One Day. One G-d. One Venture.

MIKETZ – Video Commentary On This Shabbat

Genesis 41:1 – 44:17; G. 7:42-53 & 28:9-15 || Zechariah 2:14 – 4:7; Isaiah 66:1-24

Commentary by Rabbi Chaim Richman for The Temple Institute, Jerusalem, Israel:
«The light that Yosef shed on Pharaoh’s dreams is none other than the light of Chanukah, the hidden light of creation and the light of the Holy Temple. It is the light which comes to shine upon us and upon our world the moment we recognize G-d’s hand in everything»…more:

Shabbat Shalom veChanukah Sameach

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Parashat TOLDOT Video Commentary

Genesis 25:19 – 28:9 || Malachi 1:1 – 2:7

Video Commentary by Rabbi Chaim Richman for The Temple Institute, Jerusalem:

    „Yitzchak avinu (Isaac our patriarch) was a man of vision blinded by the light of G-d’s brilliant and hidden presence. He lived, he died, and he lived again to bless his son Yaakov, ‚ish tam,‘ the perfectible man, with the task of bringing G-d’s light into the world for all to perceive“…more:

Shabbat Shalom

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Parashat TOLDOT Readings and Video Commentary

©  Lencer, Wiki Commons

© Lencer, Wiki Commons

Genesis 25:19–28:9; 1 Samuel 20:18-42

 

Commentary by Rabbi Chaim Richman, The Temple Institute, Jerusalem:

    „Yitzchak avinu (Isaac our patriarch) was a man of vision blinded by the light of G-d’s brilliant and hidden presence. He lived, he died, and he lived again to bless his son Yaakov, ‚ish tam,‘ the perfectible man, with the task of bringing G-d’s light into the world for all to perceive.“ more:


Shabbat Shalom

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Parashat Tetzaveh Readings and Video Commentary

TETZAWEH: Exodus 27:20 – 30:10; Ezekiel 43:10 – 27

Commentary by Rabbi Chaim Richman, The Temple Institute, Jerusalem:
„And you shall command the children of Israel to kindle the lamps continually.“ (Exodus 27:20) The light of the golden menora symbolizes the light of G-d in this world. If so, then why are we instructed to „kindle the lamps?“ By actively lighting the menora, we are making G-ds light our light, as well. In this manner we are able to spread G-ds light to all mankind…

Shabbat Shalom

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Parashat Terumah – Our Temple’s Mission

Exodus 25:1 – 27:19; Isaiah 66:1 – 66:24

Commentary by Rabbi Chaim Richman,
The Temple Institute, Jerusalem:

“Egypt is now behind us – it’s time to get down to business . . .“ G-d says essentially: We’ve been through enough together; after all He says: I created the world for a purpose:
That you should know who I am!
So Israel is commanded to build the tabernacle in the middle of the desert, it’s a spiritual oasis in the midst of a foreboding emptiness . . . later the tabernacle becomes the Holy Temple. The whether we talk about the temporary tabernacle or the permanent Temple on Mount Morjah the message is the same:

    Israel has a job to do, a calling, a mission, and that is to bring the lights of the divine presence by making a house for G-d’s sake, by welcoming Him in, by welcoming Him home.

»And they will build Me a sanctuary and I will dwell amongst them.« (Exodus 25:8) »Build it for ME«, G-d says. For My names sake. I want to dwell amongst man in this world. Such is My desire. G-d is not asking for perfection from mankind. Only for a welcome into this world..“

Shabbat Shalom

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Shabbat TERUMAH – Our Temple’s Mission

Exodus 25:1 – 27:19; Haftarah 1 King 5:26 – 6:13

Commentary by Rabbi Chaim Richman,
The Temple Institute, Jerusalem:

“Egypt is now behind us – it’s time to get down to business . . .“ G-d says essentially: We’ve been through enough together; after all He says: I created the world for a purpose:
That you should know who I am!
So Israel is commanded to build the tabernacle in the middle of the desert, it’s a spiritual oasis in the midst of a foreboding emptiness . . . later the tabernacle becomes the Holy Temple. The whether we talk about the temporary tabernacle or the permanent Temple on Mount Morjah the message is the same:

    Israel has a job to do, a calling, a mission, and that is to bring the lights of the divine presence by making a house for G-d’s sake, by welcoming Him in, by welcoming Him home.

