GOOD MORNING! One cannot love what one does not know. If one wants to appreciate and love being Jewish, he needs to learn the Torah and know the elevated world-view and ethics that were given to the Jewish people to be a role model to the world. Secondly, a person needs to know Jewish history -how we have impacted the world ... and how the world has impacted us.
Rabbi Ken Spiro is the resident Jewish historian at Aish HaTorah and on Aish.com. (He is also a world-renowned engaging, informing and entertaining speaker). You may find his articles on Aish.com and his lectures available on AishAudio.com for listening or downloading. (BCE = Before Common Era CE = Common Era)
Meanwhile, below is a brief synopsis that will look good taped to your refrigerator:
TIMELINE OF JEWISH HISTORY
For more on "Jewish History" go to ShabbatShalomAudio.com!
Torah Portion of the Week
Aharon is commanded in the lighting of the Menorah, the Levites purify themselves for service in the Tabernacle (they trained from age 25-30 and served from age 30-50), the first Pesach is celebrated since leaving Egypt. The Almighty instructs the Jewish people to journey into the desert whenever the ever-present cloud lifts from above the Tabernacle and to camp where it rests. Moshe is instructed to make two silver trumpets to be sounded before battle or to proclaim a Yom Tov (a holiday).
The people journey to the wilderness of Paran during which time they rebelled twice against the Almighty's leadership. The second time they complain about the boring taste of the manna and the lack of meat in the desert. The Almighty sends a massive quantity of quail and those who rebelled died.
Moshe asks his father-in-law, Yitro (Jethro), to travel with them in the desert, but Yitro returns to Midian. (It has been said that the difference between in-laws and outlaws, that at least outlaws are wanted ... Of course, in this case the father-in-law was wanted.)
Miriam, Moshe's sister, speaks lashon hora (defaming words) about Moshe. She is struck with Tzora'as (the mystical skin disease which indicated that a person spoke improperly about another person) and is exiled from the camp for one week.
* * *
based on Growth Through Torah by Rabbi Zelig Pliskin
When we open the Ark and take the Torah out, everyone recites a verse from this week's Torah portion:
"And it was when the Ark traveled, Moshe said, 'Arise Almighty and disperse Your enemies, and those who hate You will flee from You.' "
Why is this verse recited then?
Rabbi Yosef Chaim Sonnenfeld, a Torah illuminary, who lived in the Old City of Jerusalem until 1932, answered this question at the dedication of a Yeshiva. "Whenever someone wants to start some worthwhile Torah institution or project, there are always people who will try to stop him. Therefore, when we take out the Torah we ask that the Almighty should disperse the enemies of torah and prevent them from causing trouble."
Torah is the lifeblood of the Jewish people. Our enemies knew that if they could keep the Jewish people from learning Torah, the Jewish people could be swayed and conquered. Therefore, for the Jewish people to be strong and to continue, we must give our support for every effort to teach and spread Torah. Any Jewish leader who does not throw his support behind efforts to teach Torah and expand Torah schools for our children, sorely lacks the fundamental principle crucial to our survival!
* * *
My friend, Eliezer Heyman - also known as "Eliezer ben Boca Beach" has a love for taking photographs of seagulls, Yiddish and above all, his grandchildren. He has combined his love in making a children's book for his grandchildren: Erev Shabbos Mit Eliezer Siegal and His Mishugena Mishpoche. www.FloridaJewish.com/book
CANDLE LIGHTING - June 12
(or go to http://www.aish.com/shabbat/candlelighting.asp)
Guatemala 6:13 - Hong Kong 6:49 - Honolulu 6:55
J'Burg 5:04 - London 8:59 - Los Angeles 7:47
Melbourne 4:49 - Mexico City 7:57 - Miami 7:54
New York 8:09 - Singapore 6:53 - Toronto 8:41
QUOTE OF THE WEEK:
A generation which ignores history
has no past and no future.
-- Robert Heinlein
With Deep Appreciation to
for his friendship & support
Rabbi Kalman Packouz
Click here for Rabbi Packouz's bio
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