Shoftim (Judges) D’Varim (Deut.) 16:18-21:9
: Shoftim (Judges) D’Varim (Deut.) 16:18-21:9
Haftorah Readings: Isaiah (Yesh’yahu) 51:12-53:12
This Torah portion is always read on the first Shabbat of the Hebrew month of Elul. This year, this month of Elul began last evening. Today is the first day of a forty day period of repentance and soul searching leading up to Rosh Hashanah. Rosh Hashanah marks the beginning of the High Holy Days. These days of repentance should give all of us the push to look back over our life and deal with those sins that have been forgotten or just swept under the rug. It is a time to be completely honest with ourselves and with G-d. It is a time to set our spiritual house in order. I would urge you to spend time during these days to ask the Heavenly Father to shed His light on anything that needs to be dealt with.
We Are Redeemed! – Bo (Come) Exodus 10
Torah Portion: בוא Bo Exodus 10:1-13:16
HafTorah: Jeremiah 46:13-28
This Torah portion is called “Bo” in Hebrew or “Come” in English. What does the name of a Torah portion usually tell us? It is usually the main thought or idea or maybe the name of one of the main characters. So here, in one of the most important portions in the Torah, the name is “come” rather than freedom, or Exodus, which would seem more fitting. Why? I would like to take a few minutes before we get to the Passover implementation to answer the question of why. Last year I think we touched on this to some degree so some of you may remember that discussion. Why did G-d use the word “come?” Moses had met with Pharaoh a few times already. But in each of those cases G-d says “Go to Pharaoh” but here He says “Come to Pharaoh.” I think we see Moses about to enter into Pharaoh’s inner sanctum rather than meeting him in a somewhat neutral place such as by the river. Here Moses is coming into the “belly of the beast” so to speak and G-d is saying, “Come with Me to Pharaoh.” Remember in Ezekiel 29:3 how Pharaoh is described as a great serpent who crouches in the river and says, “My river is my own, I have made it or ‘made myself.’” What was Pharaoh’s biggest sin? Was it the enslavement of the Jewish people or killing of infants? No, everything he did sprung from his unbridled ego. He lived his life saying, “I am god. What is good is what helps me. What is bad hinders me.” So Moses was about to come face to face with the heart of evil. G-d assures him He will be with him. Is our ego bad? It is only bad when it is separated from G-d. Our ego should be a reflection of G-d and as such should lead us to do those things which brings glory and honor to G-d, not to ourselves. If not, then we become god in or own eyes and the world revolves around us. Right and wrong becomes perverted.