Tag Archives: Shabbat

#TieBlog #Vaetchanan #Shabbat Nachamu

8 Aug
The Ten Commandments are read three times a year, including this week.

The Ten Commandments are read three times a year, including this week.

I love my Ten Commandments tie because there are three occasions during the year when I can wear it in connection with a public reading of the Decalogue. They are read in Parashat Yitro, which falls in the winter. They are also read on Shavuot at the beginning of summer. Both of these readings are from Exodus Chapter 20. Parashat Vaetchanan is the one time during the year when we read the version from Deuteronomy Chapter 5. Believe it or not, there some subtle differences. Exodus instructs, “Remember (Zakhor) the Sabbath day….” Deuteronomy instructs “Observe (Shamor) the Sabbath day….” Exodus explains the Sabbath in spiritual terms, invoking God’s initial Sabbath following the creation of the world. Deuteronomy appeals to social justice, reminding the reader that the Israelites were slaves in Egypt and that all human beings and animals that serve them must have a day of rest each week. The Friday night hymn, Lekha Dodi reflects the midrashic view that God gave both versions of the Decalogue in a single utterance. Shabbat, therefore, is simultaneously a time for spiritual renewal and reflection on social justice in the world.

#TieBlog #Vayak’hel

20 Feb
The symbols of Shabbat

The symbols of Shabbat

Most of the last five portions of Exodus concern the construction of the Mishkan (Tabernacle). In the middle of these instructions is the Golden Calf narrative that was read in last week’s portion. Flanking the Golden Calf narrative on either side are instructions for observing Shabbat, the day of rest. Parashat Vayak’hel begins with the second of these expositions of Shabbat in this section. The Torah emphasizes that even the sacred work of constructing the Mishkan, representing a divine dwelling place, must not be done on Shabbat. The construction of the Mishkan must mirror God’s creation of the universe–six days of creation, followed by a day of rest. For a fuller exploration of the significance of the text’s juxtaposition of Shabbat and the construction of the Mishkan, read this week’s JTS Commentary by Dr. Eitan Fishbane. In the meantime, I will enjoy Shabbat with my Shabbat tie.

#TieBlog #Vaetchanan

18 Jul

image

I love my Ten Commandments tie because there are three occasions during the year when I can wear it in connection with a public reading of the Decalogue. They are read in Parashat Yitro, which falls in the winter. They are also read on Shavuot at the beginning of summer. Both of these readings are from Exodus Chapter 20. Parashat Vaetchanan is the one time during the year when we read the version from Deuteronomy Chapter 5. Believe it or not, there some subtle differences. Exodus instructs, “Remember (Zakhor) the Sabbath day….” Deuteronomy instructs “Observe (Shamor) the Sabbath day….” Exodus explains the Sabbath in spiritual terms, invoking God’s initial Sabbath following the creation of the world. Deuteronomy appeals to social justice, reminding the reader that the Israelites were slaves in Egypt and that all human beings and animals that serve them must have a day of rest each week. The Friday night hymn, Lekha Dodi reflects the midrashic view that God gave both versions of the Decalogue in a single utterance. Shabbat, therefore, is simultaneously a time for spiritual renewal and reflection on social justice in the world.