Friday, August 18, 2017

Parshiyos Re'eh - Shoftim, story

Vacation time and even Rabbis go on a work – rest vacation. Part of the vacation is buying new white shirts so that I look nice for the Chaggim coming up and even every day for a Talmud Chacham should set an example. The other part is to view a work of creation, the eclipse, if I am lucky enough to get to the area and have clear skies. Despite the threats from North Korea, I am more relaxed than the real threats from Gaza and Lebanon which can be at any moment any day or from Iran sometime after they get a bomb. With North Korea it is like a Sumo Wrestler making noises at the opponent if one examines the language.

Parsha Re’eh

With two Torah Portions this week which are rich in Mitzvos there is too much to cover for the layman and so the only thing one can hope for is a bit of emphasis on a few of the Mitzvos. Since all Mitzvos are part of a chain with 613 links one cannot leave out one and expect the chain to have full strength. The sending away of the mother bird is a simple Mitzvah and perhaps harder to do than counting the Omer or saying Kirias Shema but still it holds even an important place in Kabbalah. The three cardinal Mitzvos which one must forfeit his own life is to do Avoda Zara, to murder somebody else or be murdered and to commit a forbidden lewd act. There are three essential Mitzvos that preserve the Jewish Identity and they are Shabbos, Kashrus and Taharos Mishpacha. Last of the cardinal Mitzvos is education to continue the Torah from generation to generation. For even if a person is too poor to give charity or in a survival situation and has no Siddur for praying, Tallis or Tephillin, he can still manage to attempt to perform the Mitzvos with all his heart, soul and might. 

11:26 Behold, I set before you this day a blessing and a curse:

The idea is to choose the blessing and do everything in one’s power to avoid the curse. The initial time of Yetzias Mitzrayim until the Churban of the first Mikdash 2448 to 3338 was 890 years in which the nation thrived. So we are dependent each man upon his fellow and education and reviews are necessary. The second time of Jews in the land lasted from 3408 until 3828 or 3830 (the is a discrepancy between our tradition and the Roman Calendar – since our calendar is accurate there is a good reason to believe the earlier date and dictatorships are known to forge history. However, since there was confusion and murders in the second Churban, we could be off slightly. Our Rabbis wrote 420 years but that might have been rounded off and it was really 422 or the Temple lasted 420 years and it took 2 years to build a safe environment for sacrifices. I cannot decide one way or the other but there is no dispute on the 420 year minimum.)

27 the blessing, if ye shall hearken unto the commandments of the LORD your God, which I command you this day; 28 and the curse, if ye shall not hearken unto the commandments of the LORD your God, but turn aside out of the way which I command you this day, to go after other gods, which ye have not known.

In order to get a full understanding of the situation, we must remember that this is part of the second Drasha in Devarim. The Drasha continues from Chapter 5 through Chapter 27 and was mentioned on one day. This is part of 600,000 men listening to Moshe. He probably did his Drasha like the late Lubavitcher Rebbe did in a Verbrengung where he spoke and give a small break with singing or something and then continued. For if we don’t take this as one long Drasha, we miss out on the mountains for the blessings and the curses as they are mentioned here but chapters away.

29 And it shall come to pass, when the LORD thy God shall bring thee into the land whither thou go to possess it, that thou shalt set the blessing upon mount Gerizim, and the curse upon mount Eval.

At this point we forget about these places for a few Parshiyos but they are mentioned further on in the speech which the Bnei Yisrael are listening to.

30 Are they not beyond the Jordan, behind the way of the going down of the sun, in the land of the Canaanites that dwell in the Arabah, over against Gilgal, beside the terebinths of Moreh?

Are they not [on the other side of the Jordan]?- [: Moses] gave [geographical] landmarks [describing the mountains]. Beyond: Heb. אַחֲרֵי, [I.e.,] after crossing the Jordan, much further on in distance, for that is the meaning of the expression אַחֲרֵי, “beyond”; wherever [the term] אַחֲרֵי is used, [it signifies]“a great separation [in time or place].” beyond: Heb. אַחֲרֵי, [I.e.,] after crossing the Jordan, much further on in distance, for that is the meaning of the expression אַחֲרֵי, “beyond”; wherever [the term] אַחֲרֵי is used, [it signifies]“a great separation [in time or place].” Opposite: Far off from Gilgal. [near] the plains of Moreh: This is Shechem, as is stated: “to the place of Shechem, to the plain of Moreh” (Gen. 12:6).

