A ‘Bissel’ of Torah: KI TEITZEI (DEUTERONOMY 21:10-25:19)

By Joy Scott, Am Haskalah Congregant This week’s Torah Parsha (KI TEITZEI) occurs as the Children of Israel are at the brink of embarking on war with hostile nations, as they tirelessly struggle to reach the ‘Promised Land’. The Parsha comprises seventy-four of the Torah’s six hundred and thirteen commandments. The separate commandments, pertaining to […]

A ‘Bissel’ of Torah: SHOFTIM (DEUTERONOMY 16:18-21:9)

By Joy Scott, Am Haskalah Congregant In previous Parshiot in the Book of DEUTERONOMY, we learned how God began preparing for the establishment of a new nation in the ‘Promised Land’. Equal portions of the land were allotted, according to the population of each of the tribes. Last week’s Torah Parsha (RE’EH) emphasized the importance […]

A ‘Bissel’ of Torah: EKEV (DEUTERONOMY 7:12-11:25)

By Joy Scott, Am Haskalah Congregant In this week’s Parsha (EKEV), Moses continues his closing address to the Children of Israel, which he began in Parsha (DEVARIM), and expanded upon in last week’s Parsha (V’ETCHANAN). Moses clearly understands the risks for this new generation. They may not remember the miracles, which God had performed, to […]

A ‘Bissel’ of Torah: MATOT-MASSEI (NUMBERS 30:2-36:13)

This week, we read a double Parshiot (MATOT-MASSEI), which consolidate to comprise the finale of the Book of NUMBERS. The contents of these Parshiot are remarkable for the discontinuity of the narrative; the paradoxical elements of God’s commandments; and, seemingly incoherent directives and laws. The first of the Parshiot (MATOT) begins with Moses speaking to […]

A ‘Bissel’ of Torah: PINCHAS (NUMBERS 25:10-30:1)

By Joy Scott, Am Haskalah Congregant   Last week’s Torah Parsha (BALAK) was somewhat fanciful and surreal; although, ending in tragedy, when thousands of Israelites lost their lives, as a consequence of being lured into illicit relations with the Moabite women. Parsha (PINCHAS) transitions to more serious themes, which include not just a diverse set […]

A ‘Bissel’ of Torah: BALAK (NUMBERS 22:2-25:9)

By Joy Scott, Am Haskalah Congregant Parsha (BALAK) begins with the Israelites continuing their journey to Canaan. They have already defeated their enemies in many nations; and, have settled their next encampment on the border of Moab. Based on the victories the Israelites had achieved in other nations, Balak, the King of Moab was justified […]