

Toward the end of the parsha, we are informed: [...]  Click here to read more.

Parsha Eikev 5772: Performannce of the Under-rated Eikev Mitzvot?

by Moshe Burt

Sefer Shem Mishmuel (by R’ Shmuel Bornstein, as translated by R’ Zvi Belovski, pages 386-387) renders translation of the opening posuk of Parsha Eikev:

“And it shall come to pass, if you listen to these mishpatim (ordinances) and you guard them and do them, that Hashem Ke’ilokecha will guard the convenant for you and the kindness which He swore to your forefathers.” (Sefer Devarim Perek 7, posuk 12)

Bearing this in mind, the Stone Chumash (Parshat Eikev pages 980-981) equates Eikev: [...]  Click here to read more.