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The Haftarah for Parashat Va'aira 5762
Read from the book of Ezekiel Chapter 28:25-29:21
The Summary of This Week's Haftorah: : Israelis future blessing: (Ch.28:25). Ezekiel begins with telling us that Hashem will punish the Jewish Nation's enemies. Then Hashem will permit the Jewish people to return to their homeland in the future. A Prophecy against Pharaoh and Egypt. (Ch. 29:1) Hashem speaks to Ezekiel who was living in Bavel at the time and provides him with the following prophecy regarding Egypt. Ezekiel prophecies that Babylon will conquer Egypt. At the time Jerusalem had been surrounded by the Babylonians for about a year, and they were hoping to get help from the Egyptians to rescue them. Hashem through his prophet Ezekiel said "forget about it, don't rely on other nations to rescue you, rely on yourselves, and me, Hashem." The Haftorah explains why Egypt deserves this punishment. Egypt always promised to back up Israel against their enemies, but when it came time to help Israel Egypt never kept their word. The prophet further explains that Egypt will be desolate for 40 years, and the people of Egypt will be scattered among the nations. Then Ezekiel explains that Egypt will never rise to power again. It will be come desolate. Hashem rewards Nebuchadnezzar by allowing Babylon to defeat Egypt. (Ch. 29:17) The Haftorah concludes with Nebuchadnezzar, King of Babylon was allowed to conquer Egypt.
The Haftorah's Connection between the Parasha and Haftorah: both the Parasha and the Haftorah speak about the punishment of Egypt. The Parasha speaks about the plagues that befell the Egyptians in Moses' time and the Haftorah predicts that Babylon will conquer Egypt in Pharaoh Chofra's time. The difference in time of when the Parasha took place and the Haftorah is about a thousand years.
Haftorahman's Lesson of the week: We see a direct connection between Hashem and man with regard to "meedah kinegged meedah" measure for measure. What did Egypt do? Because Egypt kept making promises they didn't keep, Hashem's nation, Israel was being put into a vulnerable position and Hashem doesn't like that. Hashem is very protective of his "children." What do we learn from this? Don't make promises you can't keep, for sure. Don't rely on the "unreliable." Whoever that may be. If you're getting the help you need, fine. If you're not, change gears and start to help yourself. Rely on yourself for prayers and rely on Hashem for the response to your prayers. You have direct access to Hashem, at any time, in any language you can ask for help. Try it, you will like it.
The Biography of Ezekiel: Ezekiel name means "Hashem strengthens" or may Hashem strengthen. He was a Kohen. He was born in the village of Anatot surrounding Jerusalem. His wife died suddenly before his prophecies began. Ezekiel was a part of the 8000 exiles in 597 b.c.e. to go to Babylon. He prophesied for 30 years, several are date, month and year specific. He was the only person in the Tanach (Bible) to be called "Ben Adam" The son of man. The Book of Ezekiel: Ezekiel wrote his own book that is 48 chapters long. The 1st 24 chapters are about the future siege and fall of Jerusalem. The 2nd part of the book, chapters 25 -48 talk of the hope that Hashem will favor the mountains of Israel and remove the Idol worshipping and repopulate the land. Ezekiel goes on to predict of the annihilation of the hostile Heathen nations. We are explained about the rejoining of the two halves of the split Land of Israel, Judea and Sammaria. Finally we hear about the plans for the third temple and the redistribution of the land among the tribes with a President for the people. There are Major warnings to the exiles in Babylon. Just before the destruction of Jerusalem and the 1st Temple. The Book of Ezekiel begins with the prophet's vision of the Ma'aseh Hamerkavah (The Throne of Hashem) lifting itself up from the Bais Hamikdash. 2nd there is the story of the Valley of the Dry bones and their resurrection. 3rd We have the description of the 3rd Temple to be built in the messianic period.Famous phrases: Va'tesaeni ruach va'eshma kol ra'ashgadol -- baruch kevod Hashem mimekomo. Then a wind lifted me and then I heard behind me the sound of a great noise. Blessed be the glory of Hashem from his place. Included in the prayer "u'vah lezion goel."
Timeline: These events took place about 2500 years ago.
Map: The Haftorah takes place in Babylon.
Written by: The Haftorahman - Reuven Gavriel ben Nissim Ebrahimoff 5762-2001
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