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Grave Mistake (Beshalach)

Preview: “Was it for lack of graves in Egypt that you have taken us away to die in the wilderness?” Some see this as the first recorded example of Jewish self-deprecating humor. But maybe the suggestion wasn’t meant sarcastically. Maybe the people meant it seriously. Indeed, they might have had good reason to. To realize why, just think back to Yaakov and Yosef’s deathbed requests…

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Unfinished Business (Chayei Sarah)

Preview: Avraham’s last request of Yitzchak tasks the son with upholding an ideal that the father himself did not uphold. This, in fact, is part of a larger pattern of similar deathbed requests in Tanach. What gives?

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You Only Live Once (Behar)

Preview: For some reason, we seem to find allusions to death superimposed upon the section of the Torah which deals with the laws of the yovel. What might that reason be?

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