Confronting Religious Hypocrisy

When the Jewish People raise their eyes, and see the Egyptian soldiers and chariots kicking up dust galloping after them, there is nowhere for them to turn except for the Sea of Reeds. Understandably, they turn to Hashem and cry out as the pasuk says: “And the Children of Israel lifted their eyes and behold, […]

Then, Now and Forever

Immediately after the report of the devastation wrought by the first nine plagues, the Torah interrupts the dramatic narrative of Egypt’s destruction with Perek 12. The perek begins with describing the instructions to Bnei Yisrael concerning the Korban Pesach; it records the final plague – the death of all the first born throughout Egypt; and […]

To Know our Place in this World

And Yaakov called unto his sons, and said: “Gather yourselves together, that I may tell you that which shall befall you in the end of days.” (Bereishit 49:1) According to chazal, the vision of the end of days is concealed from him: Rabbi Shimon ben Lakish said: “And Yaakov called unto his sons, and said: […]

A Life of Meaning or a Life of Existence? Yaakov Avinu’s Pointed Message to Pharaoh

This week’s Parsha involves two epic showdowns between critical players in the Torah’s stories up until now. The first more well-known is the encounter between Yosef and Yehuda which comes to its dramatic conclusion within the very first moments of our Parsha. In an emotionally charged and fantastic scene, Yosef reveals his identity, sending his […]