Tuesday, July 11th is Shiv`a Asar b`Tamuz

Tuesday, July 11th is Shiv`a Asar b`Tamuz
website:
www.ttidbits.com
his thoughts
wla
'e wxt :zea`
1236
e"dl
f"ryz'd
fenz c"i
July 7-8 '17
OU Israel Center • 22 Keren HaYesod • POB 37015 • Jerusalem • (02) 560-9100
Tuesday, July 11th is Shiv'a Asar b'Tamuz
See page 2 (Word of the Month), page 37 (main schedule), and page 60
for details of our shiurim and Mincha/Maariv timing on that day
aŸwÀ r«£©In«¦ akFM
¹̈ Kx¸©C̈...
...l ¥̀½ x¨U¦
§ In¦ Æh¤aW¥ ¸ mw§
¬e
fi:ck xacna
054-844-1131 • www.yehoshuawiseman.com
JERUSALEM in/out times for Shabbat Parshat BALAK
4 7:13PM Earliest: 6:20PM • %32 8:30PM Rabbeinu Tam: 9:05PM
Your shul not getting enough TTs? Too many? None at all? 0505-772-111 or [email protected]
Above phone number & email for distribution only. For advertising, see page 3 for details
Pix
ParshaP
PPexplanations on p. 52-53
and at www.ttidbits.com
click on the PPx link
SHIV'A ASAR B'TAMUZ is Tuesday, July 11th.
Fast begins at 4:16am (J'lem) and ends at 8:18pm. Adjust for other locations.
Mishna Taanit 4:6 - Five [tragic] events befell our fathers on the 17th of
Tamuz, (and five on the ninth of Av). On the 17th of Tamuz, the Tablets were
broken (in the aftermath of the golden calf). The daily Tamid-offering was
discontinued (no lambs available because of the siege), a breach was made
in the city wall, and Apostumos burned the Torah, and an idol was placed in
the Beit HaMikdash [by Menashe, King of Judah (first Mikdash) - one
opinion; other opinion, by the same Apostumos (second Mikdash)].
Candles Plag
BALAK
Havdala
Pinchas
Yerushalayim / Maale Adumim
7:13
8:30
6:22
Aza area (Netivot, S'deirot, et al)
7:29
8:31 7:27 6:21 8:29
Beit Shemesh / RBS
7:28 6:21
8:31 7:27 6:20 8:28
GushEtzion
7:28 6:20
8:30 7:26 6:19 8:27
7:30 6:22 Raanana / Tel Mond / Herzliya / Kfar Saba 8:33 7:28 6:21 8:30
Modi'in / Chashmona'im
7:29 6:21
8:31 7:27 6:20 8:29
Netanya
7:30 6:23
8:33 7:28 6:21 8:30
Be'er Sheva / Otniel
7:26 6:21
8:30 7:24 6:20 8:28
Rehovot
7:29 6:22
8:32 7:28 6:21 8:29
Petach Tikva
7:13 6:22
8:32 7:11 6:21 8:30
Ginot Shomron
7:29 6:21
8:32 7:27 6:20 8:29
Haifa / Zichron
7:21 6:23
8:34 7:19 6:22 8:31
Gush Shiloh
7:28 6:20
8:31 7:26 6:19 8:28
Tel Aviv / Giv’at Sh’muel
7:30 6:22
8:33 7:28 6:21 8:30
Giv'at Ze'ev
7:28 6:20
8:30 7:26 6:19 8:28
Chevron / Kiryat Arba
7:27 6:20
8:30 7:26 6:19 8:27
Ashkelon
7:30 6:22
8:32 7:28 6:21 8:30
Yad Binyamin
7:29 6:22
8:32 7:27 6:20 8:29
Tzfat / Bik'at HaYarden
7:20 6:21
8:33 7:18 6:20 8:30
Rabbeinu Tam (J'lem) - 9:05pm • next week - 9:03pm
6:20
7:11 6:19 8:27
The 95/9 Sedra - Vital Lessons
Parshat Balak has none of the 613
mitzvot in it. It is pure story. And that
is how we must see the sedra... and
learn from it. The sedra is 104 p'sukim
long, divid- ing unevenly into a very
long, 95-pasuk parsha and a 9-pasuk
parsha following.
The first part is the well-known story
of Balak and Bil'am and their
repeatedly unsuccessful attempts to
curse the people of Israel. It reads
almost like a comical farce, with
Balak's invitation to Bil'am, Bil'am's
refusal to go, then a 'well maybe',
then a fancier invatation, another
refusal, maybe, and acceptance - with
a warning that he (Bil'am) cannot say
anything that G-d will not allow. Then
comes the donkey scene - oops,
should I go back? No, here's some
rope to hang yourself, go and
remember that G-d will tell you what
to say. Then Balak and Bil'am seem to
ignore or pretend it isn't so about
Bil'am's not being able to say anything on his own. But it is so, and it is
proven three times. Mission failure!
Let it not escape us that we, the
Jewish People, were totally oblivious
to the episodes related in these first
95 p'sukim of the sedra. Unlike just
about all the rest of the Torah to
which the people were witness, the
Balak-Bil'am episode would not be
known to us had G-d not included it
in the Torah. Ande since He did, we
must pay attention.
If G-d is on our side, no one can hurt
us. Sometimes, we fight along side
G-d, so to speak, and sometimes He
takes care of everything.
Should we develop an army to
protect ourselves? Definitely. We
should not rely upon miracles, yet be
very appreciative when we get them.
From both Balak and Bil'am we see
that the quality and greatness of the
Jewish People is recognized by outsiders, when we sometimes cannot
see ourselves for what we are.
Then come that last 9 p'sukim of the
sedra. Our enemies figured out how
to fight us without raising a sword.
Just get G-d angry with us enough for
Him to smite us. And so it was with
the orgiastic worship of Pe'or. Limited
to only 24,000 casualties because of
Pinchas's zealous act to preserve G-d's
honor.
If we turn our backs to G-d, if we
betray Him, if we don't keep His Torah
and Mitzvot - we are lost. (And if we
are not lost under those conditions, it
is only thanks to Chasdei HaShem,
G-d's kindness to His people.)
Even when things are bad for the
Jewish People, the act of a single
person can sometimes turn things
around - just one person!
The sedra might not have any mitzvot
to teach us, but it is packed with
lessons from G-d.
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 4
BALAK 5777
Balak
40th of 54 sedras;
7th of 10 in Bamidbar
Written on 177.8 lines (ranks 35th)
2 Parshiyot; 1 closed, 1 open
There are 2 one-parsha sedras
(Vayeitzei, Mikeitz), and then this one,
on the fewest parshiyot in a sedra list
104 p'sukim - rank 34 (8th Bamidbar)
1455 words - ranks 33 (8th Bamidbar)
5357 letters - rank 35 (8th Bamidbar)
Balak is close to average for the
Torah's sedras but is on the small side
for Bamidbar
No mitzvot in Balak. One of 17 sedras
without mitzvot.
The shloshim of
our beloved
Judith Preminger d"r
who was an avid reader of TT,
falls on this Shabbat
fenz c"i
We'd appreciate if
TT readers
could learn or do a mitzva
l'ilui nishmatah
Bula Yehudit bat R' Menachem
jexa dxkf idi
Family Preminger
[P> X:Y (Z)] and [S > X:Y (Z)] indicate
start o f a parsha p'tucha o r s'tuma. X:Y
is Perek:Pasuk o f the beginning o f the
parsha; (Z) is the number o f p'sukim in
the parsha.
Kohen - First Aliya
11 p'sukim - 22:2-12
[S> 22:2 (95!)] Balak was a weaker
king than his neighbors in the region.
The defeat of the others (OG and
SICHON) instilled fear in Balak's
heart, and he realized that waging a
“conventional” war against the
Israelites would be futile. His plan
(following research of the matter without access to Google!) was to
enlist Bil'am to curse the People of
Israel. To this end, Balak sends a
delegation to Bil'am in Midyan. Bil'am
invites the envoys to spend the night so
that he (Bil'am) can be spoken to by
G-d. G-d does "appear" to Bil'am and
asks him who these people are. Bil'am
tells G-d and He warns Bil'am not to
go with the delegation, nor to curse the
people, because "they are blessed".
How come Balak, a sworn
enemy of Israel, rates having a sedra
named after him? Commentaries
suggest that Balak was an "honest
enemy" of Israel. His antagonism was
based on his fear of Israel; his intentions
and actions were clear-cut. We have
been plagued by many enemies
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 5
BALAK 5777
throughout history who have hidden
behind a smile, a mask of friendship, or
a hand-shake and photo-op only to try
to stab us in the back (or worse). It's
"nice" when an enemy is "up front"
about it.
Commentaries point out that
Moav and Midyan were bitter enemies.
Nonetheless, they put their differences
aside and united to fight against Israel.
This shows the power of anti-Semitism
in this world. See what our enemies are
ready to do because they hate us so
much.
BUT IT ALSO must teach us another
lesson. We too must be prepared to set
aside that which divides the Jewish
People into fragments, so that we can
fight our common enemy with greater
strength. This is not to suggest that we
must ignore, overlook, or forgive these
differences. But we have to know when
we should put our religious-secular
battles "on hold", in order to be united
against the enemies of the Jewish
People. We must all work together Ashkenazim & S'faradim, National
Religious and Haredi, one chasidic sect
and another, one faction within a
chasidic sect and the other faction, left
and right, religious and secular, to
strengthen our position against those
who would harm us, take parts of Eretz
Yisrael from us, divide our capital... et al.
Rashi quotes a Midrash that
explains why G-d asked Bil'am "who are
these men with you?", when He first
appeared to him at night. This, says
Rashi, was to give Bil'am the false
impression that there are times when
G-d doesn't know something and
needs to ask. Bil'am would then be
hopeful that during one of those Divine
"lapses", he would be able to "bless" the
Jews, even though G-d told him that he
shouldn't. The Guardian of Israel has no
lapses!
Levi - Second Aliya
8 p'sukim - 22:13-20
In the morning, Bil'am (reluctantly)
dispatches Balak's emissaries with his
message of refusal. Balak sends a
larger and more prestigious delegation
to Bil'am, with offers of great honor
and wealth if Bil'am would only agree
to Balak's request. Bil'am again
refuses, but does invite the new
delegation to spend the night. This
time G-d permits Bil'am to accompany the Moabites, but warns him not
to do anything other than what G-d
Condolences to the family of
Rabbi Macy Gordon l"f
milyexie oeiv ila` x`y jeza mkz` mgpi mewnd
The Levaya is/was Wednesday afternoon
Contact Alan Gordon for
Shiva information 054-957-1306
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 6
BALAK 5777
tells him. (Commentaries draw from
this the notion: "In the direction a
person is inclined, there he is lead".
Also like, "giving him enough rope to
hang himself with".)
Why was Bil'am to be punished
for going with Balak's delegation, when
G-d permitted him to go? Sort of told
him to go. Certainly, a person is held
accountable for violations of G-d's
commands, but are we also responsible
for things which are not specifically
prohibited, although it is reasonable to
assume that G-d does not want us to do
them?
The answer is YES. This is one of the
concepts we actually derive from the
episode of Bil'am. The Torah gives us a
very good idea of what HaShem wants
of us. Many sins are spelled out very
clearly - in fact, there is a notion of "one
will not be punished unless expressly
warned"; yet we are warned that G-d
will be angry, so to speak, if we do
things that we (should) know are
contrary to His wishes.
This is something that exists in human
relationships too. Parents, for example,
expect children to behave a certain
way, even without being specifically
told. We are not programmed robots;
we are human beings with the ability to
GAV HAHAR
MOVERS
Beit El
Homes • Offices • Lifts
Packing Services and Storage
References available
(02) 997-8757 • 052-607-1171
Mazel Tov to
Marvin & Tirtza Jotkowitz
and family
upon the engagement of
their grandson
Ari Greenberg to Goldy Scharf
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 7
BALAK 5777
reason. And G-d (and our parents remember the Gemara in Kiddushin
that teaches us that there are three
partners in the human being - G-d, his
father and his mother) wants us to
make the right decision in areas He left
“open”, so to speak.
In the straight reading of the Chumash,
it seems that Bil'am is truly a man of
G-d who only wants to do what G-d
wants him to do. Tradition describes
him differently, as one who knows that
he is totally in G-d's control but tries to
fight it at every step of the way. He is
identified as Bil'am HaRasha. What a
blow to Bil'am's ego to be thought of so
highly among people, yet to know that
G-d is in charge and he (Bil'am) cannot
act independently.
Shlishi - Third Aliya
18 p'sukim - 22:21-38
Bil'am arises early in the morning,
saddles his donkey (by himself), and
goes with the Moav officers. (The
implication in the pasuk is that Bil'am
went with a great deal of enthusiasm
to "hopefully" curse the People of
Israel. Contrast this with Avraham's
enthusiasm on his way to fulfill G-d’s
command of the Akeida.) G-d is
"angry" with Bil'am for going (even
though He permitted it) and sends an
angel in an attempt to dissuade him
from continuing. The Torah recounts
that on three separate occasions symbolically,
it
happened
in
increasingly narrower passages - the
donkey sees the angel blocking the
way, but Bil'am does not. Bil'am
strikes the donkey each time, until G-d
gives the power of speech to the
donkey, who admonishes Bil'am for
his actions. Then G-d permits Bil'am
to see the angel and Bil'am
acknowledges his sin. He offers to
return, but the angel allows him to
proceed, with the warning not to say
anything "unauthorized".
In Pirkei Avot we are taught that
the "mouth of the donkey" was one
of ten special items that G-d
created in the instant before He
rested from further creation on the
very first Shabbat. One of the
lessons from this concept is SOF
MA'ASEH B'MACHSHAVA T'CHILA,
what happens in the end was in
G-d's thought at the beginning. We
should not think that the "mouth of
the Earth" that swallowed Korach
& Co. or the talking donkey, or
No'ach's rainbow, et al, were
"after-thoughts" of G-d. No such
thing.
Balak goes out to greet Bil'am, who
"warns" Balak that he is powerless to
act on his own and must say only what
G-d "puts in his mouth". (This is the
significance of the "mouth of the
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 8
BALAK 5777
donkey" - viz. that it is G-d Who
grants the gift of speech; one should
not be arrogant about his ability to
speak well. In the words of the
beautiful prayer of the Shali’ach
Tzibur on Rosh HaShana and Yom
Kippur, OCHILA LAKEIL, the
human being thinks thoughts in his
heart, but from G-d comes the ability
to express them with his mouth and
lips... or the lack of the ability.)
