Hadlakat Neyrot: 6.12, Shabbat out at 7.24pm


ELC, 64 Emek Refaim- Rav Berzon at 8, 5.30 shiur followed by seudah shlishit.

Nitzanim – shiur with Rav Shai at 6.10.

Shir Chadash on Emek – Davening at 9.15 followed by kiddush, Shir Chadash regular – New Gan Building, Yaakov Rubin #1- Parsha at 8 followed by kiddush.

Ramban – shiur at 5.30.

Daf HaYomi – Katamon Shteiblech an hr before Shabbat out

Eretz Chemdah – Parsha at 8 followed by davening.

Parsha from Brendan Stern

Ki Tetze – Derech EretzWe are commanded not to accept converts from the nations of Ammon and Moav (Devarim 23:5). Two reasons are given: They did not greet us with food and drink when we passed their region and they hired Bilaam to curse us.

Why does the Torah mention the failure to offer food and drink before the plot to curse (and murder) us – especially considering the fact that Bnei Yisrael had no need for the food and drink as they had the Manna and the well of Miriam accompany them in the desert?

Rav Yaakov Neiman explains that not offering food and drink is mentioned first to teach us that their wickedness in hiring Bilaam did not occur in a vacuum. Failing to greet a travel-weary nation with food and drink constitutes an elementary deficiency in derech eretz. What may seem as nothing more than a lack of politeness can develop into the most severe sins a man can commit.Ammon and Moav specifically should have shown greater derech eretz towards the Jewish people due to the unlimited kindness that Avraham Avinu had demonstrated toward their ancestor Lot.

Ammon and Moav only came into existence in the merit of Avraham Avinu! At a minimum they should have returned the favour by “greeting us with bread and water on the way.”Their lack of hakarat hatov and derech eretz was the precursor to the slippery slope deterioration that led to their hiring of Bilaam to curse the Jewish people.

In Pirkei Avot (3:17), we learn that “if there is no derech eretz, there is no Torah.” Rabbeinu Yonah explains that one who lacks derech eretz is incapable of truly connecting to Torah. In order to transform ourselves into vessels capable of successfully perpetuating Torah we need to first permeate ourselves with derech eretz!

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