Baltimore, MD - June 10, 2022 - The Baltimore community suffered an immeasurable loss.  A beloved Rebbe, pashut Rav, and the embodiment of an Ohev Yisroel in human form,  returned to the Yeshiva Shel Maaleh on Tes Sivan, TSh”PB . Rabbi Peretz Dinovitz, zt”l, master mechanech and  what I call a Rebbe’s Rebbe will be sorely missed by scores of people.  Having taught 3d grade for 30 years, and quite proud of his “job,” Rabbi Dinovitz saw the beauty in each and every talmid.  Listening at the Levaya today to all the stories  from some of...
President Biden on Thursday ruled out the possibility of commuting the sentence of his son Hunter Biden after a jury delivered a guilty verdict this week on three charges related to the purchase of a gun in 2018. Biden was asked by a reporter whether he would commute his son’s sentence while leaving the stage at the end of a press conference at the Group of Seven summit alongside Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, to which Biden responded: “No.” It came a day after administration officials were asked a similar question aboard Air Force One on the way to the summit in Italy, appearing not to entirely rule out the possibility. “I haven’t spoken to the president about this since the verdict came out, and as we all know, the s...
A senior Hezbollah official was eliminated in a strike in the village of Jennata in southern Lebanon's Tyre District Thursday night, Saudi news sources Al-Arabiya and Al-Hadath reported. Other than the Hezbollah official, another person was killed and at least 14 were wounded in the strike, which was attributed to Israel, according to multiple reports. Al-Hadath reported that those wounded were evacuated to nearby hospitals, and that the injured were in buildings adjacent to the building that was targeted. The official was killed in a southern command base of the terrorist organization, Maariv reported. The two-story building collapsed and was completely destroyed. Missile was reportedly launched from the sea It was also reported in Lebanon that the ...
A recent poll conducted by the Palestinian Center for Policy and Survey Research reveals that more than eight months into the war in Gaza, 73 percent of Palestinians support Hamas' decision to launch the October 7 attacks on Israel.  The support is somewhat lower among Gazans, with 57 percent expressing approval. The survey indicates a notable increase in satisfaction with Hamas and its leader, Yahya Sinwar, compared to a similar poll conducted three months ago. Hamas remains the most supported political party among Palestinians, while support for Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas has dwindled to 12 percent. The poll highlights the severe impact of the ongoing conflict on Palestinian families, with 4 in 5 respondents reporting that a family member has been either ...
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, today (Thursday, 13 June 2024), visited the special anti-terrorism unit base, together with National Security Minister Itamar Ben-Gvir. At the start of the visit, they spoke with the forum of commanders who took action and commanded the forces of the special anti-terrorism unit and the ISA during the operation to rescue the hostages from Hamas captivity, with the commander of the special anti-terrorism unit first and foremost. Special anti-terrorism unit commander H briefed Prime Minister Netanyahu and National Security Minister Ben-Gvir on the stages of the operation and the cooperation between IDF and ISA fighters. They then held an additional dialogue with the command staff. Israel Police Inspector General Yaakov Shabtai, the Prime Minister's Mi...
Benny Gantz, leader of the National Unity party, has indicated that Israel is aware of the fate of the Bibas family, who have been held hostage in Gaza since the October 7 Hamas-led attack.  In an interview with Kan 11, Gantz responded affirmatively when asked if Israel knows the fate of Shiri, Yarden, Ariel, and Kfir Bibas, though he refrained from providing specific details at this time. “I think yes,” Gantz stated, adding that the public would be informed of their fate “when things come to fruition.” The Bibas family, consisting of 9-month-old Kfir, 4-year-old Ariel, 32-year-old mother Shiri, and 34-year-old father Yarden, were abducted from the Nir Oz kibbutz during the deadly attack by the Palestinian Islamist terrorist organization Hamas. The youngest...
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Former President Donald Trump has endorsed Larry Hogan for Senate, he told a Fox correspondent Thursday. According to the correspondent, Hogan stood on his stance when it comes to how he feels about the former president. “Governor Hogan has been clear he is not supporting Donald Trump just as he didn’t in 2016 and 2020.” The endorsement comes after Hogan released a statement in the end of May regarding Trump's trial, telling Maryland to "respect the verdict." "At this dangerously divided moment in our history, all leaders—regardless of party—must not pour fuel on the fire with more toxic partisanship. We must reaffirm what has made this nation great: the rule of law," said Hogan. Historically, Hogan and Trump have not always seen eye to eye...
Baltimore, MD - June 13, 2024  - Fleet week is back in Baltimore. The free event will be full of ships, flights, festivals and sailors. To get updates pertaining to Fleet Week download the Fleet Week MD app or visit here.Raising a red flag in the Inner Harbor, but not why you might think. The 179-foot long ship called the USS Constellation is prepped and ready for Fleet Week. "Fleet Week is a biannual celebration of Maryland’s waterways. The Port of Baltimore brings in fleets from our Navy and visiting ships and it's a time to celebrate,” said Steve Bountress, the Executive Director of Historic Ships in Baltimore. Bountress said this week is important for all who work around the Inner Harbor. "This is huge for the City of Baltimore, and the state of...
A growing chorus of House Democrats say they’re planning to steer clear of next month’s speech by Benjamin Netanyahu before a joint meeting of Congress, arguing that the Israeli prime minister’s handling of the Hamas war — and his repeated snubbing of President Biden’s preferred approach to the conflict — demand a show of protest from liberals on Capitol Hill.  Some Democrats had foreshadowed the boycott earlier in the year amid speculation that Speaker Mike Johnson (R-La.) was poised to invite Netanyahu to the Capitol to push back against Democratic criticisms of the conservative Israeli leader. With the invitation now official, and the speech set for July 24, more and more progressive Democrats are emerging with a formal ...
Finance Minister Bezalel Smotrich has ordered the Tax Authority to deduct a sum of 130 million NIS from monies transferred to the Palestinian Authority, and transfer the funds instead to 28 families of terror victims. Speaking to Israel National News - Arutz Sheva on Thursday morning, Smotrich said that the move is historically just. "Following court rulings and from the funds which were deducted, which are sums which were transferred to prisoners who were involved in terror and to their families, this week I signed an order to transfer millions of shekels to the families of terror victims," he explained. "The Palestinian Authority continues to tell the world that it is on the verge of collapse and continues paying the families of terrorists and transferring money fo...
Parsha Hashavua
Shavuos 5784 - The Not-So-Innocent Question