»And they will build Me a sanctuary and I will dwell amongst them.« (Exodus 25:8) »Build it for ME«, G-d says. For My names sake. I want to dwell amongst man in this world. Such is My desire. G-d is not asking for perfection from mankind. Only for a welcome into this world..“

Shabbat Shalom

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Shabbat MIKETZ Hanukkah Readings and Commentary

Hallel
Genesis 41:1 – 44:17; Numbers 7:48-59;
Zechariah 2:14 – 4:7

Abstract of Commentary by Michael Schneider, Jerusalem:
In Chapter 41 we read about Joseph’s divine gift of interpreting dreams, including Pharaoh’s nightmare of the seven healthy cows and seven weak cows, which represented seven prosperous years and seven years of drought and famine.

GSI: On Shabbat Hanukah – this year the Mikez / or Miketz Shabbat within Festival of Lights – the Haftarah reading from Zechariah is inserted, “behold, there is a lampstand of solid gold with a bowl on top of it, and on the stand seven lamps [eight on →Hanukkah – Change the World] with seven pipes to the seven lamps. Two olive trees are by it, one at the right of the bowl and the other at its left:

Now, after two years in prison, Joseph was transferred from the dungeon to the Royal palace. This was out of the ordinary, but that’s the way the LORD works when He intervenes. Just like during Exodus, after hundreds of years in slavery, the Hebrews went from being mistreated slaves to a victorious nation in less than 24 hours.

When Joseph was called he made it clear from the beginning that he was a vessel of the Almighty God of Israel (41:25). Do we give God the credit he deserves or take it for ourselves?

With Joseph’s interpretation, Egypt could prepare for the years of drought and so the ‘abundance became the reserve’ (41:34-36).

Joseph was then given the name ‘Zaphenath-Paneah’, meaning ‘Bread of Life’ in ancient-Egyptian. He saved the entire Egyptian empire. Salvation was found in verse 55: “Go to Joseph; whatever he says to you, you shall do.” Bread today is His Word!

Joseph became a Savior to the Gentiles first and then to the Jews because his brothers rejected him. We read in verse 40, “… Only the throne (of Pharaoh) would be greater than you.” Now when the dream the hated Joseph was telling them came true, his brothers bowed down to him as foreseen. Joseph’s time in Egypt, from the beginning was in God’s hand. Not only from saving Egypt, but also – in the end – his father Jacob (Israel) from death of famine.

Joseph like his father Jacob was separated for more than 20 painful years from his father’s home to accomplish a godly task. This Torah portion teaches us that we need to see things through God’s eyes as part of the ‘big picture’ in his plan of Salvation. Even smuggling money and the ‘goblet of the king’ in the sacks of the brothers and blaming them are sadly still anti-Semitic waves, making the Jewish people the scapegoat.

All things served one goal and purpose and that is drawing them closer to Him and protecting them from assimilation and returning home to the land of their forefathers symbolized by sitting at the table of Joseph. In our Torah portion we learn of Joseph’s second weeping (first was in the ditch) when he ‘lifted his eyes and saw his brother Benjamin, his mother’s son… Joseph hurried out for he was deeply stirred (origin in the Hebrew: overwhelmed with mercies – rahamim) over his brother, and he sought a place to weep; and he entered his chamber and wept there’ (43:29-30).

Shabbat Shalom and Hanukkah Sameach

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Israel’s Mission Shabbat Terumah Readings and Commentary

Exodus 25:1 – 27:19; Haftarah 1 King 5:26 – 6:13

Commentary by Rabbi Chaim Richman,
The Temple Institute, Jerusalem:

“Egypt is now behind us – it’s time to get down to business . . .“ G-d says essentially: We’ve been through enough together; after all He says: I created the world for a purpose:
That you should know who I am!
So Israel is commanded to build the tabernacle in the middle of the desert, it’s a spiritual oasis in the midst of a foreboding emptiness . . . later the tabernacle becomes the Holy Temple. The whether we talk about the temporary tabernacle or the permanent Temple on Mount Morjah the message is the same:

    Israel has a job to do, a calling, a mission, and that is to bring the lights of the divine presence by making a house for G-d’s sake, by welcoming Him in, by welcoming Him home.