SWORD-WORDS The favored
weapon of the nations of the world is
the sword. The "weapon" of Israel is
"the power of speech" (prayer, divrei
Torah, kind words, etc.). Bil'am
arrogantly lays "his weapon" aside and
attempts to harm the People of Israel
with their (our) weapon. G-d, so to
speak, went against Bil'am with his
abandoned weapon - the angel's drawn
sword. And ultimately, the Torah tells
us, Bil'am fell by the sword. - Rashi
R'vi'i - Fourth Aliya
15 p'sukim - 22:39-23:12
Balak makes sacrifices on the
occasion, and Bil'am orders seven
altars to be built for the special
offerings. (All that is done is highly
Mazal Tov to
Rabbi Aaron & Pearl Borow
and family
on the engagement of their
granddaughter Gili, daughter of
Ephraim & Yedida Borow
to Yisrael, son of
Rabbi Yonatan & Shifra Blass
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 9
BALAK 5777
significant - e.g. the Torah records that
our three Patriarchs offered seven
korbanot at various times. Bil'am
hoped to "neutralize" the effect of
those sacrifices in G-d's eyes by
repeatedly offering seven sacrifices of
his own.)
After meditation, Bil'am "speaks"
about the People of Israel. He does not
curse them, but rather beautifully
describes the uniqueness of Israel.
Balak is upset, but Bil'am reminds him
that he (Bil'am) can only transmit that
which G-d wants him to.
If we are unique among the nations of
the world, it is because of the Torah
and our commitment to it, not
something genetic, nor a mere accident
of birth. We must preserve that
uniqueness by remaining true to Torah,
faithful to HaShem, and distinct from
the other nations. And, as Bil’am
pointed out, our uniqueness depends
upon being different from the other
nations (not wanting to be just like
everyone else.) We are different when
we are different. And that is what we
are supposed to be.
Chamishi 5th Aliya
14 p'sukim - 23:13-26
Balak takes Bil'am to a different
Condolences to
Jonathan Spector and family
on the passing of his
MOTHER d"r
milyexie oeiv ila` x`y jeza mkz` mgpi mewnd
Shiva in South Africa
vantage point, in the hopes that he will
be able to curse the People this time.
Once again, seven altars are built and
sacrifices offered. Once again, Bil'am
meditates and then utters magnificent
descriptions of the Nation of Israel.
Balak says his piece and Bil'am again
explains his restrictions. (Difficult for
someone who is considered the
quintessence of arrogance.)
Rashi says that Balak chose Rosh
HaPisga as a place from where Bil'am
might succeed in cursing the people,
because he foresaw that Moshe would
die there. Rashi says that Balak knew
this about the place but Bil'am didn’t that Balak was a more gifted prophet.
Twice we find, And Bil'am said to Balak,
build for me "with this" seven altars and
prepare for me "with this" seven bulls
and seven rams (23:1 and 29). With this,
BA'ZEH. We are taught that all the
prophets of Israel prophesy with KOH
(as in KO AMAR HASHEM), except
Moshe, who prophesies with ZEH.
Bil'am felt that he was on Moshe's level
and kept throwing around the ZEH. G-d
says to Bil'am, go back to Balak, and
thus - KOH - you shall speak. Enough
with the pretension to ZEH; you say
We will mark the 3rd yahrzeit
of our dear husband, father,
grandfather and great-grandfather
Joe Sondhelm l"f
on FRI July 14th, 20 Tammuz
We will meet at the parking lot past
Beit HaHesped in Har HaMenuchot
at 10:00am
The Sondhelm and Lipschultz families
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 10
BALAK 5777
KOH. Bil'am gets the message and
switches to KOH when he speaks to
Balak.
Shishi - Sixth Aliya
17 p'sukim - 23:27-24:13
Balak suggests yet a different vantage
point from which to observe Israel;
maybe G-d will permit them to be
cursed. Bil'am again asks for seven
altars to be built, and a bull and a ram
to be offered on each. This time,
Bil'am does not meditate in his usual
manner, expecting similar results,
namely that blessings will emerge from
him - and he really wants to curse
Israel.
Balak takes Bil'am to Rosh
HaP'or. Having seen in a vision that
Israel will soon fall at P'or, Balak
assumes that the cursing from there
would be successful (Rashi).
Targum Onkeles indicates that Bil'am
was "reminding" G-d of the Golden
Calf, so that He would allow the
People to be cursed. However, when
he saw the multitude encamped in
such a special manner, he was
endowed with "Ruach HaKodesh" and
he blessed the People of Israel a third
time. Balak had "had enough", spoke
harshly to Bil'am, and "sent him
packing".
We quote the words that emerged from
Bil’am’s mouth - MA TOVU... Sometimes
it takes a non-Jew’s observation for us
to appreciate something we might not
see.
Sh'VII Seventh Aliya
21 p'sukim - 24:14-25:9
Before Bil'am takes leave of Balak,
Bil'am prophesies about the other
nations in the region... which was, in
Mazal Tov to
Dr. Danny & Sara Berelowitz
and
Dr. Edward & Glenda Harow
on the birth of a
GRANDSON
son of Rabbi Ashi & Aliza Harow
Mazal Tov to the Berelowitz,
Harow & Sterman Families
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 11
BALAK 5777
different words, a prophecy that each
nation shall eventually perish, as will
those who will bring about the earlier
nations’ destruction.
[P> 25:1 (9)] Bil'am's final advice, his
attempts to curse the People having
failed, is to entice the People to
idolatry and immoral behavior which
will turn G-d Himself against them.
This plan works, as 24,000 perish in a
plague following the immoral and
idolatrous worship of Baal Pe'or. Only
the bold action of Pinchas b. Elazar b.
Aharon HaKohen in defending G-d's
honor, stops the devastating plague.
This final lesson of the sedra
must be learned well by us today. What
Balak and Bil'am discovered is that if
Israel is in G-d's favor, it will be
invincible from outside attack. No
nation can succeed against Israel, when
we are "on good terms" with G-d. That
includes attacks by the sword or by
words... If we, however, incur G-d's
anger, by being unfaithful to Him, by
disregarding Torah and mitzvot, then
we are extremely vulnerable to our
enemies. And they might not even
have to actually fight against us (as in
terror attacks) - we can, G-d forbid,
destroy ourselves (as with road
a
ELAZAR
GUSH ETZION
3½ rooms • Large Balcony
Possibility for building second story
1,350,000å
Phone: 052-552-0083
accidents, and more). This was true
more than 3000 years ago; it is no less
true today.
On a certain level, Parshat Balak is
extremely simple and straight- forward,
with an extremely powerful message because of that simplicity. For 95
p'sukim, we feel the protection of G-d
as Balak and Bil'am fail time and again
in what almost looks like a comical
farce. The Gemara says that Bil'am was
in some ways superior to Moshe
Rabeinu, that when he was around, G-d
Himself was extra vigilant - so to speak in protecting us. For those 95 p'sukim,
we beam with pride at the grudging
admiration of a unique nation as
expressed by Bil'am.
And then come the last 9 p'sukim of the
sedra. Bil'am went back home. So did
Balak. No danger anymore. WHAM! We
did it to ourselves. G-d protected us
from Bil'am by giving him his words. By
not letting him speak on his own. And
then we turned around and betrayed
G-d. 24,000 fatalities. And the toll
would have been greater, except for
the bold action of Pinchas. The sedra is
shouting its message to us. All we have
to do is listen to it.
Last 3 p'sukim are reread for Maftir.
Note that the Pinchas episode is
interrupted by the break between
ISRAEL CHAUFFEUR SERVICE
Nationwide up to 8-seater transport
24/6 • Good Rates & Excellent Care
Call Tuvia 058-630-2777
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 12
BALAK 5777
sedras. Zimri and Kozbi are not
identified yet, G-d's reaction comes
next week. Just for now - the plague
stopped! The swiftness with which the
plague struck is matched by the swift
action of Pinchas. For now, that’s the
point. More next week.
Haftara 17 p'sukim
Micha 5:6-6:8
Micha's prophecies include the stateof-affairs that finds Israel dispersed
among the nations of the world, the
promise of the end of war and
restoration of Israel to its Land, and
the "settling of accounts" between G-d
and the other nations, and G-d and
Israel. This portion contains a
reference to the advice of Balak and
Bil'am's response to it - thus the
appropriate choice of this portion as
the haftara for Parshat Balak.
Note the "credit" to Balak for the
advice that caused the failing of Israel
as opposed to the implication from the
Torah that it was Bil'am's idea.
Note the reference to the leaders of the
People as Moshe, Aharon, and
MIRIAM.
The haftara ends with the famous
encapsulation of our responsibilities to
Mazal Tov to
Alan & Geela Gordon
and family
on birth of a GRANDSON
born to
Yonaton & Peninna Gordon
Most Exquisite Properties in Jerusalem!
• UNIQUE CORNER PLOT - BAKA 540m plot,
private house with permits to build 3 flats or a private
huge villa - 770m to build + parkings + basement
• BALFOUR STREET - Full of charm, 250m
apartment on one level, 3 balconies, succah,
high ceilings in an authentic building, parking
(possibility to add 110m to it)
• SHAI AGNON - BEAUTIFUL RESIDENCE garden duplex, 6 bedrooms, 100m garden,
all renovated, private gym and lobby in the building,
private parking
• PENTHOUSE ON NILI STREET - 180m, succah
terrace, panoramic Jerusalem views, private
elevator, private parking, lots of potential
• OLD KATAMON - Prestigious 240m on one level,
new building, large succah balcony, parking, storage,
private elevator, delightful finishes, architectural
design!
• MAMILLA - Magnificent 300m on one level,
60m terrace facing Old City views, finished at top
standard, storage, parking
• OLD CITY - One of a kind property facing the Kotel
views! Totally renovated at the best standards, 5
bedrooms, private entrance.
FORSERIOUS BUYERS ONLY!
• MANSION in GERMAN COLONY - quiet lane,
stand-alone house of 750m with huge garden and
greenery. Full of charm, quiet, lot of privacy,
magnificent! FOR SERIOUS BUYERS ONLY!
• RECHAVIA - Ben Maimon St - Amazing 350m
garden apt with 450m private registered garden,
parking, FOR SERIOUS BUYERS ONLY!
T&T Investments & Real Estate
02-674-4000 • 054-480-4767
King David 26 cor. Washington 2
www.real-estate-jerusalem.co.il
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 13
BALAK 5777
G-d: "What does G-d demand of us,
ONLY to behave justly, love chesed,
and walk modestly (humbly) before
G-d."
This is the formula for the greatest
protection we can have from the
Balaks and Bil'ams of the world. And
its disregard makes us terribly
vulnerable to them. What a contrast
between the end of the sedra and the
end of the haftara! Again, we have the
simple but powerful point.
This is how we are supposed to behave
(from the haftara). This is how we
behaved... and what happened to us
(from the sedra).
Lessons from the Torah and from the
haftara - as there also should be. We
just have to learn them.
more basic, connection between the
parsha and the Torah reading. In that
vein, I share with you the approach of
Rav Menachem Liebtag in analyzing
the lesson found in this haftara and
the events we read of in the parsha.
The closing words of this week's
haftara are among the most familiar in
all of Tanach. The navi Micha's
statement that Hashem demands no
more of you than ASOT MISHPAT
V'AHAVAT CHESED V'HATZNEI'A LECHET
IM ELOKECHA, "to do justice, love
kindness and walk modestly with
Hashem", is better understood when
seen as part of the basic message
imparted to the nation at that time.
Rabbi Liebtag sees the navi's message
as a condemnation of the people's
false security, of their misplaced
confidence in G-d's help, relying, as
they did, on their sacrificial practices.
The nation, misled by the false idea of
This week's haftara reading, taken
from Sefer Micha, would appear to
have little in common with our Torah
reading beyond the mention of how
Hashem saved Israel from the designs
of Bil'am, from his attempts to curse
B'nei Yisra'el. And, perhaps, we might
be satisfied with that connection
alone. Certainly, that comment is
significant enough to remind us of the
events in the parsha. One may well
argue that other haftarot have even
less connection to the events of their
parasha. Nonetheless, it behooves us
to try and find a deeper, perhaps even
Y H A H B D
C A I A H P R
Y M P T N I
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 14
BALAK 5777
the ancients, might regard G-d as Man,
r"l, believing that, just as they could
placate man with gifts and bribery so
they could win G-d over through
bribery and false flattery, through
sacrifice and insincere prayer. Micha
recalls the actions of Bil'am who saw
G-d precisely as he regarded Man. He
goes on a mission against Hashem's
will, thinking he would be able to
"convince" G-d; he offers sacrifices and
rituals just as Balak did for him upon
his arrival to Moav.
Micha teaches that G-d does not
behave like Man, but that, rather, Man
must behave like G-d, emulating His
kindness, His justice and His humility.
Rabbi Liebtag adds that this message
is especially pertinent for this Shabbat
as we stand before "The Three Weeks"
and the two fasts, Shiv'a Asar B'Tamuz
and Tish'a b'Av. The message left for
us by the navi reminds us that fasting
is but a step toward repentance - not a
replacement for it. Our t'filot must call
us to return to Hashem, and our
mourning during these weeks should
make us remember how leaving G-d's
ways led us into war, suffering and
exile.
With Hashem's help, we have returned
to our land; we now must help
ourselves and complete our return to
G-d.
Probing the Prophets, weekly insights into the
Haftara, is written by Rabbi Nachman (Neil) Winkler,
author of Bringing the Prophets to Life (Gefen Publ.)
Eretz Yisrael in the Haftara
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 15
see pages 46-48
BALAK 5777
:Fcï« A§ gnŸ
© x­ gT¦
¬©I©e ...
When Pinchas saw the idolatrous and orgiastic behavior of some Israelite men with
women of Moav and Midyan - and specifically, one leader of a tribe who defiantly
'took' a Midyanite woman (princess, as we find out in next week's sedra) in front of
Moshe and the people of Israel - he armed himself with a ROMACH, a spear.
As we know, he defended G-d's honor by killing Zimri and Kozbi with that ROMACH.
On a REMEZ level, Pinchas armed himself with the REISH-MEM-CHET mitzvot of the
Torah, namely the mitzvot asei, the positive mitzvot. In othe4r words, the Torah
justified his action.
And what was Zimri's violation? The prohibition V'LO TITCHATEIN BAM at the end of
Va'etchanan, includes intermarriage and even having relations with a non-Jewish
women. When this is done in public, it consti- tutes a Chilul HaShem which adds to
the offense and results in KANA'IM POG-IN BO, which is learned from Pinchas's
action and G-d's stamp of approval in next week's sedra.
Rabbi Zev Frank made an astonishing discovery. Not only was Pinchas arming
himself with a spear, and not only with the Torah backing him, as symbolized by the
248 positive mitvot, but he also was arming himself with the mitzva of V'LO
TITCHATEIN BAM, the Torah's prohibition number 248!
(Checked and double checked in Sefer HaChinuch)
FOR SALE
Double storey du-mishpachti for sale in Yad Binyamin
5 room plus salon; centrally located
established backyard including pergola/sukkah
Call Dina on 0544-978-133
Grapes of
bricks
Onions of
his horse
Status
Nachi Reality 054-461-3943
• Great Deal! 2 rooms, 35 meters in Old Katamon on Bustani street.
