Parsha Roundup

  • Find Out!

    There are certain Torah prohibitions that require capital punishment. The implementation of capital punishment was very rare. Even if one committed an offense that was liable for capital punishment he could only be killed if two male witnesses warned him immediately before he committed the act. These witnesses were then thoroughly interrogated and then it …

  • Left Out!

    At an awards dinner I once attended, one the honorees got up and literally went through the attendees and thanked each one by name. After the rather lengthy acceptance speech the master of ceremonies came back to the podium and jokingly quipped, “Whoever’s name was not mentioned, please stand up.” Sure enough, the honoree’s own …

  • Heaven Within Reach!

    There are seventy-four Mitzvos contained in this week’s Parsha. One mitzvah is that the Torah instructs one who lent his fellow an interest free loan, and the lender wishes to take some type of collateral to ensure that the loan will be repaid; the Torah gives specific rules as to how it should be done. …

  • Chewing in his Ear!

    Through hints, acronyms and Gematria’s that are embedded in the Hebrew letters, words and verses of Torah we come to appreciate the fascinating precision, symmetry and accuracy of our holy Torah and tradition. Elul, the month that precedes Rosh Hashana, is spelled with four Hebrew letters. There are numerous verses where the first letters of …

  • Upturn!

    The Parsha begins, “When you wage war against your enemy, and Hashem your G-d will place them in your hands and you will take captives.” Reb Tzodok Hakohain and many great sages tell us that this portion can be interpreted appropriately for this time of year when our mind and thoughts should be focused on …

  • Peace and Blessings at Home

    (Torah Portion Ki Seitzai) Peace and Blessings at Home A person once confided to a friend that his marriage had become a bit strained. His friend advised him to seek marriage counseling, which he refused to entertain. His friend then recommended that he go to the great and pious Rabbi Yaacov Yisroel Kanievsky, the Steipler …

  • Gossip

    (Torah Portion Ki Seitzai) Gossip In this week’s Parsha, the Torah instructs us, “Zechor – remember – what had happened to Moshe’s sister Miriam.” She had developed a blemish as a result of Lashon Harah – speaking ill – of her brother. While she was excommunicated from the encampment for a week’s time because of …

  • Double Take

    (Torah Portion Ki Seitzai) Double Take Recently, while reading a tribute to the life of Rabbi Hirsh Diskin o.b.m., a cute story caught my eye and made me chuckle. Rabbi Diskin was a retired principal of a large Jewish religious girls’ school in Baltimore, and never passed up an opportunity to motivate others. Once, Rabbi …

  • Water Selfie

    (Torah Portion Ki Seitzai) Water Selfie At this time of year, knowing that the big day of Rosh Hashana is fast approaching, we are generally more in tune with our spiritual health. We think twice about what we say about others and we are a bit more conscious and meticulous about our observances. Let’s face …

  • Chess Move!

    (Torah Portion Ki Seitzai) Chess Move!  A story is told of a leading Rabbi who taught his young son how to play chess. He explained how each piece is moved and the goal of the game. His son asked, “If after I make a move I change my mind, can I move it back?” His …

  • Partners!

    (Torah Portion Ki Seitzai ) Partners! The other day I had a conversation with a professed atheist who has a terrific and wry sense of humor. I asked him if he can prove his atheistic position to me. His priceless response … “That, I can’t – thank G-d!” Needless to say, we both had a …