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Jewish Words of Wisdom: Quotes from April

From the Week of 20 Nisan 5757/April 27, 1997

"Next year in Jerusalem!" (the Pesach Haggadah)

"Blessed are You, L-RD our G-d, King of the Universe, who redeemed usa and redeemed our ancestors from Egypt and brougnt us to this night to eat matzah and bitter herbs. May G-d, the G-d of our fathers, bring us to future holiday and festivals in peace, and allow us to see the rebuilding of Your city Jerusalem and share in the joy of Your service so that we may partake in Jerusalem of the ancient festive offerings. We shall then sing to You a new song, a song of redemption and salvation. Blessed are You, L-RD our G-d, redeemer of Israel" (The Pesach Haggadah)




"Rebuild Jerusalem, the holy city, speedily in our own days. Blessed are You, L-RD, who in His mercy rebuilds Jerusalem. Amen." (The Pesach Haggadah)

"If I forget you, O Jerusalem,
let my right hand wither;
let my tongue stick to my palate
if I cease to think of you,
if I do not keep Jerusalem in memory
even at my happiest hour."
(Psalm 137:5-6, JPS)

"Raise a shout together,
O ruins of Jerusalem!
For the L-RD will comfort His people,
Will redeem Jerusalem."
(Isaiah 52:9, JPS)

"And the many peoples shall go and say:
'Come,
Let us go up to the Mount of the L-RD,
To the House of the G-d of Jacob;
That He may instruct us in His ways,
And that we may walk in His paths.'
For instruction shall come forth from Zion,
The word of the L-RD from Jerusalem.
Thus He will judge among the nations
And arbitrate for the many peoples,
And they shall beat their swords into plowshares
And their spears into pruning hooks:
Nation shall not take up
Sword against nation;
They shall never again know war."
(Isaiah 2:3-4, JPS. See also Micah 4:2-5)

"Thus said the L-RD of Hosts: Though it will seem impossible to the remnant of this people in those days, shall it also be impossible to Me?--declares the L-RD of Hosts. Thus said the L-RD of Hosts: I will rescue My people from the lands of the east and from the lands of the west, and I will bring them home to dwell in Jerusalem. They shall be My people, and I will be their G-d--in truth and sincerity." (Zechariah 8:6-8, JPS)

The L-RD rebuilds Jerusalem;
He gathers in the exiles of Israel.
He heals their broken hearts,
and binds up their wounds."
(Psalm 147:2-3, JPS)


From the Week of 13 Nisan 5757/April 20, 1997

"He split the Sea for us; He lead us through it on dry land..." (the Pesach Haggadah)

"We must each view ourselves as if we had come out of Egypt" (The Pesach Haggadah)

"..For it was not our ancestors alone whom G-d, blessed be He, redeemed. he redeemed all of us with them." (The Pesach Haggadah)

"And remember that you were slaves in the land of Egypt, and that the L-RD your G-d brought you out from there with a mighty hand and with a stretched out arm;..." (Deuteronomy 5:15,)

"Therefore we must thank and praise, honor and glorify, exalt and acclaim, bless and adore G-d who performed all these wonders and miracles for our ancestors and for us. He brought us out of slavery to freedom. He changed anguish to joy, mourning to festivity, darkness to great light, and enslavement to redemption. Let us sing to Him and before Him a new song of praise: Halleluyah!" (the Pesach Haggadah)

"Halleluyah!
Servants of the L-RD sing praise, praise the Name of the L-RD.
Blessed is the Name of the L-RD now and always.
From east to west the L-RD's Name is praised.
The L-RD is supreme over all nations, His glory is beyond the heavens.
Who is like the L-RD our G-d, enthroned on high, concerned with all below in heaven and on earth?
He raises the poor out of the dust, the needy from humiliation, to seat them with nobiility, with the most noble of His people.
And the barren woman, in her house, will become a happy mother of children.
Halleluyah!
(Psalm 113, part of the Haggadah)


Quotes for the Week of 6 Nisan 5757/April 13, 1997

"Let My people go that they may worship Me." (Exodus 8:16) Only when we are free can we truely worship, truely serve our one true master, G-d.

"We once were slaves to the Pharaohs of Egypt, and G-d in His glory and power caused the shackles of slavery to be broken. He redeemed us and brought us forth into freedom" (the Pesach Haggadah)

"And the Children of Israel cried out to the L-RD their G-d, and the G-d of their fathers, for their oppression was more than they could bear. And G-d heard their cries and was sympathetic to their agonized plight" " (The Concise Family Seder by R. Alfred J. Kolatch)

"Although it is the Pharaoh of old who is the tyrant of the Haggadah, it is not he alone of whom we speak...we speak...of other tyrants and tyrannies as well. We speak
Of the tyranny of poverty and the tyranny of privation,
Of the tyranny of wealth and the tyranny of war,
Of the tyranny of power and they tyranny of despair,
Of the tyranny of disease and the tyranny of time,
Of the tyranny of ignorance and the tyranny of color.
To all of these tyrannies do we address ourselves..."
(The Concise Family Seder by R. Alfred J. Kolatch)


From the Week of 28 Adar II 5757/April 5, 1997

"If, however, there is a needy person among you...do not harden your heart and shut your hand against your needy kinsman. Rather you must open your hand and lend him sufficient for whatever he needs." (Deuteronomy 15:7-8)

"When your brother Israelite is reduced to poverty and cannot support himself in the community, you shall uphold him as you would a resident stranger...You shall not charge him interest on a loan..." (Leviticus 25:35-37)

"We support the non-Jewish poor along with the poor of Israel." (Talmud Bavli, Gittin 61a as quoted in Joseph Telushkin's Jewish Wisdom)

"Yose ben Yochanan...say: "Let your house be open wide [ie for guests, hopitality, anyone in need]; treat the poor as members of your household..." " (Mishnah, Avot 1:5)

"Charity is equal in importance to all the other commandments combined." (Talmud Bavli, Bava Batra 9a as quoted in Joseph Telushkin's Jewish Wisdom)

"One who gives charity in secret is greater than Moses" (Talmud Bavli, Bava Batra 9b as quoted in Joseph Telushkin's Jewish Wisdom)

"If a person closes his eyes to avoid giving [any] charity, it is as if he committed idolatry" (Talmud Bavli, Ketubot 68a as quoted in Joseph Telushkin's Jewish Wisdom)

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This page was made by Gretchen A. Shapiro, © copyright 1997