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Posts by JCC Association

Parashat T’rumah (Exodus 25:1-27:19)

“Exactly as I show you — the pattern of the Tabernacle and the pattern of all its furnishings —so shall you make it.” (Exodus 25:9) Parashat T’rumah is a structural engineer’s delight. It describes in excruciating detail the building of the mishkan, the desert Tabernacle which is the precursor to the Temple in Jerusalem.  Every … Continued

Parshat Mishpatim (Exodus 21:1-24:18)

“Now the presence of the Lord appeared in the sight of the Israelites as a consuming fire on the top of the mountain” (Exodus 24:17)   Pity Parashat Mishpatim.  It has the unenviable task of following the gripping drama of God’s revelation on Mt. Sinai.   And yet, while Mishpatim is mostly a long listing of … Continued

Parashat Yitro (Exodus 18:1-2:23)

  “And as the voice of the shofar grew stronger; Moses spoke and God’s voice answered.” (Exodus 19:19)   Parashat Yitro is the moment we’ve all been waiting for.  The Israelites are gathered around Mt. Sinai, preparing for God’s revelation, the climax of the Torah and the central event in Jewish history.  But then a … Continued

Parashat B’shalach (Exodus 13:17-17:16)

“Who is like you, O Lord, among the celestials; who is like You, majestic in holiness, awesome in splendor, working wonders.” (Exodus 15:11) Parashat B’shalach is one of the better known episodes in the Bible, thanks in part  to Cecille B. DeMille and Disney Studios.  Freed from slavery, the Israelites reach the Reed Sea, only to discover … Continued

Parashat Bo (Exodus 10:1-13:16)

“This month shall mark for you the beginning of the months; it shall be the first of the months of the year for you.” (Exodus 12:2) Parashat Bo brings the final two plagues, darkness and the slaying of the Egyptian first-born, which lead, finally, to the Israelites’ release from slavery.  The parasha (portion) begins with … Continued

Parashat Va’era (Exodus 6:2-9:35)

“And I will take you to be my people, and I will be your God…”  (Exodus 6:7) Parashat Va’era describes Moses’ attempts to get Pharoah to free the Israelites and opens the dramatic sequence of Pharoah’s intransigence in the face of the plagues.   The opening of the parasha (portion)often is  overlooked, which is a shame, … Continued

Parashat Sh’mot (Exodus 1:1-6:1)

“God heard their moaning and God remembered His covenant with Abraham and Isaac and Jacob. “(Exodus 2:24)   Parashat Sh’mot is the first parasha (portion) in the Book of Sh’mot, known in English as Exodus (an abbreviation of the Greek, Exodus Aegyptous.)  It establishes continuity with the end of the Book of Genesis by repeating … Continued

Parashat Vayechi (Genesis 47:28-50:26)

“Jacob lived seventeen years in the land of Egypt, so that the span of Jacob’s life came to one hundred and forty-seven years.”  (Genesis 47:28))   Parashat Vayechi both closes the book of B’reishit (Genesis) and is the last parasha (portion) for 2012.  Three important narrative cycles come together in Vayechi.  The patriarchal cycle and … Continued

Parashat Vayigash (Genesis 44:18-47:27)

“Thus Israel settled in the country of Egypt, in the region of Goshen; they acquired holdings in it, and were fertile and increased greatly.” (Gen. 47:27) Parashat Vayigash describes Joseph’s emotional reconciliation with his brothers who then return to Canaan to bring Jacob and the rest of the family down to Egypt.  Jacob is overjoyed … Continued

Parshat Miketz (Genesis 41:1 – 44:17)

“Joseph answered Pharoah, saying, ‘It is not up to me…’” (Genesis 41:16) Over the course of these few weeks, we are watching the evolution of Joseph from self-centered, arrogant brother, to thoughtful, strategic leader. This week’s parsha (Torah portion) begins with Pharoah’s request for Joseph to interpret his dreams. This is the third set of … Continued

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