Found 38 Search results

  1. The Hands of Moshe: Toward a Phenomenology of Faith

    Rabbi Chanoch Waxman

    תאריך פרסום: תשע"ב | |

    This class will examine the story of the Amalekite attack upon the Children of Israel found in Chapter Seventeen of the Book of Shemot. Through careful attention to the structure of the story and its relations to the larger themes of War and Prayer found in Parshat Beshalach we will attempt to both interpret the story in a novel fashion and unmask the inner dynamics of emuna and the Children of Israel's education in faith outlined in Parshat Beshalach.

  2. Yitro

    Parashat Yitro

    Rabbi Yaakov Medan

    Why did Yitro come to the camp? Was his advice to Moshe sage? Did Moshe follow his advice? When did Yitro arrive at the camp, and when did the parallel episodes of appointing elders and judges occur? Why was the punishment of the sinners at Kivrot Ha-Ta’ava so severe, and what is the difference between the requests for meat in Beha’alotekha and in Shelah?

  3. Shaul's War against Amalek (I)

    Chapter 15 (Part I)

    Rabbi Amnon Bazak

    The mitzvah to destroy Amalek raises a number of moral issues: why were Bnei Yisrael commanded to destroy Amalek? Why does Shaul turn to the Keini and ask that they separate themselves from Amalek? Why was keeping Aggag alive such a terrible sin?

  4. Shaul's War against Amalek (II)

    Chapter 15 (Part II)

    Rabbi Amnon Bazak

    After understanding the reasons behind Shaul's decision to keep Aggag alive, we must try and understand why the sin was so severe. This lesson will explore the essential reasoning behind the commandment to destroy property in certain wars, and the problem with ignoring this commandment.

  5. The Killing of the Priests of Nov

    Chapter 22 (Part II)

    Rabbi Amnon Bazak

    This lesson will discuss the conclusion of the tragic episode of the killing of the Nov priests. Their death was caused directly by Doeg the Edomite, but various other circles were linked with the murder indirectly.

  6. David and the Amaleki Troop

    Chapter 30

    Rabbi Amnon Bazak

    Upon his return from the Philistine camp, David discovers that Amalek has taken the Israelite camp, and taken the women and children. Why did David deserve such grief? Why did he defeat Amalek? What is the relationship between David's morality and Amalek's immorality?

  7. David and the Amaleki Lad

    Chapter 1 (I)

    Rabbi Amnon Bazak

    Chapter 1 of Shmuel II is a direct continuation of the final chapter of Shmuel I. This lesson will discuss the significance of the Amalekite's description of Shaul's death. We will compare the story of the Amalekite with the portrayal of the biblical text, and assess David's reaction and his attitude toward the Amalekite.

  8. Shaul and Amalek

    Haftarot: Zakhor

    Rabbi Mosheh Lichtenstein

    The imperative to destroy Amalek has to follow the divine directive. By sparing the sheep, Shaul inserts personal considerations into the fulfillment of the commandment. He also runs the risk of desecrating God's name, because one might assume that the nation waged war against Amalek only for the loot they gained. Shaul believes wholeheartedly that he has observed God's commandment; he fails to understand that by giving in to the nation who requests the cattle he has failed as a king and leader. Generations later Mordekhai amends this error by avoiding the loot that is offered to the Jews.

  9. The Wanderings of Bnei Yisrael in the Desert

    Rabbi Yaakov Medan

    A review of various biblical sources indicates that the wanderings of Bnei Yisrael in the wilderness had additional significance, aside from the need to circumvent the land of the Pelishtim and the punishment decreed on the nation as result of the sin of the spies. These sources mainly point to the wilderness as a place with no means of subsistence. It is there that Bnei Yisrael learn that it is God Who feeds and sustains them. This lesson discusses the wandering in the desert as depicted in the prophecy of Amos, who describes the trek entirely from a social perspective, in terms of justice and righteousness.

  10. The Hand of Moshe and the Hand of God

    Rabbi Chanoch Waxman | 33 minutes

    Do Moshe’s hands really determine the battle outcome? This shiur offers a three part comparison among the events Amalek War, Masa u-Meriva, and Yam Suf. The people have a crisis of faith –will God save them again? At Yam Suf, the people were supposed to passively watch, but when they have to act, will they also recognize God’s Hand?

  11. Slave Mentality

    Rabbi Alex Israel | 41 minutes

    This parasha is very exciting –there is a building crescendo leading up to the miraculous splitting of the sea. But then Bnei Yisrael complain after a lack of food and water. Is God really leading the nation and providing for Bnei Yisrael? By examining literary structure and themes, and with the help of other texts, we will look at the educational message underlying the parasha.

  12. The Amorality of Amalek

    Rabbi Alex Israel | 39 minutes

    Amalek is presented as an archetypal enemy, but what, precisely, is so objectionable about this nation? We look at how Amalek is described in the Torah, and in selected examples from Neviim Rishonim. We also examine the concept of “yirat Elokim”—fear of God as it pertains to our topic.

