Get seven complete and original sermons for Parshat Matot-Massei (or purchase them individually)
1. Why Are We Still Crying? Roots of Trauma
Why are we still mourning 2,000 years after the destruction of the Holy Temples? Torah law explicitly forbids one from over-grieving for longer than seven days. And here we are sitting shiva for over 19 centuries… Why?
2. Bittersweet: A Lesson from Almonds
In the course of this week’s Haftorah why does Jeremiah speak of almonds? What do almonds have to do with the Temple’s destruction and its ultimate rebuilding?
3. Summer Journeys
As we make our summer travel plans, what deeper forces are at work leading us from one place to the next? Why are we drawn to journey to certain places in the world? This week’s Torah reading, which is all about journeys, offers us some profound lessons about our own journeys.
4. Is Revenge Kosher?
What does the Torah teach us about confronting forces that threaten our lives? Are we allowed to take revenge? The Torah emphatically prohibits acts of vengeance. And yet, in this week’s Torah reading, we find that revenge is not only condoned, but obligated against Midian!
5. Heroes and Anti-Heroes
When faced with the cruel injustice of life, two men in history responded in very different ways: Moses and Acher. One of doubt, the other of hope. What do we learn from their contrasting attitudes, during this period in time when Moses’ began his 120-day sojourn on Mount Sinai?
6. What Can We Do For Israel?
What can we do to help our fellow Jews in Israel? The answer lies in the words Moses spoke to the tribes of Reuven and Gad, who desired to settle outside of Israel, east of the Jordan River.
7. Bomb Shelters and Places of Refuge
What can we learn from the “cities of refuge” in this week’s Torah reading about life and death, about good and evil, about protecting what is pure and holy, and about destroying terrorism and a culture of murder?