Schem is in the valley or plain between the two mountains. There is some prophecy here as Gilgal will not exist until the cross the Yarden as mentioned during the circumcision ceremony after they enter Eretz Yisrael before Yericho.

31 For ye are to pass over the Jordan to go in to possess the land which the LORD your God giveth you, and ye shall possess it, and dwell therein. 32 And ye shall observe to do all the statutes and the ordinances which I set before you this day. 12:1 These are the statutes and the ordinances, which ye shall observe to do in the land which the LORD, the God of thy fathers, hath given thee to possess it, all the days that ye live upon the earth. 2 Ye shall surely destroy all the places, wherein the nations that ye are to dispossess served their gods, upon the high mountains, and upon the hills, and under every leafy tree. 3 And ye shall break down their altars, and dash in pieces their pillars, and burn their Asherim with fire; and ye shall hew down the graven images of their gods; and ye shall destroy their name out of that place.

The first order of business is to remove all traces of the cults of Avoda Zara from the land. This serves a dual purpose to purify the land and prevent any stray Ben Yisrael from going off into these strange cults claiming that he needed the gods of the land to succeed. For the Bnei Yisrael had been infected with the culture of Mitzrayim and their gods and the likes. A similar situation exists today with women’s styles. Where the worse immodesty from the Goyim of the world combines to disgrace many a Jewish teen who sees these things on Television and takes upon themselves to be like the styles that are foreign to Torah Modesty.

4 Ye shall not do so unto the LORD your God. 5 But unto the place which the LORD your God shall choose out of all your tribes to put His name there, even unto His habitation shall ye seek, and thither thou shalt come; 6 and thither ye shall bring your burnt-offerings, and your sacrifices, and your tithes, and the offering of your hand, and your vows, and your freewill-offerings, and the firstlings of your herd and of your flock; 7 and there ye shall eat before the LORD your God, and ye shall rejoice in all that ye put your hand unto, ye and your households, wherein the LORD thy God hath blessed thee. 8 Ye shall not do after all that we do here this day, every man whatsoever is right in his own eyes;

You will have a place to gather unto and offer the Korbanos Chagigah at the three Regelim. It will be relatively centralized.

…15 Notwithstanding thou may kill and eat flesh within all thy gates, after all the desire of thy soul, according to the blessing of the LORD thy God which He hath given thee; the unclean and the clean may eat thereof, as of the gazelle, and as of the hart.

You shall eat the animals that you slaughter in a Kosher Manner anywhere. At this point the Torah starts a review of the animals and birds that are Kosher.

16 Only ye shall not eat the blood; thou shalt pour it out upon the earth as water.

This applies to the domesticated animals but fowls and animals found in the wild such as deer, gazelles, giraffes, etc. even if penned in require that the blood be covered. This Mitzvah is given elsewhere.

… 13:1 All this word which I command you, that shall ye observe to do; thou shalt not add thereto, nor diminish from it.

Once the Torah has been given, it is codified and canonized, one cannot add or subtract from it even a fraction of a Yud.

2 If there arise in the midst of thee a prophet, or a dreamer of dreams--and he give thee a sign or a wonder, 3 and the sign or the wonder come to pass, whereof he spoke unto thee--saying: 'Let us go after other gods, which thou hast not known, and let us serve them'; 4 thou shalt not hearken unto the words of that prophet, or unto that dreamer of dreams; for the LORD your God put you to proof, to know whether ye do love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul. … 6 And that prophet, or that dreamer of dreams, shall be put to death; because he hath spoken perversion against the LORD your God, … So shalt thou put away the evil from the midst of thee.

This is not only a test but to clean up the Bnei Yisrael from diverging from the Torah. All the Kosher prophets have only come to strengthen the Torah and Mitzvos and gotten the people to repent. Sometimes they have come with warnings of destruction but in the end there will be a redemption of the people.

