Yom Ha'atzmaut

Yom Haatzmaut: Turning Seventy

April 19, 2018 By: rabbi jay kelman
“And Yaakov worked for Rachel for seven years, and they appeared in his eyes like just a few because of his love for her” (Breisheet 29:20). Seven years is a long time to wait to marry the love of one’s life. Seven years is long to wait for almost anything. But some things are worth waiting for, and while the wait was painful, Yaakov saw the seven years as a passing phase to be followed by a lifetime of happiness. If seven...
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Yom Haatzmaut 68

May 12, 2016 By: rabbi jay kelman
“In every generation one must see himself as if he had left Egypt.” Pesach may seem like a distant memory despite it having concluded less than two weeks ago. Yet it is the legacy of Pesach that hovers so strongly in the 21 st century.    Pesach celebrates Jewish peoplehood and nationhood. Such did not come easily and was preceded by much pain and suffering - anti-Jewish laws, increased taxation, forced labour,...
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Yom Ha'atzmaut: The Most Important Mitzvah

May 06, 2014 By: rabbi jay kelman
One of the Rambam's principles of faith is the eternity of the Torah. While historical circumstances may prevent the performance of certain mitzvoth, the mitzvah of Talmud Torah encompasses these "theoretical" mitzvoth as we hope that these mitzvoth will soon move from the theoretical realm to the practical. After close to 2,000 years in exile, mitzvoth that were once dormant have come back to life. The Torah is no longer just a...
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Yom Ha'atzmaut: From Yom HaZikaron to Yom Ha'atzmaut

April 15, 2013 By: rabbi jay kelman
This d'var Torah is dedicated in honour of the participants in Chidon HaTanach, the 50th International Bible Contest taking place on Yom Ha'atzmaut in Jerusalem. Hatzlacha Rabba to all!   "Two verses that contradict each other, until the third verse comes and reconciles them". So reads the 13th and final principle of Rabbi Yishmael's methodology of elucidating the biblical...
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Yom Ha'atzmaut: Turning Dreams Into Reality

April 26, 2012 By: rabbi jay kelman
“When G-d brought back those who returned to Zion, we were like dreamers” (Psalms 126). Who would have believed that after 1,900 years—and a mere three years after the greatest tragedy in Jewish history—the Jewish people could become sovereign in their land? Throughout most of our exile, Israel was a distant place: physically, spiritually, and perhaps most important, conceptually.Much of the opposition to Zionism was based on the notion that the...
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