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Today, after eating a meal, reflect on how wonderful it is that you have food. These were the last words of King David to his son and successor, Solomon.Imagine the relief and pleasure you would experience if you were stuck someplace for two days without food... David is essentially saying, "I am no longer able to struggle.I've been repeatedly approached by Jews for Jesus guys near the campus of UCLA.The pamphlet that they hand out alleges that "Messianic Jews" are Jews who believe that Jesus was the Messiah. I would label a person "Christian" if they believed Jesus was the Messiah.Ironically, Jews really could be called "Messianic Jews." One of Maimonides' classical "13 Principles of Faith" is: "I believe with complete faith in the coming of the Messiah, and even though he may delay, nevertheless I anticipate every day that he will come." In a sense we are all "Messianic Jews" – expecting the Messiah to gather the Jews back to Israel, usher an era of world peace, and reestablish the Temple. There are two excellent organizations which counteracts missionary activities and have succeeded in attracting "converts" back to Judaism. On this date in 1947, the Arab Legion surrounded Jerusalem and isolated its 100,000 Jews from the rest of the Israeli population.By March 1948 the city was under full siege, and in May, Jordan invaded and occupied east Jerusalem, dividing the city for the first time in its history, and driving thousands of Jews into exile.What is wrong is when we abdicate our right to think, judge, and decide for ourselves.
They invented "Jews for Jesus," which uses a whole lexicon of Jewish-sounding buzz words in order to make Jesus more palatable to Jews.My strength is failing, and I must now go in the way of all humans. You must be strong and be a man." Implied in this message is that Solomon was to be strong enough not to go in the way of all men, but to be his own man. Behaving in a manner similar to others in our environment is not wrong, as long as we know that our behavior is right and proper.In this case, we are acting according to our conscience.With stories and insights, Rabbi Twerski's new book Twerski on Machzor makes Rosh Hashanah prayers more meaningful. The mohel instructed me to hold the baby’s legs tight, thrusting me into the reality of what was unfolding.With hundreds of millions of dollars at stake, the parent company demanded that they work on this one Shabbat.
It's not the cross, it's "the tree." Not baptism, but "the mikveh." Not a communion wafer, but "matzah." Congregants wear a tallit and kippah, and bring a Torah scroll out of the Holy Ark – just like every other synagogue.