7 If thy brother, the son of thy mother, or thy son, or thy daughter, or the wife of thy bosom, or thy friend, that is as thine own soul, entice thee secretly, saying: 'Let us go and serve other gods,' which thou hast not known, thou, nor thy fathers; 8 of the gods of the peoples that are round about you, nigh unto thee, or far off from thee, from the one end of the earth even unto the other end of the earth; 9 thou shalt not consent unto him, nor hearken unto him; neither shall thine eye pity him, neither shalt thou spare, neither shalt thou conceal him;

If your own brother or close relative loses his faith and goes over to Avoda Zara, you shall not listen to him or pity him out of love but do unto him as you would a stranger.

10 but thou shalt surely kill him; thy hand shall be first upon him to put him to death, and afterwards the hand of all the people. 11 And thou shalt stone him with stones, that he die; because he hath sought to draw thee away from the LORD thy God, who brought thee out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage. 12 And all Israel shall hear, and fear, and shall do no more any such wickedness as this is in the midst of thee.

This goes even for the city in which you grew up in and you shall move out, go to the Sanhedrin and have they send a delegation to enquire of this and over-turn the whole city. Rabban Gamliel did this with his student Shaul. He sent Shaul to uproot the early Christians who put on Tephillin, kept Kosher, family purity, Shabbos. He gave him a Heter to put on an act and feign blindness, call himself Paul, tell of a dream where people ate pork and did not observe Shabbos. It worked in one way, the religion changed and some Jews came back to Judaism while others split and worshipped another religion. All were under Roman Control and the Sanhedrin had no power over them. After which the religion became popular to the nations and it brought in many while Judaism preserved its fundamentals.

… 3 Thou shalt not eat any abominable thing. 4 These are the beasts which ye may eat: … 9 These ye may eat of all that are in the waters: whatsoever hath fins and scales may ye eat; 10 and whatsoever hath not fins and scales ye shall not eat; it is unclean unto you. 11 Of all clean birds ye may eat. … 20 Of all clean winged things ye may eat. 21 Ye shall not eat of anything that dies of itself; thou may give it unto the stranger that is within thy gates, that he may eat it; or thou may sell it unto a foreigner; for thou art a holy people unto the LORD thy God. Thou shalt not seethe a kid in its mother's milk.

This is the restatement of the laws of Kashrus in a nutshell and the repeating of the prohibition of eating meat and milk together. We see that in the times of the Mishnah so that people would not be confused as fowl, cattle and sheep were called “meat”, the Rabbis forbade fowl with milk too in order to guard the Torah. What was once proper under the authority of Rebbe Yossi HaGalili became forbidden. (Chullin if my memory serves me about Daf 109)
… The next section deals with rejoicing before the L-RD with Maaser Sheni followed by giving the tithe to the Leviim and poor in the third and sixth years.

15:1 At the end of every seven years thou shalt make a release. 2 And this is the manner of the release: every creditor shall release that which he hath lent unto his neighbor; he shall not exact it of his neighbor and his brother; because the LORD'S release hath been proclaimed.

These are loans to the poor and if they cannot return them, leave them and the L-RD will repay you in kind.

3 Of a foreigner thou may exact it; but whatsoever of thine is with thy brother thy hand shall release. … 6 For the LORD thy God will bless thee, as He promised thee; and thou shalt lend unto many nations, but thou shalt not borrow; and thou shalt rule over many nations, but they shall not rule over thee.

There is a special blessing in the observance of this and you will not be dependent upon others.

7 If there be among you a needy man, one of thy brethren, within any of thy gates, in thy land which the LORD thy God giveth thee, thou shalt not harden thy heart, nor shut thy hand from thy needy brother; 8 but thou shalt surely open thy hand unto him, and shalt surely lend him sufficient for his need in that which he wants. 9 Beware that there be not a base thought in thy heart, saying: 'The seventh year, the year of release, is at hand'; and thine eye be evil against thy needy brother, and thou give him nought; and he cry unto the LORD against thee, and it be sin in thee.

Do not co-sign a loan or give more than you would normally give – just my good financial advice, but give to the person. If he pays back, we can rejoice and if not he has received our charity instead of where we normally give it. This is my advice so that it is always a win-win situation and not a win-lose situation. For supporting the poor or Kollelim is part of the will of HASHEM so we win a Mitzvah in any case. If the poor pays back, the money goes to the Kollel or a free loan or whatever our normal charity donation is for Schul, Mikvah, medical equipment loans or medical research. The poor should not starve, be without shelter or clothing.

