Parshat Bo I would have expected the first mitzvah (commandment) of the Torah to be the first of the Ten Commandments - to have faith in one G-d. The Rambam sites this mitzvah first when he lists all the 613 mitzvot and the Vilna Gaon refers to it as the foundation of all the Mitzvot. Perhaps the first mitzvah could have been “Love your neighbor as yourself” which Hillel refers to as a foundational principle of the Torah, or the laws of Shabbat about which the Talmud says, Shabbat observance carries the same weight as observance of the entire Torah. The first..
Our true enemy is not any other religion especially not a monotheistic one. Our true enemy is a harder one to combat for it has infiltrated into the core of our communities. Bo 5775 © Rabbi David Lapin, What the Midrash Means Series - 1:14 _________________________________ The Charlie Hebdo cartoon making fun of Muhammad is nothing compared to Moshe’s attack on the Egyptian deity of his time. G-d instructs Moshe to publicly slaughter large numbers of lambs, the Egyptian god. He is instructed to do so for the very purpose of mocking Egyptian beliefs in the lamb’s supe..
The theme of chameitz, (the leavened bread and other substances prohibited during Pesach) is prominent in our current parshios. In addition to leavened bread the word chameitz, orchometz also means vinegar, a substance that, like wine, is forbidden to a Nazzir (Bamidbar 6:3). Both usages of the wordchameitz describe a food product developed by a fermentation process. It is also interesting that during this fermentation process, if the process were stopped earlier a different product would result. In the case of bread, matza results from stoppin..
Halacha is a discipline of logical, deductive methodology by which we extrapolate G-d's expectations of us in situations not already defined in prior written works. The precision with which we practice this discipline determines the accuracy with which we can know G-d's expectations of us in any given situation. Halacha and History The Torah is a book of halacha (G-d's expectations of His people), not a work of history. As such it ought to have opened with the first formal mitzvah given to the Jewish people in this week's parsha and not with the Creati..