Private apartment for people 60+. Handicap access. 840,000NIS
• Just finished, Brand new apartment in Baka. 3 rooms. Mirpeset, 2 full bathrooms,
One floor up, handicap access with S habbat Elevator, Parking and S torage room. 2.39m NIS
• For Rent. 4 rooms in Old Katamon. One flight up. Parking. 5190NIS per month
• For Rent. 2 rooms in new bldg in Baka, Parking, S habbat Elevator, 4100NIS per mo
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 16
BALAK 5777
mgpn ixac
Divrei Menachem
[email protected]
Yes, Bilaam is a superstar in a heathen
world. He has the spiritual potential to
utilize evil and his malevolent nature to conjure up curses on the people of Israel. Yes,
there was no prophet who arose in Israel
like Moshe - but among the other nations?
Indeed, our sages even compared Bilaam
with Avraham Avinu (Rashi, Bamidbar 22:21).
In our Parsha we read of the erratic
negotiations between Bilaam and the then
king of Mo'av. Balak, who hired the wicked
soothsayer to taunt the Jewish nation.
Finally, Bilaam is on his way to initiate his
dastardly mission when, all of a sudden, the
Torah narrative tells of an altercation
between Bilaam and his she-ass of longstanding. What, however, does that story
have to do with the main plot?
R. Shlomo Aviner explains: The contest
between Bilaam and the donkey was a
microcosm of the upcoming confrontation of
Moav with Israel. Bilaam accuses his faithful
but lowly donkey of misbehavior and
threatens her. Then the mouth of the
she-ass miraculously opens with the retort:
"What have I ever done to hurt you that you
should harm me?"
When Bilaam is faced with this moral dictum
he is left speechless. Moreover, now
confronted with the angel of G-d, the
arch-charmer and Jew-hater was further
cowed into submission to say, "I have
sinned"; not his sword nor his incantations
could help him now. Which makes us ask,
when will our current-day detractors who
curse us daily (from without and from
within), finally dare submit to such a moral
code?
Q
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 17
BALAK 5777
A People that Dwells Alone
One of the most profound and
influential comments ever made about
Jewish destiny was made by the pagan
prophet Bilaam in this week's sedra:
As I see them from the mountain tops,
Gaze on them from the heights,
Behold it is a people that dwells alone,
Not reckoned among the nations.
(Bamidbar 23:9)
To many - Jews and non-Jews,
admirers and critics alike - that has
seemed to epitomise the Jewish
situation: a people that stands outside
history and the normal laws governing
the fate of nations. For Jews it was a
source of pride. For non-Jews, it was all
too often a source of resentment and
hate. For centuries, Jews in Christian
Europe were treated, in Max Weber's
phrase, as a "pariah people". All agreed,
though, that Jews were different. The
question is: how and why? The biblical
answer is surprising and profound.
It is not that Jews alone knew God. That
is manifestly not the case. Bilaam - the
very prophet who uttered these words was not an Israelite. Nor were
Avimelech or Lavan, to whom God
appears in the book of B'reishit.
Avraham's contemporary, Malkitzedek,
king of Shalem (the city that later
became Jerusalem) is described as a
priest of the most high God. Yitro,
Moshe's father-in-law, was a Midianite
high priest, yet the sedra that contains
the supreme moment of Jewish history
- the revelation at Mount Sinai - bears
his name. Even the Pharaoh who ruled
Egypt in the days of Yosef said of him,
"Can we find anyone like this man, one
in whom is the spirit of God?"
God does not appear only to Jews,
members of the covenantal nation. Nor
does He answer only Jewish prayers. At
the dedication of the Beit HaMikdash,
King Solomon made the following
request:
As for the foreigner who does not
belong to Your people Israel but has
come from a distant land because of
Your name - for men will hear of Your
great name and Your mighty hand and
Your outstretched arm - when he
comes and prays toward this Temple,
then hear from heaven, Your dwelling
place, and do whatever the foreigner
asks of You, so that all the peoples of
the earth may know Your name and
fear You, as do your own people Israel,
and may know that this house I have
built bears Your Name.
JONATHAN* POLLARD
10,956+601 days imprisoned
www.jonathanpollard.org
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 18
BALAK 5777
The sages continued this great tradition
when they said that "the righteous of
the nations of the world have a share in
the world to come." Yad Vashem, the
Holocaust museum in Jerusalem,
contains the names of more than
20,000 righteous gentiles who saved
lives during the Holocaust years.
Nor is it that God's covenant with the
children of Israel means that they are
more righteous than others. Malachi,
last of the prophets, has striking words
to say on the subject:
From where the sun rises to where it
sets, My name is honoured among the
nations, and everywhere incense and
pure oblation are offered to My name,
for My name is honoured among the
nations, says the Lord of hosts. But you
profane it . . . (Malachi 1:11-12)
Nor did any of the major strands in
Jewish thought ever see Jewish
chosen-ness as a privilege. It was, and
is, a responsibility. The key verse here is
the famous prophecy of Amos:
You alone have I singled out
Of all the families of the earth That is why I will call you to account
For all your iniquities. (Amos 3:2)
laws, and entered into their history.
"You will be to Me", He said at Sinai, "a
kingdom of kohanim and a holy
nation." Judaism is the only religion to
place God at the centre of its selfdefinition as a nation. Jews are the only
nation whose very identity is defined in
religious terms.
There were many nations in the ancient
world who had national gods. There
were other religions - Judaism's two
daughter faiths, Christianity and Islam that believed in a universal God and a
universal religion. Only Judaism
believed, and still believes, in a
universal God accessible to all, yet
peculiarly manifest in the way of life,
fate and destiny of a single and singular
people:
Where then did Jewish singularity lie?
The clue lies in the precise wording of
Bilaam's blessing: "Behold it is a people
that dwells alone." For it was as a
people
that
God
chose the
descendants of Avraham; as a people
that He made a covenant with them at
Mount Sinai; as a people that He
rescued them from Egypt, gave them
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 19
BALAK 5777
You are my witnesses, declares the
Lord, and my servant whom I have
chosen . . .
You are my witnesses, declares the
Lord, that I am God.
(Yeshayahu 43:10-12)
Israel, in its history and laws, would be
God's witness. It would testify to
something larger than itself. So it
proved to be. The historian Barbara
Tuchman wrote:
The history of the Jews is . . . intensely
peculiar in the fact of having given the
Western world its concept of origins
and monotheism, its ethical traditions,
and the founder of its prevailing
religion, yet suffering dispersion, statelessness and ceaseless persecution, and
finally in our times nearly successful
genocide, dramatically followed by
fulfilment of the never-relinquished
dream of return to their homeland.
Viewing this strange and singular
history one cannot escape the
impression that it must contain some
special significance for the history of
mankind, that in some way, whether
one believes in divine purpose or
inscrutable circumstance, the Jews
have been singled out to carry the tale
of human fate.
should He choose one nation to bear
witness to His presence in the human
arena? This is a profound question.
There is no short answer. But at least
part of the answer, I believe, is this. God
is wholly Other. Therefore He chose a
people who would be humanity's
'other'. That is what Jews were outsiders, different, distinctive, a
people who swam against the tide and
challenged the idols of the age.
Judaism is the counter-voice in the
conversation of mankind.
During two thousand years of dispersion, Jews were the only people who, as
a group, refused to assimilate to the
dominant culture or convert to the
dominant faith. They suffered as a
result - but what they taught was not
for themselves alone. They showed that
Why, if God is the God of the universe,
accessible to every human being,
Wills • Probate • Nuptial Agreements
Halachic Estate Planning
Tirtza Jotkowitz, Esq.
[email protected]
052-509-3356 • (02) 625-6475
US & Israel: 845-425-8871 / 694-7645 /596-5733
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 20
BALAK 5777
a nation does not need to be powerful
or large to win God's favour. They
showed that a nation can lose everything else - land, power, rights, a home
- and yet still not lose hope. They
showed that God is not necessarily on
the side of great empires or big
battalions. They showed that a nation
can be hated, persecuted, reviled, and
yet still be loved by God. They showed
that to every law of history there is an
exception and what the majority
believes at any given moment is not
necessarily true. Judaism is God's
question-mark against the conventional wisdom of the age.
- Thermal Camera + Moisture Reading
- Mold and Bacterial testing
- Waterproofing, insulation, Pipereplacement
- Professional American painting
It is neither an easy nor a comfortable
fate to be "a people that dwells alone",
but it is a challenging and inspirational
one. ;
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 21
BALAK 5777
From the Kli Yakar Jacob Solomon
Balak… saw all that Israel did to the
Amorites(22:2).
As the Midrash (Tanhuma: Balak 3)
elaborates, Moav and Midyan traditional enemies - (see B'reishit
36:35) sank their differences, and
allied against the perceived threat
from the Israelites. Seeing Israel
winning spectacular victories over
their better-armed and technologically superiorneighbors, theyworried
that they might be the next people on
the list. Seeking some way to save
themselves, Moav hoped that the
Midyanites, among whom Moshe had
lived when he fled from Egypt as a
younger man, would supply the key to
breaking the strength of the Israelites.
The Midyanites replied that it was
useless to go to war against them:
they enjoyed His Contact, His
Sponsorship and His Protection. As a
people, they were blessed. It would be
better to sever them from their source
of success, namely their closeness to
the Almighty. They reasoned that
Bil'am, a prophet from the region of
Avraham's family, would be able to
break that relationship by cursing
them.
In line with other commentaries, the
K'li Yakar points out that the people of
Moav were in no immediate danger as
G-d had instructed Moshe to leave
Moav alone: "Do not harass Moav, and
do not incite them to war" (D'varim
2:9). However, the K'li Yakar suggests
that the people of Moav reasoned
differently. Balak, their newlyappointed king, was not a true
Moabite (Rashi to 22:4). That had
serious consequences. With a foreign
king, they would not longer be under
the protection of "Do not harass
Moav".
So it appears that Balak and Bil'am
were embarking on a scheme to save
the nation of Moav. Nations might be
sinners, but the Torah does not
prevent them from attempting to
defend themselves - especially by a
scheme that would avoid the deaths
of any of their own fighting men.
However, the K'li Yakar observes the
way that the Torah explains Moav's
true, self-imposed situation. "Moav
AwesomeTours &Transportation
Private tours, airport shuttle and door-to-door
transportation to events country-wide
Luxury 15-seat bus at affordable prices
Call or text Ben Levine at 054-587-9350
[email protected]
www.awesometoursisrael.com
Armed driver• Native English speaker
Licensed and fullyinsured
zay xney Û dyxen wqr
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 22
BALAK 5777
greatly feared the [Israelites and their
associates] for they were many" (22:3)
is immediately followed by "Vayakatz
Moav mipnei B'nei Yisrael." The K'li
Yakar explains these words to indicate
that the people of Moav came to loath
themselves as the Israelites travelled
through neighboring regions. They
saw themselves as kotzim, lowly
thorns. They hated the Israelites to
such a degree that they considered
themselves as mere barbs in comparison.
Indeed, the K'li Yakar gives a similar
explanation of Vayakutzu mipnei B'nei
Yisrael (Sh'mot 1:12). The Israelites in
Egyptian multiplied rapidly and
became so successful that the
Egyptians felt humiliated, like lowly
thorns. Hence their proceeding to
enslave the Israelites.
It is indeed the emotions of baseless
self-hatred that cause a feeling of
victimhood and out of that, poisonous
and often violent responses. Objectively, the people of Moav enjoyed the
Interested in an excellent men's Gemara shiur on
S/M/W/TH afternoon at the OU Israel Center?
please call054-842-7725
Abu-Tor (Giv'at Hananya)
Beautiful 3.5 room, ground floor
with master bedroom, walk-in
closet, two full bathrooms, large
living/dining area. Completely
renovated! Nice garden,few steps
to house plus Machsan!
Move-in condition! A must see!
Agent: 052-238-3909
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 23
BALAK 5777
protection of "Do not harass Moav"
whoever their king might be. It was
their fundamental abhorrence of the
very existence of the Israelites that
made them detest themselves. Thus
they employed Bil'am's services in an
attempt to destroy behind the scenes.
Similarly the Egyptians. The prospering Israelites were no threat to their
well-being. But their existence was. In
their eyes, there were just too many of
them. That was enough to cause
national self-loathing and their forced
enslavementofthe Israelites.
1) Why does Bilaam welcome the
first group of messengers who came
to him from Balak with the words
SLEEP HERE TONIGHT (LINU PO
HA'LAILA - 22:8) while he said
PLEASE YOU TOO STAY HERE FOR
THE NIGHT (SHVU NA BAZEH GAM
ATEM HA'LAILA - 22:19)?
That is the challenge facing people
and nations today. The world is
blessed with plenty of potential
resources, then and now. The success
of neighboring individuals, groups,
and nations, should inspire others to
do likewise rather than hate themselves out of jealousy or irrational
fears. Thus Balak should have hired
Bil'am to bless Moav rather than to
curse Israel… n
2) Rashi explains that when God tells
Bilaam that he can go with Balak's
messengers to curse the Jewish
people if it is FOR YOUR ADVANTAGE (LIKRA LECHA) it means that if
Bilaam will get paid for it then he
can go. Why would G-D allow Bilaam
to go and curse the Jewish people
when it was for payment while
forbidding him from going when no
offer of payment was made (22:12)?
Old Movies & Video
Quality Transfer to DVD
Michael: (02) 970-90900522-8686-26
Preserve family history
Photography for those personal and intimate occasions
Parsha Points to Ponder
by Rabbi Dov Lipman
BALAK
3) Why does the Torah go out of its
way to mention that Bilaam's two
young servants were with him
(22:22) prior to his encounter with
the angel who scared his donkey?
Rabbi Lipman is an educator, author,
and community activist in Bet Shemesh.
He was a member of the 19th Knesset
[email protected]
The suggested answers are elsewhere
Ponder the questions first, then see further
B O and AV have the smallest gimatriya of any words
in Tanach, 3. From 3 on up, the smallest number that
is NOT a gimatriya of any word in Tanach is 969.
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 24
BALAK 5777
RELIGIOUS THINKERS
by Dr. Meir Tamari
HaRav Tzvi Yehuda
HaKohen Kook l"vf [1]
The only child of Rabbi Avraham
Yitzchak HaKohen Kook, was born on
Pesach (5651; 1891) in the Kovno
region of Lithuania. A short time after
his Bar Mitzva, Tzvi Yehuda emigrated
to Eretz Yisrael with his father's
appointment as Rabbi of Jaffa. He
spent time at various yeshivot of the
Old Yishuv, such as Porat Yosef in the
Old City and those in Jaffa. Finally he
decided to go to Europe, first to
Halberstadt and later to Switzerland
with his father who was stranded by
W.W.I after coming to the Knessiya
HaGedolah of Agudat Yisrael. Rabbi
Kook was then temporarily appointed
rabbi of London and R' Tzvi Yehuda
joined him there; finally, they returned
to Eretz Yisrael. At the age of 31, R'
Tzvi Yehuda married Chava Hutner,
the daughter of Rabbi Yehuda Hutner
of Warsaw. After the wedding he
returned to the land of Israel.
