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Rabbi Jack Abramowitz

Rabbi Jack Abramowitz

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.

Isaiah 1:1

July 16, 2014, by

The Talmud (Megillah 10b) tells us that Isaiah’s father, Amotz, was the brother of King Amatziah. This made Isaiah first cousins with Uziyahu, who was king when Isaiah became a prophet. The ibn Ezra explains that this is why Isaiah was not subject to the constant persecutions that Jeremiah suffered: he was protected as a […]

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Psalms 145:14

July 16, 2014, by

Ashrei is repeated at the end of the morning service. An alphabetic acrostic, the Psalm is missing a verse beginning with the Hebrew letter Nun. The Talmud in Brachos (4b) explains that it was omitted because it is the first letter of nfl, meaning to fall, as in Amos 5:2, “Fallen, never to arise is […]

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Eicha 5:21

July 16, 2014, by

This verse is recited as the ark is closed. It comes from the end of the book of Eicha (Lamentations), which is read on Tisha b’Av. The ibn Ezra explains exactly where we wish to be restored: to Jerusalem, so that we may once again serve G-d as we did before the Temple was destroyed.

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Proverbs 3:18

July 16, 2014, by

This verse is recited as the Torah is replaced in the ark. The Metzudas David understands the second part to mean “fortunate are the ones who safeguard the Torah,” i.e., by taking preventive measures in order to stay far from transgression.

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Deuteronomy 1:1

July 16, 2014, by

The book of Devarim is also known as “Mishneh Torah,” generally taken to mean “the repetition of the law” (from which the name “Deuteronomy” is derived). While many mitzvos are repeated throughout the book, many are not – and many mitzvos are introduced for the first time in this book! Rabbi Menachem Leibtag of the […]

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1,033. Pre-Wedding Repentance

July 11, 2014, by

146:3 On the days when the bride and groom don’t fast, they must be careful not to have too much food or drink. They should certainly avoid alcohol because some authorities say that the reason they fast is out of concern that they may become intoxicated and not have full control of their faculties. 146:4 […]

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1,032. Fasting Before the Wedding

July 11, 2014, by

146:1 The practice is for a groom and bride (even a widower and a widow – Mishnah Brurah 573:8) to fast on their wedding day because on this day they are forgiven for their sins. At mincha, they say “Aneinu” as on other fasts. (If they already drank from the cup at the chupah, they […]

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1,031. When Siblings Are Both Getting Married

July 11, 2014, by

145:25 The Sages said that a person should marry off his children close to puberty because if they are left unmarried, they will come to inappropriate behavior and thoughts. Regarding this, Job 5:24 says, “you shall visit your habitation and not sin.” Similarly, the Sages said that if a man sees that his wife isn’t […]

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1,030. Who Not to Marry

July 11, 2014, by

145:23 If a woman was divorced because she behaved in an immodest fashion, it would not be appropriate for a proper man to marry her. 145:24 If a woman is bad-natured, always involved in controversy and not modest like Jewish women should be, then it’s a mitzvah to divorce her even if it’s the first […]

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1,029. An Alleged Affair

July 11, 2014, by

145:21 When it comes to women whom we may not marry, one may not even live in the same street as them. 145:22 If one heard that his wife had been unfaithful, even if the matter is not obvious to him, he must consult with a Torah authority regarding whether he may continue living with […]

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