10 Thou shalt surely give him, and thy heart shall not be grieved when thou give unto him; because that for this thing the LORD thy God will bless thee in all thy work, and in all that thou put thy hand unto. 11 For the poor shall never cease out of the land; therefore, I command thee, saying: 'Thou shalt surely open thy hand unto thy poor and needy brother, in thy land.'

It seems that for the reason of Gilgul Neshamos people are tested with being poor and being rich and how they act with their lack of money or money ensures them a place in heaven.

12 If thy brother, a Hebrew man, or a Hebrew woman, be sold unto thee, he shall serve thee six years; and in the seventh year thou shalt let him go free from thee.

Man to pay off his debt or to survive. A woman in order to marry the rich man or his son upon reaching maturity. For a maid might be of very good stock a Bas Cohain or Levi and her family dirt poor that they cannot afford her upbringing. She is sold for the purpose of marriage or there is a famine and the girl is sold in order to live. This girl is given priority into marrying into the family.

13 And when thou lettest him go free from thee, thou shalt not let him go empty; 14 thou shalt furnish him liberally out of thy flock, and out of thy threshing-floor, and out of thy winepress; of that wherewith the LORD thy God hath blessed thee thou shalt give unto him.

In the age of servants and slaves there was no idea of worker’s compensation. The Torah revolutionizes the world with worker’s compensation and either retirement money or money to get back on the worker’s feet as a free man.

… 19 All the firstling males that are born of thy herd and of thy flock thou shalt sanctify unto the LORD thy God; thou shalt do no work with the firstling of thine ox, nor shear the firstling of thy flock.

… 16:1 Observe the month of Abib, and keep the Passover unto the LORD thy God; for in the month of Abib the LORD thy God brought thee forth out of Egypt by night. … 9 Seven weeks shalt thou number unto thee; from the time the sickle is first put to the standing corn shalt thou begin to number seven weeks. 10 And thou shalt keep the feast of weeks unto the LORD thy God after the measure of the freewill-offering of thy hand, which thou shalt give, according as the LORD thy God blesses thee. … 13 Thou shalt keep the feast of tabernacles seven days, after that thou hast gathered in from thy threshing-floor and from thy winepress. 14 And thou shalt rejoice in thy feast, thou, and thy son, and thy daughter, and thy man-servant, and thy maid-servant, and the Levite, and the stranger, and the fatherless, and the widow, that are within thy gates. … 16 Three times in a year shall all thy males appear before the LORD thy God in the place which He shall choose; on the feast of unleavened bread, and on the feast of weeks, and on the feast of tabernacles; and they shall not appear before the LORD empty; 17 every man shall give as he is able, according to the blessing of the LORD thy God which He hath given thee.

This is the preservation of the religion and the meeting of families together in the place of holiness.

Parsha Shoftim

16:18 Judges and officers shalt thou make thee in all thy gates, which the LORD thy God gives thee, tribe by tribe; and they shall judge the people with righteous judgment. 19 Thou shalt not wrest judgment; thou shalt not respect persons; neither shalt thou take a gift; for a gift doth blind the eyes of the wise, and pervert the words of the righteous. 20 Justice, justice shalt thou follow, that thou may live, and inherit the land which the LORD thy God giveth thee.

This is the basis for justice and civilization. BUT THIS MUST BE DONE IN RIGHTEOUSNESS.

… 2 If there be found in the midst of thee, within any of thy gates which the LORD thy God giveth thee, man or woman, that doeth that which is evil in the sight of the LORD thy God, in transgressing His covenant, 3 and hath gone and served other gods, and worshipped them, or the sun, or the moon, or any of the host of heaven, which I have commanded not; 4 and it be told thee, and thou hear it, then shalt thou inquire diligently, and, behold, if it be true, and the thing certain, that such abomination is wrought in Israel; 5 then shalt thou bring forth that man or that woman, who have done this evil thing, unto thy gates, even the man or the woman; and thou shalt stone them with stones, that they die. 6 At the mouth of two witnesses, or three witnesses, shall he that is to die be put to death; at the mouth of one witness he shall not be put to death. 7 The hand of the witnesses shall be first upon him to put him to death, and afterward the hand of all the people. So thou shalt put away the evil from the midst of thee.

Minimum is two witnesses and they must be willing to be the starting executioners.

