Saturday, 3 September 2016

Parsha: Shoftim, "To King or Not to King"


Canadians will undoubtedly favour the Royalist Position whilst Americans will surely prefer the Republican Position!

The Torah states that: when you [Bnei Yisrael] ask for a KING,  "'I will set a king over me, like all the nations that are round about me" (Devarim: 17:14) you shall surely place one - Even [or especially] when asking to be like the surrounding nations.

Sh'muel [with Hashem's approbation] protests that his people requested a King just like "the Goyim." (Shmuel I 8:5).

Shmuel's protestations all make sense if our Sidrah-Parsha is stating that this royal appointment is optional and subjunctive to a request. In that case, the objection was to the request for appointing a King. Once requested, it must be fulfilled,  according to the law in our Parshah.

However, Rambam Sefer Hamitzvot et. al. states that a king is a requirement.  This implies that the request is also obligatory. Sh'muel's protests then seem difficult to fathom.

I have some answers but I was wondering what you readers might say?

Shalom,

RRW

Shoftim: The False Prophet

From the archives of Nishma's Online Library at http://www.nishma.org/, we have chosen an article that relates to the week's parsha, both to direct you to this dvar Torah but also for the purposes of initiating some discussion.

This week's parsha Shoftim and the topic is the the navi sheker, the false prophet. The issue is not solely the person who lies about speaking in the name of God but the issue is also the message. The issue concerns any distortion of Torah. We invite you to look at an article on this topic at http://www.nishma.org/articles/insight/spark5756-22.html

Sunday, 28 August 2016

Re'eh: To'eva

From the archives of Nishma's Online Library at http://www.nishma.org/, we have chosen an article that relates to the week's parsha, both to direct you to this dvar Torah but also for the purposes of initiating some discussion.

This week's parsha is Re'eh and the topic is the the term to'evah, usually translated as abomination. The term is often used by proponents of different ethical perspectives as a further indication of the significance of their ethical stance. The fact is, though, that the use of this term in the Chumash itself may not actually provide support for such assertions. We invite you to look at an article on this topic at 
http://www.nishma.org/articles/insight/spark5754-27.htm.