He spent 1929-1933 to bringing Jews
from Russia to Eretz Yisrael but from
then on he devoted himself to
publishing the writings of his father
and to running Mercaz Harav
established by him to be the Central
Yeshiva in keeping Rav Kook's
teaching of the imminent redemption
and therefore the unification of Am
Yisrael. This was also the idea behind
the establishment of the Chief
Rabbinate for all Israel. Both tasks
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 25
BALAK 5777
drew the attention of young Isreali
yeshiva graduates and students at the
Hebrew University who came because
Mercaz Harav was different. A yeshiva
with studies in Hebrew not Yiddish and
an opportunity to study Gemara,
Chumash, Nach, history, Halakha and
Aggada and Machsevet Yisrael with
Harav Tzvi Yehuda.
Rav Tzvi Yehuda taught that Torat
Eretz Yisrael differed from that of the
galut which was merely a residual
Torah. Eretz Yisrael has an intrinsic
holiness, independent and even
predating that of Am Yisrael in the
promises to Avraham. Together these
two holy bodies determined the fate but
also the mission of the Jewish People.
They pervaded our learning and gave
content and meaning to our tefillot and
mitzvot. Galut, the separation between
People and Land therefore also brought
disunity in tefilot, Torah and mitzvot.
Originally, this galut was the punishment for Israel's sins, however,
Yechezkiel prophesied that in that galut
Israel added another sin by their very
presence there which caused Chilul
HaShem. Rav Tzvi Yehuda, echoing
his father, therefore taught that
continuing to live in the golah was
HEALTH IS WEALTH
Nourish & support your circulatory, immune, digestive,
hormonal and respiratory systems with traditional
Chinese herbal formulas. Safe, non-medicinal
 kosher 054-490-4795 Sales agentswanted
Photo-magnets for your Simcha • 058-456-1221
itself a sin which needed atonement,
teshuva returning to Eretz Yisrael.
This return was not just the opportunity
of keeping mitzvol HaTeluyot Ba'aretz
or those of kingship and their wars, but
actually all the mitzvot since that was
the intended place for their observance.
This includes those of the body like
tefilin; "even when you are in galut put
on tefillin and write mezzutot in order
they should not be strange to you when
you return" (Rashi. Yisrael 11:18).
Tefilin and mezuzah in the golah are
only a reminder for when we do t'shuva
and return to observe them properly in
Eretz Yisrael.
A major new development in Rabbi
Tzvi Yehuda's thinking is one which
has been seen as almost Marxist or
Darwinist in its deterministic character.
He taught that everything that
happened in world history in the 19th
and 20th centuries was a preparation
Chesed Fund
Your tzedaka check to the
Chesed Fund will help us help
over forty needy families
and individuals
Please make your checks to the
Chesed Fund (no foreign checks)
and mail them to
Chesed Fund
att. Menachem Persoff
POB 37015
Jerusalem91370
or leave them at the front desk
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 26
BALAK 5777
for the emergence of the State of Israel.
The French Revolution and the
Napoleonic wars broke feudal Europe
and the Austro-Hungary Empire and
freed an outpouring of striving for
nationalism, Poland and the Balkans;
Jewry there was affected by the
nationalistic strivings. W.W.I destroyed
the Ottoman Empire so freeing Eretz
Yisrael from their rule and the Russian
Revolution freed Jewish masses to
settle there. For centuries the oath
which Israel had taken not to revolt
against the nations prevented mass
conquest by Aliya settlement. This
changed halachically, after W.W.I
when the League of Nations publicly
acknowledged the consent of the
nations of the world to Israel's return
home. After W.W.II the United Nations
ratified our legitimate right to a state in
Eretz Yisrael. Now there was no
halachic obstacle to diplomatic moves
Vaani Kinchalim
Dr. Eliezer Rosenblum
NYS Licensed and Board Certified
Chiropractor
Offices in Jerusalem, Ramat Beit S hemesh
052-662-4658
Apartment Management
also vacation rentals Since 1978
ITZHAK KOTLER
(02) 586-1554052-286-3877
See us atwww.jerusalem-management.com
Jonathan Rosenblum, DPM
• 050-595-5161
Pediatric and Geriatric Foot Care, Bunions,
Hammertoes, and Diabetic Wound Care
We give cash for
• Gold jewelry
• Diamonds
• Silverware
054-219-2428 or *4556
cash4gold.co.il • [email protected]
or military action to achieve statehood
and so on Hei Iyar 5708, Israel entered
the world of the nations.
Statehood for Rav Tzvi Yehuda meant
apart from anything else, 3 things.
[1] Upholding the authority of the
Chief Rabbinate which made Judaism
an integral part of the state and its
institutions.
[2] Respect for state institutions and
those heading them. To the argument
that many were not religious, he
countered that Eliyahu ran respectfully
before Achav's chariot despite his
idolatry simply because he represented
the state; the same applied to
personalities of the State.
[3] The Israeli army is kadosh since it
protects the state which is an
expression of the sanctity which exists
in Am Yirael in Eretz Yisrael. So he
could refer to 'bigdei hakodesh' of
Harav Shaar Yashuv HaKohen when he
came to his wedding in his army
uniform
HaRav Tzvi Yehuda opposed the U.N.
partition into two states but the
majority of religious Zionists accepted
it, which made the emergence of Israel
a political and historical fact. However,
Hei Iyar was not to be the end to Harav
Tzvi Yehuda's Torah. 
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 27
Love mitzvot in the sedra
BALAK 5777
Relieving The Agony
of the Agunah
by
Rabbi Ephraim Sprecher
Dean of Students, Diaspora Yeshiva
The plight of the Agunah wife is an
ongoing tragedy. Recently, a woman
who has been an Agunah for 17 years
went on a hunger strike in Jerusalem.
An Agunah (literally a chained wife)
is one whose husband deserts her and
refuses to give her a GET, thus
preventing her from remarrying. The
leading Rabbis in every generation
have tried to find solutions, even
far-fetched ones, for the distress of
Agunot.
Rabbi Akiva Eiger helped to release
an Agunah with the explanation that,
"The time is right to release a Jewish
wife from being an Agunah, and
Jewish women should not be Hefker
(ownerless victims who are trapped
and might be led to sin). Thus we are
going to be lenient with an Agunah."
The Maharam of Rotenberg in his
Responsa goes so far to rescue an
Agunah by invoking the concept of
"Mekach Ta'ut" ("a marriage under
false pretenses"). Had the wife known
that her husband was so cruel, she
never would have married him in the
first place.
Therefore the act of Kiddushin
(marriage) is annulled "L'Mafrei'a"
(retroactively) using the concept of
Hefker Beit Din Hefker (what Beit
Din declares null and void is null and
void). The Maharam also explains,
"Kol
HaMekadesh
al
da'atei
d'Rabbanan Mekadesh" "Everyone
who contracts a Jewish marriage does
so with the consent and agreement of
the Rabbis."
These great Rabbis of the past were
no less G-d fearing than the Dayanim
of today. They were also familiar with
the warning of the Talmud (Sanhedrin
7) against hastiness in judgment, "A
Dayan (Rabbinic judge) must always
see himself as though the gates of hell
are open beneath him." However, the
Maharam and Rabbi Akiva Eiger in
their awareness of their great
responsibility were not afraid to seek
solutions for complex questions about
Agunot. Moreover, according to
Kabbala, releasing an Agunah brings
the Final Redemption closer.
Today we also have the widespread
syndrome of Jewish wives being
Hefker by being held captive and
denied a GET by their husbands.
Solving their problem according to
Halacha is one of the major Rabbinic
challenges of today. Israeli law has
authorized the Rabbinical Courts to
send a husband, who denies a GET to
his wife, to prison. However, there are
Dayanim (Rabbinic Judges) who are
opposed to such an enforcement, for
fear of a Get Kofui - a divorce,
granted under coercion, which is not
considered valid. Consequently there
are many cruel husbands who exploit
this situation for prolonged abuse
against their chained and captive
wives.
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 28
BALAK 5777
This is a complicated and complex
issue. On the one hand, a GET,
imposed on the husband against his
will, is invalid according to the
Halacha. On the other hand, the
Rambam rules concerning a husband
who refuses to give his wife a GET,
"He is beaten until he says, 'I agree'."
The Rambam says that such a GET is
kosher and valid. This seeming
contradiction is explained by the
existence or lack thereof of a decree
of Beit Din requiring the husband to
divorce his wife. Most Halachic
opinions agree that without such a
prior Rabbinical Court decree, even
mild persuasion might threaten the
non-coerced requirement of the GET.
With such a Rabbinical Court decree,
requiring the husband to divorce his
wife, persuasion, coercion and even
physical force are considered valid to
bring the husband to want to comply
with the decree of the Beit Din and
give a GET of his own free will.
Today's Rabbanim are divided over
the types of sanctions which, according to Halacha, can be imposed on
husbands who deny their wives a
GET. The unresolved nature of these
differences of Rabbinical opinions has
caused many wives to live as captive
women to unscrupulous and cruel
husbands who hold them in chains to
blackmail them to receive a GET.
Many Rabbinical Judges seem to
ignore the directive of the great
Maharsha in the Talmud Bavli
Yevamot who says, "To free an
Agunah our Rabbis invoked many far
Professional
providing individualized strategies
for marketing your home
Experienced
over 21 years combined
in Jerusalem real estate
Dedicated
to help you actualize your dreams
for home and family
Dov Shapiro 052-5533-739
Ilana Nelson 054-5341-403
www.integrityrealestate.co.il
Having a Brit?
KISEI SHEL ELIYAHU
Available to borrow
from the OU Israel Center
For details, call
MarionSilman052-240-7078
EXTERIOR PORCHES
SEALING SOLUTIONS
ROOF COATING
THERMAL CAMERA LEAK DETECTION
MOLD & MILDEW PROOF
PAINTING INTERIOR/EXTERIOR
EXTERIOR STONE POLISHING
LICENSED & INSURED
SHMUEL 052-840-5660
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 29
BALAK 5777
reaching leniencies."
The Maharsha concludes that, "G-d
must grant courage to Rabbinical
Judges so that trapped and captive
suffering wives will be blessed with
peace and domestic tranquility."
If only our current Rabbis had the
moral courage and Torah wisdom of
the Holy Maharsha! u
Rabbi Weinreb's Weekly Column:
BALAK
Doing It My Way
Most of us have had occasions in our
lives when we acted as supervisors
over others. It might have been in
our role as parents disciplining our
children, it might have been as
employers giving instructions to
employees, or it might have been
any number of other contexts in
which we had to tell others what to
do.
I sometimes reflect on the many
times in my own personal and
professional life when I suggested,
counseled, or otherwise instructed
others. And I often think of the
diverse reactions I received to my
attempts to influence or guide the
behavior of another.
There were certainly those who
rejected my instructions, sometimes
passively, sometimes defiantly. My
own children were quite creative in
devising ways to ignore their father's
commands. And I have had subordinates in various positions that I have
held who sometimes stood up to me
and simply said, "No!"
I have also experienced numerous
occasions when my suggestions or
commands were carried out to the
letter. These were occasions when
the individuals I supervised acted
with commitment, with obedience
to my wishes. I must admit to my
great preference to these individuals. Every supervisor likes commitment.
But there is a middle category. Here,
the subordinates neither defy their
orders, nor perfectly conform to
them. Rather, the subordinate's
response is, "Yes, but!" - "I will listen
to what you say," they respond, "but
I will do it my way!"
When I received responses in this
middle category, I found myself in a
quandary. On the one hand, I
wanted my orders obeyed, but on
the other hand, I didn't want to
squelch 'the initiative and selfreliance of the person to whom I was
assigning the task. I may have
preferred total commitment, but I
compromised. I allowed concession.
It is from these personal reflections
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 30
BALAK 5777
that I can better understand the
interaction between the major
character of this week's Torah
portion (Parshat Balak), Bilaam son of
B'or, and the Almighty.
Read the opening paragraphs of this
week's Torah portion carefully.
Bilaam begins as a very pious
individual who dares not make a
move without the Lord's permission.
He asks God whether he can accept
the request he has received to curse
the Israelites. God answers, "Do not
go with them! You must not curse
that people, for they are blessed."
Bilaam accepts this response with
commitment. He tells Balak's
dignitaries, "I cannot go with you."
But then Balak ups the ante and
sends more numerous and more
distinguished dignitaries to Bilaam.
Again, Bilaam consults the Almighty.
But this time, He responds, "You may
go with them, but whatever I
command you, you shall do." How
do we understand this shift in the
divine instructions?
Drawing upon our own personal
human experiences in giving instructions to others, we can begin to
understand this shift. At first, Bilaam
responds with commitment. In his
second consultation with the Lord,
that commitment has diminished.
The second delegation of dignitaries
has weakened Bilaam's resolve. So
God, so to speak, has to adapt to
Bilaam's "Yes, but!" And God offers a
concession: "Obey me, but do it your
way."
Our sages describe this concession
with this adage: "On the road which
man wishes to pursue, upon that
road he is led." That is, God allows us
to follow the paths we ourselves
choose. Our free will is so important
to Him that He concedes to our
wishes, and allows us to "do it our
way."
Of course, He prefers commitment,
but He grants concession, hoping
that, even in doing it our way, we
will ultimately obey Him and
conform, albeit imperfectly, to His
will.
This approach to understanding one
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 31
BALAK 5777
of the ways in which the Almighty
deals with human weakness allows
us to understand many other
examples in the Bible of God's
concessions to human willfulness.
Just a few short weeks ago, for
example, we read in Bamidbar 13
(Parshat Sh'lach) of God's command
to Moshe to send spies, meraglim, to
scout out the Promised Land. The
commentaries struggle with the
account in D'varim 1 in which it is
clear that it was the people's idea,
indeed demand, that spies be sent,
and not God's command. The rabbis
resolved the problem of the differing
texts by suggesting that God Himself
did not think spies were necessary.
He originally depended upon the
people's commitment to rely
unquestioningly upon His promise of
the land to them. But the people
wanted to "do it their way" by
sending spies. God, as it were,
relented, conceded. His command to
send out spies was a concession He
felt was necessary to grant in the
absence of commitment.
This insight also helps us understand
the questions which have been
raised by students of the Bible for
millennia about the desirability of a
king in Israel. Is appointing a king a
divine imperative, as some texts
suggest? Or is it a concession by God
to the will of the people? Here, too,
our approach is helpful. If He could
depend upon the people's total
commitment to His divine sovereignty, then there would be no
necessity for a king. But the people
wanted it "their way", and so we
have God's concession, the mitzva of
appointing a king.
This concept is particularly useful to
apply to our own lives. Ideally, we all
should act out of perfect commitment. But human nature often insists
that we do it our way. The
compassionate Lord of the universe
"cuts us a bit of slack" and gives us
some flexibility but relies upon us
not to veer too far from His
expectations. 
Pinchas is properly pronounces PI - N'CHAS and not
PIN - CHAS (although many people with that name are
called PIN-CHAS). Even without a YUD, PI-N'CHAS.
