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Parshas Shoftim - Brother from Another Mother

This week's parsha discusses a wide range of topics. Among them are the unique laws of eidim zomemim, the false, plotting witnesses who are given the exact...

   
 

Listen: 3 1/2 minutes with Rabbi Godberger, yahrzeit of Rabbi Daniel Goldberger, Z'L (Audio)

Baltimore, MD - Aug. 17, 2018  - 3 1/2 minutes with Rabbi Godberger, yahrzeit of Rabbi Daniel Goldberger, Z'L ...

   
 

Parshas Shoftim - A Fish Out of Water

There are numerous places in the Torah where Chazal derive significant lessons from the placement of one Mitvzah or historical event directly opposite or next t...

   
 

Parashas Shoftim and My Search for Hashem

Parashas Shoftim contains a passage which was important in my religious development.  My parents had maintained conservative synagogue affiliation.  ...

   
 

Parshas Shoftim - We Are EASILY Influenced

In this week's parshah, the Torah tells us that someone who serves an idol is punished by public stoning. Interestingly, the pasuk states that the witnesse...

   
 

Parshas Shoftim - Life Is Not Fair!

After the Torah details the obligation to appoint judges and officers to administrate justice in all the cities throughout the land, exhorting these officials t...

   
 

Definite Signs that Moshiach is Very Close

The sha’ilos I’ve received  are hair-raising, shocking and sad. The Yetzer Hara is out of control.  Yidden from every ba...

   
 

Parshas Shoftim - A Man Alone, and in Community

“Repent, Harlequin!” said the Ticktockman… So, begins a short story by science fiction writer Harlan Ellison.   In it, the character of the Har...

   
 

Parshas Shofitm - Look Into the Crystal Ball, or Not

 Black Cats:   We all know them. Black cats, broken mirrors, stepping on the cracks in sidewalks, rabbit’s feet and four leaf clovers. I’m ta...

   
 

Sukkos in The Bais HaMikdosh

Posuk chof aleph in Perek Tes Zayin in Chumash Devarim tells us that one may not plant a tree next to the Mizbeach of Ha...

   
 

Updated - Can a Sheitel be Prohibited Because of Avodah Zarah?

A Background Discussion of the Halachic Issues Involved in the Use of Indian Hair By Rabbi Yirmiyohu Kaganoff I wrote this article originally several years a...

   
 

Parshas Re'eh - A Friend In Need? Be A Friend In Deed

This week's parsha presents the contradiction of the following two pesukim. First we are told (15:4) that with the proper fulfillment of the laws of shemit...

   
 

Parshas Re'eh - The Holiest Place in the World

Har Hamoriya, Har Habayis, Makom Hamikdash, the point from which the Earth was formed, this special place on our planet has a recorded history dating back thous...

   
 

The Double-Header Haftarah

Directly due to the interesting circumstances of this week, Parshas Re’eh / Shabbos Rosh Chodesh Elul, an unusual occurrence will transpire in a fortnight on ...

   
 

Parshas Re'eh - Why Do We Learn Torah?

Why do Jews learn Torah? Furthermore, why do we learn Gemara which discusses many opinions that we do not even practice in law? One answer lies in our Parshah,...

   
 

Parshas Re'eh - Listening Equals Blessing

[Ed. Note] Out of the respect and recognition of the impact made by longtime BJL friend and contributor, Reb Shaya Gross, z’l, we will maintain a living memor...

   
 

Parshas Re'eh - Hit ‘Em in the Kishkes!

שמור ושמעת..., Safeguard and listen..., Moshe exhorts. The order seems incorrect. Shouldn’t one first hear specifically what it is that they must pre...

   
 

Parshas Re'eh - Light, Alternative Medicine, Tears and Faith

1) Darkness and Light Ramban (11:29) opens with a discussion of Har Girizim and Har Eivel. The Torah never tells us which side they were on, which is on the ri...

