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/


Learning from the Past

Bamidbar, 33:1: “These are the journeys of the Children of Israel, who went forth from the...

The DIfference Between Shimon and Levi

The Portion begins with the account of Pinchas’ act of zealotry of killing Zimri and Kozbi....

The Importance of Forgiveness

Bamidbar, 21:4-7: They journeyed from Mount Hor by way of the Sea of Reeds to go around the land...

The "Holiness" of Korach and his Assembly

An important law is derived from verses in the Torah portions of Shelach and Korach. The Gemara...

Individuality within the Torah

Bamidbar, 15:39: “And you will not explore after your hearts and after your eyes after which...

Empathy and Wisdom

Bamidbar, 11:16: “Gather for Me seventy men from the elders of Israel, whom you know to be...

The Overbearing Husband

Bamidbar: 5:12: “Speak to the Children of Israel and say to them: Any man (ish ish) whose...

The Value of Each Individual

The Torah Portion begins with a census of the Jewish people. Indeed, counting is such a...

Bring the Redemption through Kindness

Vayikra, 26:42: And I will remember my Covenant with Yaakov, and even my Covenant with Yitzchak,...

The Foolishness of Anger

The Torah Portion ends with the terrible story of ‘the blasphemer’ – the son of...

The Value of Life

Vayikra, 18:5: “And you will guard My statutes and laws, that you will do them and you will...

The Distinguished Man

The Torah discusses the laws of the Metzora, a person stricken by Tzaraat, an ancient disease1,...

Moses’ Seven Days at the Kohen Gadol

Vayikra, 9:1: “And it was on the eighth day, Moshe called to Aaron and his son and the...

The Advantage of the Baal Teshuva

In Its discussion of the various offerings, the Torah describes the Guilt (Asham) and Sin...

Finding Our True Essence

Vayikra, 1:3: “…he will offer it according to his will, before God.” Rashi,...

Shabbat and Unity

Shemos, 35:1-2: "And Moshe gathered all the assembly of the Children of Israel, and he said...

Fire and the Half Shekel

Shemot, 30:13: This shall be given by everyone who passes through the counting, from twenty years...

Serving the Community For the Right Reasons

Tetzaveh 27:20: And you shall command the Children of Israel that they shall take for you pure...

The Half Measurements of the Ark

Shemot: 25:10: "They shall make an Ark of acacia wood, two and half cubits its length; a...

Torah and Morality

Shemos, 21:1: "And these are the Mishpatim that you shall place before them." Rashi,...

Goodness Versus Intelligence

This week's Torah portion begins with the account of Moshe's father-in-law, Yitro, coming to the...

The Good Deeds in Leaving Egypt

Shemos, 13:18: "The children of Israel were chamushim when they went up from...

Around Midnight: Avoiding Desecrating God's Name

"And Moshe said, 'so said God at about midnight I shall go out in the midst of Egypt. Every...

Nothing "Bad" Happens

"And Moshe returned to God and he said, 'My Master, why have You done evil to this...

Yosef and the Burning Bush

One of the most famous incidents in the Torah is that of the Burning Bush, where an Angel appears...

Insights in Rashi: Zevulun's Reward

Zevulun shall settle by seashores. He shall be at the ship's harbor, and his last border will...

Dealing with Suffering

"Pharaoh said to Yaakov, 'How many are the days of the years of your life?" Yaakov...

Sorcery and Lucky Charms

Yosef, in the guise of the Viceroy of Egypt, sends back his brothers and commands his son to hide...

Yosef and Yeravam

After Yosef told the brothers about his dreams, they recognized that the dreams indicated that he...

Esav's Adaptable Angel

It's hard to know your enemy.

The Sign of Redemption

And behold! Hashem was standing over him, and He said, "I am Hashem, God of Abraham your...

Esav's Potential

"And the children crushed within her..." (Bereishit, 25:22) And [the children]...

Making Every Day Count

"Sarah's lifetime was one hundred years, twenty years, and seven years; the years of Sarah's...

The Curiosity of Lot's Wife

"He overturned these cities and the entire plain, with all the inhabitants of the cities and...

The Era of Torah

"Abram took his wife Sarai and Lot, his brother's son, and all their wealth that they had...

Terach: Completing the Journey

The Torah makes a fleeting mention of Terach in this week's Torah portion. He is most well-known...

Knowing God

There is a huge difference between intellectually knowing that there is a Creator and actually living with that realization on a constant basis.

The Haggadah: The Instruction Manual of Gratitude

There are numerous lessons that can be derived from the Hagaddah. One of them is brought out by...

The Value of the Tabernacle

"These are the reckonings of the Tabernacle, the Tabernacle of Testimony, which was reckoned...

Purim: Keeping Hope

The Gemara tells us that the terrible decree to destroy the Jewish people was a punishment for...

Tu B'Shvat: Appreciating God's World

The first Mishna in the tractate Rosh Hashana informs us of various 'new years'. These are times...

Pharaoh's Daughter: The Rebel

One of the heroic figures who briefly appears in the Torah is Batya, the daughter of Pharaoh. Her...

The Connection Between Shechem, Joseph, Zimri and Korach

Bereishis, 49:5-6: "Simeon and Levi are comrades; their weaponry is a stolen craft. Into...

Judah – Taking Responsibility

Greatness comes to those who embrace responsibility.

Spiritual Kindness

Bereishis, 41:55: "When all the land of Egypt hungered, the people cried out to Pharaoh for...

Tamar and Potiphar's Wife: Making Good Intentions Last

In Vayeshev, the Torah juxtaposes two seemingly unconnected stories. The first is the incident...

Timna and Amalek: The Rejects

The nation of Amalek is well-known as the epitome of evil and enmity towards the Jewish people....

Jacob - The Man of Truth

Jacob is known as being the pillar of Emet, truth, as it states in the Book of Micah, "give...

The Source of Blessing

When famine strikes the Land of Israel, Isaac plans to go to Egypt. However, God instructs him to...

Ephron - Acting on Impulse

In Chayei Sarah we are briefly introduced to the character known as Ephron. His sole 'merit' in...

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