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 32
BALAK 5777
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 33
BALAK 5777
TUESDAYS at 11:30am
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 34
BALAK 5777
8:20pm after Maariv
Mondays:
Insights in the Parsha
Wednesdays:
Halacha B'Iyun:
Sheilah of the Week
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 35
BALAK 5777
SCHEDULE NOTES
SUNDAY • '`
mei
4
Shabbat shiur - 5:00pm
10:00am - L'AYLA
Mrs. Sylvie Schatz
BALAK - July 8th
Perek Shira
Rabbi Aharon Ziegler
11:10am - L'AYLA
MONDAY • 'a mei
9:15am
Mrs. Pearl Borow
Book(let) of Hoshei'a
Resumes in September
Mommy & Me with Jackie
Wisdom for Life (Mishlei) 054-533-9305•[email protected]
Rabbi Yitzchak Breitowitz
In the Ganchrow
Beit Midrash...
10:00am
Rabbi Jeff Bienenfeld
Masechet Kiddushim
This shiur is in tribute to
Rabbi Fred Hollander z"l
Sun thru Thu • 11:15am
RCA DAF YOMI
Rotating Magidei Shiur
The Daf Yomi shiur
is in tribute to Rabbi
Yitzchak Botwinick z"l
4:30pm Su/M/W/Th
Rabbi Hillel Ruvel
Gemara Shiur
Please note:
Regular shiurim:
25NISmembers
30NIS non-mem • 5 NIS Life
One-time shiurimand
mini-series 25 NIS members
and Life Members
30NIS for non-members
unlessotherwiseindicated
Discounted zeiqihxk
(punch cards) available at
the front desk and valid
for all shiurim and classes
12:00noon
Rabbi Chaim Eisen
KUZARI
12:00noon
Haya Graus
Easy Hebrew Ulpan
2:00pm
Rabbi Ephraim Sprecher
Bilam's Legacy Belief in Moshiach
Watch for resumption of
this class:
Rabbi Joseph
Klausner-Yedidyahu
8:00pm • no charge
Rabbi Mordechai Machlis
The Book of Shmuel
10:00am
Rabbi Poupko's
Parsha Perspective
10:30am (welcome home)
Rabbi Zev Leff
Pirkei Avot
11:30am
Get Fit while You Sit
Exercise with Sura Faecher
050-415-3239
2:00pm
Rebbitzen Pearl Borow
Women in Tanach
3:00pm
Phil Chernofsky
Mishna, Mitzvot & more
Resumes in September
Music with Jackie for children
5:20pm
Pri-Hadash Writing Workshop
6:30pm
Emotions Anonymous
Faigy 02-571-0632
See page 60 for
Video Schedule and
7:00pm
more goings-on at Dorot OU Intergenerational Choir
the OU Israel Center Directed by Hadassah Jacob
(as are CourtesyCards)
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 36
call Sara - 560 9104
BALAK 5777
TUESDAY • 'b
mei
WEDNESDAY • 'c
mei
SHIV'A ASAR B'TAMUZ
9:00am
Fast begins (J'lem) 4:16am
Rabbi Aharon Adler
9:00am
Rambam's Book of Mitzvot
Rabbi Yitzchak
Breitowitz
Rabbi Anthony Manning
Minchat Chinuch
Resumes IY"H July 19th
The Studyof Mitzvot
10:15am
9:15am - L'AYLA
Tehilim
Mrs. Shira Smiles
Rabbi Dr Tzvi Hersh
Torah Tapestries
Weinreb
10:30am (see p.38 top-left)
11:15am - L'AYLA
Rabbi Aaron
Rabbi Shmuel Herschler
Goldscheider
In-depth TREI ASAR
ParshatHaShavua
THURSDAY • 'd
mei
9:00am
Rabbi Ari Kahn
Parshat HaShavua
10:10am
Rabbi Baruch Taub
"Thursday, the Rabbi
gave his Drasha"
11:45am
Weekly Perek of Tanach
Rabbi Shmuel Hirschler
10:30am
Mrs. Shprintzee Rappaport
Ramchal's Derech HaShem
11:30am T'hilim Group (women)
Current Halachic Issues
11:30am
Rabbi Aaron Ziegler
Current Halachic Issues
Halachot of the 3 Weeks
12:15pm (welcome back)
Rabbi Nachman Winkler
History is HIS Story
Resumes in September
Dr. Deborah Polster
3:00pm
Knitting Club with Verna
SHIV'A ASAR B'TAMUZ
PROGRAM - see p.60
2:00 & 3:00pm
Rebbetzin Pearl Borow
The Transmission of
Torah via Pirkei Avot
Chumash with M'forshim
7-10pm
Rabbi Yonatan Kolatch
Topics in Parshanut
7:30pm
Rabbi Chaim Eisen
The Meaning and Mission of
the Chosen People: Chosen
from - or - for Whom?
5:45pm Shiur
7:00pm Mincha + mini Sh
8:10pm Maariv
(fast over 8:18pm)
Refreshments
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 37
2:00pm
Rabbi Ephraim Sprecher
Current events in the
weekly haftara
Thank you to Yehuda Lave for
helping to make this shiur a reality
July 6 - 7:30pm
Special Root & Branch
Lecture
July 6th - NO
July 13th - YES
8:00pm
Rabbi Avrum Kowalsky
Topics in the
Book of Sh'muel
BALAK 5777
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 38
BALAK 5777
ttRIDDLES
Prizes for TTriddle solutions
Jerusalem (3 stores)
•15Malchei YisraelinG eula
•RechovLunz right of f BenYehuda
Midrachovin thecenter of town
•Kanf eiNesharim64
8
FUN
PLACES
TO SHOP
Stop by
often;
new items
all the time
Ramat Beit Shemesh
•RBSAlef ShoppingCenter
Bnei Braq •RabbiAkivaStreet
Ra'anana •R'Achuza110
Rishon L'Tziyon - CLOSED
Efrat Dekel ShoppingCenter
World of Jewish Music
Malchei Yisrael 5
Jerusalem
02-538-8474
Rabbi Akiva 88, Bnei Braq • 03-579-9580
Previous (Chukat) TTriddles:
[1] FPTL: Ashrei's closer
First, FYI: The bulk of ASHREI is T'hilim
145, all 21 p'sukim of it. P'sukim are in
alphabetical order except that the ALEF
pasuk begins with T'HILA L'DAVID. Also,
there is no NUN pasuk. There are three
other p'sukim: The first - ASHREI
YOSH'VEI VEISECHA... which is T'hilim
84:5 and another ASHREI, ASHREI
HAAM SHEKACHA LO... which is the last
pasuk of T144, the pasuk right before
T'HILA L'DAVID (T145). Which leaves us
with the ASHREI CLOSER - T115:18,
VA'ANACHNU N'VAREICH KAH MEI-ATA
V'AD OLAM HALLELUYAH. Gimatriya of
which is 6+1+50+8+50+6 (121) + 50+2
+200+20 (272) + 10+5 (15) + 40+70+
400+5 (515) + 6+70+4 (80) + 70+6+30+
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 39
BALAK 5777
40 (146) + 5+30+30+6+10+5 (86) =
1235.
[2]624-0504
Several people commented about the
ad at the bottom of the front page for
the Red Heifer restaurant as to how
appropriate for Parshat Chukat and the
Para Aduma. The ad is weekly, so it
matches Chukat and Shabbat Para, but
it's good to see that people pay attention. This TTriddle is their phone
number.
[3] Between Leonardo Pisano
Bigollo's 1 and 8
The TTriddle would have been simpler
to solve had we written Between
Fibonacci's 1 and 8. But it's more fun to
make it more challenging. In this case,
one only had to search the internet to
find out that Fibonacci is a nickname
for this Leonardo Pisano Bigollo, a.k.a.
Leonardo of Pisa. His famous number
sequence begins with 1 and 1 and
every subsequent number in the series
is found by adding the two previous
numbers together. So 1 & 1 gives you 2
and 2 & 1 gives 3 and 3 & 2 gives you 5
and 5&3 gives you 8... and so on. The
first 10 Fibonacci numbers are 1, 1, 2, 3,
5, 8, 13, 21, 34, 55. Between 1 and 8 we
have 1235, the TT issue number of last
week.
[4] A confused live miracle without
hook
LIVE MIRACLE is NEIS CHAI. Confused
means that the letters are mixed up.
NUN, SAMACH, CHET, YUD can
rearrange to spell SICHON. Since
SICHON is spelled both with and
without a VAV, for this TTriddle we used
SICHON without the hook (which is
what VAV means in Hebrew). FYI:
SICHON with a VAV occurs 20 times in
Tanach; without a VAV, 17 times. Majority with a VAV, but not overwhelming.
In contrast, YAAKOV occurs 348 times
without a VAV and five times with.
Yehoshua 217 times without as second
VAV; twice with.
[5] Atones for and pasuk count
The PARA ADUMA is a KAPARA (atonement) for the sin of the golden calf. The
pasuk count of Parshat Chukat is 87,
PAZ in Hebrew letters. PAZ is a biblical
and literary word for gold or golden.
Well over 1000 audio and video
shiurim for listening and
downloading pluswritten articles
www.rabbisholomgold.com
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 40
BALAK 5777
from the virtual desk of the
OU VEBBE REBBE
T he Orthodox U nion - via its website - f ields questions of all types in the areas of Kashrut, J ewish L aw and
V alues. Som e of them are answered by Eretz Hem da, the Institute f or A dvanced J ewish Studies, J erusal em ,
headed by R av Yosef Carm el and R av M oshe Ehrenreich, f ounded by HaR av Shaul Yisraeli z t" l, to prepare
rabbanim and dayanim to serve the National R eligious com m unity in Israel and abroad. A sk the R abbi i s a
joint venture of the OU , Yerushalayim Network, Eretz Hem da... and OU Israel' s T orah T idbits.
Kabbalat Shabbat of
Part of the Community
Question: My community has a small
minyan for Kabbalat Shabbat that accepts
Shabbat early, and no second minyan (there
is a larger minyan for the rest of Shabbat).
Must I accept Shabbat at the time the early
minyan does, which is sometimes difficult
for me?
Answer:
The Shulchan Aruch
(Orach Chayim 263:12) rules, based
on the Mordechai, that at whatever
time the majority of the community
accepts Shabbat, individuals, even
those who have not come to shul,
must accept it as well.
The acceptance of the community
(according to most, at the end of
Lecha Dodi - Mishna Berura 261:31)
does not make it Shabbat for all in the
fullest sense but creates a prohibition
to do melacha. Those who have not
yet accepted Shabbat may daven
Mincha during this time, just not in
the place the majority are davening
Ma'ariv (Shulchan Aruch ibid. 15; see
Bi'ur Halacha ad loc.).
Let us see exceptions to the rule of
communal acceptance, as perhaps one
applies here. The Magen Avraham
(263:24) says that in a community
with multiple batei knesset, the first
shul to accept Shabbat does not
impact other shuls, even if it contains
a majority. According to many, this
applies also to two minyanim in the
same
shul
(Shemirat
Shabbat
K'hilchata 46:(43)). However, some
say that a clearly central shul sets the
tone for the entire community (Eliya
Rabba 263:26). Private minyanim,
i.e., those held in houses, are
overpowered by a public one that
contains a majority of the community
(Mishna Berura 263:51).
A member of a shul (even if it does
not have a community majority) is
included in its Shabbat acceptance
Preparation of US Federal, State & Israeli
Individual Tax Return
Sabina Frimer C.P.A (USA & Israel)
054-747-8688 • Fax: 09-741-2695 • [email protected]
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 41
BALAK 5777
even if he or she was not there
(Machatzit Hashekel 263:24), unless
he decided to go to another shul that
week (Aruch Hashulchan, OC
263:28). If most of the community's
members are not in shul, the shul does
not draw along the community
(Mishna Berura ibid.).
In determining the majority, who is
included in the community? Poskim
posit that it refers to Shabbatobservant Jews (see Shevet HaLevi
IX:56). This makes sense, as in trying
to figure out the time at which
Shabbat will be accepted, you should
ask those who will practically accept
it. Someone who is careful about
Shabbat but may not keep every
halacha or be a regular shul-goer
likely counts, unless perhaps if he is
socially divorced from the community
of Shabbat observers. It is unclear
from your question if those who
accept Shabbat early in your
community are the majority based on
this perspective. The case for not
having a single shul cause a whole
area to accept Shabbat early is
stronger in Israel, where the public
announcement of Shabbat times, the
end of bus service, etc. follow the
regular time. (The boundaries of a
community are not always easily set is there a division between Rechavia,
Shaarei Chesed, and Nachlaot, and if
so, where? Are Teaneck and Bergenfield one or two communities?)
Rav Moshe Feinstein (Igrot Moshe,
ACCEPT: BALAK TO CURSE ALOUD
OC III:38) and the Be'er Moshe
(II:17) present a novel but logical
distinction. The idea of accepting
Shabbat early in a way that binds
others makes sense when done in an
effort to increase the time of sanctity
or distance people from Shabbat
desecration. However, where early
minyanim are done only in the
summer, when late nightfall creates
technical problems, these halachot
likely do not apply. This distinction
seems to assume that the halacha is
based on the nature of the acceptance
of Shabbat. If, though, the halacha is a
matter of avoiding degrading by doing
melacha the Shabbat of the majority
of the community who are already
celebrating Shabbat (Shevet HaLevi
ibid.), it shouldn't make a difference
what the motivation is. Shemirat
Shabbat K'hilchata (46:(42)) cites this
opinion without accepting or rejecting
it, and it may be pertinent that the
halacha of getting pulled into Shabbat
by the tzibur is ostensibly only
Rabbinic.
In a case of need, it is legitimate to
rely on Rav Moshe's leniency. For
several reasons, though, it is
preferable to try to make it to the
Kabbalat Shabbat minyan and then
accept Shabbat with them.
Rav Daniel Mann, Eretz Hemdah Institute
Questions? email [email protected]
Having a dispute?
For a Din Torah in English or Hebrew
contact 'Eretz Hemdah - Gazit' Rabbinical
Court: 077-215-8-215 • fax: (02) 537-9626
[email protected]
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 42
BALAK 5777
Eiferman Properties Ltd
Real Estate & Investment Agency
From Sorcerer to Prophet
Nobody has a very high opinion of Bilam
even though we like his words, "How
goodly are your tents, O Jacob, your
dwellingplaces, OIsrael".
One of our doubts is whether - despite
the grandeur of these words - he really
deserves to be called a prophet.
It's true that the Biblical idea of
prophecy underwent a development
over the centuries and became a
sophisticated spiritual movement
exemplified by Yeshayahu, Yirmiyahu,
and Yechezkeil.
But real prophets find themselves
prophesying automatically, taken over
by the Divine spirit almost in spite of
themselves. God speaks to them and
they can do nothing but prophesy. Not
soBilam.
Several times (it's almost a comical
interlude) he offers sacrifices in the
hope that God will reward him with a
prophetic revelation. He tries to bribe
the Almighty to ensure that He "will
happen to him"(Bamidbar 23:3,6,29).
Maimonides is dubious about whether
God can be influenced to grant Bilam or
anyone else a prophetic moment.
