Ishmael
Is Ishmael the Father of the Arabs?

Is Ishmael the Father of the Arabs?

After Abraham banishes Hagar, God reassures the Patriarch.  As the firstborn son of Abraham, God blesses Ishmael to be a “great nation.” While it is widely assumed that the present-day conflict in the Middle East between Jews and Muslims...

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The Portion of Chayei Sarah

The Portion of Chayei Sarah

This week’s portion focuses on the death of Sarah and Abraham’s quest to find a wife for their son, Isaac. Although Abraham disapproves of the local women, he does not want Isaac to leave the Land of Israel to find his wife. Abraham thus...

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Isaac and Ishmael: a Tale of Two Sons

Isaac and Ishmael: a Tale of Two Sons

The Torah now relates the birth of Isaac, long-awaited son to Abraham and Sarah. Named for the laughter of joy his birth elicited in his father, Isaac is circumcised at eight days old, just as God commanded Abraham. As he grows, however,...

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The Portion of Vayeira

The Portion of Vayeira

Our portion continues the story of Abraham as he establishes the foundation for the Jewish nation. Having circumcised himself at God’s command, he now encounters three visitors as he recuperates. Sodom and Gomorrah are destroyed in this...

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The Portion of Lech Lecha

The Portion of Lech Lecha

This week’s portion is a busy one! Abram is commanded by God to leave the land he knows and journey to a place “that I will show thee”. Once there, Abram almost immediately experiences famine, family tension and war. Through it all,...

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