The midrash (Mechilta Yisro 5, Sifrei V’zos HaBerachah 343) recounts the events that preceded matan Torah. HaShem offered the Torah to the other nations before offering it to B’nei Yisrael. When He approached the descendants of Eisav, they asked, “What is written in it?” HaShem responded “Thou shall not murder.” The offer was subsequently rejected as they were unable to commit to that provision for Eisav ultimately lives by the sword. When the sons of Ammon and Mo’av were approached and were told that the Torah included a prohibition against illicit relations, they rejected the offer for the very source of Ammon and Mo’av was the incestual relationship between Lot and his daughters. The Yishmaelites were given the same offer. When they asked what such a commitment would entail, they were told that it would be forbidden to steal. Thievery being the essence of the descendants of Yishmael, they were unable to commit to follow the Torah. The Midrash states that there was not one nation that was not offered the Torah but no one would accept it. When B’nei Yisrael were approached they all declared in unison “na’aseh v’nishma,” we will do and we will listen.


R’ Yaakov Weinberg, zt”l, asks a very simple question on this midrash. Why was the sample law given to each nation one that contradicted their very existence and thus, certain to lead to rejection? Why were they not given a taste of the Torah that was more likely to please them? R’ Weinberg answers that HaShem’s actual response to the nations was of little relevance. The very moment that they asked what is written in the Torah, they disqualified themselves from receiving it. By making their acceptance of the Torah contingent upon their approval of its contents, the nations showed a lack of commitment which is incongruous with a Torah nation. Torah must be at the forefront while society is built around it. When the nations asked their seemingly innocent question, they showed that they were not prepared to give up their ideals for Torah. HaShem, therefore, answered them in such a way that showed them that Torah was not for them.


The response of B’nei Yisrael was the exact opposite. They did not flinch. They did not vacillate. They accepted the Torah with true faith and showed no concern for their own agendas. This is why their response is so vital to the process of matan Torah. With this understanding, we ourselves have the opportunity to reach the level of “na’aseh v’nishma” in our own way. By subordinating ourselves to the values of the Torah, we show, like our ancestors did, that we are ready to commit unequivocally to a life of Torah. If we set our standards in accordance with the Torah, not allowing them to be tainted by the contrary influences of society, we are, indeed, showing our true devotion to the word of HaShem, much like our forefathers did at the foot of Har Sinai when they accepted the Torah.