Nechama Leibowitz suggests that
though Bilam seems to be, at least in
the beginning, nothing more than "a
Special Offer - Pay 50% on contract signing,
Move in - balance in 2 years! From NIS2,100,000
Rechavia- 80 sqm option to 115 sqm. Succah,
elevator
Rechavia- Renovated 2 bdrms. succah,1 st floor
T albieh: A-2 bdrm, 2 nd floor, Succah
B-3 bdrms 105 sqm, elevator, NIS2,500,000
C-Luxurious 4 bdrm penthouse, View
Jerusalem Projects -From NIS1,420,000 for 3
rooms
German Colony - 205-460sqm from $2,700,000
Near Old Katamon-133-157sqm, Shabbat elev.
succah, parking, from NIS 4M to NIS 5M
Baka- 58 -200 sqm, Succah, storage, parking
Gush 80- 55 -150 sqm, view, parking, from NIS
1,800,000 Occupancy 2018.
G. Hamivtar –360 sqm villa+2 units! $2,775,000
RENT AL/SALE: * Rechavia-2 Bdrms. NIS 5,200
*Wolfson 3 & 4 bdrms. view
*Har Nof – 4-6 room apts.
*O. Katamon- 5 rms. duplex, priv. ent.
Check our website for ADDIT IONAL
PROPERT IES:www.eifermanrealty.com
Contact Us:02-651-4030 [email protected]
common sorcerer", in time he becomes
a prophet.
At that point God takes over his mind
and personality, and when He says there
is something impressive about Israel's
tents and dwelling places, Bilam cannot
hold back his words of praise of Israel.
That's why the Midrash says that Bilam
is a prophet like Moshe himself.
Rabbi Apple served for 32 years as the chief
minister of the Great Synagogue, Sydney, and
was Australia's highest profile rabbi and leading
spokesman for Jews and Judaism there. He
lives in J'lem and blogs at www.oztorah.com
Rabbi Apple is currently the president of the
Israel Region of the RCA.
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 43
BALAK 5777
for Fertility and Gynecology
in Accordance with Halacha
Mother or Fetus
pregnancy.
Last week we saw that Rabbi
Waldenburg, in the Tzitz Eliezer,
brought the Mishna that the fetus is
not considered a life until it is born.
However the Rambam (Laws of Murder
1:9) permits killing the fetus because
the fetus is like a rodef (pursuer) which
implies that he has a soul previous to
being born and the only permissibility
to taking his life is if he endangers the
mother. Rabbi Waldenburg explains
that the Rambam did not mean
literally that the fetus is a rodef but
rather that this scenario is somewhat
analogous a situation with the pursuer
and the pursued.
It is fascinating to see how these two
Torah giants use the same sources and
arrive at the completely opposite
conclusion and this is the richness of
the halachic debate that is focused on
this interpretation of the sources.
Rabbi Moshe Feinstein, the great posek
in America whose responsa, Igrot
Moshe, is almost universally accepted
as a definitive word in halacha, took
strong opposition to Rabbi Waldenberg's answer. He was adamant that
the unborn fetus is considered a
human being and he quoted the
Tosafot in Sanhedrin (57b) that an
unborn fetus is alive and therefore it is
forbidden to kill it. This is deduced
from the verse "he who spills the blood
of a man within a man his blood will
be spilled" (B'reishit 9:10). He states
even further that the Rambam
introduced the concept of rodef to
stress that otherwise it would be
clearly forbidden to terminate the
A deeper reading will show that they
actually differ as to the status of the
unborn fetus - according to Rabbi
Waldenburg the fetus is not an
independent being but is part of the
mother's body, in the words of the
Talmud "the fetus is a limb of the
mother". However Rabbi Feinstein
takes the opposing view that the fetus
is considered a completely separate
entity and a being in his own right.
Based on this understanding we can
suggest that these opinions can assist
us when coming to decide which
method is preferable in fetal surgery.
Is the fetus an independent being and
should be treated as such? If yes, then
we should choose the method that has
the best outcome for the fetus. If the
fetus is considered part of the mother
then we need to prefer the method
that causes less damage to the mother
even if the outcome is less positive for
the fetus.
More on this next week.
Rabbi Gideon Weitzman
The Puah Institute is based in Jerusalem and helps couples from all over the world who are experiencing fertility
problems. Puah offers free counseling in five languages, halachic supervision, and educational programs. Offices in
Jerusalem, New York, Los Angeles, Paris. Contact: (02) 651-5050 (Isr) • 718-336-0603 (US) • www.puahonline.org
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 44
BALAK 5777
by Richard Shavei Tzion
BALAK
The dove guides Noah to a new world
Sage Solomon discerns the cry of the
wild
Rabbi Nachman, the song of the wild
grasses
As the winds sweep through them
Let us sharpen our senses to the refrain
of God's works
Tune our awareness to the tone of their
talk
Emulate creation great and small
Eloquence, grace and mighty forbearance
Hyena's laughter, soaring bird song
Heed the call of our travelling
companions
With empathy as we would ourselves
And etch them in the cadence of our
lives
Pinchus Klahr, MD
Rheumatology
US Board Certified / MisradHaBriut recognized specialist
in all Arthritisconditions Joint and MusclePain
Conscientious “American style” Care
Conveniently located at Refa Na Medical Center,
Givat Shaul, Jerusalem • NOW also at
RBS Family Medical Center, Ramat Beit Shemesh
052-713-2224
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 45
BALAK 5777
Eretz Yisrael in the Haftara
by Rabbis Ethan Eisen and Tuly Weisz
Declaring from
the Mountaintops and
the Knesset Podium
Forty years ago, in the summer of 1977,
Menachem Begin boldly asserted the
Jewish people's Divine claim to the
Land of Israel in his inaugural address
as Prime Minister: "There are those who
question our right to our ancient
homeland, and even our right to exist
within its sacred boundaries. How dare
they? … Let the world know that we
were granted our right to exist by the
God of our fathers at the glimmer of the
dawn of human civilization 4000 years
ago. The Jewish people have a historic,
eternal and inalienable right to the
whole of the land of our forefathers."
Despite Begin's strong convictions,
following his resignation in 1983, he
largely disappeared from public life.
Upon his death, this once-fiery,
unapologetic orator rejected a state
funeral. As one of his close advisers
recalled: "No lying in state, no military
guard of honor, no official delegations,
not even eulogies - just a shroud."
Haftarat Balak is taken from Micha
(5:6-6:8). Perhaps the most famous line
of the haftara is the ultimate one: "He
has told you, O man, what is good (tov),
and what Hashem seeks from you: only
the performance of justice, the love of
kindness, and walking modestly
(Hebrew: Tz-N-A) with your God." The
Talmud (Makot 24a) explains that
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 46
BALAK 5777
modesty applies even to public actions,
such as weddings and burials, and all
the more so to our private and personal
matters.
With Micha's concluding emphasis on
modesty, the opening verse of this
chapter is particularly glaring. The navi
introduces Hashem's rebuke to Bnei
Yisrael as a charge to be called out
publicly from the mountaintops: "Arise!
Contend with the mountains, and let
the hills hear your voice. Listen, O
mountains, to Hashem's argument…"
How do we understand the navi initially
declaring his prophecy most publicly
with his final command to act modestly
and privately?
The answer can be found through a
careful look at the precise words used
by Micha. He describes modesty as
"tov" which we find in our parsha as
well. In Bilaam's final blessing of the
Jewish people (24:4): "How goodly
(T-O-V) are your tents, O Jacob, your
dwelling places, O Israel." Rashi applies
the midrash (Bava Batra 60a) to this
verse, that explains Bilaam saw the
Jewish people's modesty in their
encampment which he considers "tov".
Modesty, purity and humility are
characteristics meant to limit our own
self-aggrandizement, and remind us of
our place before God. However, when
it comes to defending Hashem and His
will, the opposite behavior is often
warranted.
In the final episode of our parsha, "a
man of the Children of Israel came and
brought a Midianite woman near to his
brothers in the sight of Moshe and in
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 47
BALAK 5777
the sight of the entire assembly of the
Children of Israel" (Bamidbar 25:6). In
response to this brazen, public sin of
promiscuity, Pinchas boldly arose and
carried out the appropriate punishment, in front of the entire nation. For
this courageous act in which he
"zealously avenged My vengeance
among them"
(25:11), Hashem
promised Pinchas "my covenant of
peace".
It is this lesson that Micha is teaching as
he proclaims publicly from the hills. He
reviews God's great kindness toward
the Jewish people: "When I brought
you up from the land of Egypt and
redeemed you from the house of
slavery, I sent before you Moshe,
Aharon, and Miriam. O My people,
remember now what Balak king of
Moav plotted and what Bilaam son of
Be'or answered him; [despite the sin of
the spies dispatched] from Shitim [I
nevertheless split the Jordan for you
when I brought you] to the Gilgal"
(Micha 6:4,5).] When it comes to
declaring our gratitude and faith to
God, we must do so publicly.
The essential quality of modesty is one
that should pervade our personal lives.
We are reminded of this idea when
even the most prominent Jewish
leaders are laid to rest in simple burial
shrouds. However, we learn from Micha
Hurting from a loved one's addiction?
We can help!
Women's only al-anon - FREE
Mondays at 6:30pm
8 Balfour St (vegetarian center)
and Pinchas that in defense of Hashem
and His word, we must be bold and
unashamed.
As Micha described the process of the
Jewish people's entry into Eretz Yisrael,
it is Hashem who has given us this land,
and we should not be ashamed to
publicly say so. If Menachem Begin
publicly acknowledged God's hand in
his opening address as Prime Minister,
we can all use as many opportunities as
are afforded to us to likewise assert
Hashem's role in delivering the Land of
Israel to the People of Israel.
Rabbi Tuly Weisz is the director of Israel365 and
editor of "The Israel Bible"; Rabbi Dr. Ethan Eisen
is a psychologist and a new Oleh, as well as a rebbe
in Yeshivat Lev Hatorah. Please send comments to
[email protected]
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 48
BALAK 5777
David
050
30
88
355
Rabbi Kahana's articles www.nachmankahana.com
Schocketino
Catering
Un de rth e
supervision
of
u -Israel
Mehadrin
Pareve
and
Meat
menu
Call
052-855-1538
Brit
Ba r/Ba t M itzva
S h e va Bra ch o t
Anniversary
Fa mily g a th e rin g
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 49
BALAK 5777
Reprinted from
Rabbi Wein's
Weekly
Blog
Old adversaries return to plague the
Jewish people. Bilaam, according to
midrash, was one of the advisors to
the Egyptian Pharaoh. He was the
one that advocated the enslavement
and eventual destruction of the Jews
in Egypt. His plan was thwarted by
the intervention of Heaven. Nevertheless, a substantial number of Jews
were destroyed in the centuries of
Egyptian bondage and slavery.
One would have thought that Bilaam
would have taken the hint and
relented in his efforts to destroy
Israel. But as this week's Torah
reading amply illustrates, he once
again intensifies his hatred against
the Jewish nation. But now he
intends to kill them with kindness.
He showers them with compliments
and noble rhetoric. He wishes to lull
them into believing that he is really
their friend and admirer. And by so
doing, he will corrupt them with the
sexual immorality for which he
himself is so justly famous.
The Jewish people, like all people,
are moved by flattery and compliments. Everyone wants to hear
others say nice things about them. In
Yiddish there is a famous folk-saying
that no one ever received a slap for
No lecture
TUE July 11
(after the fast)
BUT...
JEWISH SOCIETIES IN RETROSPECT
continues with
Rabbi Berel Wein
in Beit Knesset HaNasi
Tuesday, July 18th • 8:30pm
Jewish Society in Ottoman Palestine
Date change: Sunday, July 23 • 8:30pm
Jewish Society in WWII USA
25NIS (20NIS members, 10NIS students)
ContactNachum:[email protected]
orcall0544-54-36-18
flattering someone else. Therefore, it
is no wonder that the flattering
words of Bilaam are remembered
and treasured by the Jewish people
even until today.
We have ignored the sinister hateful
message that lay behind these
words and merely bask in the nice
things that he said about us. But the
truth is that thousands of Jews died
in the desert because of him and the
advice that he rendered to Balak, the
Moavites and Midianites. Bilaam was
truly a bitter enemy.
What I have always found difficult to
understand is the motivation behind
the hatred of Bilaam for the Jewish
people. After all, he is a man of great
intelligence and gifted with prophetic qualities. The rabbis of the
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 50
BALAK 5777
Talmud even allowed him to be
equated with our great teacher
Moshe in certain of his qualities. He
is a man of academia and of the
cloth. He has wealth and honor,
position and power. So why
squander all of this on an irrational
hatred of the people that have done
him no harm and have not
threatened him in any way?
This question is not restricted to the
ancient Bilaam found in the Torah
reading of this week. It is just as valid
a question in our time, as to the
attitude of certain members of
academia and religious leadership.
Their preoccupation with demonizing the State of Israel particularly
and the Jewish people generally is
baffling to any thoughtful observer
of current events.
The only conclusion that can be
drawn is that such hatred is beyond
logical explanation and rationale
argument. Bilaam serves as a
prototype for much of what we see
and experience in our own time. On
the surface, most of our enemies
decry anti-Semitism and claim to be
only friendly critics, with our welfare
and benefit in mind. They are full of
unsolicited advice and remain
almost willfully blind to the realities
of the situation in which we find
ourselves and must operate within.
Again, Bilaam is our most insidious
and consistent enemy. 
Yaakov, Moshe, Bil'am, Balak
Parsha Points to Ponder
Suggested answers
1) Rabbeinu Bachaya teaches that
this demonstrates Bilaam's ego.
When the less dignified messengers
came he treated them as such, just
telling them to sleep there without
any respect. But when the more
respectable group came he used the
word PLEASE and indicated that he
didn't simply offer them to sleep
there but to stay with him which
implies more considerable hospitality.
2) Rav Shimon Schwab answers that
when the messengers made no offer
of personal gain for Bilaam, Bilaam
would be going to curse the people
with no motive or intention other
than cursing the nation. In that
situation the curses could take
effect. But once Bilaam was going
with the intent of making money, his
heart would not really be into it and
curses said without meaning and
intent would not take effect.
Therefore, in that scenario, G-D
allowed him to go.
3) The Chizkuni explains that these
words come to emphasize that
Bilaam was traveling with these two
young men alone and not with a
large entourage. This is important to
make it clear that Bilaam could not
explain his donkey's strange
behavior as a reaction to the large
crowds that were with him and this
caused him to become angry with
his donkey.