   
 

Listen to Rabbi Moshe Hauer - Parshas Re'eh - Clear & Mysterious Mountains- First Aliyah (Audio)

Baltimore, MD - Aug. 8, 2018 - Parshas Re'eh contains the explicit locations of Har Grizim and Har Evel, where Bnei Yisroel w...

   
 

Parshas Re'eh - To Stand Alone; Have Iphones Caused Us To Fail In Our Responsibility To Make Our Children Independent Beings?

A father is obligated to do the following for his son: to circumcise him, to redeem him if he is a first born, to teach him Torah, to find him a wife, and to te...

   
 

The Torah of Rav Yehosef Schwartz

Since this parsha, Re’eih, discusses the different species of kosher animals, a topic that will be included in this article, it provides an opportunity to lea...

   
 

Parshas Eikev - It's Not Your Doing

Parshas Eikev falls between the two places in the Torah where we are warned of the calamities which would befall Klal Yisroel if they turned away from Hashem.&n...

   
 

Parshas Eikev - Wealth

In this week's parshah, the Torah warns us not to forget Hashem in our pursuit of wealth, nor when we achieve it. After describing a future where the Jewis...

   
 

Parshas Eikev - Alien Rights

Although the Torah asserts in several places Hashem’s love for His people collectively and for the Patriarchs, there is but one individual to whom Hashem proc...

   
 

Parshas Eikev - Keeping the Inspiration & Reflections from the Kosel

[Ed. Note] Out of the respect and recognition of the impact made by longtime BJL friend and contributor, Reb Shaya Gross, z’l, we will maintain a living memor...

   
 

Parshas Eikev - Rachmanus, Rachmanus… Rodef Rachmanus!

Rabbi Soloveitchik does not mince words, “The experience of Egyptian servitude underlies the very morality of the Jew.”  The import of what he asserts ...

   
 

Parshas Va'eschanan: Constant Reminders

Today, the 15th of Av, marks the yahrtzeit of my Opa, Mr. George Jakobovits. This week's shtikle is dedicated le'iluy nishmas...

   
 

Tu B'Av and the Secret to Good Marriage

Tu B’Av is a day which many people associate with weddings, and for good reason. While the Gemara provides a whole list of events that happened to the Jewish ...

   
 

Parshas Vaeschanan: How Good Do We Have It

Much has been written about the relatively minor differences between the Aseres Hadibros given by Hashem in Parshas Yisro and those repeated in this weeks Parsh...

   
 

Parshas Vaeschanan: Expand Your Universe

There will come a time, the Torah foretells, when we will become stale in our devotion to Hashem, and ‘Hashem will scatter you among the peoples, and you will...

   
 

Parshas Vaeschanan: Judaism - Beyond A Shadow Of A Doubt

When describing the monumental event of the giving of the Torah at Har Sinai, this week’s Parshah makes a point to repeatedly state, after every detail, the w...

   
 

Disney Announces Plan To Eliminate Plastic Straws, Stirrers

Orlando, FL - The Walt Disney Co. has announced it will stop using single-use plastic straws and plastic stirrers at all of its locations. Disney officials sai...

   
 

Parshas Vaeschanan - Seeing Hashem, E”Y and Yirah and Ahavah

1) Hashem’s Name in This World We know that Moshe Rabbeinu was pining to go into Eretz Yisrael, and davened very hard to Hashem to allow him to enter Eretz Y...

   
 

Parshas VaEschanan - Contemplate Before Pouncing

[Ed. Note] Out of the respect and recognition of the impact made by longtime BJL friend and contributor, Reb Shaya Gross, z’l, we will maintain a living memor...

   
 

Parshas VaEtchanan: If At First...

It is not your responsibility to finish the work [of perfecting the world], but you are not free to desist from it either – - Rabbi Tarfon, Pirkei Avot 2:16 ...

   
 

Parshas Devarim - Healthy Musar vs. Destructive Criticism

Sefer Devarim encapsulates many of the events which transpired earlier in Sefer’s Shemos, Vayikra and Bamidbar.  Parshas Devarim in particular chronicles...