I recently heard an intriguing question which might perhaps spur some discussion over the Shavuos table:  Suppose the Jews had responded first inquiring what was written in it. What might the response have been?


Have a chag samei'ach!

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Baltimore, MD – June 11, 2024  -  BJL wishes a hearty Mazel Tov to Mr. and Mrs. Shragi Rabinowitz on the birth of a son. יה"ר שיזכו לגדל בנם לתורה, לחופה, ולמעשים טובים. אמן!
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The midrash (Mechilta Yisro 5, Sifrei V’zos HaBerachah 343) recounts the events that preceded matan Torah. HaShem offered the Torah to the other nations before offering it to B’nei Yisrael. When He approached the descendants of Eisav, they asked, “What is written in it?” HaShem responded “Thou shall not murder.” The offer was subsequently rejected as they were unable to commit to that provision for Eisav ultimately lives by the sword. When the sons of Ammon and Mo’av were approached and were told that the Torah included a prohibition against illicit relations, they rejected the offer for the very source of Ammon and Mo’av was the incestual relationship between Lot and his daughters. The Yishmaelites were given the same off...
Baltimore, MD – June 11, 2024  - It is with regret that Baltimore Jewish Life (BJL) informs the community of the petira of  R’ Berish Meth, z’l, husband of Mrs. Shifra Meth, and father of Sarah Ney, Reuven (Debra) Meth, Chalavna (Malky) Meth and Uri (Devorah) Meth.Shiva will be observed until 5:30PM today, erev Yom Tov, at 6507 Deancroft Road, Baltimore,, MD, 21209Reuven is not in Baltimore. Mincha at 5:30PMShiva will conclude with the start of Yom Tov Bila Hamaves LaNetzach...
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Hamas has given Qatari and Egyptian mediators its official response to the proposal for a hostage and ceasefire deal, Barak Ravid of Axios reported on Tuesday, citing two sources with knowledge of the issue. Senior Hamas official Osama Hamdan later told Al Mayadeen that Hamas' response included several comments on the proposal, which was recently outlined by US President Joe Biden. He said Hamas is committed to what it said before, which is the demand for a ceasefire and the withdrawal of Israeli forces from Gaza. Hamas and Islamic Jihad said in a joint statement, "A joint delegation of Hamas and Islamic Jihad delivered tonight the answer of the resistance factions to the Qataris during a meeting with the Prime Minister of Qatar. The answer was also de...
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Baltimore, MD -  June 11, 2024  - On Sunday June 9th, the Yeshiva hosted its annual national Yarchei Kallah on campus.  The sugya d’kalla was Geirus. Those who attended in person or viewed the sessions via livestream enjoyed hearing from Moreinu Rosh Hayeshiva Harav Aharon Feldman, Menahel Ruchani Harav Beryl Weisbord, Menahel Harav Boruch Neuberger, Harav Dovid Rosenbaum as well as Rabbi Duvi Rubin. Talmidim returned to campus and filled the beis medrash with their kol haTorah as we prepared together for the upcoming Yom Tov of Shavuos and Kabolas HaTorah. Seeing so many fellow talmidim come back and learn in Yeshiva was truly special. Once again communities outside of Baltimore set up ”satellite” locations to participate in this year’s Yarchei Kal...
Baltimore, MD - June 11, 2024  - Rabbi Tuvia Tessler's first grade Yeshivas Toras Simcha students built shtenders for shavuos with their rebbe's help.  Each shtender has a picture of the student learning chumash.  Rabbi Tessler told each student to take home his shtender for yom tov and use it to learn Torah over Shavuos.
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Baltimore, MD – June 11 2024 -  BJL wishes a hearty Mazel Tov to Kasriel Yavne & Miriam Rosenberg on their engagement. Mazel Tov to Rabbi Shlomo & Sarah Yavne and Chaim & Sora Rochel Rosenberg יה"ר שיזכו לבנות בית נאמן בישראל. אמן!
Baltimore, MD - June 11, 2024 - Click on the graphic below for a printable version
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