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January 18, 2017 / 20 Tevet, 5777

Posts Tagged ‘Abraham’

25,000 Pray in Hebron on ‘Shabbat Chayei Sarah’

Sunday, November 27th, 2016

Some 25,000 Jewish worshipers flocked to the Cave of the Patriarch this weekend to celebrate the life of the Biblical matriarch Sarah.

The Torah portion tells the story of the purchase of the Cave, called “Machpela,” and its surrounding property, by the Biblical patriarch Abraham, who bought it for a final resting place for his wife, Sarah.

In honor of the occasion, all sections of the cave, Machpela, were open to the Jewish visitors, which is rarely the case as a portion of the site is often reserved for Muslim worshipers alone.

Some 2,500 Jews also participated in a subsequent tour of the Jewish areas of Hebron as well.

IDF security was expanded in order to accommodate the massive crowd of worshipers, which streams into the ancient holy city each year at this time.

Hebron is one of the four ancient holy cities of the Bible, which also include Jerusalem, Tzefat (Safed) and Tverya (Tiberias).

Hana Levi Julian

Secrets of the Tomb of the Patriarchs in Hebron [video]

Friday, November 25th, 2016

See NEVER BEFORE SEEN aerial footage of the Tomb of the Patriarchs and Matriarchs!

Hear EXCLUSIVE testimony from one of the only living people to have entered the actual Machpela Cave!

Walk the same 4,500 year old steps that the biblical Abraham ascended himself.

Video of the Day

When Ishmael Finally Repents

Friday, November 25th, 2016

“And his sons Isaac and Ishmael buried him in the cave of the Machpela… (Breishit 25:9)

Rashi comments that we see from this Pasuk that Ishmael repented, as he yielded the precedence to Yaakov.

What was the sin of Ishmael that was rectified and required repentence?

There were 2 groups who denied the lineage of Isaac.

Last week, Rashi spoke of those skeptics who claimed that Avraham and Sara could not possibly be Isaac’s parents, rather they found a baby on their doorstep. A lie, but plausible.

Next week Rashi opens with the illogical claim of the cynics of the generation, the “letzanei hador”: Isaac was Sara’s child, but the father was Avimelech. This contention is absurd, as Avraham fathered Ishmael. It was Sara who was barren.

The Sforno teaches that when the Torah tells us that Ishmael was “metzachek”, it was that he spread the lies of the “letzanei hador” and poked fun of the great feast that Avraham and Sara threw in honor of Yitzchak’s weaning.

The Meshech Chochma points out that the public recognition and acknowledgement by Ishmael, of Isaac as the primary son of Avraham and Sara, corrected the travesty that he promulgated some 70+ years previously.

Today we are confronted by anti Semitism. Some manifestations, while vile, are theoretically plausible. Often they are absurd lies that are so remote from any actual possibility.

One day the perpetrators will repent and denounce their wicked ways and lies. It may be sooner than we think.

Shabbat Shalom.

Rav Yitzchak Korn

Thousands Flocking to Hebron for Shabbat

Friday, November 25th, 2016

Thousands and possibly tens of thousand of Jews are expected to spend this Shabbat in the town of Hebron for Parshat Chayei Sara.

Parshat Chayei Sara is this week’s Torah reading which details the Jewish Patriarch Abraham’s purchase of the Maarat Hamachpela caves and the surrounding field from Ephron HaHiti.

It has become an annual tradition for many to spend this particular Shabbat in Hebron, praying at the Tomb of the Patriarchs.

The IDF says it is prepared to protect all the visitors to this ancient Jewish city.

 

 

Jewish Press News Briefs

Abraham the Individualist

Friday, November 11th, 2016

Not armies, not nations, have advanced the race; but here and there, in the course of ages, an individual has stood up and cast his shadow over the world. -Edwin Hubbell Chapin

In the very first recorded conversation between God and Abraham, God commands Abraham “Lech Lecha” which can be translated as “go for you” or “go to you.” Rabbi Hirsch on Genesis 12:1 explains that it is a command to “go your own way” or “follow your unique path.”

Rabbi Hirsch elaborates that one of the prominent beliefs during Abraham’s time was the primacy of the communal over the individual and the priority of centralization of authority rather than individual decision-making. It engendered the “tyranny of the majority” (a phrase originally seen in the writing of John Adams, and subsequently popularized by Alexis de Tocqueville and John Stuart Mill).

Abraham, by leaving his country, his birthplace and his people, by demonstrating an unyielding belief in one God, by standing up to the entirety of the rest of the polytheistic world, indeed carved his own path. He demonstrated an unflinching capacity to do his own thing, to go his own way, to be his own person, to do what he knew to be correct though the entire planet thought otherwise. He is a model of the Individual, of the non-conformist, of the person who will take a stand for what is right though it is unpopular. His is the lesson that even if the majority believes in something or says something, it doesn’t necessarily make it right.

May we hold steadfast in our positive and unique paths.

Shabbat Shalom,

 

Rabbi Ben-Tzion Spitz

Aleph Beta: Lech Lecha: Was Abraham The First Wandering Jew?

Thursday, November 10th, 2016

In the video for Parshat Lech Lecha (Genesis 12:1-17:27), David and Immanuel ask – why is it that, though God keeps reassuring Abraham that this land is his, he refuses to settle down? God just promised him the land – why wouldn’t he mark his territory? To answer this, we are reminded that the stories of Abraham occur in a larger context – and specifically, right after the catastrophe of the Tower of Babel – and we can answer the question: what is it about Abraham that really makes him special, and the father of our nation?

Dig Deeper: For more on Lech Lecha: https://goo.gl/leZqtM & https://goo.gl/nHJkvI

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Rabbi David Fohrman

Happy Aliyah (Election) Day

Tuesday, November 8th, 2016

What a strange coincidence.

As Americans go to the polls today to choose between bad and worse, Israel is celebrating Aliyah Day – if you don’t get the connection, don’t worry.

Enacted in June, today is the first Aliyah Day, which coincides with the day – the 7th of Cheshvan – when we actually begin praying for the rain to fall (the delay from when we should say the prayer is to give the pilgrims (olim l’regel) from Babylon time to return to Babylon – which seems somewhat contradictory for Aliyah Day).

But as it happens, in most years Aliyah day falls out in the week of Parshat Lech Lecha – when God tells Abraham to go to the Land of Israel.

That probably also happened on an Election Day in Ur Kasdim – “Vote for Nimrod or get the fiery furnace” – not much a great choice back then either.

JoeSettler

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/blogs/muqata/happy-aliyah-election-day/2016/11/08/

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