   
 

Parshas Devarim Chazon / Tish'ah B'Av

In a shiur on the haggadah earlier this year I heard an interesting perspective on vehi she'amdah. Part of the retribution meted out upon those who seek to...

   
 

Parshas Devarim - Blowing Our Cover

Moshe reviews how previously he was overwhelmed with his judicial duties and had requested men of stature, good character and wisdom to assist him in administer...

   
 

Listen to Rabbi Moshe Hauer - Parshas Devarim - Netziv on the Parsha (Audio)

Baltimore, MD - July 20, 2018 - Listen to Rabbi Moshe Hauer - Parshas Devarim - Netziv on the Parsha To listen, click here...

   
 

Parshas Devarim - Relating to the Sin of The Spies

As the Jewish nation stood at the threshold of entering Eretz Yisroel, Moshe Rabbeinu took the opportunity to remind the Jewish nation of the sin of the Spies, ...

   
 

Parshas Devarim - Moshe’s Lessons of Life and Leadership

1) Why Didn’t Moshe Review Toras Kohanim? Ramban opens with an introduction to each sefer. We will discuss some opening comments here. Devarim is called Mish...

   
 

Parshas Devarim - Let Us Approach with Care

So, Moshe went and returned to Jethro, his father in law, and said to him, “Let me now go back to my brethren who are in Egypt, and see if they are still aliv...

   
 

Listen to Rabbi Moshe Hauer - The Three Weeks Parts I, II & III (3 Audios)

Baltimore, MD - July 17, 2018:Parshas Pinchas - Pinchas and the Broken Luchos- The Three Weeks Part 1: Hashem knew that in order for the Jewish people to surviv...

   
 

Netanyahu Uploads Clip Of Trump Saying Putin Is ‘Bibi Fan’

Jerusalem - Russian President Vladimir Putin is both a “believer in Israel” and a “fan of Bibi,” US President Donald Trump said Monday evening, using Pr...

   
 

Parshas Matos/Maasei - A Passing Phase - Le'iluy nishmas, Mrs. Michelle Jakobovits, Rochel Mirel bas Shmuel HaLevi

As if the Three Weeks and Nine Days were not sad enough, this week, my cousin, Mrs. Michelle Jakobovits, passed away here in Baltimore. This week's shtikle...

   
 

What to Know for the 9 Days

Baltimore, MD - July 13, 2018 - This 60-page document was prepared by Agudath Israel of Illinois – Midwest Agudas Yisroel Council of Synagogue Rabbonim...

   
 

Parshas Matos/Maasei - Understand the Truth of Hashem

The parsha begins with the topic of nedarim and shevuos. There are various reasons why it is placed here. A shevuoh is a statement which mentions the Shem Hashe...

   
 

Listen to Rabbi Moshe Hauer - Netziv on the Parsha - Mattos Massei (Audio)

Baltimore, MD - July 13, 2018 - Listen to Rabbi Moshe Hauer - Netziv on the Parsha - Mattos Massei Click here to listen...

   
 

Parshas Matos/Massei - A Light Unto The Nations

In Parshas Balak, Balak and Bila’am decided to attack the Jewish nation. After their attempts to curse the Jewish nation failed, they convinced the nation of ...

   
 

Parshas Matos/Massei - Barking Up the Wrong Tree

The tribes of Gad and Reuven appeal to Moshe to receive their share of the ‘land’ in Transjordan. Surprisingly there is no resistance to the basic notion of...

   
 

Parshas Mattos - The Three Prongs

Parshas Mattos provides us with some valuable insights into the concepts of responsibility, Hakaras Hatov and the merits of being part of a Tzibbur.  After...

   
 

Masei and The Journey of Our Lives

It is good to have an end to journey toward; but it is the journey that matters, in the end. - Ernest Hemingway  Imagine yourself on a commuter train.&nb...

   
 

Parshas Pinechas - A Gentleman and a Scholar

In this week's parsha, Moshe asks of HaShem to find a suitable replacement to take over the leadership of B'nei Yisrael after he passes away. Moshe su...

