In this Shabbat’s weekly Torah portion Vaeira, Exodus 6:2 – 9:35, the children of Israel multiply in Egypt. Threatened by their growing numbers, Pharaoh enslaves them and orders the Hebrew midwives, Shifrah and Puah, to kill all male babies at birth. When they do not comply, he commands his people to cast the Hebrew […]
This Shabbat’s weekly Torah portion Shemot, Exodus 1:1 – 6:1, begins the Book of Exodus. Pharaoh issues harsh decrees against the Israelites, beginning decades of Jewish suffering and slavery. Moses is born and raised in the Egyptian royal palace. After killing an Egyptian, Moses escapes to Midian and marries. G‑d appears to him in […]
This Shabbat’s weekly Torah portion Vayechi, Genesis 47:28 – 50:26, discusses Jacob’s final years. Shortly before his passing, Jacob blesses Joseph’s children as well as his own. A massive funeral procession escorts Jacob’s body to Canaan. The reading, and the Book of Genesis, concludes with Joseph’s death.
In the Haftara Prophets reading, I Kings 2:1 – […]
This Shabbat’s weekly Torah portion Vayigash, Genesis 44:18 – 47:27, concludes the story of Joseph and his brothers, with Joseph unable to contain himself and revealing himself to them after his brother Judah offers to be imprisoned instead of Benjamin. This gripping story has captured the imagination of people for thousands of years, and […]
This Shabbat’s weekly Torah portion Toledot (The Life and Times of), Genesis 25:19 – 28:9, is the only portion that focuses on the middle patriarch, Isaac, but even still opens and closes with stories about his son Jacob. In between, the stories about Isaac mostly mirror some stories about Abraham his father.
The two best known […]
This Shabbat’s weekly Torah portion Chayei Sarah (The Life of Sarah), Genesis 23:1 – 25:18, opens with the death of Sarah and her widower Abraham’s mourning for her and especially purchase of the Double Cave (Me’arat Hamachpela) in Hebron in order to bury her. This purchase is recognized as the first acquisition in the […]
This Shabbat’s weekly Torah portion Vayera, Genesis 18:1 – 22:24, continues the stories of Abraham, starting with his visit from angels who tell him that God will bless him and his wife Sarah with a son, then describe the destruction of Sodom and Gemorah, and conclude with the important story of Isaac’s Binding (Sacrifice). […]
This Shabbat’s weekly Torah portion Lech Lecha, Genesis 12:1 – 17:27, introduces Abraham, promises blessing to non-Jews who support Israel (Gen.. 12:3) and tells the world that the Land of Israel belongs to the Jews (Gen 12:7 etc etc).. The Haftara Prophets reading, Isaiah 40:27 – 41:16, includes Isaiah 40: 31:
Those who hope in […]
This week we read Noah (the “h” should be pronounced more gutturally, like you are clearing your throat), Genesis 6:9 – 11:32. The second portion of Genesis, we read mostly the story of the Flood, but also a bit of Noah’s life story; the population of the world with the 70 nations descended from Noah; […]
This week we read Breshit (In the beginning of), Genesis 1:1 – 6:8. This is a festive reading, as we are restarting the cycle of reading the entire Torah, some fifty-two portions, one week at a time.
This week’s Prophets reading is from Isaiah 42:5-43:10. The connection to the Breshit reading is its first verse, […]
This week we read Ha’azinu (Listen!), Deuteronomy 32:1 – 32:52. As introduced in last week’s reading, Moses concludes his messages from God to the Israelites just before they enter the Land. As God warns over and over, the People will forget about their covenant with God and ultimately be exiled. But God will bring them […]
This week we read Vayelech (And He Went), Deuteronomy 31:1 – 31:30. This is the weekly portion with the fewest verses, and is often combined with the previous week’s portion, Nitzavim. In the parashah, Moses tells the Israelites to be strong and courageous, as God and Joshua would soon lead them into the Promised Land. […]
This week we read Nitzavim (Standing), Deuteronomy 29:9 – 30:20, which mostly revisits Moses’ and God’s exhortation to the people to keep the commandments. This week, the week just before the holiday of Rosh Hashana, is especially fitting for this portion to be read, as it includes the “Passage of Teshuva,” return or repentance, which appear in chapter 30 […]
This is the first post in a new category – Weekly Torah Readings.
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Every week, the Jewish tradition call for a portion of the Torah – the Five Books of Moses […]