Rabbi Jack Abramowitz is Torah Content Editor at the Orthodox Union. He is the author of five books, including The Tzniyus Book. His latest work, The Taryag Companion, is available from OU Press as well as on Amazon.
133:13 If a pregnant woman smells a certain food and craves it, and it’s certain that if she is not given some of this food then she and the baby may be in danger, the following procedure applies. If she says, “I must have some” even though her face has not changed color, or if […]
In a bit of a reality check, G-d reminds the Jews that they’re just like everyone else. Rashi explains that we are all descendants of Noah and G-d has redeemed other nations from their enemies as well. The only difference is that He forged a covenant with us.
Some people insert the word “na” (please) in the middle of “behold our affliction” in the seventh bracha of Shemoneh Esrei. Some authorities consider this incorrect because David did not say it that way in Psalms, though other authorities approve of the practice because Yaakov said “na” when asking God to redeem him from his […]
The Baal HaTurim points out that the previous parsha ends by telling us to guard ourselves from various abominations. He explains this juxtaposition as follows: if we guard ourselves from sin, then we will become holy.
The haftarah for Shabbos Chol HaMoed Pesach is the famous prophecy of the “valley of the dry bones” from Ezekiel chapter 37. But was this a prophetic vision or did Ezekiel actually witness a valley of bones being resurrected? In the Talmud (Sanhedrin 92b), Rabbi Eliezer says that the revived dead from this incident actually […]
The seventh bracha of Shemoneh Esrei is called “Geulah” (redemption). Its opening words (“behold our affliction”) are a paraphrase of words used by King David in several Psalms, including this one. The ibn Ezra tells us that in this verse, David is not describing a physical struggle but rather his battle with the yetzer hara […]
Rashi explains why such a Passover was impossible “all the days of the kings of Israel and the kings of Judah.” Jeroboam, the first king of the northern kingdom, set up two golden calves and did not allow his people to go to Jerusalem. Now, after the ten Tribes were exiled, Jeremiah brought back representatives […]
133:11 A husband and wife should not touch one another, not even during the day. Rather, they should distance themselves the entire day of Yom Kippur the way they do when she is a niddah. 133:12 On Yom Kippur, pregnant and nursing women must complete the fast just like everyone else. If a baby is […]
133:9 We may stand on mats and coverings, even of leather. During the Amida we may not stand on anything but one who is finicky may stand on grass. 133:10 Every ill person, even if not dangerously ill, may wear shoes. This is also true of one who has an injured foot and a woman […]
133:7 Anointing is prohibited, even to remove dirt and even if done on just part of one’s body. If a person is ill, even if not dangerously so, he may anoint in his usual fashion. If a person has scabs, since it is not our practice for healthy people to anoint them on weekdays, it […]