Jump to Main ContentJump to Primary Navigation

Behar-Bechukkotai

"I am the LORD your God, who brought you forth out of the land of Egypt, to give you the land of Canaan, to be your God” Leviticus 25.38

    The decision to use an Employment Tribunal to defend an individual’s right to support the state of Israel was described by one legal epic as an “epic folly”. Epic or not, surely the greatest folly was the assumed expertise of Judge Anthony Snelson to rule that an attachment to Israel was “not intrinsically a part of Jewishness”.

    Exposure to this week’s Torah reading might have enlightened the judge with its multiple references to Israel and the special mitzvot like the sabbatical year, which can only be performed in our Land. The message could not be clearer in declaring the centrality of Israel not only in Jewish history but also as a central pillar in our relationship with God.

    The Ramban — in his glosses on Maimonides’s Sefer Hamitzvot — quotes a midrash from Behar stating that anyone leaving Israel for the diaspora is similar to an idolator. This is one of many texts adduced in his famous note which states that the mitzvah of living in Israel applies as fully today as at any other in Jewish history.

    Meanwhile, the furore over the possible enlistment of yeshivah students into the Israeli army became more frenetic. Last week the Satmar Rebbe, Aaron Teitelbaum, declared the current crisis in Israel as “worse” than the Holocaust and invited Israeli yeshivah bachurim to avoid the draft and decamp to New York where they would be the guests of the Satmar community. Perhaps they could invite Judge Snelson along too.

    RELATED STORIES

  • Sidrah

    Toldot

    Rabbi Joseph Dweck

    Thursday, December 1, 2016

    Toldot
  • Sidrah

    Chayei Sarah

    Rabbi Debbie Young Somers

    Thursday, November 24, 2016

    Chayei Sarah
  • Sidrah

    Vayera

    Rabbi Joseph Wolfson

    Thursday, November 17, 2016

    Vayera
Sidrah

Lech Lecha

Rabbi Daniella Kolodny

Thursday, November 10, 2016

Lech Lecha
Sidrah

Chol Hamo'ed

Rabbi Mark Solomon

Friday, October 21, 2016

Chol Hamo'ed
Sidrah

Nitzavim

Rabbi Larry Tabick

Thursday, September 29, 2016

Nitzavim
Sidrah

Noach

Rabbi Dr Benjamin Elton

Thursday, November 3, 2016

Noach
Sidrah

Ha'azinu

Rabbi Daniel Roselaar

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Ha'azinu
Sidrah

Ki Tavo

Maureen Kendler

Thursday, September 22, 2016

Ki Tavo
Sidrah

Bereshit

Rabbi Joseph Dweck

Thursday, October 27, 2016

Bereshit
Sidrah

Vayelech

Dr Lynndy Levin

Thursday, October 6, 2016

Vayelech
Sidrah

Ki Tetzei

Rabbi Mark Solomon

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Ki Tetzei