Emor 5772-2012

"Lessons from a Priest’s Wanton Daughter" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald This week’s parasha, parashat Emor, highlights the special status of the Kohanim, the priests, in the community of…

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Devarim 5772-2012

"The Al-mighty’s Relationship with the Nations of the World" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald As we have previously noted on several occasions (Devarim 5765-2005), the book of Devarim…

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Vayeishev 5773-2012

“Heaven-Sent Spices” by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In this week’s parasha, parashat Vayeishev, we read of the sale of Joseph by his brothers, to merchants who eventually bring Joseph to…

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Mikeitz 5773-2012

"Two Long Years in Joseph’s Life" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald This week’s parasha, parashat Mikeitz, opens two years after Joseph had successfully interpreted the dreams of Pharaoh’s…

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Kee Tisah 5772-2012

"The Preeminence of Shabbat" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In this week’s parasha, parashat Kee Tisah, we learn, among other things, of the preeminence of Shabbat, the Sabbath Day.…

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Tazria-Metzorah 5772-2012

“The Essential Ingredient for Repentance and Prayer--Humility” by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In parashat Metzorah, the second of this week’s double parashiot, Tazria-Metzorah, we read of…

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Balak 5772-2012

“Balaam, the Sorcerer, Becomes a Prophet” by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In this week’s parasha, parashat Balak, we read of how Balak, the Moabite king, hired the pagan prophet, Balaam, to…

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B’shalach 5772-2012

"Pharaoh's Ultimate Fate" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In this week’s parasha, parashat Beshalach, we read of the splitting of the Red Sea and the miraculous salvation of the Israelites…

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Tetzaveh 5772-2012

"Where is Moses?" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald Parashat Tetzaveh focuses in depth on the special vestments that the lay priests and the High Priest wore when they officiated at the…

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Pinchas 5772-2012

“Transferring Power” by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In this week’s parasha, parashat Pinchas, we learn of the transfer of the leadership of Israel from Moses to Joshua. In Numbers 27:12,…

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Va’etchanan 5772-2012

"The Magic of the Mezuzah" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In this week’s parasha, parashat Va’etchanan, we encounter the first of two textual references to the mitzvah of mezuzah that are…

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Kee Tavo 5772-2012

“Persecution’s ‘Silver Lining’” by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald This week’s parasha, parashat Kee Tavo, is one of two weekly Torah portions that contain the verses known as the “Tochacha ,”…

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Lech Lecha 5773-2012

"To the Land that I Will Show You" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In this week’s parasha, parashat Lech Lecha, G-d instructs Abram (his name had not yet been changed to Abraham), to begin…

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Vayeira 5773-2012

“Seeking Advice From a Good Friend” by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald As this week's parasha, parashat Vayeira, opens, G-d appears to Abraham in the Plains of Mamre. The Bible, in Genesis…

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Chayei Sarah 5773-2012

"Beware Not to Return My Son There!" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In this week’s parasha, parashat Chayei Sarah, we learn that Abraham, who is well-on in years, is deeply concerned about…

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Toledot 5773-2012

"The Sale of the Birthright" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In this week’s parasha, parashat Toledot, we learn of the sale of the birthright by Esau to his twin brother Jacob. In order to…

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Vayeitzei 5773-2012

"The Complex Relationship Between Jacob, Rachel and Leah" In this week’s parasha, parashat Vayeitzei, Jacob, who has fled from his father’s home in BeerSheba where Esau seeks to kill him,…

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Vayigash 5773-2012

"Is My Father Still Alive?" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In this week’s parasha, parashat Vayigash, we read of one of the most dramatic moments in the Torah, when Joseph finally reveals…

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Shemot 5773-2012

“The Role of Exile in Jewish History” by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In this week’s parasha, parashat Shemot, the book of Exodus opens with the story of the people of Israel’s enslavement…

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Vayechi 5772-2012

"The Scepter Shall Not Depart from Judah" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In this week’s parasha, parashat Vayechi, Jacob calls his sons together in order to bless them before he dies. Not…

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Shemot 5772-2012

“A Truly Moral Man Goes Out To His Brethren” by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In this week’s parasha, parashat Shemot, we learn how Moses is saved from certain death after being placed by his…

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Bo 5772-2012

"The Plague of Darkness" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In this week’s parasha, parashat Bo, we learn of the eighth, ninth and tenth of the ten plagues--locusts, darkness and the death of…

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Yitro 5772-2012

"Who is the Real Jethro?" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald Jethro, a man of great stature and distinction, is first encountered in the Bible in Exodus 2:16. The Torah describes Jethro as…

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Mishpatim 5772-2012

"Capital Punishment: Revenge or Restitution?" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald With fifty-three commandments--thirty negative and twenty-three positive, parashat Mishpatim ranks fourth among…

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Terumah 5772-2012

"The Outer Altar" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald With this week's parasha, parashat Terumah, we begin to read a cycle of five Torah portions that extensively describe the building and…

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Vayakhel-Pekudei 5772-2012

“A United People Build the Tabernacle” by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In parashat Vayakhel, the first of this week’s double parashiot of Vayakhel and Pekudei, we read of the actual…

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Vayikra 5772-2012

“Pass the Salt, Please!” by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In this week’s parasha, parashat Vayikra, we learn of the obligation of placing salt on all sacrificial offerings, including all…

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Tzav 5772-2012

“Spiritual Movements in the Life of a Jew” by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald This week’s parasha, parashat Tzav, continues the theme that dominates much of the book of Leviticus: the roles of…

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Acharei Mot-Kedoshim 5772-2012

"Respect for Elders" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald The double portions of Acharei-Mot and Kedoshim together contain a total of 79 mitzvot, more than one seventh of all the mitzvot in the…

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Behar-Bechukotai, Yom Yerushalayim 5772-2012

"Living Outside the Land of Israel" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In parashat Behar, the first of this week’s double parashiot, Behar-Bechukotai, we learn of the special relationship that…

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