  13. The War against Amalek

    Rabbi Menachem Leibtag

    Bnei Yisrael were unprepared for their redemption from Egypt, and God places them in various situations of peril, encouraging Bnei Yisrael to raise their spiritual level high enough to enable that process to continue, and work toward real independence from their captors. 

  14. Ehud and Shamgar

    Rabbi Michael Hattin

    The geographical context of the kingdoms to the East of the Jordan River is presented as the background to the heroics of Ehud ben Gera.

    Shamgar ben Anat is described in one brief verse like Shimshon - a hero who fights the Philistines. A suggestion is raised that he is from the Tribe of Shimon. Did every tribe provide at least one judge? An attempt to reconcile a contradiction between the words of Rabbi Eliezer in the Talmud and the Yalkut Shimoni regarding this question is presented.

  15. The Appointment of Gideon

    Rabbi Michael Hattin

    The appearance of the prophet to the nation in chapter 6, which is reminescent of the appearance of the angel to the nation in Bokhim in chapter 2, signifies the end of the era of selfless, righteous, and manifestly inspirational leadership. 

    Gideon, threshing wheat in the wine pit, is appointed as the new leader to fight the threat of Midyan. By challenging God, Gideon paradoxically demonstrates that he cares much about Him and especially about the fate of His people.

  16. David's Division of the Spoils of War

    Dr. Adina Sternberg

    תאריך פרסום: תשע"ב | |

    This shiur looks at David’s divisions of the spoils after the war to retrieve the captives taken by Amalek. But wasn't Amalek supposed to be destroyed by Shaul? As we analyze this story, we notice that David is strikingly different from Shaul. We survey the stories of Shaul and examine what characterizes these differences. Returning to the division of the spoils, we uncover what is behind those who disagree with David. We find religious as well as moral-societal perspectives, and compare these various approaches with the one found in the deal between Avraham and the King of Sedom.

  17. Amalek

    Rabbi Elchanan Samet

    The mizvah of eradicating Amalek is mentioned twice; First in Exodus, and later in Parshat Ki Tetze. Why are the details of the mitzva found so much later in the Torah? We find an answer to this question through a close examination of the text and its structure.  

  18. From Sea to Sinai - Trials and Edification

    Rabbi Dr. Avraham Walfish |

    Between the two great revelations in the book of Shemot, the splitting of the sea and the Ten Commandments, the Torah describes a series of events in the wilderness, including the miraculous provision of food and water, the battle of Amalek, and the visit of Yitro. Through close reading techniques, including careful attention to literary and thematic connections linking these narratives, we will explore the ways in which the challenges and trials of living in the wilderness help prepare the people to progress from the revelation at the sea to the revelation at Sinai.

  19. Amalek and the Keini

    Shani Taragin | 5 minutes

    Chapter 15 of Shmuel Alef relates the tragic failure of Shaul to complete the war against Amalek. The text emphasizes that he does not listen to God. But interestingly enough, he seems to begin to fulfill God’s command by telling the Keinites to separate from Amalek so they will be spared. There is precedent for this, apparently, in the book of Shemot, with the stories of Amalek’s attack and Yitro’s visit. This story will have repercussions for other stories in Tanakh.

  20. Miracles in the Book of Joshua

    Dr. Ruth Walfish | Hour and 8 minutes

    The book of Yehoshua is the point of transfer from a miraculous supernatural existence that Bnei Yisrael experienced in their years of sojourn through the desert to a more mundane, natural existence in the Land of Israel. This lecture points to a number of parallel events that occurred in both the desert and in the beginning of the book of Yehoshua, and draws comparisons between them, illustrating this gradual transition from the supernatural to mundane. 

  21. Geneologies: Seir, Edom, and Amalek

    Rabbi David Silverberg

  22. The War Against Amalek

    Rabbi Elchanan Samet

    In what way was Amalek so much worse than any of Israel's other enemies? What was the significance of Moshe keeping his hands raised throughout the war? Through an examination of the text we can understand that Amalek's war was, instead, the calculated plan of a nation coming to disrupt and thwart God's plan concerning the nation of Israel. We can also learn about two different models of leadership- the model of Moshe as a representative of God and that of Yehoshua, as the natural future leader of the next generation.

    Moshe and his staff change from being tools to accomplish God's great and overt miracles, and instead become means of expressing the hidden Divine providence that acts within the natural reality. Thus it is specifically this natural war that turns into an exceptional educational opportunity to mold the religious consciousness of this generation, already used to miracles. God's hand works not only in great miracles that are visible to all, but also guides the world in its everyday activities and provides for each individual and nation in accordance with its needs and its actions.

  23. Overview of Megillat Esther

    Gina Junger | Hour and 40 minutes

    Who is the author of Megillat Esther? What is the purpose of the Megilla, and why was it included in the Tanakh? This lecture places Megillat Esther within historical context and presents an overview of the structure and story. Through a close exploration of the text we notice a subtle but important message to the Jews living in Persia, and note its relevance throughout history and in present times as well. 

