Parshat Korach 5773: What Do We Learn from the 250 Who Brought Incense and Died by Heavenly Fire?

by Moshe Burt

Yehuda Nachshoni’s “Studies in the Weekly Parsha” (pages 1032-1033) on our Parsha Korach cites Ramban’s view that the cause of the rebellions: Korach, Dasan and Aviram and the First Born’s was:

The spies’ severe punishment, which brought death to the generation of the desert and plague to its princes. It [the punishment]… brought to the surface all of the accumulated bitterness of the dissatisfied, who until now had not dared to come out against Moshe. Now they took advantage… to settle accounts. [...]  Click here to read more.

Parsha Shelach 5773: Distorted Modern-Day Shelach, and the Divine Incumbency Behind Our Dwelling in Eretz Yisrael

by Moshe Burt

Our Parsha Shelach brings to mind the evolution of today’s Israeli political, governmental scene. Continued governmental tolerance of Arab attacks upon Jews — near the Kotel and throughout Yehuda and the Shomron, of prohibition of Jews, even MKs, from praying at Har HaBayit (The Temple Mount), of alleged police framing of Jews regarding alleged violence and damage in so-called “Arab areas” all show clearly that the politicians still have not learned and internalized the lessons which should have been gleaned after Jew expelled Jew from Gush Katif. [...]  Click here to read more.

Parsha Beha’aloscha 5773 — Contrasting Aaron HaKohen’s Enthusiasm and Constancy, Levite Service with Our Aleinu Prayer

by Moshe Burt

Our Parsha notes:

“And Aaron did so, toward the face of the Menorah he kindled the lamps, as Hashem had commanded Moshe.” (Sefer Bamidbar, Perek 8, posuk 3 translation as rendered in the Artscroll Chumash, page 775)

Many commentators including Rashi and the S’fas Emes, as cited by by R’ Zelig Pliskin in “Growth Through Torah”, note that this posuk expresses the epitomization of the enthusiasm and constancy of Aaron HaKohen’s Service in the Mishkan as a paradigm for B’nai Yisrael to emulate. [...]  Click here to read more.

Parshat Naso 5773: The Significance of Shevet Ephraim’s Inaugural Mishkan Offering on Shabbos

by Moshe Burt

Like last year, our Parsha Naso falls out on the Shabbos after Shavuot, and Shem Mishmuel (translated to English by Rabbi Zvi Belovski) provides commentary about one of the 12 princes — Elishama, prince of Shevet Ephraim — all of whom brought identical gifts at the inauguration of the Mishkan.

Shem Mishmuel cites our Parsha (Bamidbar Perek 7, posuk 48) and comments (Shem Mishmuel, pages 315-318):

“On the seventh day, the prince of the children of Ephraim — Elishama ben Amilud.” [...]  Click here to read more.

Shavu’ot 5773: Megillat Ruth and the Impact of Actions L’Shem Shemayim

by Moshe Burt

The Sefer Shem Mishmuel (page 302) cites Rabbi Berachyah in Shemos Rabbah Perek 28, posuk 1:

“The Tablets were six tefachim (handbreadths) long — in some sense, Hashem grasped two tefachim, Moshe grasped 2 tefachim and 2 tefachim bridged the gap between them.”

Shem Mishmuel then explains (pages 302 – 304):

We can sub-divide all mitzvot, and indeed, all human endeavors into three spheres: thought, speech and action. There are some Mitzvot which require a Jew to think in a particular way. For example, the first of the Ten Commandments demands belief in Hashem. [...]  Click here to read more.