Parshat Pinchas 5773: About the Magnitude of the Sin Compelling Pinchas’ Zealousness — Then and Now

by Moshe Burt

We learned near the end of Parsha Balak that Bila’am’s scheme to seduce Jewish men to avodah zora by way of immorality (co-
habitation) resulted in a plague which killed 24,000 Jewish men until Pinchas’ act brought the plague to a halt. However, Bamidbar, Perek 25, posuk 4 and 5 read;

And Hashem, said to Moshe: Take all of the chiefs of the people, and hang them up unto the Hashem in the face of the sun, that (there) may turn away the fierce anger of Hashem from Israel. And Moshe said unto the judges of Israel: Slay you every one his men that have joined themselves unto the Ba’al Peor. [...]  Click here to read more.

Parshat HaShevua Sponsorships

Shalom Friends:

I’m writing to invite all of you to sponsor a Parshat HaShevua, like this one, on the weekly Torah portion. Sponsorships are offered so that you can celebrate a Simcha — a birth, a Bar/Bat Mitzvah, a Chassuna or other Simcha event in your life, or commemorate a Yahrtzeit of a loved one, or for whatever other reason by sponsoring (or co-sponsoring) a Parshat HaShevua.

Your name, the name(s) of Simcha celebrant(s) or the Yahrtzeit name being remembered will be contained in a message above the body of the Parshat HaShevua in the weekly email, as well as above the text appearing here on the Israel and the Sin of Expulsion blog. Minimum cost of sponsorship (or co-sponsorship) is $100 USD (In Israel — talk to me).  [...]  Click here to read more.

Parsha Balak 5773: Historical Parallels — Today’s Bila’ams, and Motivations for Toleration of Evil in the Camp

Shalom Friends;

This week, our Parshat HaShevua is being sponsored by Avraham and Miriam Deutsch of Efrat in honor of Kol Am Yisrael — Am Yisrael Chai! To the Deutsch family, many thanks for your continued kindnesses.

You can celebrate a Simcha — a birth, a Bar/Bat Mitzvah, a Chassuna or other Simcha event in your life, or commemorate a Yahrtzeit of a loved one, or for whatever other reason by sponsoring (or as the case may be, co-sponsoring) a Parshat HaShevua. Please be in contact with me with any questions, or for further details. [...]  Click here to read more.

Parshat Chukas 5773: The Parah Adumah and Rachel Imeinu’s Prayers for Divine Compassion

by Moshe Burt

The Midrash Says, by Rabbi Moshe Weissman writes regarding Parsha Chukas (Sefer Bamidbar, pages 245-247):

There are numerous examples of chukim…. Since they contain apparently contradictory elements, they are liable to be ridiculed by a rational thinker. The Torah advises the Jew to tell himself, It’s a chok; I have no right to question it.”

Nevertheless, chukim are not “laws without reasons”; rather their logic is Divine. The greatest among our people were able to understand some of them. [...]  Click here to read more.