»And they will build Me a sanctuary and I will dwell amongst them.« (Exodus 25:8) »Build it for ME«, G-d says. For My names sake. I want to dwell amongst man in this world. Such is My desire. G-d is not asking for perfection from mankind. Only for a welcome into this world..“

Shabbat Shalom

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Hanukkah and Nittel Nacht Shabbat 5772 Miketz

Hallel; Genesis 41:1 – 44:17; Numbers 7:24-29; Zechariah 2:14 – 4:7

Abstract of Commentary by Michael Schneider, Jerusalem:
In Chapter 41 we read about Joseph’s divine gift of interpreting dreams, including Pharaoh’s nightmare of the seven healthy cows and seven weak cows, which represented seven prosperous years and seven years of drought and famine.

GSI: On Shabbat Hanukah – this year the Mikez / or Miketz Shabbat within Festival of Lights – the Haftarah reading from Zechariah is inserted, “behold, there is a lampstand of solid gold with a bowl on top of it, and on the stand seven lamps [eight on →Hanukkah – Change the World] with seven pipes to the seven lamps. Two olive trees are by it, one at the right of the bowl and the other at its left”, this year it falls together with Christmas → Nittel Nacht weekend:

Now, after two years in prison, Joseph was transferred from the dungeon to the Royal palace. This was out of the ordinary, but that’s the way the LORD works when He intervenes. Just like during Exodus, after hundreds of years in slavery, the Hebrews went from being mistreated slaves to a victorious nation in less than 24 hours.

When Joseph was called he made it clear from the beginning that he was a vessel of the Almighty God of Israel (41:25). Do we give God the credit he deserves or take it for ourselves?

With Joseph’s interpretation, Egypt could prepare for the years of drought and so the ‘abundance became the reserve’ (41:34-36).

Joseph was then given the name ‘Zaphenath-Paneah’, meaning ‘Bread of Life’ in ancient-Egyptian. He saved the entire Egyptian empire. Salvation was found in verse 55: “Go to Joseph; whatever he says to you, you shall do.” Bread today is His Word!

Joseph became a Savior to the Gentiles first and then to the Jews because his brothers rejected him. We read in verse 40, “… Only the throne (of Pharaoh) would be greater than you.” Now when the dream the hated Joseph was telling them came true, his brothers bowed down to him as foreseen. Joseph’s time in Egypt, from the beginning was in God’s hand. Not only from saving Egypt, but also – in the end – his father Jacob (Israel) from death of famine.

Joseph like his father Jacob was separated for more than 20 painful years from his father’s home to accomplish a godly task. This Torah portion teaches us that we need to see things through God’s eyes as part of the ‘big picture’ in his plan of Salvation. Even smuggling money and the ‘goblet of the king’ in the sacks of the brothers and blaming them are sadly still anti-Semitic waves, making the Jewish people the scapegoat.

All things served one goal and purpose and that is drawing them closer to Him and protecting them from assimilation and returning home to the land of their forefathers symbolized by sitting at the table of Joseph. In our Torah portion we learn of Joseph’s second weeping (first was in the ditch) when he ‘lifted his eyes and saw his brother Benjamin, his mother’s son… Joseph hurried out for he was deeply stirred (origin in the Hebrew: overwhelmed with mercies – rahamim) over his brother, and he sought a place to weep; and he entered his chamber and wept there’ (43:29-30).

Shabbat Shalom and Hanukkah Sameach

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Hanukkah Lights Across the World

Chanukah News from Across the Globe »
Hanukkiah in Cologne/Germany 2010 »
Download Hanukkah Greeting Card »

 

Once a year
heavenly light will be close to us.

