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‘Weekly Torah Portion’ Category

Parashat Devarim; Shabbat Hazon July 17, 2021, 8 Av 5781 Torah: Deuteronomy 1-3:22; Triennial 2:2-2:30 Haftarah: Isaiah 1:1-27 Not Just a Second Torah Ilana Kurshan With this week’s parashah we begin Sefer Devarim, the final book of the Torah and the one referred to by the Talmudic rabbis as Mishneh Torah – a second Torah (see, for instance, [...]
Parashat Matot-Masei July 10, 2021, 1 Av 5781 Torah: Numbers 30:2-36:13; Triennial 32:1-33:49 Haftarah: Isaiah 66:1-24 Diasporic Dispersal, Then and Now Ilana Kurshan The first of the two parshiyot we read this week, Matot, concludes with the request of two of the twelve tribes to remain on the near side of the Jordan River and [...]
Parashat Pinchas July 3, 2021, 23 Tamuz 5781 Torah: Numbers 25:10-30:1; Triennial 26:52-28:15 Haftarah: Jeremiah 1:1 - 2:3 Why Should We Be Excluded? Ilana Kurshan Our parashah introduces the five daughters of Tzlofchad, who petition Moshe to be allowed to inherit a portion in the land of Israel after their father died leaving no male [...]
Parashat Balak June 26, 2021, 16 Tamuz 5781 Torah: Numbers 22:2-25:9; Triennial 22:2-38 Haftarah: Micah 5:6-6:8 Flawed Prophets Ilana Kurshan In commenting on one of the final verses in the Torah— “never has there arisen in Israel a prophet like Moshe” (Deuteronomy 34:10)—the midrash raises a surprising challenge from our parashah. While it is true [...]
Parashat Hukat June 19, 2021, 9 Tamuz 5781 Torah: Numbers 19:1-22:1; Triennial 19:1-20:21 Haftarah: Judges 11:1-33 Hukat – The Song that Wells Up from Inside Ilana Kursha Parashah Hukat is about the death of a generation and its leaders. Miriam and Aaron die, and Moshe is informed by God that he, too, will die before [...]
Parashat Korach June 12, 2021, 2 Tamuz 5781 Torah: Numbers 16:1-18:32; Triennial 16:20-17:24 Haftarah: I Samuel 11:14-12:22 Korah’s Take on Leadership Ilana Kurshan Our parashah features a serious and dangerous assault on Moshe’s leadership of the Jewish people. In the midst of the Israelites’ desert wanderings, a Levite named Korah rallies a group of two [...]
Parashat Sh’lach June 5, 2021, 25 Sivvan 5781 Torah: Numbers 13:1-15:41; Triennial 14:8-15:7 Haftorah: Joshua 2:1-2:24 The Sotah and the Spies Ilana Kurshan Our parashah contains an account of the spies sent by Moshe to scout out the land of Israel before the Israelites enter to conquer it. Instead of simply reporting on the land, [...]
Parashat Beha’alotcha May 29, 2021, 18 Sivvan 5781 Torah: Numbers 8:1-12:16; Triennial 9:15-10:34 Haftarah: Zechariah 2:14-4:17 The Varieties of Religious Experience Ilana Kurshan In parashat Beha’alotcha Miriam and Aaron speak out against Moshe “on account of the Cushite woman he had married” (Numbers 12:1), a reference to Moshe’s wife Tziporah, who was described as a [...]
Parashat Nasso May 22, 2021, 11 Sivvan 5781 Torah: Numbers 4:21-7:89; Triennial 5:11-6:27 Haftarah: Judges 13:2-25 Grooming, Grieving, Grapes Ilana Kurshan Parashat Nasso introduces us to the nazir, a person who vows to take upon him or herself additional commitments so as to draw closer to God. A nazir vows not to drink wine or [...]
Parashat Bamidbar May 15, 2021, 4 Sivvan 5781 Torah: Numbers 1:1-4:20; Triennial 2:1-3:13 Haftarah: Hosea 2:1-22 The Anesthetized Mishkan Ilana Kurshan Parashat Bamidbar describes the various responsibilities incumbent upon each of the three branches of the Levite clan, who transported the Tabernacle every time the Israelites broke camp and traveled. The sons of Gershon carried [...]