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Dedicated in memory of Alice Setton

           Parshat Ki Teitzei                                                       August 21, 2021  13 Elul, 5781

                    TORAH                       Rabbi Sacks on Parshat Ki Teitzei
             ARTSCROLL  1046           Our parsha contains more  not love” or “unloved” is   deciding to whom to hand it
                 HERTZ   840           laws than any other.    senuah, which normally means  on.” But there is also the
                                       Some of them have       “hated.” We will see later why   welfare of others, including
                  HAFTORAH             generated much study    this strong word is used.   the other children, other
             ARTSCROLL   1201          and debate, especially   On the face of it, this is a   family members, and the
                  HERTZ  857           two at the beginning, the   straightforward, logical law. It   community and society that
                                       law of the captive woman                            are damaged by family
                 Bar Mitzvah           and that of the “stubborn   tells us that love must not   disputes. The Torah here
                                                               override justice. The firstborn,
                       of              and rebellious son.” There   in ancient Israel and elsewhere,   draws a line, acknowledging
              Charlie Sassoon          is, however, one law that   have special rights, especially   the rights of the biological
                                       deserves much more      in connection with inheritance.   firstborn and circumscribing
                    Aufruf             attention than it has   In most societies they tended   the rights of the father.
                                       generally received,
                       of              namely the one placed   to succeed to their father’s   The law as such is
               Joshua Frumkin          between these two. It   position. That was the case in   straightforward. What
                                       concerns the laws of    Israel in relation to kingship   makes it remarkable is that
                     Times             inheritance: If a man has   and priesthood. They did not   it reads as if it were directed
                                       two wives, and he loves   inherit all the father’s property,  against a specific biblical
           Weekly Times                  one but not the other,   but they did inherit twice as   figure, namely Jacob. One
           Mon. & Thurs.                                am   and both bear him sons   much as the other children. It   connection is linguistic. The
                                                               was important to have rules
                                                                                           key terms in our law are an
                                       but the firstborn is the
           Tues., Wed. & Fri.   6:45/7:45 am   son of the wife he does   like the above to avoid   opposition between ahuvah,
           Sunday               8:30 am   not love, when he wills   damaging family splits every   “loved,” and senuah,
                                                               time a death occurred or was   “hated/unloved.” This
                                       his property to his sons,
           Mincha               7:30 pm   he must not give the   imminent. The Torah gives us a  opposition occurs ten times
                                                                                           in the Torah. Three have to
                                                               graphic example of the court
                                       rights of the firstborn to
           Shabbat Times                 the son of the wife he   intrigue that went on, as David  do with the relationship
           Friday Night         7:00 pm   loves in preference to his   lay dying, as to which of his   between us and God: “those
                                                                                           who hate Me and those who
           Mincha                      actual firstborn, the son   children should be his heir.
                                       of the wife he does not   More recently, lehavdil, there   love Me.” That leaves seven
           Candle Lighting      7:27 pm                        have been several examples of  other cases. Four are in the
                                       love. He must
           Hashkama             8:00 am   acknowledge the son of   Hassidic dynasties irreparably   paragraph above. The other
                                                               torn apart because different
                                                                                           three are all about Jacob:
           Parsha Shiur         8:30 am   his unloved wife as the   groups wanted different   two of them about his love
                                       firstborn by giving him a
           Main Sanctuary       9:00 am   double share of all he   individuals to inherit the   for Rachel in preference to
           Beit Midrash         9:15 am   has. That son is the first   leadership.         Leah (Genesis 29:30-31, 32
                                                                                           -33), the third about his
                                       sign of his father’s    There is a tension between
           Youth Minyan         9:45 am                                                    love for Joseph in preference
                                       strength. The right of the  individual liberty and the   to the other sons (Genesis
           Gemara Shiur         6:20 pm   firstborn belongs to him.   common good. Individual   37:4). Both caused great
                                       (Deut. 21:15-17) Note   liberty says, “This wealth is
           Mincha/SS            7:20 pm                                                    grief within the family and
                                       that the Hebrew word    mine. I should be able to do
           Shabbat Ends         8:33 pm   here translated as “does   with it what I like, including   had devastating
                                                                                           consequences in the long
                   Latest Times for
                Shema/Shemoneh Esrei                         Kiddush is sponsored by
           August 21        9:34/10:42 am                       Aliza & Dov Sassoon
           August 28        9:36/10:43 am   in honor of the Bar Mitzvah of their son Charlie
                    Next Shabbat
                      Ki Tavo                           Bima Flowers are sponsored by
           Mincha               7:00 pm                       Marcy & Daniel Aharon
           Candle Lighting      7:16 pm                  in honor of the Bat Mitzvah of their daughter Nili
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