Numbers

Parshat Balak: The Wind that Leads in the Desert

Neveh Shmuel Principal Chezi Zecharia

Parshat Balak: The Wind that Leads in the Desert Bilaam is fortunate enough to experience divine revelation and “walk on air” for a few moments, and it is this spirit that lifts him out of the muck in which he had wallowed. However, he misses his opportunity. Chezi Zecharia, Principal of OTS’s Neveh Shmuel Yeshiva …

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“Shabbat Shalom” – Parshat Balak 5779

Shabbat Shalom: Balak (Numbers 22:2-25:9) By Rabbi Shlomo Riskin Efrat, Israel – “There is no sorcery for Jacob, there is no magic for Israel.” (Numbers 23:23) What is the true message of an entire Torah portion dedicated to the hiring of a gentile soothsayer to curse the Israelite nation – but who instead becomes inspired to …

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Chukat: Faith in the Unclear and the Unknown

Bezalel Safra photographed by Rony Nathan

Parshat Chukat: Faith in the Unclear and the Unknown “There are things that are hidden, we won’t understand and we won’t know/we will also do things, seemingly without reason/there’s no need to ask and investigate into everything/sometimes, it’s fine not to know everything” This is the refrain of Zohar Argov’s well-known song, “There are things …

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“Shabbat Shalom” – Parshat Chukat 5779

Shabbat Shalom: Chukat (Numbers 19:1-21:35) By Rabbi Shlomo Riskin Efrat, Israel – “And he said to them: “Listen now rebels”…and he struck the rock twice.”  (Numbers 20:10) Rabbi Nahman of Bratslav tells a tale of a king who was beside himself because his only son was behaving like a rooster: he divested himself of all …

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Korach: Leadership, Accountability and Responsibility

Rabbi Chaim Kanterovich

Korach: Leadership, Accountability and Responsibility Rabbi Chaim Kanterovich, OTS Senior International Educator and Director of the OMEK program At one point or other in our lives, we all feel victimized. We feel taken advantage of, wronged by another person, or perhaps that life is simply not fair. The victim state of mind is extremely potent, …

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“Shabbat Shalom” – Parshat Korach 5779

Shabbat Shalom: Korach (Numbers 16:1-18:32) By Rabbi Shlomo Riskin Efrat, Israel – “And Korach took…” ( Numbers 16:1)  Is controversy a positive or a negative phenomenon? Since the ideal of peace is so fundamental to the Jewish ideal – to such an extent that we even greet and bid farewell to each other with the …

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Shelach: It would have been more appropriate to send women as spies

Rabbanit Renana Birnbaum

Parshat Shelach: It would have been more appropriate to send women as spies Rabbanit Renana Birnbaum is the Director of the Claudia Cohen Women Educators Institute and OTS’s Conversion Institute for Spanish Speakers The spies understood their roles differently than what Moses had intended. What was the goal of their mission, and was it even …

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“Shabbat Shalom” – Parshat Shelach Lecha 5779

This week’s parsha commentary has been sponsoredby the Charif family of Sydney, Australia    in memory of Bryna (Bertha) bat Nottel Noteh Charif whose 5th Yartzheit was on 21 Sivan. Shabbat Shalom: Shelach Lecha (Numbers 13:1-15:41) By Rabbi Shlomo Riskin Efrat, Israel – “And God spoke unto Moses saying, ‘Send out men for yourself to spy …

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