Pinchas B’midbar/Numbers 25:10-30:1

Torah Portion: Pinchas B’midbar/Numbers 25:10-30:1

Haftorah Reading: I Kings 18:46-19:21 

Today we have an interesting Torah portion and Haftorah portion. I would like to begin with something that has been in my head all week. I pray you will be touched by the verses as I was. Please read I Kings 19:9-12. In the beginning of the Haftorah section we read of the confrontation between Elijah and the priests of Ba’al. Most of us know these verses well. Elijah met 400 of the priests of Ba’al on the top of Mt. Carmel in northern Israel to settle the question of who was G-d. Was it Ba’al or G-d Almighty?

Ekev (Because) D’Varim (Deut) 7-11

Torah Portion:  Ekev (Because) D’varim(Deut.) 7-11

Haftorah Reading: Isaiah 49:14-51:3

This week we read a Torah portion so full of beautiful verses and spiritual insight it is hard to know where to begin. First, I have a question for you. What can we learn about Israel from this Torah portion? Look at chapter 8:7-9 and chapter 11:9-12. In these verses we see G-d cares for the Land. His eyes are always on it. He waters it with the rain of heaven. It flows with milk and honey and is blessed in every way. It is the inheritance of His people. It is part of the everlasting covenant between the nation of Israel and G-d. They may be scattered because of disobedience but G-d will and is gathering them home.  The Haftorah this week, Isaiah 49:14-51:3, talks of this gathering and also our place and part to play in this event. This is one of the founding principles of Road to Zion, to be a part of this process and to help in any way we can.

B’Shallach (After He Had Let Go) Ex 13-17

Torah Portion: B’Shallach (After he had let go) Exodus 13-17

HafTorah: Judges 4:4-5:31

Why does Torah say, “When Pharaoh sent out the people?” Would it not be more accurate to say, “When G-d took Israel out of Egypt?” After all it was not Pharaoh’s idea to send them out. In Exodus 14:8 we see where they went out with an upraised arm. So did they go out as free men or as fleeing slaves? Which is correct? Actually there were two exoduses, a physical one and a spiritual one. And that is what I want us to look at over the next minutes. Physically the people did leave as free men but spiritually it was a different matter. When people have been intertwined for over 400 years much more is involved in separation than just the physical leaving. It is somewhat like the breakup of a marriage. It is complicated and always carries a good bit of internal trauma.