The way biblical lessons can transform our everyday lives!
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Rabbi Ovadia explains some of the psalms with explanation. Psalms are full of expression, love, sadness, hope, and many more. Some read psalms daily, weekly, in time of need, in tragedy, in celebration, to express what’s in our hearts and minds.
Exodus 6 – 9
ב וַיְדַבֵּ֥ר אֱלֹהִ֖ים אֶל־מֹשֶׁ֑ה וַיֹּ֥אמֶר אֵלָ֖יו אֲנִ֥י יְהוָֽה׃
ג וָאֵרָ֗א אֶל־אַבְרָהָ֛ם אֶל־יִצְחָ֥ק וְאֶֽל־יַעֲקֹ֖ב בְּאֵ֣ל שַׁדָּ֑י וּשְׁמִ֣י יְהוָ֔ה לֹ֥א נוֹדַ֖עְתִּי לָהֶֽם׃
ד וְגַ֨ם הֲקִמֹ֤תִי אֶת־בְּרִיתִי֙ אִתָּ֔ם לָתֵ֥ת לָהֶ֖ם אֶת־אֶ֣רֶץ כְּנָ֑עַן אֵ֛ת אֶ֥רֶץ מְגֻרֵיהֶ֖ם אֲשֶׁר־גָּ֥רוּ בָֽהּ׃
(2) And God spoke unto Moses, and said unto him: ‘I am the LORD; (3) and I appeared unto Abraham, unto Isaac, and unto Jacob, as God Almighty, but by My name ….a I made Me not known to them.
The words of Hashem as the “ וַיְדַבֵּ֥ר אֱלֹהִ֖ים אֶל־מֹשֶׁ֑ה וַיֹּ֥אמֶר אֵלָ֖יו אֲנִ֥י יְהוָֽה׃ (3) וָאֵרָ֗א אֶל־אַבְרָהָ֛ם אֶל־יִצְחָ֥ק וְאֶֽל־יַעֲקֹ֖ב בְּאֵ֣ל שַׁדָּ֑י וּשְׁמִ֣י יְהוָ֔ה לֹ֥א נוֹדַ֖עְתִּי לָהֶֽם׃ ” are a secret, that is revealed in the names of the El of Abraham, El of Isaac, El of Yaacov.
The world was built on love/chesed and brought into a place of chaos and then rectification. These three things are the foundations of the world.
So many of us are like a child of three years old and our love and faithful obedience toward those we love is blind and untrained. We see the world as a child. We are nieve and unable to see around the corners.
Many are like Yosef at the age of seventeen, immature and unable to be directed, because we know everything, and our goals and dreams must be first, and primary to all others wishes and objectives. Our careers are what we are chasing, and Hashem will have to wait, until I am ready, to hear from Him. The one chasing this world does not need direction from above, to find the way below. Do you remember seventeen and know everything?
Wo, are my grey hairs, for I am a man of eighty. With much strength, and wisdom, to bring stability, and balance to the world. But the world has passed me by because it has failed in its own self-portrait. Like Moses, sent at eighty to free a people that were destined to be great but had to be strengthened in the fire of Egypt, in that narrow place. Moses was eighty, you see?
The world has not given to those in need. The world has not helped the ones, who need help the most. The world has not forgiven the ones that need forgiveness, the guilty have lost hope of ever being forgiven. We all have sought honor for ourselves, and everything given, must have something in return, to give to me, or it is not worth my time or effort. There must be a reward for everything, I do.
Remember, that you were once in that same state, of not knowing. Like a child and then young, looking for a friend to help you overcome the ordeal you were standing in. Empathy was looking to find a home, but you were hurt, and offended, by someone’s words, and could not give, or share a kind word of support.
You see, loving kindness built this world, and judgment will one day have its place. Abraham taught us this lesson when asked Hashem, to save the wicked along with the righteous in that place. Isaac was not offended when the wells of his father were covered up and no longer provided living water to those who needed it. Great love, have they, who love your Torah and nothing shall offend them.
Can you not see, that the world is not a place of sin and punishment, but a place to grow, and to become like the El of Abraham, the El of Isaac and the El of Yaacov. A place of chesed, strength, and truth, all working together. Everyone working as a crew, together, to bring us to the mountain of Hashem to serve Him there. To do and to hear. That was the plan. On that day Hashem will be One and His name will be ONE.
Hashem gave Israel a free gift in Egypt. As He defeated the Egyptians through His ten emunations and then He took us out to the place of words, and then told us, now you must do it yourselves. You must defeat, this world.
Published on Nov 15, 2015
Published on Dec 30, 2017
Published on Dec 31, 2017
Exodus 1 – 6
א וְאֵ֗לֶּה שְׁמוֹת֙ בְּנֵ֣י יִשְׂרָאֵ֔ל הַבָּאִ֖ים מִצְרָ֑יְמָה אֵ֣ת יַעֲקֹ֔ב אִ֥ישׁ וּבֵית֖וֹ בָּֽאוּ׃
ברְאוּבֵ֣ן שִׁמְע֔וֹן לֵוִ֖י וִיהוּדָֽה׃
ג יִשָּׂשכָ֥ר זְבוּלֻ֖ן וּבְנְיָמִֽן׃
ד דָּ֥ן וְנַפְתָּלִ֖י גָּ֥ד וְאָשֵֽׁר׃
My thoughts this week in the Torah Portion comes from a lecture I heard from Rabbi Jonathan Sacks where he states ”
Genesis 44 – 47
יח וַיִּגַּ֨שׁ אֵלָ֜יו יְהוּדָ֗ה וַיֹּאמֶר֮ בִּ֣י אֲדֹנִי֒ יְדַבֶּר־נָ֨א עַבְדְּךָ֤ דָבָר֙ בְּאָזְנֵ֣י אֲדֹנִ֔י וְאַל־יִ֥חַר אַפְּךָ֖ בְּעַבְדֶּ֑ךָ כִּ֥י כָמ֖וֹךָ כְּפַרְעֹֽה׃
יט אֲדֹנִ֣י שָׁאַ֔ל אֶת־עֲבָדָ֖יו לֵאמֹ֑ר הֲיֵשׁ־לָכֶ֥ם אָ֖ב אוֹ־אָֽח׃
As we approach the city of Jerusalem moving to its rightful place in the world, the capital of Israel, and the light of the world, and as Judah moves closer to bring the Torah to its rightful place in the nations. We face a world full of hate for the Jewish people and our religion.
