Haftorah Reading: Malachi 1:1-2:7
This week we study a Torah portion that is filled with intrigue and suspense. It also raises spiritual issues that are very important to each of us. Perhaps it would be best to start with the most difficult first. Who do you sympathize with when you read this portion? Who do you see as the person most at fault when you read these verses?
Torah Portion: Korach B’midbar(Numbers) 16:1-18:32
Haftorah Reading I Samuel 11:14-12:22
This week we read a Torah portion that begs the question, why? Why, after the catastrophe of the sending of the spies, would something like Korach’s rebellion happen? Maybe a clue can be found in the two opening words, in Hebrew, of our portion. In Hebrew this passage begins with the words, “Korach took.” Korach found people who were vulnerable to his arguments. They were men from the tribe of Rueben, Dothan and Aviram were among them. If you remember, the tribe of Reuben was displaced from the normal privileges of the first born because of his sin against his father Jacob. That place of the first born was given to Judah.
Torah Portion: Ki Tetze (When You Go Out) D’Varim (Deuteronomy) 21-25
HafTorah: Isaiah 54:1-10
What would you say would be the theme of this Torah portion? In my opinion it is describing how we are to live our lives each day and how we are to relate to people. How are we to act toward our spouse, our children or others whom we have dealings with during the day? One of the principles our nation operates on is individualism, looking out for our self, no one can tell me what to do or how to live my life. How does this square with both the New Testament and the Hebrew Scriptures? Not very well. As we read this section of Torah we see over and over that we are part of a community and have responsibility for each other. Our world is to be bigger than just us. So how are we to know what G-d’s Word says? We are to study, really dig it out everyday. By this we know what He says to us about the decisions we make. Even today, and from before the time of Messiah, Jews have been taught how to live by each day reading, memorizing and internalizing G-d’s Word. Music and poetry are two of the most effective ways to get information to remain in our memory. When we are filled with the Word of G-d we are better equipped to meet the world. ( II Timothy 2:15)
Torah Portion: Mishpatim (Rulings) Sh’mot (Exodus) 21-24
HafTorah: Jeremiah 34:8-22, 33:225-26
I would like us to look first at Exodus 23:7 today. But before that think about this Torah section. It follows the spiritual high of the revelation at Sinai, the awesomeness of G-d coming before His people. Then here we seem to get mired in details. Mostly between man and his neighbors, things concerning, how to relate to our fellowman. I think G-d here is showing us that He is found in the details. The high points are great but they are fleeting. We live in the world everyday. How do we go about it in a way that glorifies G-d? So, to give us a little help I want us to ponder this verse on falsehood. This is easy right?