Gleaning Supermarket Aisles

It is nearly time for Thanksgiving, and throughout the United States communities are putting up posters for holiday food drives. Giving food to the poor is certainly one of the oldest…

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What is Shmittah?

We have now completed the fall holidays and have fully entered the new year, 5775. Beyond the quaint palindrome nature of its numbers, this new year is distinct from the past few years in…

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Korach 5762-2002

"The Origin of the Big Lie" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In this coming week's Torah portion, parashat Korach, we read of Korach and his rebellion against G-d, Moses and Aaron. Although…

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Kee Teitzei 5770-2010

"Caring for Workers and Domestic Animals" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald This week’s parasha, parashat Kee Teitzei, contains an array of rather impressive, indeed, revolutionary, laws…

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Behar-Bechukotai 5778-2018

“Torah From Sinai” by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald The opening verses of parashat Behar, the first of this week’s combined parashiyot, Behar and Bechukotai, speak of the laws of Shemitah,…

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Take A Sabbatical

It is interesting that the two most common professions which offer sabbatical leaves are academia and clergy. These two professions are fields in which practitioners devote a great deal…

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Noah 5776-2015

"Noah - A Hero of Limited Proportions " by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In this week’s parasha, parashat Noah, we read of the only living person whom G-d considered worthy of being saved…

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Kee Tavo 5777-2017

“The Choice Parts to G-d” by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald Parashat Kee Tavo is best known for the second תּוֹכֵחָה , Tochacha, G-d’s second reproof of the People of Israel. The first is…

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Take A Sabbatical

It is interesting that the two most common professions which offer sabbatical leaves are academia and clergy. These two professions are fields in which practitioners devote a great deal…

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World Food Day

It is a fundamental Jewish belief that in the era of the Messiah, the world will be transformed into a state of perfection. As stated by Rabbi Moses ben Maimon (Rambam, Maimonides - 12th…

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Re’eh 5762-2002

"Changing and Updating Jewish Law" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In this coming week's parasha, parashat Re'eh, we encounter a fascinating law known in rabbinic literature as Shmitat…

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Bereshith 5763-2002

"Being Moral in an Increasingly Immoral Environment" Rabbi Ephraim Buchwald This week's parasha, parashat Bershith, is one of the richest of all the narrative portions of the Torah. One…

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Lech Lecha 5764-2003

"A Scriptural Assessment of Lot" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald By paying close attention to specific words and verses in the Bible, we can often learn much concerning the Bible's…

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Vayechi 5760-1999

"How Important is Timing?" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald This week's parasha, parashat Vayechi, is an exalted collection of poetry. In this parasha, Jacob blesses his children, but it is…

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Bo 5768-2008

"Is This What You Call Borrowing?" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In parashat Bo we learn that after the ninth plague, the plague of darkness, Pharaoh has reached his wit's end, and agrees…

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Behar-Bechukotai 5766-2006

"The Economics of Torah" by Rabbi Ephraim Buchwald The very last chapter of the book of Leviticus chapter 27, which concludes this week's double parashiot Behar-Bechukotai, focuses on…

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Matot-Masei 5760-2000

"Jeremiah's Prophecy: An Ancient Message for Contemporary Times" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald Once again, this coming week's parashiot will be doubled, and we will be reading both…

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Toledot 5772-2011

“Isaac Blesses His Sons” by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In this week’s parasha, parashat Toledot, we learn how Isaac’s intentions to bless Esau are thwarted by the deceptive actions of…

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Tzav 5775-2015

“When Performing a Mitzvah Comes at a Significant Personal Cost” by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald This week’s parasha, parashat Tzav, for the most part, continues the Torah’s review of the…

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Bamidbar 5775-2015

“Finding Value in Every Task” by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In this week’s parasha, parashat Bamidbar, the Torah describes the structure and layout of the camp of Israel in the wilderness.…

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Shelach 5775-2015

“The Sin of the Spies--Revisited” By Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In this week’s parasha, parashat Shelach, we read of the sin of the scouts whom Moses sent out, at G-d’s behest, to scout…

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Behar 5776-2016

“Bernie Sanders Meets Parashat Behar" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald This week’s parasha, parashat Behar, introduces many of the Torah’s revolutionary economic ideas (see Behar 5765-2005).…

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Vayakhel 5779-2019

"Jewish Women and Jewish Destiny" (Revised and updated from Vayakhel 5760-2000) by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald The vast majority of this week’s parasha, parashat Vayakhel, deals with…

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Matot-Masei 5779-2019

“Jeremiah’s Prophecy: An Ancient Message for Contemporary Times” (Revised and updated from Matot-Masei 5760-2000) by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald   This Shabbat, when parashiot Matot…

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Vayechi 5780-2020

"The Critical Importance of Timing" (updated and revised from Vayechi 5760-1999) by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald This week's parasha, parashat Vayechi, includes almost a full chapter…

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Emor 5764-2004

"The Blasphemer - A Midrashic View" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald This coming week's parasha, parashat Emor, deals, for the most part, with the laws of the Cohanim--the Priests. These…

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Re’eh 5780-2020

Re'eh 5780-2020 “Changing and Updating Jewish Law” (updated and revised from parashat Re’eh 5762-2002) by, Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In this week’s parasha, parashat Re’eh, we encounter a…

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A Jewish Income Tax?

On February 3, 1913, the Sixteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution was ratified. “The Congress shall have power to lay and collect taxes on incomes, from whatever source derived,…

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Lech Lecha – 5760-1999

"Understanding the Rite of Circumcision" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald Toward the end of this coming week's parasha, parashat Lech L'Cha, we read of the covenant of circumcision, Brit…

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Vayechi 5764-2004

"Can It Be a Mitzvah to Lie?" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald The late great Bible teacher, Nehama Leibowitz, alerts us to a major issue that appears in the narrative of this week's parasha,…

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