Author Archive | Jill Weinthal

Parashat Ki Tavo

April Akiva, R.J.E. In this week’s parashah, Ki Tavo, Moses commands the Israelites to take the first fruits of their harvest and offer them to God.  He instructs: You should take some of every first fruit of the soil…You shall leave it before the Lord your God and bow low before the Lord your God.  […]

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Parashat Ki Tivo

Rabbi Heidi Cohen What does a 15-year-old girl living in Beit Shemesh have to do with this week’s Torah portion, Ki Tavo? Ki Tavo is one of the final Torah portions we read before entering into the High Holy Days and before concluding our yearly cycle of Torah reading. It is in this portion that […]

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Parashat Ki Teitzei

Rabbi Shelton Donnell & Esther Edelsburg Congregation Kol Haneshama, Jerusalem The portion Ki Teitzei continues to develop the theme discussed in the previous portion, Shoftim namely, what makes for a proper society?  Like the previous portion, this week’s text gives us a variety of mitzvot and statutes relating to the general theme of establishing a […]

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Parasht Re’eh

by April Akiva, R.J.E In this week’s parasha, Re’eh, Moses instructs the Israelites on a variety of laws regarding false prophets, the centralization of Jewish sacrifice, ritual slaughter, tithes, freeing slaves, and the pilgrimage holidays.   In addition, the text warns of the severe punishment inflicted for idol worship and the crime of urging a fellow […]

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Parashat Eikev

by Rabbi Heidi Cohen We sit down to eat a meal and our blessing is but one line. Short, simple, and allowing us to eat as soon as possible. Following our meal, our body satisfied, we bentch, or recite Birkat HaMazon, the blessing following our meal, giving thanks for all of our sustenance and blessings […]

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Parashat Devarim

Rabbi Shelton J. Donnell In Parashat Devarim Moses begins his last speech to the Israelites.  He recounts to them their journey from Egypt through the wilderness to the borders of the land of Canaan.  For forty years Moses led the people, and now he turns to remind them where they have been together.  Forty years!  […]

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Parashat Pinchas

By April Akiva, M.A.J.E. As Parashat Pinchas opens we learn of Aaron’s grandson, Pinchas, who is granted a pact of priesthood for all time, “because he took impassioned action for his God, thus making expiation for the Israelites (Numbers 25:13).”  After forty years in the desert, sins with the golden calf, and loads of complaints, […]

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Parashat Balak

Rabbi Shelton Donnell & Esther Edelsburg The story of Balaam, the heathen prophet sent by Balak the king of Moab to curse the Israelites, is well known.  It is noteworthy for its many curious aspects.  There is the character of the central figure that speaks for itself in the hubris of his own words, “the […]

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