Please enable JavaScript in your browser to experience all the custom features of our site.

RabbiHorowitz.com
Please Use Our New Website
still under constructions
to purchase safety books and educational materials
https://thebrightbeginnings.com

Mr. Harry Skydell, Chairman
Mr. Mark Karasick, Vice Chairman
Rabbi Yakov Horowitz, Director
Rabbi Avrohom M. Gluck, Director of Operations
The first 1000 members will have a chance to win a
16 GB
iPod
touch
with Rabbi Horowitz audio

Membership Benefits:

  • Save articles to your favorites folder.
  • Save and print selected articles in a PDF journal.
  • Receive emails containing the latest comments on your favorite articles.
  • Mark articles as "READ".
  • More member features coming soon...

Raffle Rules:

NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. To enter, complete the signup form and join as a member. Incomplete entries will be disqualified. All entries shall become the property of CJFL. CJFL is not responsible for lost, misdirected or delayed entries.

The contest is open to the general public. Members need to be at least 18 years old. Identification must be produced on request. Employees of CJFL, its raffle sponsor, advertising and promotional agencies and their respective affiliates and associates and such employees' immediate family members and persons with whom such employees are domiciled are excluded from this raffle. ALL PREVIOUSLY REGISTERED MEMBERS WILL BE AUTOMATICALLY ENTERED INTO THIS RAFFLE. The prize is not redeemable in cash and must be accepted as awarded. Decisions of the raffle judges are final - no substitutions will be available. By claiming the prize, the winner authorizes the use, without additional compensation of his or her name and/or likeness (first initial and last name) and municipality of residence for promotion and/or advertising purposes in any manner and in any medium (including without limitation, radio broadcasts, newspapers and other publications and in television or film releases, slides, videotape, distribution over the internet and picture date storage) which CJFL may deem appropriate. In accepting the prize, the winner, acknowledges that CJFL may not be held liable for any loss, damages or injury associated with accepting or using this prize. CJFL retains the rights, in its absolute and sole discretion, to make substitutions of equivalent kind or approximate value in the event of the unavailability of any prize or component of the prize for any reason whatsoever. This contest is subject to all federal, provincial and municipal laws. CJFL reserves the right to withdraw or terminate this raffle at any time without prior notice. One entry per person.


Parshas Bo 5765
by Rabbi Yakov Horowitz

Not Rated Yet   |   Viewed 2751 times since 12/19/06   |   0 Comments
Decrease Font Size Increase Font Size    [ Change Font Size ] Email This Article to a Friend
   

12/19/06

A Torah Thought for Teens – Parshas Bo

By: Rabbi Yakov Horowitz

“Hachodesh Hazeh lochem Rosh Chodoshim.” This month (Nissan) will be the first of all months [of the year] (Shemos 12:2).

So begins the first mitzvah directly given to Klal Yisroel (see Rashi, Bereshis 1:1) – the sanctification of the New Moon, and the primacy of Chodesh Nissan as the first of the months of the year. Although other mitzvos were referenced in earlier parshiyos (such as milah and gid ha’nasheh), this was the first one given as a direct commandment to the Jewish people.

Upon reflection, it is not immediately evident why this mitzvah was selected as the first one and why it was given to the B’nei Yisroel at this particular moment – as they began their destiny as the Am Hanivchar (the Chosen People of Hashem). While the theme of Chodesh Nissan is certainly congruent with the instructions for the preparation of the korban Pesach, knowledge of the halachos of kiddush hachodesh were not a prerequisite for the mitzvos of the korban. In fact, the full spectrum of kiddush hachodesh – establishing the new month based upon the actual sighting of the moon, was not put into effect until we lived in Eretz Yisroel and the Sanhedrin was functioning.

I would like to propose that Hashem might have selected this moment to share the concept of kiddush hachodesh with His people in order to share with them two powerful lessons that can be gleaned from the careful study of the moon.

