No Results Found.

Numbers 28:2
by in
The korban tamid (daily offering) is described as part of the preliminary morning service. This verse is surprisingly hard for us to understand! Does G-d eat? Does He enjoy fragrances? Lacking nothing, does He actually need our sacrifices in any way? (No – the mitzvos were given for our benefit, not for His!) Accordingly, Onkelos […]
Leviticus 6:2
by in
The preliminary morning service describes the burnt offering and the removal of the ashes. All over the Torah, Moshe is instructed to “tell” things to Aharon. Why here is he told to “command” Aharon? Rashi cites the Sifra that the kohanim might need a little extra encouragement to perform this mitzvah. They made their living […]
Exodus 30:19
by in
Part of the preliminary morning service discusses the construction of the kiyor (the laver), from which the Kohanim would wash their hands and feet in the Temple. The Talmud in Zevachim, cited by Rashi, explains that the kohanim washed their hands and feet simultaneously. That is, the kohein placed his right hand on his right […]
Genesis 32:14
by in
In order to secure peace and avoid a conflict, Yaakov was willing to give Esau “that which he had in his hand,” i.e., physical property like gold, jewels and cattle. Rabbi Joseph B. Soloveitchik points out that Yaakov was not, however, willing to negotiate with any of his spiritual possessions. Such things as Torah and […]
Hosea 12:10
by in
Why would we want to go back to living in tents? Rashi explains that this is a reference to our forefather Yaakov, whom the Torah describes as a dweller of tents (Genesis 25:27). This means that, unlike the outdoorsy Esau, Yaakov stayed in the Beis Medrash and studied Torah. Similarly, G-d is telling us through […]
Zephaniah 3:20
by in
This verse is cited in its entirety at the end of the prayer “You are Hashem, our G-d” in the preliminary morning service. The Metzudas David explains that “At that time I will bring you in” refers to the ten “lost” Tribes. They were not restored to the land of Israel during the time of […]
2 Kings 19:15
by in
One might think that the reference the cherubim in King Chizkiyahu’s prayer means actual cherubim in Heaven; the Ralbag clarifies that the reference is to the golden cherubim that were part of the cover of the aron (ark) in the Temple. Chizkiyahu refers to Hashem as “G-d of Israel” – i.e., the One Who guides […]
Isaiah 44:6
by in
This verse is paraphrased in the prayer “You are Hashem, our G-d,” which follows the Shema in the preliminary morning service. The Metzudas David tells us that when G-d says “I am first,” He means to say that He existed before the world was created. By “I am last,” He is telling us that He […]
Genesis 29:35
by in
Rabbi Joseph B. Soloveitchik points out that the names of Leah’s first three sons reflect her attempts to get Yaakov to love her as much as he did Rachel. After three sons, Leah finally got the message that she would never supplant Rachel as Yaakov’s most beloved. Therefore, with the birth of Judah, her names […]
Malachi 1:1
by in
What was G-d’s word doing in Malachi’s hand? To explain this, Rashi quotes a Midrash that the souls of all future prophets stood at Mount Sinai, where they were given their prophecies. They were not, however, permitted to reveal them until their proper time. Therefore, Malachi’s prophecy remained “in his hand” until it was time […]