Torah Tidbits

25 July 2014 / 27 Tammuz 5774

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Issue 1019
Shabbat Parshat Vayeira
November 01, 2012
Lead Tidbits
Guest Article

Rashi in Parshat Vayeira (21:12) states that Sarah was an even greater prophet than Avraham. We don't have prophecy today, so wh

Rashi in Parshat Vayeira (21:12) states that Sarah was an even greater prophet than Avraham. We don’t have prophecy today, so what is Sarah’s legacy to us?

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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

Vayeira Stats

4th of the 54 sedras;
4th of 12 sedras in B’reishit
Written on 252 lines in a Torah, ranks 5th
6 Parshiyot; 4 open, 2 closed
147 p’sukim - ranks 7th (4th in B’reishit)
2085 words - ranks 2nd (first in B’reishit)
7862 letters - ranks 3rd (2nd in B’reishit)
P’sukim above average in length (i.e. number of words and number of letters per pasuk) explain its rise in rankings from p’sukim to words (and letters). Vayeira is actually 2nd largest sedra in the Torah. (Naso, is #1 with no rival - Bamidbar, Pinchas, and R’ei all take up more lines than Vayeira, but those sedras each have many parshiyot, which means a lot of blank space between parshiyot, which adds to the number of lines.)

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Lead Tidbit

Avraham Avinu: We are He

Avraham Avinu: We are He

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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

Rabbi M. Miller, in a penetrating essay on the parsha, asks why Avraham was so concerned, three days after his circumcision, in the heat of the sun and in pain, to take care of the needs of three weary Arab nomads who happened to pass by his tent. Today, in our society, an adult in such a situation would probably be in a hospital under the nurturing care of doctors and nurses!

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"From Machon Puah"

Uterine Transplants - Science Fiction or a New Reality?

Uterine Transplants - Science Fiction or a New Reality?

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Portion of the Portion

And they walked together - whose test was it?

And they walked together - whose test was it?

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Parsha Points to Ponder

Parsha Points to Ponder

Parsha Points to Ponder by Rabbi Dov Lipman - VAYEIRA
1) Why does G-D repeat that He will return and Sarah will have a son (18:14) after this was already promised in 18:10?
2) Why does G-D link His decision to tell Avraham about the impending destruction of S’dom to the fact that Avraham is going to head a large nation (see the flow from 18:17 to 18:18)?
3) Why does the Torah use the masculine when it describes Lot’s wife looking back at the destruction of Sedom - ACHARAV (19:26)?

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Chizuk and Idud

CHIZUK and IDUD for Olim not yet Olim respectively

Avraham’s journey towards the Akeida takes 3 long days. During this time he is deliberating, debating, experiencing an extended inner struggle as depicted in the Midrash describing his meeting with an old man (his conscience) who makes him confront that which he is about to do. Where are you going? the man asks. Why do you carry a knife? The nature of Avraham’s internal dilemma has been described as the “teleological suspension of the ethical”, meaning that Avraham’s understanding of G-d as being all good, is not compatible with Avraham’s being commanded to sacrifice his beloved son. Alternatively, Avraham must confront the total contradiction between having been promised “Ki v’Yitzchak Yikarei L’cha Zera” (in Isaac shall thy seed be called - B’reishit 21:12) and being told to bring Isaac to the Akeida (Rashi on 22:12).

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Vebbe Rebbe

Vebbe Rebbe

The Orthodox Union - via its website - fields questions of all types in areas of kashrut, Jewish law and values. Some of them are answered by Eretz Hemdah, the Institute for Advanced Jewish Studies, Jerusalem, headed by Rav Yosef Carmel and Rav Moshe Ehrenreich, founded by HaRav Shaul Yisraeli zt"l, to prepare rabbanim and dayanim to serve the National Religious community in Israel and abroad. Ask the Rabbi is a joint venture of the OU, Yerushalayim Network, Eretz Hemdah… and the Israel Center. The following is a Q&A from Eretz Hemdah…

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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

4th of the 54 sedras;
4th of 12 sedras in B’reishit
Written on 252 lines in a Torah, ranks 5th
6 Parshiyot; 4 open, 2 closed
147 p’sukim - ranks 7th (4th in B’reishit)
2085 words - ranks 2nd (first in B’reishit)
7862 letters - ranks 3rd (2nd in B’reishit)
P’sukim above average in length (i.e. number of words and number of letters per pasuk) explain its rise in rankings from p’sukim to words (and letters). Vayeira is actually 2nd largest sedra in the Torah. (Naso, is #1 with no rival - Bamidbar, Pinchas, and R’ei all take up more lines than Vayeira, but those sedras each have many parshiyot, which means a lot of blank space between parshiyot, which adds to the number of lines.)

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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…

There are 385 possible Jewish Calendar dates. From the first of the Adar that immediately precedes Nisan all the way around the year to the 29th of Marchesh- van (295 days), there are no variables. The 30 days of Adar Rishon and the 30th of Marcheshvan and Kislev are the 32 days that sometimes are and sometimes aren’t. This year - 5773 - has none of them, leaving 353 days - the minimum length of a year. This year is both a P’SHUTA (only one Adar) and a CHASEIR.