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 51
BALAK 5777
Upper-left is part of one of the very first
ParshaPixPuzzles of years ago. A BLOCK
(sounds like BALAK) in a nest, which makes
it BLOCK BEN TZIPOR • Globe wearing an
eye patch. Balak said that Israel covered EIN
HAARETZ, the eye of the Earth • Messengers came to Bil'am with K'SAMIM
B'YADAM, hence, the magic trick in the hand
• Bil'am's donkey saw the sword drawn in the
angel's hand • When the donkey talks, she
asks why he has hit her these three
REGALIM, 3 times. Commentaries point out
that it doesn't say P'AMIM, but rather uses
the word that refers to our cycle of holidays
and to the People who observe them. The
speech-bubble for the donkey contains the
question (mark) about the three festivals •
Chicago basketball player, one of the BULLS
and a St. Louis football player, one of the
RAMS. Bulls and rams, 7 of each, were
repeatedly offered as sacrifices by Bil'am
and Balak • Clapping hands - stands for
Balak's striking his hands together in disgust
at Bil'am VAYISPOK. A unique word in
Tanach • The Xed out snake is also from
Bil'am's words, that there is no NACHASH in
Yaakov. His meaning is that we do not rely
on omens • A "houseful of silver and gold" •
Shul in the lower-left corner reminds us of
MA TOVU OHALECHA YAAKOV... • Lying
across the bottom of the PP is the ROMACH,
the spear that Pinchas used to defend G-d's
honor • River of oil from the pitcher is from
the haftara • Reverse side of a US dollar is a
picture of the Great Seal: A pyramid with an
all-seeing eye on top. Sometimes called the
enlightened eye. Bil'am calls himself the man
with SH'TUM HA-AYIN. Living Torah offers
these meanings:enlightened, future-seeing,
seeing, open, true-sighted, sleepless, evil,
dislocated, blinded • The letter MEM begins
the column in the Torah that starts with MA
TOVU OHALECHA YAAKOV... one of only 5
columns (in most Sifrei Torah) that do not
start with a VAV • The lion cub is mentioned
in Bil'am's description of the people of Israel
- "Behold, the people will arise like a lion cub
and raise itself like a lion..." (Bamidbar
23:24) and "He crouched and lay down like a
lion, and, like a lion cub - who can stand up
to him?" (24:9) • ET is for ITI, with me. This
word occurs 52 times in Tanach and brings
to mind the extraterrestrial who wanted to
phone home. Balak asks Bil'am to go with
him to another vantage point and see the
Israelite camp • The Shofar and crown go
together and represent the pasuk, Bamidbar
23:21, in which Bil'am proclaims, "He has not
seen iniquity in Yaakov, nor has he seen
perverseness in Yisrael; HaShem his God is
with him, and the TRUMPET BLAST OF A
KING (UTRU'AT MELECH) is among them."
• Below the crown on the right side is
CHEF-E, as in SHEFI, from 23:3. It has the
meaning of He went alone • The name of the
ZIM shipping company comes from Parshat
Balak (Bamidbar 24:24): "V'TZIM, large ships
shall come from the ports of the Kitim, and
they will lay waste Assyria and Eber..." • The
haftara begins with V'HAYA SHE'EIRIT (or
SHE'EIRIS - hashgacha) • an ox grazing, to
match Balak's description of his impression
of the multitude of Israel • The picture next
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 52
BALAK 5777
the hand-clap is of R' Eliyahu KiTov. The
phrase KI TOV occurs 15 time in the Torah.
We'll focus on the combination of VAYAR
(and he saw)... KI TOV, that it was good.
This cuts our 15 down a bit. In the account of
Creation, we find that G-d saw... that it was
good - six times. I guess we need to add
Chava to the list. With her, the word is
VATEIREH, the woman (Chava) saw that the
fruit of the forbidden tree was good looking
and looked delicious. The Baker in prison
with Yosef saw that Yosef had interpreted
the Wine Stewards dream well, KI TOV
PATAR. Another woman with VATEIREH,
this time Yocheved, who saw that baby
Moshe was good, and she hid him... And
then it was Bil'am who saw that it was good
to bless the people of Israel... Something
about the use of KI TOV with Bil'am strikes
as an arrogance in light of the repeated use
of the term in the Creation account. Also, in
Yaakov's blessing to Yissachar (B'reishit 49),
the Torah says VAYAR MENUCHA KI
TOV... "And he saw that resting was good,
and that the land was pleasant."
Commentaries variously explain that
Yissachar was to favor staying on its land,
working it, not into travel and warfare... and
was to develop a commitment to Torah
learning with their stay-at-home attitude •
Towards the lower- right, above the young
bird, is a $5 bill and a lamb - that is, BIL-AM.
The sheep is saying something. Well sheep
always say BAA and this one is also saying
LOCK, giving us BALAK • The fellow in the
picture next to Chef-E is grandson Lavi • The
two guys in the lower-right make up a single
word. There is MOE of the Three Stooges
and "the father of our country" making
George an AV. Together - MOAV.
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 53
BALAK 5777
CHIZUK!IDUD
Divrei Torah from the weekly sedra
with a focus on living in Eretz Yisrael Chizuk for Olim & Idud for not-yet-Olim
In the year 1948, David Ben Gurion
proclaimed the establishment of the
Jewish State in Eretz Yisrael. Yet, Ben
Gurion and his peers could hardly claim
full credit for this act, since as the
eminent British historian Paul Johnson
has written, in truth: "The State of Israel
is the product of more than 4000 years of
Jewish history." With such a rich history
behind it, perhaps the most important
question regarding the newly found state
was: Where would it be heading? What
was its basic identity and raison d'etre?
Would the state become a "nation like
every other nation" as Herzl and many
political Zionists believed it should be, or
would it blend Jewish Nationalism
together with loyalty to the historical
religious faith of the Jewish People, as
the Mizrachi Party believed was right?
At the time of its founding, many points
of contention such as this were simply
left open - to be decided with the passage
of time.
An important insight into the question of
the ideal relationship between the Jewish
nation and the nations of the world, can
be gleaned from this week's Parsha. In
Bamidbar 23:9 we read: HEN AM
L'VADAD YISHKON U'VAGOYIM
LO YITCHASHAV, "Behold a people
that shall dwell alone and not be
reckoned among the nations". This verse
teaches us that while we are a part of the
league of nations , at the same time - on
a deep existential plane - we are apart
from them.
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 54
BALAK 5777
Rav Shternbuch quotes Rav Elchanan
Wasserman HY"D (whose yahrzeit is
12 Tamuz) in explaining the difference
between the two terms AM (People) and
GOI (Nation), mentioned in the above
verse. Every nation (GOI) needs a land
in order to forge it into a people. The
Jewish People, however, are different
than the Goyim, as our identity as an
AM came about outside of our
homeland, by virtue of our shared
religion. The land's importance is
mainly as a holy site affording us the
possibility of fulfilling the Mitzvot
Hat'luyot Ba'Aretz. This understanding
of the verse explains the Chareidi
antagonism to a Jewish State, as this
political entity is perceived as
promoting a vision in which geography
- the land - takes the place of spirituality
and morality as the basis for our shared
nationalistic identity.
On a personal level, though, I find this
very same verse to be partially
responsible for my own Zionist fervor.
This Pasuk always manages to transport
me back in time to the year 1961 - back
to my early student days in my
hometown of Montreal. The local Hillel
House played host to a highly
publicized debate place between the
renowned British historian Dr. Arnold J.
Toynbee and
the then Israeli
Ambassador to Canada, Dr. Yaakov
Herzog z"l.
(A record of the debate can be found in
Herzog's collected writings and
speeches aptly entitled: "A People That
Dwells Alone".)
The most famous point of argument
raised in the course of this historic
debate, revolved around Toynbee's
derogatory categorization of the Jewish
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 55
BALAK 5777
people as a "fossil civilization' - not dead
but not truly alive in the present. As a
result of Herzog's counter-argument,
Toynbee ultimately retracted this term,
claiming that the term "fossil" should be
substituted with "frozen" as the Jewish
people were slowly thawing from an
extended period of permafrost.
At the conclusion of this highly
publicized debate, which was broadcast
across Canada, many in the media
declared Dr. Herzog the clear winner.
For a young college student like myself,
having been in attendance at that exciting
dispute was a very uplifting experience.
Another attendee of the debate, Irwin
Cotler (then a law student studying at
McGill University who went on to
become a Justice Minister of Canada),
conveyed his feelings in an interview he
gave Herzog's biographer years later: "If
the Jewish students had felt humiliated
by Toynbee's (prior) lecture", he
continued, "now they felt pride and
self-respect as Jews. What Herzog did
had psychological, no less than intellectual, impact".
to my desire to come study in Israel and
ultimately to make Aliyah.
My daughter-in-law once asked me to
explain the source of my Zionist
aspirations, seeing as I was raised in a
home, and schooled in a Yeshiva high
school, wherein I received no Zionist
education. I am not sure I can give a full
answer to this question, but I am sure
that the words I heard that day played a
great role.
I would like to conclude with an
interesting note. Dr. Herzog himself was
an Oleh. When his father, Rabbi Isaac
Herzog, left Dublin in order to assume
the role of Israel's Chief Rabbi, his son
Yaakov was sixteen years old. I can
easily imagine the naysayers warning
Rabbi Herzog against such a move,
portraying the possible negative
ramifications of uprooting and relocating
a teenager to a foreign culture - Jewish
history will surely judge otherwise…
Who knows what destiny awaits your
children upon making Aliyah!
Rabbi Yerachmiel Roness, Ramat Shiloh, Beit Shemesh
The entire episode filled me with great
Jewish pride and, no doubt, contributed
For Sale by owner
Cottage in Ramot Gimmel
Great location, 3 floors, over 200m
gardens, Sukka balcony
To schedule a viewing,
call Yitzhak 0522-863-877
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 56
BALAK 5777
BLESSINGS
In this week's portion we see
Bilaam's repeated futile attempts to
curse Israel, and God's insistence
that he bless them. It contains
some of the nicest poetry and
blessings for the children of Israel.
For example the verse that we are
all familiar with "How good are your
tents, Jacob, your tabernacles,
Israel" (24:5).
Or other verses such as "God does
not look at wrongdoing in Jacob
and he sees no vice in Israel. God,
their Lord, is with them, and they
have the King's friendship. Since
God brought them out of Egypt,
they are like his highest expression
of strength" (23:21-22).
But doesn't it seem strange that
Bilaam was the one who recited
them? Why did God orchestrate for
these blessings to be delivered
from the mouth of a non-Jew, a
sorcerer? The Shelah answers that
God specifically wanted these
blessings to come to Israel through
the wicked and immoral Bilaam, so
that all the world would know that
no matter how strong or determined
our enemies may be, they will not
succeed against us against God's
will.
FOR RENT IN OLD KATAMON beautiful 3 rooms,
modern building, shabat elevator, succa balcony,
spacious, master bedroom, parking,
6200NIS a month - Exclusive
MEKOR HAIM - GOOD DEAL! 3 rooms, first floor,
exit to garden, option to add 40m, quiet, for renovation,
1,650,000NIS
ARMON HANATSIV CLOSE TO ARNONA Cute 4
rooms, second floor, 50m garden, renovated, view, quiet
Exclusive - 1,700,000NIS
MEKOR HAIM CLOSE TO EMEK REFAYIM Nice
4 rooms, first floor, in good shape, quiet,with potential,
2,500,000NIS
IN THE HEART OF BAKA Great 3 rooms, ground
floor, stone building, balcony, quiet, parking, storage,
2,700,000NIS
HEART OF OLD KATAMON 3 rooms + separate
unit, ground floor, exit to a garden, completely
renovated, rare! Quiet - 3,000,000NIS
OLD KATAMON WITH GARDEN 140m, 5 large
rooms, ground floor of Arabic style, garden, private
entrance, high ceilings, for renovation, parking
SINCE IN OUR PORTION Bilaam
offered numerous bulls and rams as
sacrifices, this is a recipe that can
be made with meat or lamb. One of
Bilaam's poetic verses refers to
Israel as being numerous "Jacob is
like the dust; who can count his
[hordes]? Who can number the
seed - (Rova) of Israel?" (23:10) so
this recipe also contains seeds.
SPICY THAI MEAT
WITH CHIA SEEDS
2 hot chilies, thinly sliced
¼ cup light soy sauce
6 cloves garlic, peeled and sliced
One 2-inch piece fresh ginger,
peeled
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 57
BALAK 5777
Pepper, to taste
1 kilo favorite meat or lamb
1 red bell pepper, seeds removed
and sliced
1-2 cups cooked basmati rice
1 Tbsp oil
1 cup broccoli
5 scallions, chopped
1 Tbsp brown sugar (optional)
2 Tbsp chia seeds
Mix the chilies, soy sauce, and
garlic. Cut ginger into pieces the
size of matchsticks, and add to the
bowl. Add pepper. Slice the meat
into long thin strips and add. Cover
and leave to marinate in the
refrigerator for 2 hours. Remove
seeds from the red pepper and
slice. Set aside. Pour the marinated
beef through a sieve, and collect
the liquid to use later. Heat oil over
high heat in a large wok. Add the
beef, chilies, garlic, and ginger
(collected in the sieve), and cook
for 3 minutes, stirring often. Add the
bell pepper and broccoli and heat
for another 2 minutes. Add scallions
and sugar heating for another
minute. Add the reserved marinade
and simmer for 2 to 3 minutes. Add
the chia and stir everything
together. Taste and add more
pepper if so desired. Serve with the
cooked rice. N
Jenny's Pesach, Shavuot, and Sukkot
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 58
BALAK 5777
zelila jzpen`e
Faith in the Nights
adapted from Ein Eyah vol. I, p 65, on B'rachot 12
What is the role of faith? What is the
relationship between faith and intellectual understanding?
On Shabbat, the Leviyim sang in the
Beit HaMikdash::
“To tell of Your kindness in the
morning; and in the nights - Your
faith” (T'hilim 92:3).
www.gabairealestate.com
KIRYAT SHMUEL / OLD KATAMON, Itamar Ben
Avi - Amazing and quiet location, a once in a lifetime
opportunity, rare lot for sale on one of the most
desirable streets in Jerusalem with an immediate
permit to build up to 2 units totaling 540m
EFRAT, Dagan - brand NEW 190m cottage, 6 rms,
4 baths, gorgeous views, spacious yard, pergola,
superior level of construction and insulation,
exceptional layout, Most pop. new neighborhood in
Efrat. Asking 2,680,000NIS
EFRAT, Zayit, A spectacular semi-attached family
house, approximately 470m, large living areas,
terrific eat-in kitchen, great backyard for the kids to
run around in, separate rental unit and office,
spacious “American” style bedrooms, rare in size,
functionality, and quality of construction in this
much sought after community
The verse contrasts two pairs of
opposites. The first pair is the
morning and the night, while the
second is our recognition of God’s
kindness, and our faith in Him. The
daily prayers also reflect this
dichotomy. In the morning we recite
the prayer, EMET V'YATZIV ("True
and Certain"), while in the evening
we say, EMET VE'EMUNAH ("Truth
and Faith") - right after the Sh'ma..
RECHAVIA, TALBIEH, Arlozorov - 130m on one
level, 4 bdrms, 2 full baths, private parking, elevator,
incredible stone work on floors and walls,
breathtaking interior design, large balcony,
Asking 5,950,000NIS
In what way does knowledge of
God’s nature correspond to the
morning, while faith belongs to the
night? Also, why does the verse
mention morning first, when the
(Jewish) day starts in the evening?
PISGAT ZE'EV - Perfect for the investor or the
young couple. 40m, first floor, 2 rooms.
