Shabbat Nasso (Numbers 4:21-7:89)

Welcome to Parashat Naso! Come right in and watch your step. On the right side of the Torah you’ll notice the longest single parshat. That’s right folks, 176 verses of wilderness fun! Moving ahead to our first stop, there is the ever popular census taking. This time the Levite tribes are counted, divvied up, and counted again! Now did everyone remember to wash their hands? It’s important... read more

Shabbat Bamidbar (Num 1:1 – 4:20)

Chazak, chazak… we have left Leviticus behind us and begin the rebellious tale of the Israelites (lost, perhaps) in the wilderness. In Bamidbar – the portion, not the book – we are told how to make holiness portable. We double wrap it – first in cloth, then in leather. The cloth – Torah uses the word b’gadim, which means “clothes” like people wear – is to be of the purest colors. Not white or black,... read more

Shabbat Behar-Behuchotai (Leviticus 25:1 – 27:34)

Parasha Behar (“on/in/from the Mountain”) spends a great deal of time discussing the sabbatical and jubilee years in the land of Israel. The rabbi’s have interpreted this Shabbat of the land in different ways, from simple agricultural common sense to a living reminder that everything ultimately belongs to and derives from God, to a mirror of the 7 days of creation, to a chance to put... read more

Shabbat Emor (Lev 21:1 – 24:23)

This weeks’ portion continues with the “Holiness Code”. The Hebrew word for Holy (Kadosh) comes from the root that does NOT mean “better”, “higher”, “righteous”, etc but RATHER “set apart” or “separate”. It puts an entirely different spin on what it is that God is asking the Israelites to do and be. Where last week the portion... read more