By February 1, 2019 Read More →

Shabbat Times, Parsha Gems and Hoody Happenings

Times: In at 4.36, out at 5.50. 

As usual, plenty on this Shabbat:

At Ramban, women’s shiur at 3 and Rav Lau at 5.05.

At the ELC (64 Emek Refaim), Rav Berzon at 8am and Seudah Shlishit.

Eretz Chemdah (2 Bruriya), Rabbi Wruble giving the pre-parsha shiur at 8 and Drasha.

Nitzanim, Rav Shai Finklestein after mincha which is at 4.35.

Shir Chadash: 1) Emek Refaim 43, from 9.15 with kiddush after and 2) at Ohel Nechama at 8 with Parsha shiur followed by davening and then kiddush.

Yakar, Parsha and kiddush at 9.30am.

Daf HaYomi an hour before Shabbat out at the Shteiblech.

Parsha gems from Brendan Stern: Mishpatim – Holy People

“You shall be holy people to Me: you must not eat flesh torn by beasts in the field; you shall cast it to the dog[s] (lakelev)” (Shemot 22:30).

The Torah commands us to be holy, yet strangely immediately juxtaposes this with the command to give dead animals to the dogs to eat. Surely there are better ways of being “holy people” than feeding dogs? How do we understand the Torah’s seemingly peculiar prototype of holiness?

The Chizkuni points out that the pasuk reads “lakelev” and not “lekelev” implying that the Torah is referring to a specific dog – namely the dogs which guard your flocks. Since the dogs have worked hard to protect the flocks until now, they have earned the privilege of being fed the flesh of the animals.

If the pasuk is referring to an animal within the flock which has been found killed, then seemingly the watchdog did not do its job well. Had the dog performed to expectations there would not have been a slain animal! Why then does the Torah enjoin us to reward the dog for its failure?

Say the Da’at Zekeinim Miba’alei HaTosafot, the Torah is teaching us a tremendous lesson in Hakarat Hatov (gratitude). Even though instinctively we would like to punish the dog for not doing its job properly, we are instructed to feed it the animal in recognition of the good work the dog has done up until now. The test of Hakarat Hatov is not when one expresses gratitude when things go right but rather when things go wrong! Even when people mess up we need to look at the bigger picture, realising that everyone makes mistakes, and not fall into the trap of ignoring the earlier good the person has done.

This is how we become “holy people”!

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