Asking: 1,190,000NIS
RECHAVIA, Ben Maimon - On the best part of the
best street in Rechavia, 125m, 3 bedrooms, true
masterpiece in its design
RENTAL - BAK'A - Dan St - Upper cottage, 140m,
5 bdrms, 2 succah balconies. Asking: 10,500 NIS/mo.
RASKO, Tschernichovsky - First floor, renovated
and spacious. 60m, 2 bdrms and 1 full bath.
Asking 1,890,000NIS
N.ACHIM / SH.CHESED - Even Sapir - Duplex
garden apartment in a new building. 4 bedrooms,
49m garden, under floor heating.
Asking: 6,000,000NIS
Reserve of Light
Night is a time of preparation. We
sleep at night to regain strength for
our daytime activities. The value of
night is in its
cont. p.61
lfiix oa ikcxn oeyxb - dnly d`etx
Yaniv Gabbay
Elia Gabai
052-614-1442
052-862-9208
[email protected][email protected]
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 59
BALAK 5777
Dr. Maurice E. Joseph Jewish Video Program
12:30pm • no charge • in the Library (unless stated elsewise)
Tasty, full-sized sandwiches will be sold between 12-12:15 prior
to Main Hall JewishVideo showings. Tuna or egg salad on fresh
whole wheat or white roll - ONLY 15NIS! Also hot drinks for 5NIS
MON July 10th - Phil Chernofsky - Tisha B’Av Is Coming!
TUE July 11th - America and the Holocaust • Main Hall • 1½ hrs
Reveals actions by officials at highest levels that prevented hundreds of thousands
of Jews from escaping the Nazis. You probably don’t know the whole, heartbreaking
story, the utter perfidy. Historians and U.S. officials build an airtight case.
WED July 12th - Echoes That Remain • Main Hall • 1 hr
A favorite! One of our best! Powerful documentary on a world that is no more shtetl life. Deeply moving portrait of the shtetl - her people and customs.
TheIsrael CenterandtheOld City Free Loan Association Gemach - Free Loan Society
providing interest-free loans for people in financial distress (living in the J'lem area).
Interviews at the Center • Bring ID • Tuesdays 10-12 and 19-20:15
Shiv'a Asar b'Tamuz
Root and BranchAssociation Lecture
Tuesday, July 11th
Thursday, July 13th • 7:30pm
(also see p.2 and p.37)
6:00pm
Shiur on Inyana D'Yoma
(timely topics for the Fast and the 3 Weeks)
Rabbi Jeff Bienenfeld
Hosted at the OU Israel Center, Jerusalem
Program in memory of
First Sgt. Hadas Malka c"id
by
Mr. Lowell
Joseph Gallin
Author, Interviewer...
and more!
7:00pm - Slow-paced MINCHA
mini-shiur with Phil
Program Chair:
8:10pm - Maariv (fast ends 8:18pm) Dr. Les Glassman
Fast-breaking refreshments
Regular Israel Center Fees
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 60
BALAK 5777
cont. from p.59
preparatory nature; the actual goal
is the activities of the day.
Like the night, faith serves to
prepare us. The final goal, spiritual
perfection, lies in clear awareness of
the nature of God. But without faith,
one would not perform mitzvot nor
refine character traits, both of which
ultimately lead to true enlightenment. Faith serves as a necessary
prerequisite for intellectual insight.
In his introduction to the “Guide for
the Perplexed”, Rambam used the
metaphor of lightning to describe
divine enlightenment. It is not a
constant phenomenon, but rather it
shines its brilliant truth in pulses.
The frequency of these lightning
bolts of truth is a function of one’s
spiritual level. For a great prophet
like Moshe Rabeinu, the lightning
flashes are so rapid that they appear
to be a single continuous light. For
others, the light appears and
vanishes, like “the flame of the
rotating sword” (B'reishit 3:24).
Here lies the second role of faith.
When the intellect is well illumi-
nated, we can recognize the truth of
the Torah by its light. But faith is
needed for those times when the
light of the intellect does not shine,
during the hours of night when
spiritual darkness reigns.
The verse mentions day before
night to indicate this second aspect
of faith. After the light of day, which
intermittently enlightens the intellect, faith serves as a reserve source
of illumination during periods of
darkness. 
All your jewelry needs
in one place!
A 5th generation skilled craftsman will fix,
refurnish, polish or restore your family
heirlooms,Kiddush cups, candlesticks, and
any gold/silver jewelry
Deliveries directly to/from your home
in Jerusalem area
Details: Santo - 052-228-9627
Stunning Jerusalem Penthouse
S leeps up to 10.Indo o rpo o landfitness
center.Callto dayfo rdisco unted
summerweeklyrate.
054-805-0425
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 61
BALAK 5777
Maharal on the Sedra
Bilaam's Second Prophecy
- The Status of Israel
at Arvot Moav
Bamidbar 23:21 - Hashem, his God, is
with him, and the shofar blast is with
him.
Netzach Yisrael 58:895 - Bilaam
explains to Balak why his attempted
curses cannot succeed. The link
between Israel and Hashem is not
separable. Whenever Israel calls for
help by blowing the shofar, Hashem
answers. As midrash relates, an
orchard without a watchman is
vulnerable to damage by a thief. If
the watchman sleeps, the thief
enters. But "the Watchman of Israel
neither slumbers nor sleeps" [T'hilim
121:4] - how can I do them harm
[Yalkut Shimoni 1:768]? Balak
suggests Moshe their teacher could
be responsible for this bond - what
happens
after
him?
Bilaam
prophesies his successor will perpetuate the bond, saying "the
staccato sound of the shofar of the
king is in him [23:22]", referring to
the fall of the walls of Yericho
[Yehoshua 6:20].
Bamidbar 23:22 - God brought them
out of Egypt, like angels and
demons.
Same - Hashem does two things: He
guards and leads the world toward
its correction and He destroys it
consequent to the deserved punishment of people, which He decrees
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 62
BALAK 5777
according to His wisdom and will as
He did in the generation of the
Flood and the generation of
Dispersion. TO'AFOT are the angels
assigned to the conduct of the
world; RE'EM are the demons
assigned to the destruction of the
world. Hashem operates both and
used both to extract Israel from
Egypt. All this attests that Israel is
the people of Hashem.
blessed be He. When they say
"Hashem is One" [6:4] they
consume the destructive forces
before them [Yalkut Shimoni 1:769].
Therefore it is not fitting to praise
Israel as powerful in human terms their power is Godly, not human.
Their acts are great and awesome Godly mitzvot.
- Column prepared by Dr. Moshe Kuhr
Bamidbar 23:24 - This is a nation
that rises like a lion, and lifts itself
like a lion. It does not lie down until it
eats its prey and drinks the blood of
its kill.
Same - No nation is like this one they sleep surrounded by the Torah
and mitzvot done the previous day,
and arise like lions to call out the
Sh'ma and enthrone the Holy One,
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 63
BALAK 5777
Pirkei Avot
,dp̈W§ O¦ d© oFWl§ A¦ min¦ k̈£g EpẄ
.mz̈p̈W§ n¦ aE
§ mdÄ
¤ xg© ÄW¤ KExÄ
The sages taught the following in
the style of the Mishna, - Blessed
be He that made choice of them
and their teachings.
The above is the introduction, preamble, to the 6th perek of Pirkei
Avot.
Masechet Avot consists of five
p'rakim. When the custom first
began to learn a chapter on each
Shabbat between Pesach and
Shavuot, a sixth chapter was
composed of Mishna-like writings
(B'raitot) on the theme of Torah
study and a Torah Life. Very
appropriate for the Shabbat right
before Z'man Matan Torateinu.
Let's take a close look at the brief
intro, above.
In essence, we are thanking G-d for
our Sages as well as what they teach
us.
Does this mean that it is important
to know and trust our teachers, the
authors that we read, the various
people who input into our
knowledge and instruction for living
a proper Torah life?
I would say VERY MUCH SO!
But let's look back into this week's
sedra. From whose mouth did we
hear MA TOVU OHALECHA YAAKOV and from whom do we learn important lessons of Jewish Life?
Bil'am. Bil'am HaRasha.
Okay, maybe we can say that it is
clear that G-d put those words and
those lessons into Bil'am's mouth against Bil'am's better judgment.
Maybe that's the only way we can
learn from Bil'am.
And what about Rabbi Meir continuing to learn Torah from Acheir, after
he went off the derech - BIG TIME?
Maybe a Rabbi Meir can do that, but
we have to be careful from whom we
learn. We are not Rabbi Meir, who
was able to sift out true Torah from
whatever else Acheir had ro say.
Be very careful from whom you learn
Torah, and really just about anything
else. Science teachers and history
teacher and literature teachers need
to be trustworthy to teach us (and
our children) in a proper way.
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 64
BALAK 5777
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 65
BALAK 5777
Last week we presented a prayer to HaShem of thanks for our having the great
privilege of living in Eretz Yisael. We took it (with permission) from the book To
Dwell in the Palace. At the back of the book is a prayer for Jews who don't (yet)
live in Eretz Yisrael. We havreaders like that, and our TTreaders who B"H live
here, have relatives and friends who don't yet. Maybe share this with them.
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 66
BALAK 5777
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 67
BALAK 5777
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 68
BALAK 5777
The Jerusalem Fellowships
is proud to present
Dr. David Luchins
Chair, Dept of Political Science, Touro College
at Aish HaTorah’s
World Headquarters
2:00pm on...
Thursday, July 20th • 2:00pm
Trump, Israel and the Path to Peace
Sunday, July 23rd
Have We Sold Out on Social Justice?
M onday, July 31st (Erev Tish'a b'Av)
Stop the Fire
Wednesday, August 2
Elections 2016: Was it Good for the Jews?
Additional talks by Dr. Luchins at 2pm on
M onday, August 7; Wednesday, August 9;
Thursday, August 10; M onday, August 14
New on the market!
Uzia Street, Greek Colony
210m duplex, tastefully renovated,
4 bedrooms, 3 full bathrooms,
40m terrace to view, parking, elevator,
storeroom + separate 50m unit
NIS 7,900,000
Ruth Abrahami Real Estate Agent
054-80-70-677 Fax: 02-651-4955
www.ruthabrahami.com•[email protected]
ARNONA - New garden apt, 4 bedrooms, 128m, quiet,
sunny, fully renovated, master bedrrom,2 parking,
storage, private a/c &heat systems • Ofer 052-450-7266
ABU TOR - 2 bedrooms approx 117m on 1 level,
elevator, privte parking, storage, 2 balconies, amazing
renovation, huge living spaces, luxury building, walking
distance to Kotel • Ofer 052-450-7266
CASPI - unique property, 4 bedrooms apt, view of the
Old City, easy access, succa balcony 90m, private
parking, storage, very quiet, walking distance to the
Kotel, Baka,andGerman Colony, Ofer 052-450-7266
NEW ARNONA - 3 bedrooms apt, 100m, elevator,
parking, storage, balcony with amazing view, master
bedroom Ofer 052-450-7266
OLD KATAMON - amazing penthouse, 170m on one
level, elevator, 2 parking, storage,succa balcony, smart
house, good location,Hertzel - 058-785-2271
ARNONA - 4 bedroom townhouse, private entrance,
70m succa balcony, renovated + 2 bedrooms unit for rent
in 4000nis, parking, storage, a/c, good location
3,900,000nis flexible •Ofer 052-450-7266
BAKA - amazing deal, 3 bedrroms, first floor, sunny and
light, rent - in 5000nis,only 1,875,000nis Ofer 052-4507266
19 Yad Harutzim, Jerusalem
077-2151200 • www.hemed-nadlan.co.il
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 69
BALAK 5777
Rabbi Breitowitz's Tuesday morning shiur
continues to be sponsored by
Mel & Pessy Krausz David
Please join us at the OU Israel Center in wishing Mel a refuah shleima
Menachem Mendel ben Toba Rivka
Mrs. Smiles's shiur (TUE July 4th)
was sponsored by Sara Berelowitz
in honor of the birth of a Grandson
Rabbi Kahn's shiur (THU July 6)
is sponsored by Elaine Pomrantz
in honor of the Bat Mitzva of Elianna Chaya Markowitz
daughter of Rena Markowitz
Rabbi Sprecher's shiur (THU July 6)
is sponsored by Shimshon Granek
In memory of his MOTHER a"h on the occasion of her yahrzeit
d"r wip`xb dgny za dwax dxy
Rabbi Adler's shiur (WED July 12)
is sponsored In memory of
our beloved Husband, Father, Grandfather & Great-Grandfather
Howard Sherby z"l
by Carole Sherby & Family
Rabbi Ruvel's shiur (THU July 13)
is sponsored by Bev Marcus and family
l"f ilztp oa ikcxn mdxa` znyp ielrl
on his 25th yahrzeit
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 70
BALAK 5777
It is not too early
to sign up for our upcoming
IN-HOUSE
SHABBAT NACHAMU
Fri-SHA, August 4-5
Great Davening
Great Food
Great Shiurim
Great Camaraderie
Call Ita Rochel
(02) 560-9125
Yitzchak Kowalsky
054-766-0338
[email protected]
Great investment in Katamon - (Haporzim)
2.5 rooms, 53m, Sukkah balcony, Rare and quiet
Asking 1.85M NIS
Located in heart of the Greek/German Colony 190m, Garden apartment (large private garden),
Original Arab house, Private entrance, high ceilings,
character & charm, private parking, 2 Storage rms
Tama 38 project on Rivka street: Last mini duplex
in project, starting from 2.6M NIS, 3 rms, 66m with
balcony of 5m, 4th floor, elevator, asking 1.75M NIS
RENT - Beautiful unique 5 room, 4 bath garden apt
in the heart of Katamon, state of the art utilities &
beautiful new furniture, balcony, 2 covered parking
spots, available immediately for long term
Beautiful large property for rent in arnona (Caspi) renovated 180m apt with all modern amenities,
large garden, 2 small balconies and private parking,
2 floors, 6 rooms and full of light
Rechavia: 4 steps to entrance, 4 rooms, 85m,
architecturally renovated, central A/C, floor heating,
two full bathrooms, balcony, bright and quiet
UPCOMINGS
Dr. David Luchins
will be speaking at the
OU Israel Center
on TUE July 25th, 8:00pm
"Rav Aharon Soloveichik on
the search for Social Justice"
www.sossingroup.com
and on MON Aug 14th • 8:00pm
"When Jews Break the Law"
Watch for details of
our Leil Tish'a b'Av
and Tish'a b'Av day
programs
U.S. based Life Insurance for
Israel residents with minimal hassle
Lower premiums • more benefits
Underwriting requirements will need to be completed in the U.S.
Call for a FREE quote
054-227-0863 • US: 917-559-1828
[email protected] • www.dflifeinsurance.com
OU Israel Center TT 1236 z page 71
BALAK 5777
Was this manual useful for you? yes no
Thank you for your participation!

* Your assessment is very important for improving the work of artificial intelligence, which forms the content of this project

Download PDF

advertisement