Category: Sefer Bamidbar / Book of Numbers

Dinah: An Unexpected Trans Story

Dinah: An Unexpected Trans Story

Based on rabbinic midrash from tractate Berakhot, Dinah can be read either as a trans woman or, as this piece argues, a closeted trans man.

Shlach Lecha: Learning Inclusion from the Scouts

As God commanded Moses to include Caleb and Joshua, we can imagine the same command applies to us. We can seek to include people.
Parashat Matot-Masei Haftarah: The Boiling Point

The Boiling Point

In these weeks leading up to Tisha B’av, we read a passage of Jeremiah, overflowing with water imagery and see the boiling point.
Parashat Matot-Masei Study Guide: All Over Again?!

Study Guide: All Over Again?!

This week's study guide continues an ongoing conversation about how to divide the land of Israel for the tribes of the Israelites.
A Lyric of Love

A Lyric of Love

Parashat Masei opens with a long list of all the encampments of the Israelites in the wilderness and discusses a lyric of love.
Marriage (and) Vows

Marriage (and) Vows

Our parashah begins with the laws governing oaths and vows. Then the Torah discusses the various types of vows and how they are used.
Parashat Pinchas Haftarah: Building Walls

Building Walls

This week's haftarah marks the three weeks leading up to Tisha B'av and uses Jeremiah's words to do so, when Israelites are building walls.
Parashat Pinchas Study Guide: The Land Should Be Divided

Study Guide: The Land Should Be Divided

The study guide for Parashat Pinchas investigates the division of the land of Israel among the twelve tribes of the nation.
Moshe's Forced Retirement

Moshe’s Forced Retirement

At the end of the Israelites’ journey in the wilderness, Moshe’s job is terminated prematurely. This explores Moshe's forced retirement.
Parashat Balak Haftarah: What is Good?

What is Good?

There is something disturbing in hearing basic tenants of human decency presented as revelatory. Our haftarah explores what is good.
Parashat Balak Study Guide: My Land or My Resources?

Study Guide: My Land or My Resources?

The study guide for Parashat Balak continues the discussion of a concept in the study guide for Parashat Chukat, about passing through land.
The Unwanted Gaze

The Unwanted Gaze

In Parashat Balak, the Moabite king Balak hires Bilaam to curse his Israelite neighbors. Bilaam notices the prevention of the unwanted gaze.
Parashat Chukat Haftarah: Powerful Vows

Powerful Vows

Our haftarah this week tells the brutal story of powerful vows and human sacrifices and all of the complications that go with it.
Parashat Chukat Studay Guide: Passing Through the Land

Study Guide: Passing Through the Land

The study guide for Parashat Chukat focuses on the Israelites passing through the land and their relationship with other regions.
Spare the Rod

Spare the Rod

This week's parashah, Chukat, focuses on the story of Moshe hitting the rock, choosing not to spare the rod, to get water.
Parashat Korach Haftarah: Saul and Eve

Saul and Eve

This week's haftarah discusses Saul's assumption of power as the first king of Israel. Bex Stern Rosenblatt compares Saul with Eve.
Parashat Korach Study Guide Do As I Mean, Not As I Say

Study Guide: Do As I Mean, Not As I Say

Korach led a rebellion against Moshe (and Aaron). Ahead of the incense trial, Korach gathers the congregation against Moshe and Aaron.
Disputations Without Denigrations

Disputation Without Denigration

Korach and his followers, a rebellion undermining the leadership of Moshe and Aaron, teach about disputation without denigration.
Parashat Shlach Haftarah: Whores and Heroes

Whores and Heroes

This week’s parasha starts out gloriously—we scout out the land in order to enter it. Then we investigate the concept of whores and heroes.
Parashat Shlach Study Guide: Stronger Than Whom?

Stronger Than Whom?

The study guide for Shlach focuses on the phrase used by spies, that the people of the land of Israel were too strong for the ...
Spies and Tzitzit: Camela and Death

Spies and Tzitzit: Camels and Death

Our parashah is bookended by the story of the spies and tzitzit. This leads to a discussion on the obligation of mitzvot.
Parashat Behaalotcha Haftarah: On Regifting

On Regifting

We look at Leah's children's names and how its haftarah connection. Through this, we work on regifting God's gift to the rest of the world. ...
Parashat Behaalotcha Study Guide: Blisters On Feet or The Soul?

Study Guide: Blisters On Feet or The Soul?

This week's study guide looks at the complaints of Bnei Yisrael, as they are wandering through the desert, and what is behind this.
Lamps Give Light

Lamps Give Lights

Behaalotcha describes the appointment of seventy elders to help judge the people and leadership in terms of the phrase "lamps give light."
Parashat Naso Haftarah: Names and Blessings

Names and Blessings

Names are important—they tell the world who we are and help us understand ourselves. This Haftarah discusses names and blessings.
Parashat Naso Study Guide: One Day of Glory

Study Guide: One Day of Glory

The study guide for Parashat Naso presents commentaries from Rashi and Hizkuni to explore the building of the Mishkan.
Hair Today, Gone Tomorrow

Hair Today, Gone Tomorrow

Our parashah describes the laws of the Nazir, one who elects to take a vow of consecration to God for a certain period of time. ...
Parashat Bamidbar Haftarah: Missing Mothers

Missing Mothers

The haftarah for Parashat Bamidbar is taken from the Book of Hosea and explores the concept of missing mothers.
Parashat Bamidbar Study Guide: How You Say What You Say

Study Guide: How You Say What You Say

This week's study guide focuses on Ruth, in preparation for Shavuot. Specifically, "How You Say What You Say" explores Ruth and Boaz.
Flags at the Shabbat Table

Flags at the Shabbat Table

In this week’s parashah we learn that the Israelites traveled through the wilderness like a troop of soldiers or a marching band.