Our sages tell us that one day Judah will approach Joseph and they will embrace each other. As Jews pray daily for the return of Ephraim and the lost tribes we hope the meeting will be one of great joy and salvation for Klal Israel.
As we approach the seventh anniversary of Israel as the homeland of the Jewish people. I would say, that the last ten years have been one of great growth, and knowledge for those outside of Judaism. The nation has been learning the Oral Torah, and Kabalah, and Jewish philosophy from some of the greatest Jewish Rabbis we have to offer. This is from Hashem because He is close to making this world His dwelling place.
Much progress has been made, but still, there is a gulf between those who say, they love Israel, and the Jewish people, and their willingness to trust our Rabbis and Hashem, to save us, without following something that our forefathers never knew or were told to follow.
As Judah approaches its redemption, my prayer is that the nation would do their job and help us, the Jewish people, be the best Jews we could be, instead of trying to convert Jews to a religion that can only take us further away from the covenants of promise, trust the God of Israel, that He will keep His promise to us and save us.
Instead of bow and sword and horseman, try Hashem and baseless love.
Hosea1:7 But I will have compassion upon the house of Judah, and will save them by the LORD their God, and will not save them by bow, nor by sword, nor by battle, nor by horses, nor by horsemen.’
And Judah approached….
Where will you be?
Genesis 41 – 44
א וַיְהִ֕י מִקֵּ֖ץ שְׁנָתַ֣יִם יָמִ֑ים וּפַרְעֹ֣ה חֹלֵ֔ם וְהִנֵּ֖ה עֹמֵ֥ד עַל־הַיְאֹֽר׃
ב וְהִנֵּ֣ה מִן־הַיְאֹ֗ר עֹלֹת֙ שֶׁ֣בַע פָּר֔וֹת יְפ֥וֹת מַרְאֶ֖ה וּבְרִיאֹ֣ת בָּשָׂ֑ר וַתִּרְעֶ֖ינָה בָּאָֽחוּ׃
וַיְהִ֕י מִקֵּ֖ץ And it was in the end”.
Have you ever questioned, why you had to endure such challenges in your life?
Why has my life been lived in such a way, that it has brought about all the things that has to lead me to this place? A place of uncertainty and unrest. A place of questions and lost in space.
What is life truly about?
Proverbs 14:23 “In all labour there is profit, But the talk of the lips tendeth only to penury”. Midrash Rabbah Mikketz 2
And it was in the end that I knew the journey.
Where is Chanukah in the Torah? (see commentary at the end of the article).
Why do Sephardic Jews and Ashkenazi and all other Jews treat each other with such disdain?
Where is the Beit Hamikdash?
Is Yerushalayim the light to all nations?
And he (Israel) settled in the end. (וַיֵּ֣שֶׁב יַעֲקֹ֔ב)
The Torah is a blueprint for the cosmos and our world. With Chanukah just a week away. The question may be asked? Who will we be fighting in the future to free our spiritual lives? Yaakov wrestled with a man. (Himself)
Just as the Greeks tried to remove our spiritual connections to Hashem and His Torah. So, the world is busy trying to distract us from our heritage and culture as Jews.
How do we bring the light of Judaism to a world that is steeped in darkness when we as Jews continue to hate each other without a cause.
The story of Yosef is the axis for many of our pains as Jews. Today we fight between Ashkenazi and Sephardic and the many different sects within our Jewish communities.
Will our enemies ask us, when they try to destroy us, are your Sephardic or Haredi or Mizrachi, conservative or reform?
Please listen to the song “Echad”.
We, are Klal Israel, and we must make Tikkun in the end where our forefathers failed. We can not settle in the end, the way our Torah portion begins with baseless hatred for each other.
Jews must be that shining light to the nations and bring them close to Torah and Hashem. We must teach them, that, Torah is the only blueprint that Hashem has given to mankind to fix our lives.
We do not need some “heavenly escape plan” as some outside of Torah Judaism say, but we must see that our world can not survive with each one us only concerned about him or herself. We must stop this baseless hatred and bring the miracle of Or HaGanuz, “the hidden light.”
So, let us rededicate ourselves, to this hidden light, that was always there from the beginning. Let us light the light of Chanukah as we are told in Vayikra 24:”1 And the LORD spoke unto Moses, saying: 2 ‘Command the children of Israel, that they bring unto thee pure olive oil beaten for the light, to cause a lamp to burn continually. 3 Without the veil of the testimony, in the tent of meeting, shall Aaron order it from evening to morning before the LORD continually; it shall be a statute for ever throughout your generations. 4 He shall order the lamps upon the pure candlestick before the LORD continually.
(By the way what festival comes after Sukkot? Chanukah)
Let us settle, Chanukah/Dedication, in the end with giving (אהבה). Love and Torah.