8 If there arise a matter too hard for thee in judgment, between blood and blood, between plea and plea, and between stroke and stroke, even matters of controversy within thy gates; then shalt thou arise, and get thee up unto the place which the LORD thy God shall choose. 9 And thou shall come unto the priests the Levites, and unto the judge that shall be in those days; and thou shalt inquire; and they shall declare unto thee the sentence of judgment.

Go to your leaders and teachers of Halacha. In the generation of Moshe and afterwards they were the Cohanim and Leviim. But by the end of the Second Temple they were the Rabbis and Sanhedrin.

10 And thou shalt do according to the tenor of the sentence, which they shall declare unto thee from that place which the LORD shall choose; and thou shalt observe to do according to all that they shall teach thee. 11 According to the law which they shall teach thee, and according to the judgment which they shall tell thee, thou shalt do; thou shalt not turn aside from the sentence which they shall declare unto thee, to the right hand, nor to the left.

Once you have gone to the Rabbis or Sages, you shall do as you have been told and not what your heart tells you to do to the left or the right.

12 And the man that does presumptuously, in not hearkening unto the priest that stands to minister there before the LORD thy God, or unto the judge, even that man shall die; and thou shalt exterminate the evil from Israel. 13 And all the people shall hear, and fear, and do no more presumptuously.

In short if you go to a Rabbi or Beis Din for a Psak accept it and listen to it.

14 When thou art come unto the land which the LORD thy God giveth thee, and shalt possess it, and shalt dwell therein; and shalt say: 'I will set a king over me, like all the nations that are round about me'; 15 thou shalt in any wise set him king over thee, whom the LORD thy God shall choose; one from among thy brethren shalt thou set king over thee; thou may not put a foreigner over thee, who is not thy brother.

He must be a full Ben Yisrael which could according to the language be a Ger Tzeddek but not a Ger Toshav aka a Ben Noach. All the more so a stranger from the nations. Ideally it should be a G-D fearing person born as a Ben Yisrael.

… 18:9 When thou art come into the land which the LORD thy God giveth thee, thou shalt not learn to do after the abominations of those nations. 10 There shall not be found among you any one that makes his son or his daughter to pass through the fire, one that uses divination, a soothsayer, or an enchanter, or a sorcerer, 11 or a charmer, or one that consults a ghost or a familiar spirit, or a necromancer.

That is going to a séance to contact some dead spirit or as Shaul did a person who placed bones and other enchantments to raise the spirit of Shmuel during this first year after burial before his Neshama had settled in the next world. (See the Malbim Sefer Shmuel).

12 For whosoever does these things is an abomination unto the LORD; and because of these abominations the LORD thy God is driving them out from before thee.

The nation should stay clear of these people.

18 I will raise them up a prophet from among their brethren, like unto thee; and I will put My words in his mouth, and he shall speak unto them all that I shall command him. 19 And it shall come to pass, that whosoever will not hearken unto My words which he shall speak in My name, I will require it of him. 20 But the prophet, that shall speak a word presumptuously in My name, which I have not commanded him to speak, or that shall speak in the name of other gods, that same prophet shall die.'

A true prophet will arise to guide you but a false prophet shall be put to death. How do we know he is true? If he says a good thing will come to pass that is fine. If a person says a bad thing is to come like Yona at Nineveh and it does not happen due to repentance, he still might be a true prophet.

19:1 When the LORD thy God shall cut off the nations, whose land the LORD thy God giveth thee, and thou dost succeed them, and dwell in their cities, and in their houses; 2 thou shalt separate three cities for thee in the midst of thy land, which the LORD thy GOD giveth thee to possess it. 3 Thou shalt prepare thee the way, and divide the borders of thy land, which the LORD thy God causes thee to inherit, into three parts, that every manslayer may flee thither. 4 And this is the case of the manslayer, that shall flee thither and live: whoso kills his neighbor unawares, and hated him not in time past; 5 as when a man goes into the forest with his neighbor to hew wood, and his hand fetches a stroke with the axe to cut down the tree, and the head slips from the helve, and lights upon his neighbor, that he die; he shall flee unto one of these cities and live;

The man slaughterer must flee into exile. For had he prayed, the blade of the ax would not have flown off to kill the neighbor.

