Archives for posts with tag: Moshe


There is a minhag not to have the same  person be honored as a Sandek twice in one family. The Rama quotes the Maharil who likens a sandek to a Kohen who brings the ketores in the mikdash. The ketores was considered an important mitzvah and was a segulah for wealth. In order to create a fair society amongst the Kohanim,  they created a system so that no kohen should be able to bring the ketores more than once. During the daily gorel they would announce that only those Kohanim who have not bought the ketores should participate in the gorel.

Similarly, being Sandek at a Bris is a segulah for wealth and like the Kohen offering Ketores, it is limited to once per family.

But why is bringing a baby to the Bris likened to offering Ketores? What is the deeper connection between the Bris Mila and Ketores which causes us to equate them?

To understand the power of Ketores, let’s first take a look at the Parsha. After Korach and his cohorts are punished for their rebellion, Bnei Yisroel complained that Moshe and Aharon were responsible for killing the nation of Hashem. As a result, Hashem sends a plague to punish the Jewish people.

Moshe tells Aharon to offer Ketores to atone for the Jewish people. Why did Moshe suddenly pull out the Ketores? What is the connection to the impending plague? The Gemara explains that when Moshe was on Har Sinai to receive the Torah, each of the Malachim presented Moshe with a gift. Even the Malach Hamaves gave Moshe a gift, teaching Moshe the secret that Ketores has the ability to stop a plague. When Aharon burnt the Ketores amongst the Jewish people, the Malach Hamaves halted in his tracks, bringing the plague to its end.

What is the unique power of Ketores that it can stop a plague, even when the Jewish people seemingly deserved to be punished?

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We all have our challenges through the twists and turns of life. Some are easy and some are harder. Sometimes we see bracha clearly in our lives and at times, it seems that the wells of bracha have dried up.

Chazal in Taanis 8b state that bracha does not rest upon things that have already been weighed, measured or counted, rather bracha can only be found on things hidden from sight. The Kedushas Levi asks, that we find by the Mishkan that everything had an exact accounting, yet there was still Bracha there?

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The Rambam in Hilchos Teshuva 5;2 writes that we should all strive to be like Moshe Rabbeinu. Rav Pam asked, how could the Rambam say this, after the Torah says there will be  no one as great as Moshe? Rav Pam explains that Hashem said on Moshe כי כל ביתו נאמן הוא , we see that even though no one can be as great as Moshe, that is only regarding Nevuah, Middos and wisdom, but to build a Bayis Neman B’Yisrael one has to channel everything he does for Hashem and in that everyone can strive to be like Moshe and we should all be zoche to a Bayis Neman B’Yisrael in the truest sense.


The Talmud (Megilla 13b) states “When Haman drew lots for the month to carry out the annihilation of the Jewish people it fell in Adar, Haman was very happy with this as this is the month that Moshe Died” the Gemara continues that what Haman didn’t realize is that it was also the month that Moshe was born. The question is what difference does it make now that Moshe was also born in Adar, at the end of the day this is the month that he died?

The Yaaros Dvash explains that although Moshe did indeed die on the 7th of Adar, he is reborn each year on the 7th of Adar to help each and every Jew learn and fulfill the Torah properly, every Jew has Moshe Rabbeinu helping him! It was this zechus of Moshe Rabbeinu that dissolved Haman’s plot and turned the tables. Vnehapoch Hu…….

Yom Kippur is a time of renewal a time to start fresh  a time of teshuva. During the times of the Beis Hamikdosh, this renewal process was done by the Kohen Godol via the avodah of the Day. The Gemara says that Moshe Rabbeinu had the status of a Kohen Godol. We see just like on Yom Kippur we have a renewal, so too on the 7th of Adar, on the day that Moshe Rabbeinu is reborn we have a renewal to learn Torah and fulfill it properly with the aid of Moshe.

The same applies to  Purim, which is a special Eis Rotzon for Teshuva and Tefilla. Hashem should help us that today should be a new time, a time of renewal in Torah and in the zechus of Moshe Rabbeinu  we should be able to fulfill the Torah  properly.


Before the accounting of Matan Torah and Kabbalas HaTorah, the Torah relates the story of Yisro.

What brought Yisro?

Did Yisro come because he heard about Krias Yam Suf or because he heard about Matan Torah. In other words did he come before or after Matan Torah?

There is a popular Jewish folktale of a melamed who was teaching his students Parshas Yisro and he explained that Yisro was the Galach, priest, of Midian and was also the Shver, Father in law of  Moshe. One bright student immediately asked if Yisro was a priest how did he have a son-in-law? The Melamed thought long and hard and finally answered “This happened before Matan Torah!”

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