Meant is not the Christ but in a very different way Jesus of whom a Jewish tradition says:
“Now it was the Feast of Dedication [Hebrew: Hanukkah] in Jerusalem, and it was winter. And Jesus walked in the temple, in Solomon’s porch.” (Gospel of John 10:22). To make a long story short, Jesus was a regular rabbi coming from Nazareth who refueled on the Temple Feast of Dedication and was about – like every other rabbi around the globe till the time being – to bring The Light into the world because “I [the LORD] have called You [Israel] in righteousness, and will hold Your hand; I will keep You and give You as a covenant to the people, as a light to the Gentiles, to open blind eyes” (Isaiah 42:6).
Sh’ma Israel:
“The LORD our God, the LORD is one. You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your strength. And these words which I command you today shall be in your heart:”
Change the world, You, who are chosen! Bring My Light to the Gentiles, O Israel! That is what – like Jesus – the Lubavitcher Chassidim today do on Hanukkah on behalf of His Israel in U.S. cities and all over the nations.

It is the Jews who were chosen to open the blind eyes of the Gentiles / nations, not visa versa! Even if the church wants us to do the opposite credible – the decision and love of God, baruch HaShem, is eternal: “I will destroy on this mountain the surface of the covering cast over all people, and the veil that is spread over all nations” (Isaiah 25:7). The victory is Me – not the church. That is the story behind, that a small group of Jews (Maccabees and Jews in total compared to the world and the church) were victorious over the hundred times larger Syrian-Greek conversion heer in 164 BCE (→ Seleucid Empire), but after all in the devastated temple of God in Jerusalem was only a single pot of kosher oil for the eternal light to find. Not more than one day, this amount would have been enough oil, but by a heavenly miracle, the light burned for eight days. Which is precisely the time it took to complete the procedure for obtaining new kosher oil. Since that time celebrated all the faithful believers, religious and non-religious one, these eight days a year as Hanukkah (Hebrew: consecration / dedication), till our Second Temple was destroyed . . . by the Romans!

The same Romans had financed with the spoils of the 66 – 70 CE wars against Israel and the destruction of God’s Temple, the construction of the Colosseum from year 72 on (see German Wikipedia which is obviously not allowed to be translated in the American Wikipedia considering tourism collapse from Overseas might be) and later on founded their new religion against God, His Temple, His People, His Shabbat . . . and not least against the teachings of Jesus. . .

  • Was it Jesus who – as one of His People a model of all mankind – put Satan to flight with the words of the Holy Scriptures (Deut. 6:13): “You shall worship the LORD your God, and HIM ONLY you shall serve.” Rome made Jesus himself, of all warnings to the contrary, the God, their own Lord.
  • Did Jesus warned, „Moses [Torah] and the prophets [Neviim] to hear and obey“ in order not to arrive at „the place of eternal torment“ instead of eternal life (Luke 16:28), then Romans cultured their own scriptures, which they sanctified and in them is to read to this day, that “ therefore, since we have such hope, we use great boldness of speech – unlike Moses, who put a veil over his face so that the children of Israel could not look steadily at the end of what was passing away. But their minds were blinded [instead of that Jews shall open the eyes of the Gentiles – see above]. For until this day the same veil remains unlifted in the reading of the Old Testament, because the veil is taken away in Christ. But even to this day, when Moses is read, a veil lies on their heart. Nevertheless when one turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away. Now the Lord is the Spirit; and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty [such as to murder Israel in Jewish-Roman Wars, Crusades or Luther’s Reichskristallnacht] But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord. “(2 Cor. 3:12 ff).

But Adonai, Adon Olam, remains the same (Isaiah 60), He yesterday . . .
. . . and You One in Him today on Hanukkah? . . .
“Arise, shine; for Your light has come! And the glory of the LORD is risen upon You. For behold, the darkness shall cover the earth, and deep darkness the people; but the LORD will arise over You, and His glory will be seen upon You. The Gentiles shall come to Your light, and kings to the brightness of your rising.”
. . . wherever You are!

Hag Hanukkah Sameach
Eric C. Martienssen

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