… 11 But if any man hates his neighbor, and lie in wait for him, and rise up against him, and smite him mortally that he die; and he flee into one of these cities; 12 then the elders of his city shall send and fetch him thence, and deliver him into the hand of the avenger of blood, that he may die. … 14 Thou shalt not remove thy neighbor's landmark, which they of old time have set, in thine inheritance which thou shalt inherit, in the land that the LORD thy God giveth thee to possess it.

Remember that the close neighbor was also most likely close family. Everybody had the land divided according to their tribes and father’s house. So one who does this would be literally stealing from his brother.

15 One witness shall not rise up against a man for any iniquity, or for any sin, in any sin that he sins; at the mouth of two witnesses, or at the mouth of three witnesses, shall a matter be established.

You need two to establish something otherwise the judge confronts the equivalent to he said to she said situation.

16 If an unrighteous witness rise up against any man to bear perverted witness against him; 17 then both the men, between whom the controversy is, shall stand before the LORD, before the priests and the judges that shall be in those days. 18 And the judges shall inquire diligently; and, behold, if the witness be a false witness, and hath testified falsely against his brother;
… 20:1 When thou go forth to battle against thine enemies, and see horses, and chariots, and a people more than thou, thou shalt not be afraid of them; for the LORD thy God is with thee, who brought thee up out of the land of Egypt. 2 And it shall be, when ye draw nigh unto the battle, that the priest shall approach and speak unto the people, 3 and shall say unto them: 'Hear, O Israel, ye draw nigh this day unto battle against your enemies; let not your heart faint; fear not, nor be alarmed, neither be ye affrighted at them; 4 for the LORD your God is He that goes with you, to fight for you against your enemies, to save you.' 5 And the officers shall speak unto the people, saying: 'What man is there that has built a new house, and has not dedicated it? let him go and return to his house, lest he die in the battle, and another man dedicate it. 6 And what man is there that hath planted a vineyard... 7 And what man is there that hath betrothed a wife, and hath not taken her? … let him go and return unto his house, lest he die in the battle, and another man take her.' … 'What man is there that is fearful and faint-hearted? let him go and return unto his house, lest his brethren's heart melt as his heart.'

There is an allowance for a person that just built a house, planted a vineyard and the newly wed. However, in a Mitzvah War to protect Eretz Yisrael, one is not exempt. It happened to me in 1982 and to a few that were injured in the Pillar-Cloud Operation and Protective Edge Operation. However, the coward has a way out.

… 19 When thou shalt besiege a city a long time, in making war against it to take it, thou shalt not destroy the trees thereof by wielding an axe against them; for thou may eat of them, but thou shalt not cut them down; for is the tree of the field man, that it should be besieged of thee?

One cannot destroy fruit bearing trees especially in Eretz Yisrael.
21:1 If one be found slain in the land which the LORD thy God gives thee to possess it, lying in the field, and it be not known who hath smitten him; 2 then thy elders and thy judges shall come forth, and they shall measure unto the cities which are round about him that is slain. 3 And it shall be, that the city which is nearest unto the slain man, even the elders of that …

The city should have protected their guests.

6 And all the elders of that city, who are nearest unto the slain man, shall wash their hands over the heifer whose neck was broken in the valley. 7 And they shall speak and say: 'Our hands have not shed this blood, neither have our eyes seen it. 8 Forgive, O LORD, Thy people Israel, whom Thou hast redeemed, and suffer not innocent blood to remain in the midst of Thy people Israel.' And the blood shall be forgiven them. 9 So shalt thou put away the innocent blood from the midst of thee, when thou shalt do that which is right in the eyes of the LORD.

The elders of the city did not send up somebody to accompany the man or pray for him. Similar to the Cohain HaGadol and the unintentional murderer.

