Ki Tetze 5779

September 10, 2019

This is Torah Talk for the week of September 8th, 2019

Why does Deuteronomy care so much about the “wayward” [סורר] and defiant son of 21:18?

This week’s handout: 49 Ki Tetze 5779

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Learn Biblical Hebrew:
https://www.thegreatcourses.com/courses/biblical-hebrew-learning-a-sacred-language.html
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Shoftim 5779

September 3, 2019

This is Torah Talk for the week of September 1, 2019

What is the priest in Deuteronomy 20 doing — and what is he missing?

This week’s handout: 48 Shoftim 5779

Re’eh 5779

August 27, 2019

This is Torah Talk for the week of August 25th, 2019

Blessings, curses, and the place that’s MISSING from Deut 11:29-30.

This week’s handout: 47 Re’eh 5779

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Learn Biblical Hebrew:

https://www.thegreatcourses.com/courses/biblical-hebrew-learning-a-sacred-language.html

For further reading:  Yairah Amit, “Shechem in Deuteronomy: A Seemingly Hidden Polemic,” In History, Memory, Scriptures: A Festschrift for Ehud Ben Zvi, ed. Ian Douglas Wilson and Diana V. Edelman.

Ekev 5779

August 20, 2019

This is Torah Talk for the week of August 18th, 2019

An ee vowel instead of an ah vowel?  That difference leads to a frightening follow-up to Deuteronomy 7.

This week’s handout: 46 Ekev 5779

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Learn Biblical Hebrew:

https://www.thegreatcourses.com/courses/biblical-hebrew-learning-a-sacred-language.html

 

Va-etchanan 5779

August 13, 2019

This is Torah Talk for the week of August 11th, 2019

B. Nedarim 62b       A Rabbinical scholar may assert, “I am a servant of fire, and will not pay poll-tax.”

How is this possible?  The Talmud thinks it’s just to escape the government’s evil clutches … but Deuteronomy 4:24 may suggest a different answer.

This week’s handout: 45 Va-etchanan 5779

Click here for an article by Shai Secunda on studying the Persian background of the Babylonian Talmud.

Simcha Gross, who gave the talk that introduced me to this Talmud text, is now teaching at Penn.  Congratulations, Simcha!

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Learn Biblical Hebrew:https://www.thegreatcourses.com/courses/biblical-hebrew-learning-a-sacred-language.html

Devarim 5779

August 6, 2019

This is Torah Talk for the week of August 4th, 2019

How do you say 11 in Biblical Hebrew?  (And why it matters.)

This week’s handout: 44 Devarim 5779

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Learn Biblical Hebrew:

https://www.thegreatcourses.com/courses/biblical-hebrew-learning-a-sacred-language.html

 

 

Mattot-Masei 5779

July 30, 2019

This is Torah Talk for the week of July 28th, 2019

The return of Pinchas!  In Numbers?  No, when civil war threatens Israel — in Joshua and in Judges.

This week’s handout: 42-43 Mattot-Masei 5779

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Learn Biblical Hebrew:

https://www.thegreatcourses.com/courses/biblical-hebrew-learning-a-sacred-language.html

 

 

Pinchas 5779

July 23, 2019

This is Torah Talk for the week of July 21st, 2019

Where else in the Bible does Numbers matter?  In the middle of the book of Joshua!

This week’s handout: 41 Pinchas 5779

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Learn Biblical Hebrew:

https://www.thegreatcourses.com/courses/biblical-hebrew-learning-a-sacred-language.html

 

 

Balak 5779

July 16, 2019

This is Torah Talk for the week of July 14th, 2019

Balaam: Saint or Sinner?

This week’s handout: 40 Balak 5779

Update: see now Alexander Rofé’s article on thetorah.com.

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Learn Biblical Hebrew:

https://www.thegreatcourses.com/courses/biblical-hebrew-learning-a-sacred-language.html

 

 

Hukkat 5779

July 9, 2019

This is Torah Talk for the week of July 7th, 2019

What is “Waheb” … and why does it have the letters את in front of it?  Ed Greenstein and “Signs of Poetry Past” have the answer.

This week’s handout: 39 Hukkat 5779

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Learn Biblical Hebrew:

https://www.thegreatcourses.com/courses/biblical-hebrew-learning-a-sacred-language.html