Rabbi Wein.com The Voice of Jewish History

Rabbi Wein’s Weekly Blog

NOT ME

The current dispute between Poland and Israel, really between Poland and the Jewish people, highlights one of the great weaknesses of the human character. Even after committing and participating in the worst of atrocities against innocent fellow human beings, the perpetrators rarely have the courage and moral fortitude to acknowledge their actions and attempt to atone for their guilt. The...

Posted in:
In My Opinion
by
Faigie Gilbert

TU B’SHVAT

I think that if all of us stopped and contemplated the growth and success of the state of Israel in our time, we would truly realize that we are living in a miraculous age. Though the miracles are consistent and regular, oftentimes, perhaps even most times, we take them so for granted that the miraculous become mundane. One of the great miracles of the state of Israel is its agricultural...

Posted in:
In My Opinion
by
Rabbi Berel Wein

YITRO

The high point of Jewish spiritual history is achieved in the narrative that is this week’s Torah reading. The revelation at Sinai and the subsequent granting of the Torah to Israel defined the character and mission of the Jewish people throughout its long and eventful history. The basic ideas encompassed in the Ten Commandments have become the foundation of Western civilization. And, even...

Posted in:
Weekly Parsha
by
Faigie Gilbert

BSHALACH

The Pharaoh of Egypt has finally relented and freed the Jewish people from their centuries of slavery and persecution and allowed them to leave his country. Even though he was forced to do so by continuing plagues and disasters that fell upon him and his people, nevertheless freeing the Jewish people was a noble thing that he accomplished. Yet, as is the want of all tyrants and evil people, he...

Posted in:
Weekly Parsha
by
Faigie Gilbert

DEMOCRACY IS MESSY

Even though our wonderful little state is still facing major diplomatic and terrorist persecution and problems, the Israeli public has become so accustomed to them that we hardly take real notice or have undue concern. Currently there really are few major issues that are presented to the public as being overly threatening or very serious. Because of this we here in Israel have reverted to our...

Posted in:
In My Opinion
by
Rabbi Berel Wein

THE INSCRUTABLE FUTURE

Human beings are limited drastically by our inability to forecast and see the future accurately while we are engaged in the present. There is no question that world history would read far differently if only the assumptions of the present could be judged by the realities of the future. In the autumn of 1914 the German army stood at the gates of Paris and the Kaiser believed that his victory was...

Posted in:
In My Opinion
by
Rabbi Berel Wein

BO

As the narrative of the Torah regarding the exodus of the Jewish people from Egyptian slavery reaches its climax in this week’s reading, I feel that it is important for us to concentrate on the verb that the Lord uses so to speak in telling Moshe to once again appear before the Egyptian Pharaoh. The word “bo” in Hebrew means not only to come but it’s more nuanced understanding is to...

Posted in:
Weekly Parsha
by
Faigie Gilbert

IT IS COLD OUTSIDE

The well-known axiom about the weather is that everyone talks about it but there is no one that can do anything about it. So this is an opinion article about the weather without any pretense by the writer to be able to do anything about it. We here in Jerusalem have experienced a number of quite cold days, heavy rains and high winds recently. Of course it is winter here and these things are not...

Posted in:
In My Opinion
by
Rabbi Berel Wein

VAEIRA

Moshe had complained to God that since the Lord had sent him on a mission to the Pharaoh, the situation of the Jewish people had not only not improved but in fact had worsened. Moshe’s view of the matter was that somehow the Lord had not fulfilled the Divine part of the bargain. This opinion was based on Moshe’s human logic and understanding, which, even though Moshe was on such a high level,...

Posted in:
Weekly Parsha
by
Rabbi Berel Wein

IS JERUSALEM STILL IN PLAY?

We have been told time and again over the past 70 years that Jerusalem – its borders and sovereignty – is one of the most contentious issues that will have to be settled before there can be a legitimate peace between Arabs and Jews here in the Land of Israel. In fact, the diplomatic experts have always contended that this issue is so complex that it must be left as the last piece of a...

Posted in:
In My Opinion
by
Faigie Gilbert