  24. Ehud and Shamgar

    Rabbi Michael Hattin

    The geographical context of the kingdoms to the East of the Jordan River is presented as the background to the heroics of Ehud ben Gera.

    Shamgar ben Anat is described in one brief verse like Shimshon - a hero who fights the Philistines. A suggestion is raised that he is from the Tribe of Shimon. Did every tribe provide at least one judge? An attempt to reconcile a contradiction between the words of Rabbi Eliezer in the Talmud and the Yalkut Shimoni regarding this question is presented.

  25. Beshalach - Tefilla and Action

    Rabbi Jonathan Snowbell | 30 minutes

    Bnei Yisrael are standing at the Sea, and they see the Egyptian forces coming. They call out to God, praying. Moshe tells them that God will fight for them, and that they are to proceed. How are Bnei Yisrael supposed to go if Moshe has not yet been commanded to split the sea? And how are we to understand the predicament of “Moshe’s hands were heavy” during the war with Amalek?  And where does the story of the manna fit in? We find some interesting parallels to Korban Tamid. The connections between the successive stories in Beshallah, model different aspects of the idea that God demands tefilla combined with action.

  26. Yitro and Amalek

    Dr. Yael Ziegler | 33 minutes

    When does Yitro arrive? When does the meeting with Moshe take place? What was it that he heard that motivated him to see Moshe? And where does this meeting fit in chronologically- before or after Ma’amad Har Sinai? Why is it recorded here? There are astoundingly strong linguistic parallels between the Yitro and the Amalek story that precedes it. We look at these mirror image parallels, as well as the story of Yael and Sisra to see that the nearby nations are not monolithic when it comes to choices about the knowledge of God and the attitude toward Bnei Yisrael.

  27. Structure and Meaning of Sefer Shemot

    Dr. Yael Ziegler | 36 minutes

    This shiur looks at some of the broader themes in Sefer Shemot, the story of Bnei Yisrael’s development into a nation. Why was the nation created? What was the purpose of the idea of a nation with a special relationship with God? The Book of Shemot can be divided into three broad sections, but how do the stories between the Song at the Sea and Mount Sinai fit into these categories? We return to some of the motifs in the first section of Shemot in order to answer our questions.

    The story of Yitro serves as Shemot’s finale to the universalist goal of the Exodus story—that Egypt will recognize God. The rest of Shemot – the Giving of the Torah and the setting up of the Mishkan – begins to fulfill the other goal of the Exodus story: helping the People of Israel cultivate their own recognition of and relationship with God.

  28. Amalek in the Book of Shmuel

    Elisheva Brauner

  29. Amalek and Esther

    Elisheva Brauner

  30. Amalek - Overview Staff

  31. Tavera, Yitro, and Shaul: The Edge of the Canp and Attending to the Vulnerable

    Rabbi David Silverberg

  32. Ki-Teze: What a Story!

    Rabbi Jay Kelman

  33. Thoughts on Parashat Ki Tetze

    Rabbi Yaakov Beasley

  34. Rivka & Esther: Mirror Images

    Vivien Hidary

    תאריך פרסום: 5777 | | Hour and 7 minutes

    The genre for Megillat Esther seems to be cryptology -  the message is encrypted, because otherwise it would have been censored by the ruling powers in the Persian Empire. To decipher the message, we need the codebook, and for us - the codebook is the Torah.

    Our focus in this shiur is on Esther and Rivka, two women who had to take action for the sake of the nation. But our study of Esther will bring us to far-reaching comparisons with other women (and men) in Tanakh, as we pay careful attention to the wording, leitmotif (milah manha), and other tools that offer hints at a hidden message about an enduring struggle. 

  35. Parshat Beshalach Part 6: What's So Evil About Amalek?

    Rabbi Menachem Leibtag | 30 minutes

    This podcast concludes Parshat Beshalach with the eternal law to remember Amalek and a discussion about what makes them so evil. We also discuss the significant parallels between the laws of Shmitta in the Land of Israel and the manna in the desert, leading up to the covenant at Sinai. 

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  36. Lesson 9: A United Kingdom

    Prof. Yehuda Elitzur

    The Biblical story of the battle against Amalek is a typical prophetic passage. The central themes of the story are the sin of Saul and the rebuke of Samuel, and throughout we are reminded of the prophetic teaching about life and religion. 

  37. Moshe’s Hands

    Rabbanit Dr. Michal Tikochinsky

  38. Wiping out Amalek: Vendetta or Virtue?

    Rabbi Menachem Leibtag

    תאריך פרסום: 2023 | |

    How can the same section in Sefer Devarim which forbids 'punishing children for the sins of their parents' also demand that we wipe out the descendants of Amalek? The lecture examines the numerous encounters with Amalek throughout Chumash & Navi - to determine if Amalek is the eternal 'enemy of Israel' or the 'enemy of God'.