Shabbos in the Parashah
This Shabbos is Parashas Bereishis, when we commence the cycle of the Torah reading. Prior to Bereishis we have Shemini Atzeres and Simchas Torah, and there is a time-honored tradition to connect the end of V’Zos Habracha to the beginning of Bereishis. The Torah ends off with the following verses (Devarim 34:11-12) velo kam navi od biYisroel kiMoshe asher yidao HaShem panim el panim lechol haosos vihamofsim asher shilacho HaShem lassos bieretz Mitzrayim liPharaoh ulechol avadav ulechol artzo ulechol hayad hachazakah ulechol hamora hagadol asher asah Moshe lieieni kol Yisroel, never again has there arisen in Israel a prophet like Moshe, whom HaShem had known face to face, as evidenced by all the signs and wonders that HaShem sent him to perform in the land of Egypt, against Pharaoh and all his courtiers and all his land, and by all the strong hand and awesome power that Moshe performed before the eyes of all Israel. Rashi explains that these verses refer to Moshe accepting the Luchos from HaShem and subsequently breaking them upon witnessing the Golden Calf that the Jewish People had created. One has to wonder why the Torah would choose to mention this episode as the conclusion of the Torah. Would it not be fitting to conclude with an incident that depicts the Jewish People in a positive light? The Sifri actually lists other miracles, such as the slaying of the first born Egyptians, the splitting of the sea, and the giving of the Torah. I would like to suggest an idea based on what I found to be a fascinating insight into Shabbos written by Rabbi Pinchos Winston on www.torah.org. Rabbi Winston explains that HaShem, so to speak, hides Himself in nature, yet, this goes against HaShem’s “nature”, so hiding is deemed by HaShem to be “work.” Shabbos, however, is when HaShem rested, so to speak, from this “work,” and revealed His Presence to us, thus allowing Shabbos to be a day of eternity. Using this premise, we can understand why Rashi writes that the Torah concludes with Moshe breaking the Luchos. When the Jewish People created the Golden Calf, they caused in a sense that HaShem should hide His Presence from the Jewish People. The Gemara (Eiruvin 54a) states that prior to the Luchos being broken, there was no concept of one forgetting the Torah that one studied. This is akin to HaShem hiding Himself, as the Jewish People, the Torah and HaShem are all one, so if HaShem chose to conceal His Presence from us, He also was required to conceal somewhat the light of Torah from us. Although Moshe breaking the Luchos appeared to be catastrophic, the Torah provides the antidote with Bereishis, where HaShem created the Original Light. When HaShem saw that the wicked would not be deserving of this great light, HaShem hid the light for the World to Come. Nonetheless, on Shabbos and Yom Tov this light is revealed. We are thus very fortunate to have Shabbos and Yom Tov, when we are keenly aware of the Divine Presence. The Zohar states that on Shabbos, Moshe returns the crowns that the Jewish People forfeited upon worshipping the Golden Calf. Apparently, the crowns reflect the light that was lost when the Jewish People fashioned the Golden Calf, and it is through the Holy Shabbos that we gain back that great light. Hashem should bless us that we merit the great light that is contained within Shabbos and Yom Tov, and we should merit the light of Moshiach Tzidkeinu, speedily, in our days.
Shabbos in the Zemiros
Ribbon kol HaOlamim
Published in 5401 (1641)
Melech kabir, King Who is powerful. How do we sense HaShem’s power? The obvious way to perceive HaShem’s power is by witnessing a thunder storm or any other “natural” occurrence. I would like to suggest a different answer, based on what I recently read in a Sefer called Pe’er Yashar from Dr. Peter Rosenzweig from
Shabbos in Tefillah
Habocheir bishirei zimrah, Who chooses musical songs of praise. What is the message contained within this praise of HaShem? Why is HaShem great because He chooses musical praises? Perhaps the answer to this question can be found in the High Holiday liturgy, where we contrast the praise that the angels offer HaShem and the praise that HaShem receives from the Jewish People. Although we are human beings and are prone to sin, HaShem still prefers our praises over the praises of the angels. Thus, we praise HaShem as being the One Who chooses musical songs of praise, because we are grateful to HaShem that He praises our songs and praises over the songs and praises of the angels.
So much of life is being in the right place at the right time or being in the wrong place at the wrong time. The Sadigerer Rebbe had to be in
Shabbos in Navi
Yehoshua Chapter 5
In this chapter it is said that that all the nations in the Land of Canaan heard that HaShem had dried up the waters of the Jordan River and they were all afraid of the Jewish People. At that time HaShem instructed Yehoshua that he should circumcise the Jewish People a second time as the Jews in the Wilderness had not had circumcision performed to them. The Jewish People the camped in Gilgal and they celebrated Pesach there on the fourteenth of Nissan. The manna then ceased to fall and that year the Jewish People ate from the grain of the
The Gemara states that one who kills an animal on Shabbos will be liable the death penalty and will be exempt from monetary compensation. Shabbos is unique from all the days of the week. The holiness of the day requires us to be aware of the ramifications if we were heaven forbid to violate the day. Hashem should allow us to be knowledgeable in the laws of Shabbos so that we can observe the Shabbos properly.
Shabbos in Halacha
One cannot add baked croutons (soup nuts) to a pot of soup (kli rishon) or to a bowl (kli sheini) into which the soup was poured. If a ladle was used to transfer the soup, however, one can add croutons to the bowl. One is also allowed to put croutons in a bowl and pour soup on them with a ladle. The same law is true for challah or matzah. [Deep-fried croutons can be added directly to the pot or bowl.]
Shabbos in Numbers and Words
It is said (Bereishis 2:1) Vayechal Elokim bayom hashevii melachto asher asah, by the seventh day Hashem completed His work which He had done. The word vayechal in mispar katan, digit sum, equals twelve, and this alludes to the amount of times that Shabbos is mentioned in the Torah.
Shabbos: Ta’am HaChaim V’Zos Habracha-Bereishis 5768
Have a wonderful and delightful Shabbos, and a superb Yom Tov
Prepared by Rabbi Binyomin Adler.
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