Funeral on Monday by Rabbi Y. Tilles

The woman tried to control her tears as she knocked on the door of Rabbi Shloima Poupko (1928-2003) one Friday morning. Originally from New York, Rabbi Poupko had joined the Johannesburg community in the 1950's, where he served as the Chief Rabbi and also as the pulpit rabbi of the Sydenham Highlands North Synagogue.
The woman, a neighbor of Rabbi Poupko, knew that he was willing to help everyone in the Jewish community in South Africa. Rabbi Poupko opened the door. One look at his visitor told him that something was very wrong. "I need your help. It's ... it's my nephew. David Kauder. He's just four years old, and the doctors say he's going to die on Monday."
The woman took a deep breath, then explained. "David was hit by a car six months ago. He's been in an irreversible coma ever since. Today, the doctor came in and told us that his funeral would be on Monday."
Rabbi Poupko was taken aback. How could the doctor have spoken in such a manner? I've never heard of anyone, let alone a doctor, speaking like that. It's barbaric to say such a thing!"
"Can you help us?" the woman begged. There was no time to spare. Rabbi Poupko grabbed his jacket, ran outside, and asked his driver to take him to the Florence Nightingale Nursing Home, where David was being treated.
Less than ten minutes later, he was striding down the corridor, searching for the room that held the gravely ill David Kauder and his family. Rabbi Poupko found a grim scenario as he peeked around the door. The boy lay motionless in bed, only the faintest rising of his chest giving any indication that he was still alive. His parents stood nearby, looking helplessly at their son.
Rabbi Poupko greeted the nurse, then quietly asked about the boy's status. The nurse slowly shook her head. "It's not good. The doctor says his funeral will be on Monday."
Once again, Rabbi Poupko was shocked by these callous words. He gave a quick glance at David, lying silently on the bed. There was a good chance that the young boy-though appearing unaware of his surroundings-could actually hear every word. How could the doctor have spoken in this way?
"Please give that doctor a message from me," Rabbi Poupko declared. "Tell him that no one only G-d knows whose funeral will take place when on Monday!"
Rabbi Poupko returned home to find David's aunt anxiously awaiting his return. He invited her into his office. "Please sit down for a few minutes. I'll be right with you."
Rabbi Poupko had decided to send a telegram to the Satmar Rebbe, Rabbi Yoel Teitelbaum, asking him to pray on the boy's behalf. There wasn't enough time before Shabbos to write a detailed explanation, so Rabbi Poupko simply wrote the boy's name and his mother's name, and urged the Rebbe to pray immediately for the child's recovery.
That task done, Rabbi Poupko returned to the aunt and told her to invite the entire family-many of whom were not religious-to come to his house for kiddush and the Shabbos meal that Friday night. "Let them know that they won't be able to drive back. They'll either have to walk, or if it's too far, we'll be happy to arrange accommodations for the night."
That Friday night, over forty Kauder family members showed up at Rabbi Poupko's house-uncles, aunts and cousins. After making kiddush, Rabbi Poupko spoke to them about the significance of kashrus, Shabbos, family purity and Jewish education. "We all want David to have a full recovery," Rabbi Poupko declared, "but we have to do something to arouse Divine Mercy for the One Above to reverse the Heavenly decree."
The family members unanimously agreed to accept these mitzvos upon themselves. "It's not that hard," they reassured each other. "We can do it-for David's sake." Early Sunday morning, Rabbi Poupko was awakened with a call from the nursing home.
"I can't give any details on the phone," the nurse said breathlessly. "Could you please come down to the nursing home right away?" Rabbi Poupko sat frozen, trying to fight down the surge of panic and despair that had welled up at the nurse's words. He couldn't help imagining the worst.
Forcing himself to stand up, he immediately set out for the nursing home, ready to face whatever was coming. Rabbi Poupko walked cautiously into David's room-to be greeted by a room full of people, including a beaming Mr. and Mrs. Kauder and a bewildered array of doctors and nurses. The source of their bewilderment was right in front of them. Little David was awake and out of bed, pulling the tubes out of his mouth and crying, "Mama, Mama!"
One of the assisting doctors, the disbelief evident upon his face, turned to Rabbi Poupko and exclaimed, "This is an absolute impossibility!"
Like the doctors, Rabbi Poupko could hardly believe his eyes. Yet he knew what he had to do. He immediately gave praise and thanks to Creator for performing this open miracle for the Kauder family.
One year after David's miraculous recovery, Rabbi Poupko received an unexpected letter from the Satmar. "You should know that the souls of the family made a strong impression in Heaven," the Rebbe wrote. "Since you encouraged them to return and accept the mitzvos, the Heavenly Judgment was changed and their child was spared."
Rabbi Poupko was astonished. There had been no time to tell the Rav anything about the Kauder family on that hectic Friday-no time, in fact, to do much more than write David Kauder's name. Yet the Satmar Rav had known it all.
Editor's note: At first I thought to omit this part of the original article (before the paragraph beginning "One year after"). In the end I decided that's not fair, so I include it here as a P.S.:
One person was absent from the scene of the miracle. David's doctor-the one who had predicted the boy's funeral for Monday-happened to have the day off. He was tinkering with his car in front of his house, changing a tire, when a truck parked further up the hill suddenly came rolling down. The doctor didn't see it coming-until it smashed into his car a moment later. He never had a chance. His funeral was on Monday morning.
Source: Adapted by Yerachmiel Tilles from "Shabbos Stories for the Parsha" (Noach 5772), as posted from an email of "Good Shabbos Everyone," where it was taken from "Visions of Greatness" by Reb Y. Weiss (Volume VII)
Biographical note:
Rabbi Yoel Teitelbaum [of blessed memory: 5648 - 26 Av 5739 (1888 - August 1979 C.E.)], was part of an extraordinary escape from Bergen-Belsen in 1944, after which he went to the Holy Land. In 1947 he moved to the USA, where he established himself as the Satmar Rebbe, in the Williamsburg section of Brooklyn, doing extensive work in establishing Torah education networks. Famed as the leader of Hungarian Jewry and the largest Chassidic group in the world, and as the spiritual leader of the opposition to a secular-based Jewish government in Israel, he was also one of the greatest Torah scholars of his generation.
Connection: Seasonal-the 38th yahrzeit of "Reb Yoelish." I either heard this from Rav Glixman or somebody else or read it. The doctors are no prophets and it is HASHEM in the end who decides who will live and who will die. I remember the ending very well.

