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A New Order

The story of the scouts is repeated in the Torah portion, revealing a unique trait of Moses. The people decided that they would not be able to conquer the land because of the existence of the giants, and they said: “Because of G-d’s hatred for us, He took us out of Egypt to deliver us to the hands of the ... Read More »

The Daily Olah Sacrifice

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The list in this week’s Torah portion of sacrifices during the different times in the year is precise to the very last detail. We might well wonder why this is so. Two sheep are sacrificed every day in the Temple, one in the early morning and one in the evening. This teaches us about the eternal link between the Children ... Read More »

The Red Heifer and Logic

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The Red Heifer is the instrument through which a person is purified. The impurity of contact with death is the result of an encounter between a living person and death. A stone cannot cause ritual impurity, since it never had any life. Death is the opposite of life, and the shock of contact with it upsets life. The severity of ... Read More »

Good Intentions

The action of the scouts is one of the greatest tragedies that happened to our nation. Five terrible events happened to our ancestors on the ninth of Av, and one of them was that it was decreed that they would not be allowed to enter the Land of Israel. How can it be that ten of the most prominent men ... Read More »

Near and Far

The book of Numbers teaches us how to behave in the desert, when the regular order of things has been disturbed. This week’s Torah portion begins with the problems of an individual who sets aside his normal life. Even though usually the Torah first treats the general situation and then goes to particular cases, in times of crisis it is ... Read More »

At a TIme of Anger, Remember Mercy

(The title is a quote from Habakkuk 3:2.) In both the Torah portions of Behar and Bechukotai we see that history is organized in cycles that are related to the number seven. Every seventh day is Shabbat, every seventh year is Shemitta, and after seven cycles of Shemitta the Yovel (Jubilee) comes. We can also add that redemption will come ... Read More »

A Visitor or a Resident?

“The land cannot be sold permanently, for the land is Mine, for you are visitors and residents with me” [Leviticus 25:23]. The law that prevents permanent sale of the land draws its basis from the essence of the status of man in the world. On one hand, man is a resident of the world as a natural creation – “For ... Read More »

Sanctified for Praise

In an article for Kedoshim 5774, Rabbi Cherki compares the sanctity of nature with the higher level of sanctity that human beings can achieve by incorporating natural products into their own bodies.   Read More »

Going In and Going Out

In an article for Acharei-Mot 5774, Rabbi Cherki notes that there is a danger that when the High Priest enters the holiest part of the Temple he may not want to leave the high spiritual level that he as attained. Read More »