(Haftara: Zecharia 2:14-4:7)
(Pirkay Avot, chapter 1)
1. [9:7] “And those men [who were impure and couldn’t do the first Pesach] said to him, “We are impure…’ “. Whoever is ritually impure or too far away and can’t eat the Passover sacrifice on Passover can do it a month later. This law, however, was only instituted after these people asked for it. Why did God wait for the people to ask before he instituted the law?
2. [11:28-29] “…and he said, “My master, Moshe, destroy them.” When Eldad and Medad have prophecy, Yehoshua suggests that they be destroyed, but Moshe says that he wishes all the people were prophets. What is the difference between Moshe’s ideal of leadership and Yehoshua’s ideal of leadership?
3. [12:2] “And they said, “Has God spoken only with Moshe, hasn’t he also spoken with us?”. Didn’t Miriam and Aharon know that Moshe’s prophecy was so much greater than theirs? What was it about Moshe’s behaviour or about the nature of his prophecy that made them think that they were equal to Moshe in prophecy?
4. [12:2] What is Miriam’s complaint against Moshe and what does it have to do with Moshe’s wife?
5. [Pirkay Avot 1:6] In what situation does one judge someone else to the side of merit? Why? Isn’t it better to judge a person according to the facts—even if it is not to the side of merit? Aren’t we interested in the truth, rather than judging to the side of merit?
“Search for God when He can be found (Yeshaya 55:6)”—the initiative for the search rests entirely with man…The path to God is not a highway, but rather a narrow winding and challenging road.
–R. Y. D. Soloveitchik, 1903-1993, USA.
This study page is dedicated to the memory of Sarah Bella bat Yitzchak Kummer, Chaim Yosef Yechiel ben Eliyahu Kummer and Eliyahu and Margaret Kummer