Weekly Haftorah

by Reuben Ebrahimoff -
The Haftorahman



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The Haftarah for Parashat Shemot- Exodus 5762

Read by the Sephardim

From the Book of Jeremiah Chapter 1:1- 2:3

The Summary of This Week's Haftorah: The Haftorah starts with Yirmiyahu's appointment as a prophet. Hashem told Jeremiah of his future as a prophet, before he was born, while he was in his mother's stomach. You could say that he did not have a choice in the matter. Jeremiah reluctantly accepted. Hashem reassured Jeremiah that regardless his dismal circumstances Hashem would always be there for him. The Haftorah turns to Jeremiah's first two prophecies. The 1st prophecy is the vision of an almond tree sprouting its first branch. In the springtime it is the almond tree that sprouts the earliest and quickest. It takes exactly 21 days for the almond tree to sprout. This prophecy was a warning to the Israelites that the "sprouting" of Jerusalem will be quick, soon and brief. As a matter of fact it took exactly 21 days from the day that Nebuchadnezzar pierced the walls of Jerusalem on Shiva-assar b'Tamuz or the 17th of month of Tammuz until the destruction of the Bait Hamikdash, on Tishah Be'Av or the 9th of the month of Av. The second vision is of a boiling pot with it's opening to the North. This meaning of this vision is that the "boiling pot" symbolizes the nation of Babylon, which was situated to the North spilling over onto the Jews in the land of Israel. Jeremiah is warning Israel to change their evil ways or be exiled. Hashem gives to Jeremiah encouragement not to be afraid of the responses he will be getting from the people of Israel. The Haftorah concludes with Jeremiah's first message to the Jewish people. The reassuring words are that the nation and the land of Israel are dear to Hashem and any one who attacks Israel, evil will fall upon them.

The Haftorah's Connection between the Parasha and Haftorah: Why do we read this Haftorah? In the Parasha of Shemot, Moshe Rabbainu is appointed a prophet and leader. This Haftorah was chosen because similarly to Moses, Yirmiyahu is called upon by Hashem to relay his messages to the Jews. They both modestly rejected Hashem's request. They both claimed that they didn't posses the power of speech needed to convince the nation of Israel to change their ways. They both prophesied for 40 years.

Haftorahman's Lesson of the week: The prophet Yirmiyahu show us with his actions to "deliver the message, without fear of the response." Hashem was always there backing up the prophet Jeremiah no matter how bad it looked. Hashem told Jeremiah to never be afraid to speak up. We should learn from him not to be afraid to speak up to people are not behaving correctly to us or Hashem. Don't be afraid. Hashem is always with us. Just remember to say it nicely.

Yirmiyahu's (Jeremiah's) biography: The meaning of his name is "Hashem will elevate." He was the son of Chilkiya also a prophet. He was a Kohen. He was born in Anatot, 2 miles north of Jerusalem in the land of Benjamin. He spoke at childhood and cursed the day he was born. Isaiah came before Yirmiyahu, and Ezekiel comes after.

He wrote 3 Books: Jeremiah - 52 chapters, Each (Lamentations), and Mealtime (The Book of Kings). His prophecies started when he was 18 and continued for 40 Years. He was born with a circumcision. He was a descendant of Rehab, Jericho's innkeeper that Joshua saved. Jeremiah's prophecy before, during, and after the destruction of the Bait Hamikdash (Holy Temple). The Temple was destroyed by Nebuchadnezzar King of Babylon. He remained in Jerusalem after its destruction with Gedalyah ben Achikam, The man who the fast of Gedalyah is named after. Shafan was his scribe. Shafan brought the scroll he found in the Bait Hamikdash to Jeremiah, which was originally written by Moses. It was open to the verse "Hashem will bring you and your elected King to a nation unknown to your fathers." That scared people into changing their ways. He was chosen by Hashem in 624 B.C.E. to be a prophet about 2625 years ago. Jeremiah claimed he was too young for the job. Jeremiah lived in Jerusalem. He was never married and he never had children. He was the head of the Mishmeret Hakohanim (The Guard by the Priests doing work in the Holy Temple) They were the custodians of the Ark of the Lord. Wore a wooden yolk around his neck. Was know as the Weeping Prophet Was born in 640 B.C.E. about 2650 years ago, on Tishah Be'av. The time span of the book 66 years. Baruch was his friend and deceiple. He was stoned to death after fleeing to Egypt, Alexandria. The structure of the Book of Jeremiah. Jeremiah's commission - Call to Prophecy. The broken covenant. Prophecy to Judah and gentiles. Judgment nears-King Zedkiya and the 70 year captivity. Jerusalem falls - Babylonians invade Israel and Jerusalem.

