Devotionals

devotional

Moses uses just a few urgent words, “please heal her,” in his shortest prayer recorded in the Bible, on behalf of his beloved sister Miriam. Why did Moses offer such a brief, succinct prayer, and not pray at length? Our Sages say that there is a time for prayer, and a time for action. In… Read more »

devotional

Did you know that according to Judaism, the year we are now in is really 5776, and is counted from Creation and the birth of Adam? An unbelievable lesson emerges from the wisdom of biblical Hebrew and the word for man, ‘Adam,’ which stands for Adam, David and Messiah. Jewish tradition teaches that the greatest… Read more »

devotional

In today’s verse, Jeremiah gives an incredible message of hope to the Jewish people as they were marched into exile. He adjures them to mark their route and ‘set up landmarks.’ Why? For they will surely come back home and will use the sign markings to find their way.

devotional

In Judaism, life is valued above almost all else. The Talmud notes that all people are descended from a single person, thus taking a single life is compared to destroying an entire world, and saving a single life is as meritorious as saving an entire world.

devotional

We love to learn about and share the biblical significance of the modern day cities of Israel. Haifa is not just the largest and most important northern city of Israel, with a glorious setting on the slopes of Mount Carmel, surrounded by sea. The Book of Kings describes the prophet Elijah ascending Mount Carmel to… Read more »

devotional

The rising of the sun is seen as a metaphor for the redemption of the Jewish people. The Talmud relates a story of two righteous rabbinic scholars, Rabbi Hiyya and Rabbi Shimon, walking in the Arbel Valley of the Lower Galilee in the early hours of the morning. As the first rays of dawn appeared,… Read more »

devotional

Hezekiah was the most righteous of all the kings of Judea. His name is composed of the word “kha-zak” – strong – and God’s name “ya” meaning that he strengthened the people’s devotion to God. In a recent sensational discovery, King Hezekiah’s royal clay seal was unearthed at the foot of the Southern Wall of… Read more »

devotional

Are Jews supposed to wish Christians a Merry Christmas? According to Orthodox Rabbi Benjamin Blech, “as Jews I think we ought to recognize that today the greatest challenge to our faith is not another faith, but faithlessness. Our greatest fear should not be those who worship in a different way but those who mockingly reject… Read more »

devotional

Today’s verse from the wisdom of King Solomon urges each of us to seek out and connect with others with whom we can grow spiritually. From the word ‘chaver’ (friend) comes the word ‘chavruta’ – a study partner – a deeply traditional way of biblical learning where two people explore Jewish texts together.

devotional

Today’s verse shows the incredible depth and ability of the Hebrew language to convey God’s expectations for mankind. The same word in Hebrew, צדקה – tzedaka, which means “charity,” also means “justice,” implying that the giving of charity is a simple act of justice.

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The Psalmist’s words are a modern day plea for the world to wake up and “see the affliction” of Christians and other minorities who are being persecuted, driven and wiped out, and their places of worship destroyed. Elie Wiesel, Holocaust survivor and Nobel Peace Prize recipient, once said “We must take sides. Silence encourages the… Read more »

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From our earliest Biblical roots, the Jewish people have held soldiers up in high esteem. Our greatest biblical heroes have combined their spiritual service of God with a willingness to physically fight for what they believed in and defend His honor. Abraham went to battle against the five kings, David was a brave warrior and… Read more »

devotional

Year after year, one of the most popular boys names is ‘David.’ You might rightly presume that the name’s origin goes back to King David, but do you know what ‘David’ means in Hebrew? David comes from the most ancient Hebrew word for love, dode, as in ah-NEE le-doh-DEE ve-doh-DEE lee, אני לדודי ודודי לי… Read more »

devotional

One of Israel’s most fascinating spots is what is known in Hebrew as יָם הַ‏‏מֶּ‏‏לַ‏ח – yam ha-me-LAKH, which literally means, “Salt Sea” but is more commonly referred to in English as the Dead Sea, יָם הַ‏‏מָּוֶת – yam ha-ma-VET. Fresh water flows in but no water flows out. The stagnant and non-flowing waters of… Read more »

devotional

After years of separation, Joseph emotionally asks his brothers, ‘Is my father still alive?’ Over the centuries, this question has become a statement, in our absolute conviction that our Father in Heaven is indeed alive and constantly looking out for the welfare of His children.