   
 

Parshas Pinchas - I Am My Brother's Keeper

When the B’nos Tzlafchad approach Moshe Rabbeinu, they are intent on pointing out that their father was not part of Korach’s rebellion.  Rather, they r...

   
 

Parshas Pinchas - The Three Weeks: "Impending Disaster"

This week begins the three weeks between shivah asar b’Tammuz and Tisha b’Av. The haftoros of these three weeks are ones that prophecy impending disaster—...

   
 

Parshas Pinchas - Where Do You Stand?

We read this week the details regarding the daily communal sacrifices that are to be brought in the Temple as well the additional sacrifices that are offered on...

   
 

Parshas Pinchas - Balancing Our Midos

[Ed. Note] Out of the respect and recognition of the impact made by longtime BJL friend and contributor, Reb Shaya Gross, z’l, we will maintain a living memor...

   
 

Parshas Pinchas - True Strength

At the conclusion of last week’s parshah, Bila’am recommended to Balak a last resort to harm the Jewish nation: entice them to sin with the Midianite women ...

   
 

Parshas Pinchas - Its Not Always What You Say...

There are many places in the Torah where we see the effect of different types of behavior.  Anger inevitably leads to mistakes, kindness can have positive ...

   
 

Parshas Pinchas - The Present Rests Upon The Past, The Future, Upon The Present

If I have seen further, it is by standing on the shoulders of giants… - Sir Isaac Newton “The daughters of Zelophehad, son of Hepher, son of Gilead, son o...

   
 

Listen to Rabbi Moshe Hauer - Pinchas - Identity of Feeling - 1st Aliyah (Audio)

Baltimore, MD - July 2, 2018 - When Pinchas was sensitive to the tremendous chilul Hashem (desecration of G-d's name), it removed Hashem's a...

   
 

Parshas Balak - Fit for a King??

This past Thursday, 15 Tammuz, was the yahrzeit of my wife's grandmother, Mrs. Shirley Yeres, Chaya Sheindel bas Alexander HaLevi. The previous ...

   
 

Parshas Balak - Who is Really Pro Choice

In Parshas Balak, the Torah describes for us in graphic detail, one of the most colorful stories in the Chamishei Chumshei Torah, that of Bilham and his donkey ...

   
 

Shaving And Haircuts During The Three Weeks

 Question #1: Bushy presenter “My company sent me out of town to meet a new client, and I forgot to have my hair cut before Shiva Asar BeTamuz. May I ha...

   
 

Parshas Balak - Taking Personal Blame [A Note of Thanks to HKBH]

A note from Rabbi Baruch Gross: I just want to take this opportunity to thank Hashem for the all the nissim that He does for us on a constant basis and especi...

   
 

Parshas Balak - Enjoy But Remember

Parshas Bolok is a confusing parsha. Bilaam is an enigma. Without Chazal, we would think Bilaam was some doddering magician who has some kind of pow...

   
 

Parshas Balak - Stop To Smell The Roses

When Bila’am was traveling on his donkey to curse the Jewish nation, Hashem sent His angel of mercy to stop him (22:22). Despite his donkey refusing to move a...

   
 

Parshas Balak - The Age of BilaamThe Power and (Ir)relevancy of Politics

I have always found this week's parsha very intriguing, as it is one of the only places in the Torah where we see politics at play in “real time.” The ...

   
 

Parshas Balak - The Right Man in the Right Place

Hashem initially refuses to allow Bilaam to accede to Balak’s request that he curse the Jewish nation. Despite Balak’s incessant promises to shower him with...

   
 

Parshas Balak - Freewill, Influence and Seeing a Star

1) Bilam Vs. God’s Will? Ramban (22:20) tackles a classical question. There are three pesukim, and they sort-of seem to contradict each other, and need to be...

   
 

Parshas Balak - The Age of Bilaam

From the beginning of time, half-truths, lies and falsehoods have been used effectively to soften, weaken and, ultimately, bring down nations.  Such a stra...