Famous phrases: Od yeshamah, b'arai yehudah, u'vechusot, u'vechusot Yerushalaim. Kol sasson vekolsimcha, kol chatan ve'chol kalah. - There again will be heard, in the cities of Judah and in the streets of Jerusalem, the sound of joy and the sound of gladness, the sound of the groom and the sound of the bride. Jeremiah 33:10-11. Religious and social situations in Israel: adultery, deceit, and exploitation of the poor.

Timeline: The Haftorah takes place 2650 years ago.

Map: The Haftorah takes place in Jerusalem

The Haftorah for Parashat Shemos - for Ashkenazim

Ashkenazim read this weeks Haftorah from the Book of Yeshayahu / Isaiah

Chapter 27:6-28:13, and 29:22,23.

Hashem criticizes the Jews for overindulging in Physical Pleasure

The Connection between this week's Parasha and Haftorah: This week's Haftorah begins with the story of how Hashem caused Yaakov's family to multiply while in Israel. That relates thematically to the Parasha, which also tells us that Hashem caused B'Nai Yisrael to multiply via multiple childbirth's while in Egypt.

The Summary of this week's Haftorah: 27:6-8 Hashem shows his kindness to the Jews while in Egypt. He blesses them with many children and plenty of food to eat. Hashem even showed us mercy when punishing us. When Hashem punishes other nations his punishment is much more severe. 27:9 Yeshayahu commands the inhabitants of the kingdom of the Ten Tribes to destroy their idols. Hashem wants to bless us and by doing teshuva it will enable Hashem to forgive the Jewish people for their past sins. 27:10-12 If the Jews to teshuva they will be redeemed. 28:1-4 The kingdom of the Ten Tribes indulges in the pleasures of the times, which results in punishment. Our enemies will devour the Kingdom of the Ten Tribes. 28: 5-6 The remaining Tzadikim, that were not exiled, will learn a lesson that Hashem will protect them during these difficult times. The Jews will experience true glory because they no longer will have to protect themselves, Hashem will. 28:7-8 The Kingdom of Yehudah's also sin by overindulging in food and drink. 28:9-13 The Jews will be punished for ignoring the prophet's reproof. The prophet complains that the people are too preoccupied with overeating, to listen to him. 29: 22, 23 Yaakov will be proud of his descendants. Ultimately the Jewish people will behave, as they should.

Isaiah's Biography:

The name means "Salvation of Hashem"

Isaiah wrote his own book 66 chapters long
His father was a prophet named Amoz
He was from a royal family and had access to the Bait Hamikdash.
He was born in the year 765 b.c.e. (8th century) about 2760 years ago.
Isaiah was 25 years old when he had his first vision.
After Moses he was considered to be the greatest of all prophets.
4 prophets lived in Isaiah's time - Hosea, Amos, Michah and Isaiah.
Isaiah was born circumcised
He survived 4 kings - Uzziah, Yotham, Ahaz, and Hezkiah.
Isaiah lived 120 years
Isaiah said he saw in a prophecy the throne of Hashem.
He had one wife and two sons.
Menasheh the King of Judah killed him.
He predicted Israel's demise.

Famous Pesukim from Isaiah: Said on weekdays in the Amidah prayer. "Hasheeva shoftainu kevarishona v'yoatzenu kevatchelah". "Hashem will restore the Judges as at the first and your counselors as at the beginning".

Timeline: The prophet Isaiah lived approximately 2700 years ago just before the destruction of the 1st temple.

Map: Isaiah's prophecies took place in Jerusalem.

Dedicated in loving memory of Naftali ben Leah & Nissim Gad z"l, by Mr. & Mrs. Joseph Gad

Written by: The Haftorahman - Reuven Gavriel ben Nissim Ebrahimoff 5762-2001

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Shema Yisrael Torah Network
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