Yehonasan Gefen
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About the Author

Rabbi Yehonasan Gefen

Rabbi Yehonasan Gefen is a close student of Rabbi Yitzchak Berkovits and a senior member of the Jerusalem Kollel.  Rabbi Gefen’s has spent over 12 years of intensive Torah and Talmudic study at Aish HaTorah and the Jerusalem Kollel, and has a degree in history and politics from the University of Birmingham, UK. Rabbi Gefen has written numerous articles for Hamodia and other publications. His writing inspires people across the spectrum of Jewish observance to live with the vibrancy and beauty of Torah.

Rabbi Gefen has recently published his second book, A Light in Time, a compilation of essays on the Jewish festivals and life cycle. Rabbi Gefen’s successful first book, The Guiding Light, a compilation of essays on the weekly Torah portion.

Visit Rabbi Gefen's site at http://rabbiygefen.blogspot.com/

Understanding the True Meaning of 'Chesed'

Understanding the True Meaning of 'Chesed'

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In the latter part of the Parsha the Torah enumerates the various forbidden relationships and their punishments. Towards the end of this list the ...


Negative Surroundings

Negative Surroundings

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Before detailing the list of forbidden relationships the Torah instructs us: "Do not perform the practices of the land of Egypt in which you ...


A New Start

A New Start

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We can always put our past behind us.


Purifying Our Speech

Purifying Our Speech

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The Torah Portion of Tazria discusses at length the spiritual malaise of tzoraas whereby a person is afflicted with white blotches on his skin. He ...


Who Comes First

Who Comes First

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Among the list of non-kosher birds in Parshas Shemini is the interestingly named 'Chasida'. Rashi quotes the Talmud in Chullin that explains that ...


The Temptations of Money

The Temptations of Money

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"And God said to Moses, saying; Command (tzav) Aaron and his sons, to say; this is the Law of the burnt offering..." (1) The Parsha ...


Gift Offerings

Gift Offerings

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The Book of Vayikra focuses to a significant degree on the various sacrifices (korbanos) (1) that were to be given in the Tabernacle (Mishkan), and ...


Spiritual Effort

Spiritual Effort

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After the building of the Mishkan (Tabernacle) was completed, the workmen could not erect it because of its massive weight. Since Moses had not had ...


Shabbos

Shabbos

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The Parsha begins with an exhortation to observe Shabbos: "For six days work will be done and the seventh day shall be holy for you, a day of ...


The Punishment Due To the Golden Calf

The Punishment Due To the Golden Calf

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The sin of the Golden Calf is one of the most difficult episodes in the Torah. There is much discussion about how the great generation who lived in ...


The Robe and the Incense

The Robe and the Incense

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"You shall make the Robe of the Ephod entirely of turquoise wool.... You shall make on its hem pomegranates of turquoise, purple, and scarlet ...


Overcoming Laziness

Overcoming Laziness

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The Torah portion begins with God instructing Moses to tell the people to bring the raw materials necessary in order to build the Mishkan ...


Truth and Falsehood

Truth and Falsehood

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TRUTH AND FALSEHOOD (1) "Distance yourself from falsehood.(2)" It is well known that honesty is one of the most important character ...


Listen Up

Listen Up

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One of the striking features of Parshas Yisro is the juxtaposition of the portion about Yisro’s advice to Moses with the Giving of the Torah. ...


Persistence

Persistence

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The Torah tells us that when the Jewish people were preparing to leave Egypt, Moses was involved with in the mitzvah of taking the remains of Joseph ...


Thinking

Thinking

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One of the most distinctive aspects of the Ten Plagues was the persistent refusal of Pharaoh to recognize the error of his ways and accept that the ...


Moshe Rabbeinu and Pharaoh

Moshe Rabbeinu and Pharaoh

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Moshe Rabbeinu and Pharaoh


Giving for the Sake of Giving

Giving for the Sake of Giving

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"God benefited the midwives - and the people increased and became very strong. And it was because the midwives feared God that He made them ...


Achieving the Right Balance

Achieving the Right Balance

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The book of Genesis culminates with the eternal blessings that Jacob bestowed on his sons. Each son received a unique blessing which catered exactly ...


Joseph's Proof

Joseph's Proof

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"They went up from Egypt and came to the land of Canaan to Jacob their father. And they told him, saying, 'Joseph is still alive' and that he ...


Serving Man or God

Serving Man or God

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The Torah portion begins with Joseph's interpretation of Pharaoh's dreams and his subsequent rise to power in Egypt. On close analysis of the ...


Stepping Out of Our Own World

Stepping Out of Our Own World

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Towards the end of the parsha, Joseph finds himself in a hopeless situation, having been in prison for ten years with no prospect of freedom. Then ...


Education Through Encouragement

Education Through Encouragement

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This week's Torah portion ends with an account of the genealogy of Esau. In the midst of this we are told of the birth of Amalek, the progenitor of ...


The Desire For Greatness

The Desire For Greatness

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"And God remembered Rachel, and God listened to her, and opened her womb. And she became pregnant and she bore a son, and she said God has ...


The Role of Isaac

The Role of Isaac

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The Torah devotes several entire Torah portions to the lives of Abraham and Jacob. In contrast, only this week's portion focuses on Isaac. And even ...


Kindness With Wisdom

Kindness With Wisdom

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Abraham sends his faithful servant, Eliezer to find a suitable wife for his righteous son, Isaac. When Eliezer arrives at his destination he prays ...


Using the Good for Good

Using the Good for Good

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The Torah portion begins with the story of Abraham's incredible kindness with the three angels. Abraham goes to great lengths to provide all their ...


Out Of This World

Out Of This World

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"And God said to Abraham, go for yourself from your land, from your relatives, and from your father's house to the land that I will show you. And I ...


Noach and Avraham

Noach and Avraham

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"These are the offspring of Noach, Noach was a righteous man, perfect in his generations; Noach walked with God."(1) Noach was the ...


The Development of Civilization

The Development of Civilization

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After Cain's heinous act of murdering his brother Abel, God decreed upon him to be a wanderer around the earth. He was never to have a permanent ...


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