Torah Tidbits

25 April 2014 / 25 Nisan 5774

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Issue 1012
Parshat Sho-f’tim
August 23, 2012
Lead Tidbits
Guest Article

Is Aramaic a Part of Hebrew?

In last week’s article we showed that speaking Hebrew is a Mitzva. If so, why did the Rabbis of the Talmud converse in Aramaic? The Babylonian Talmud was written in Aramaic and not in Hebrew. The Biblical Book of Daniel is written partly in Aramaic. Even the Torah itself in Bereshit 31:47 has an Aramaic phrase.

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Aliya-by-Aliya Sedra Summary

Aliya by Aliya Sedra Summary

Aliya-by-Aliya Sedra Summary
[P> X:Y (Z)] and [S> X:Y (Z)] indicate start of a parsha p’tucha or s’tuma. X:Y is Perek:Pasuk of the beginning of the parsha; (Z) is the number of p’sukim in the parsha.
Numbers in [square brackets] are the Mitzva-count of Sefer HaChinuch AND Rambam’s Sefer HaMitzvot. A=ASEI (positive mitzva); L=LAV (prohibition). X:Y is the perek and pasuk from which the mitzva comes.

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Sedra Stats

SHO-F'TIM Stats

SHO-F’TIM Stats
48th of the 54 sedras;
5th of 11 in D’varim
Written on 191.6 lines (rank: 27)
18 Parshiyot; 3 open, 15 closed
97 p’sukim - ranks 36th - 7th in D’varim (tied with Tzav, but larger)
1523 words - ranks 28th - 7th in D’varim
5590 letters - ranks 31st - 7th in D’varim
Relatively large p’sukim, like most of D’varim but an average-sized sedra

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Lead Tidbit

The True Source of All Authority

We’ll start with the sedra, but we’ll go beyond (or before) it as well.
Sho-f’tim seems to be about authority. Several of our feature writers focused on the connection between the sedra and the beginning of Elul.
Let’s take a look. The sedra begins with the command to appoint judges and officers to be responsible for the carrying out of justice. The various levels of Batei Din and Sanhedrins (small ones of 23 judges and the Great Sanhedrin of 71) have an awesome task and are given a tremendous amount of authority over the people. But what (or rather Who) is the source of that authority? The obvious answer is G-d.
He is the Dayan Emet - the True Judge. And He is capable of running the whole show - but He gave over to people the responsibility and power of administering Justice.

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Other Tidbits
TTriddles "Report"

TTriddles

TTRIDDLES…
are Torah Tidbits-style riddles on Parshat HaShavua (sometimes on the calendar). They are found in the hard-copy of TT scattered throughout, usually at the bottom of different columns. In the electronic versions of TT, they are found all together at the end of the ParshaPix-TTriddles section. The best solution set submitted each week (there isn’t always a best) wins a double prize a CD from Noam Productions and/or a gift (game, puzzle, book, etc.) from Big Deal

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Divrei Menachem

Divrei Menachem

This week’s parsha talks much of judges and the kings. To sum it up, the nobility must take care neither to become haughty nor to become corrupt. Both are instructed what to avoid and both royalty and judges are to behave in ways that serve as examples of righteousness to the people.

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"From Machon Puah"

How to Respond

In her recent talk at the very successful joint Puah and OU conference on Intimacy held in Teaneck, New Jersey, the psychologist Dr. Sara Barris spoke about the dynamics of intimacy in all stages of life, how to connect together “for the long haul”, in her words.
She compared successful and unsuccessful marriages, including in the latter group marriages that still survived but that had become stale for both spouses and left the couple just going through the motions but lacking the emotions.
One of the things that bind couples together is what Dr. Barris called acts of constructive response, as opposed to destructive response. This is reflected in the way one partner responds to the success of the other.

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Portion of the Portion

Rachamim vs. Din

The month of ELUL is here. The Sepharadim amongst us already rise early to say the selichot prayers, which include the 13 attributes of RACHAMIM used to bring down G-d’s compassion on our nation. Soon the Ashkenazim will join in as well.

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Parsha Points to Ponder

Parsha Points to Ponder

1) Why does the Torah add the words TO TRANSGRESS HIS COVENANT (LA’AVOR B’RITO) when describing a person who serves idols (17:2)? Isn’t it obvious that a person who does this is violating the pact G-D made with His people?
2) Why does the person who serves idols have to be brought specifically to the place where he worshiped the idols to have his judgement (17:5 - EL SH’ARECHA - Rashi)?
3) Why are the laws of Egla Arufa, regarding a dead body found between two cities, placed in the midst of laws regarding wars (see 21:1-9 and the sections before and after)?

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Word of the Month

Word of the Month

A weekly feature of Torah Tidbits to help clarify practical and conceptual aspects of the Jewish Calendar, thereby better fulfilling the mitzva of haChodesh HaZeh Lachem…

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Sedra Stats

SHO-F’TIM Stats
48th of the 54 sedras;
5th of 11 in D’varim
Written on 191.6 lines (rank: 27)
18 Parshiyot; 3 open, 15 closed
97 p’sukim - ranks 36th - 7th in D’varim (tied with Tzav, but larger)
1523 words - ranks 28th - 7th in D’varim
5590 letters - ranks 31st - 7th in D’varim
Relatively large p’sukim, like most of D’varim but an average-sized sedra

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Word of the Month

A weekly feature of Torah Tidbits to help clarify practical and conceptual aspects of the Jewish Calendar, thereby better fulfilling the mitzva of HaChodesh HaZeh Lachem…

ELUL: Its MOLAD was Friday (Aug 17) afternoon. Rosh Chodesh was Shabbat and Sunday. First opportunity for Kiddush L’vana according to Minhag Yerushala- yim (3 full days after the molad) was Monday night (Aug 20). First op for 7-day after the molad people is Motza’ei Shabbat (Aug 25) - would have been Friday night except we don’t say KL on Leil Shabbat or Yom Tov unless it is the LAST op. The last op this month is all night Thursday to Friday (Aug 30-31).