Leviticus (Vayikra)

Bechukotai 5774 – Blessings and Curses

May 16, 2014

This week’s Torah reading, Bechukotai, contains the tokecha, the “rebuke.” God tells us if we follow the rules, things will be good for us and we’ll enjoy blessings.  And if we don’t follow the rules, things will be bad.  REALLY bad.  One verse says we’ll be eating our children. I never could connect with that...
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Tazria 5774 – Picking and Choosing

March 28, 2014
Tazria 5774 – Picking and Choosing

And the leper in whom the disease is, his clothes shall be torn, and his head bare, and he shall put a cover upon his upper lip, and shall cry, Unclean, unclean. …Leviticus 13:45 I hope my Christian friends won’t be offended by my asking this, but I really don’t understand the Christian relationship...
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Tazria – Metzora 5773 Don’t Touch Me, You’re Impure

April 12, 2013
Tazria – Metzora 5773 Don’t Touch Me, You’re Impure

The rituals surrounding taharat mishpacha, “family purity,” are some of the more difficult laws for many modern liberal Jews to understand. This week’s Torah portion contains the basis of many of these rules. Leviticus 15:19 is a challenge for the contemporary reader: “And if a woman has a discharge, and the discharge of her...
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Behar 5772

May 11, 2012
Behar 5772

 “Proclaim liberty throughout all the land” …Leviticus 25:10 “Moreover of the children of the strangers that do sojourn among you, of them shall you buy, and of their families that are with you, which they fathered in your land; and they shall be your possession. And you shall take them as an inheritance...
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Tzav 5772 — Removing the Ashes

March 30, 2012
Tzav 5772 — Removing the Ashes

And he shall take off his garments, and put on other garments, and carry the ashes outside the camp to a clean place. …Leviticus 6:4 Why did God need to make it a commandment to remove the ashes from the altar and carry them outside the camp?   In his work of mussar, Duties...
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Bechukotai 5771 — May the Force be with you

May 19, 2011
Bechukotai 5771 — May the Force be with you

  If you walk in my statutes, and keep my commandments, and do them…I will give peace in the land, and you shall lie down, and none shall make you afraid; and I will remove evil beasts from the land, nor shall the sword go through your land. …Leviticus 26:3, 6 Are the blessings...
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