The Gemorah (Chullin 60b; and referenced by Rashi, Bereshis 1:16) relates that the moon was originally equal in brilliance to the sun, but after the moon complained and questioned the value in having "two kings wear the same crown," Hashem reduced its light and established the dominance of the sun among the celestial bodies.

After 210 years of galus in Egypt, the Bnei Yisroel were in the midst of a meteoric rise – in prestige, power, and financial success. As with all blessings, there were challenges associated with acquiring these brachos. Penniless slaves have little reason to envy each other. Moreover, there is a natural bond created among people who share a common enemy and suffer depravation together. These relationships – and the value systems of individual members of Klal Yisroel – were about to undergo a rigorous test as they were showered with the allure of freedom, the bounty of the Egyptians, and eventually, the acquisition of each family’s portion in Eretz Yisroel. (Some meforshim comment that the fear of the challenges of sudden wealth was the reason that Moshe was initially reluctant to have his people ‘borrow’ the valuables of the Egyptians.)

Perhaps this is what Hashem was hinting to them as he directed the attention of Klal Yisroel to the New Moon. Remember the importance of humility, proclaims the levanah. Frowning upon the success of others diminishes your own stature – in so many ways. Appreciating their success will elevate you and make you a spiritual being; a true Eved Hashem.

This may offer us a homiletic insight into the phrase that Hashem uttered to Moshe as He showed him the new moon. “K’zeh r’eiy v’kaddeish”, look [at the image of the new moon] and [when you see it in this position in the sky] proclaim it to be holy [Rosh Chodesh].” Hashem is instructing Klal Yisroel that looking at the moon and remembering its message of the importance of humility will elevate your kedusha.

Another, related message of the moon may be found in its monthly cycle of waxing and waning. While the sun remains in its full glory day after day, the moon undergoes change – from its humble beginnings each month as a mere sliver in the evening sky, to full strength in mid-month, only to fade and eventually disappear from sight altogether.

The gemorah (Succah 29a) compares the Jewish people to the moon. And, in fact, throughout our history we were fortunate to enjoy periods of glory – and times of horrific churban. Hashem directed Klal Yisroel to look at the moon and realize that their newfound freedom and power may not last forever. Our strength as the Am Hanivchar needs to be much more than the power we possess and the financial success that we achieve. Enjoy the blessings I have given you, says Hashem. But at the same time, realize that you will need to live meaningful lives; lives devoted to the eternal principles of our Torah – as you earn the title “Yisroel asher b’cha espo’eir”

Best wishes for a gutten Shabbos.

© 2004 Rabbi Yakov Horowitz, all rights reserved



To sign up for Rabbi Horowitz’s weekly emails, please click here.


Reader's Comments:      Rating & Comments Policy      Rate & Write a Comment!
 Average Rating:       Not Rated Yet
Subscribe to this Article
(by subscribing you will receive email notification
when new comments are posted)
There are no comments yet. Click above to write the first comment.
Dear Readers:

Please visit our Parenting Resource listing to learn about agencies and services that you can make use of. If you know of an agency that can be of assistance to others, kindly drop an email to our site administrator at admin@RabbiHorowitz.com and pass along the information to him.

I ask that you please consider supporting the work we are doing to improve the lives of our children. Click on these links to learn more about our teen and parent mentoring program that serves hundreds of teens and their families, or our KESHER program, now in 20 schools in 4 states. Your financial support can allow us to expand these services and help more children.

If you believe in the governing principles of this website – to help effect positive change through the candid discussions of the real issues we collectively face, please consider becoming a daily, weekly or monthly sponsor of this website and help defray the costs of it’s maintenance.



Working with Families and Educators on Behalf of our Children

This site is managed by The Center for Jewish Family Life, Inc., 56 Briarcliff Drive, Monsey, NY 10952
Project Y.E.S. was founded by Agudath Israel of America
The Center for Jewish Family Life/Project YES - 56 Briarcliff Drive, Monsey, NY 10952 (845) 352-7100 ext. 114 Fax: (845) 352-9593
email: email@kosherjewishparenting.com


Advertisements