Redeeming Relevance: Parshat Toldot: Switching the Land On and Off 

Being bound on Mount Moriah gave Yitzchak a connection with God that would be disturbed by living outside the Land of Israel. 

Redeeming Relevance: Did God set Avraham up for Failure?

In fact – at its core – there is no better argument than Avraham’s. For his petition is asking for nothing else than what is good for God. For when God executes strict justice, He often “sacrifices” His own reputation for the sake of the truth.

Redeeming Relevance: Parshat Noach: Do We Really Understand why Murder is Wrong? 

If so, why was Noah commanded not to murder (and, likely, other old commandments) as well? Apparently, there was something not yet completely intuitive, and that was the sanctity of life.  

Redeeming Relevance; V’Zot HaBracha: Moshe’s Blessings and his Successful Failure

Yet in spite of Moshe’s best intentions, it is obvious that his blessings – as we have portrayed them – had little effect on the Jews once they reached the Land of Israel.

Redeeming Relevance: Moshe’s Command to Die

When we cannot fully understand God’s decision that accepting it shows our true allegiance to Him

Redeeming Relevance: How to Enjoy this World

There is nothing wrong – and actually everything right – about loving God’s world. But to be significant, it must be a love grounded in enhanced awareness and appreciation of God.

Redeeming Relevance: Parshat Re’eh: How to See God in the World

Whether in its variation or in its norms, the world around us provides countless ways to see God. But that will only happen to someone who is looking for them. In other words if we really want to see God, we must also seek God.

Redeeming Relevance: When Moshe Threw a Book Across the Classroom

Most of Devarim is Moshe’s series of parting lectures to the Jewish people. Two things about them are clearly felt – the first is that they are long, often abstract and sometimes even appear repetitive; and the second is that Moshe accordingly uses diverse tactics to keep the Jews listening.

Redeeming Relevance: One Law Fits All?

The notion that all men are created equal is a modern myth. The truth is that all men are created differently

Redeeming Relevance: All You Need is One Good Man 

a different leader of the next generation steps up and takes action. That leader was Pinchas...True leaders like Pinchas don’t come out of leadership schools. When the time is ripe, they simply emerge. 

Redeeming Relevance: Parshat Korach: What to do When Our Decisions Bring Casualties

Many of the commentators find a disturbingly strong rationale in the Jews’ complaint mentioned above. The complainers were essentially blaming Moshe for setting up a murderous trap for the two hundred and fifty men that contested the choice of Aharon and his sons as priests.

Redeeming Relevance: Parshat Behaalotecha: Just Trying to Improve Things

In this week's parsha, there is an unusually insightful process of how a little complaint can undermine a gigantic and noble enterprise:

Redeeming Relevance: Why House Clothes Simply Won’t Do

It might seem easier to pray alone to God, rather than with the various distractions of a communal setting. True, Jewish law actually recognizes this and tries to minimize these distractions by recommending a set seat, prohibiting holding objects, etc. Still, the many distractions are impossible to completely eliminate. Yet in spite of its drawbacks, we derive strength from doing things together with a group.

Redeeming Relevance: Parshat Vayakhel: Dr. Frankenstein’s Melacha

Perhaps in the midst of the great uncertainties created by the Coronavirus pandemic, it is all too easy to remember that we are not God. But the temptation to think otherwise still exists. And once the pandemic will be over and man will continue to build better and better tools to control his fate and his environment, that temptation will regain its strength

Redeeming Relevance: Parshat Mishpatim: An Eye for an Eye and the Best of All...

The traditional understanding – that the Torah is referring to the monetary value of an eye – is not without its difficulties either

Redeeming Relevance: How Many of Moshe’s Children are on His Family Tree?

Though they share parents and ancestors, once the two lines diverge, the Torah tells us exclusively about Aharon’s descendants

Redeeming Relevance: Parshat Vayechi: Like Reuven and Shimon?!?

Ya’akov’s mistake instructs us to understand that even if something appears to be good, that does not mean there isn’t a different way that might be even better

Redeeming Relevance: Parshat Vayishlach: The Torah’s Mother

In one of the most mysterious verses in the Torah (Bereshit 35:8), we read about the death of Devorah the nursemaid, a character so minor that we have never really heard of her before

Redeeming Relevance: Parshat Toldot: When a Son Confronts a Father and When a Father...

On the face of it, a conventional exchange between father and son, we see it nowhere else in Tanakh. Moreover both discussions take place at pivotal points in which the respective father-son relationships are tested to their limits.

Redeeming Relevance: Parshat Chayye Sarah: Avraham and Eliezer, Trust and Closeness Across the Gap

Avraham, saw a world where people can acknowledge a huge and intractable gap between them, know it will not go away, and also build a strong and trusting friendship across tbe gap.

Redeeming Relevance: Parshat Noach: A Death Penalty for Animals?

When Noach gets off the ark, there seems to be a whole new world order that surrounds him.

Redeeming Relevance: Parshat Haazinu: Why Did Yehoshua Repeat Haazinu?

“If God only commanded Moshe to present Haazinu, what was the need for Yehoshua to join in?”

Redeeming Relevance: Parshat Nitzavim: A Nation of Yentas

Since we are taught that each person is like a universe, to casually dispense with one individual is like dispensing with an entire universe.

Redeeming Relevance: Parshat Ki Tetzeh: Levinas, Ammon and Moav – On the Neutral Neighbor

Many commentators wonder why not proffering bread and water is considered such a great crime. Because turning away goes from being a sign of neutrality to being an act of hostility.

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