From Adele: I tried to take a nap ... but my husband was watching MSNBC ... all I could hear is what a Racist that our President is... all that I can say is... he may be a lot of things ... but does anyone remember the signs in Florida? 
If you tried to drive into BOCA RATON. There was a sign it read...NO JEWS OR NEGROES ALLOWED..
Does anyone here remember but me? 
OUR PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP ... sued and had those signs removed ... we could not even stay in a Hotel there ... not until you got to Miami
... my parents remembered too..
What is wrong with people now? 
President Trump is not a Racist
... he may be a lot of other things that really are wrong with him ... but to say he is a Racist ... is just a lie!
He really needs to be more careful about what he says
... the left is working very hard to bring him down even if it means destroying our Country!

Church sells land to Jews but then tries to retract.

From Gary. I have been told that his has been banned for not being PC this Bugs Bunny Cartoon.

Before HaRav Uri Zohar became religious he produced a movie “To save the Life Guard” but little could one believe in a drowning of a life guard who was only 39.,7340,L-5004271,00.html

Inyanay Diyoma

Trump – Putin deal endangers Israeli and Jordanian Borders:

Egypt kills Jihadist who attacked Copts.

IDF captures terror cell who shot at IDF Post.

Argentina honors an Argentinean Israeli Dr. who treated Syrians.,7340,L-5001807,00.html

Ed- Op: Once ISIS is eliminated the Jihad of Iran – Hezballah will take over.,7340,L-5000180,00.html

On Shabbos female terrorist attacks Charedi but stabs Arab.

ISIS is out Iran in and Israel will not take it. Talk by Netanyahu is cheap.

Dr. Martin Sherman Humanitarian Paradigm part 2:

Paris – car rams into Pizza Place.

Kim freezes attack as Defense Secretary says we have a chuck wagon come and get it.

Rabbi leaves Venezuela.

Truck’s crane knocks down bridge.

Can it be that an Arab incites terrorism!,7340,L-5003036,00.html

Nazis aka National Socialists are bad but the alt left is worse.

In Virginia the Nazis paraded in front of a Synagogue:

Ed-Op Ben Dror Yemeni we must stop the radical Israeli Arab movement.,7340,L-5003662,00.html

Ed-Op by Jack Engelhard: First they came for our statues. Whether destroying statues of Robert E. Lee or Abraham Lincoln - those who try to erase the past are eerily reminiscent of UNESCO denying the Jewish roots on the Temple Mount.

Good Shabbos all as next week I will be traveling to and from the Eclipse in the mid-west. Hope to be back in two weeks.

Rachamim Pauli