The Book of Exodus – Session III

In this ongoing class on the book of shemot we looked at different approaches to Moshe’s encounter with God at the burning bush.  We began with a debate from the Gemara in Berachot (7a) about whether or not Moshe behaved appropriately when he hid his face.  Was this a sign of great humility or misplaced fear?

We then moved to the Ramban about why Moshe could not come too close – because he had not yet reached the level of prophecy that he would reach at the revelation of the Torah.

Finally, we discussed Rabbeinu Bechaya’s reading of the removal of shoes. Was this simply a sign a respect?  Was this a sign of removing physicality? Perhaps there was something even deeper going on.

We concluded with a quick read through of chapters three and four and analysis of the personality of Moshe at that moment in time.

You can find the core texts at this link.

Here is the audio of this session:

Exodus 3 & 4 – Remove your shoes – Ramban Bachya

After we concluded chapters three and four we went to an analysis of some material from the Seder.  The core issue that we addressed is what is the low-point of Jewish history (genut) and what is the concomitant high-point?  In addition to the material on this sheet, we also looked at 2 Kings chapter 25 and the way in which that shows the failure of the Jewish people to ever actually leave Egypt.

May we each merit to experience a sense of personal and communal redemption this Pesach.

Here is the audio from this session:

Pesach – begin with degredation and conclude with liberation


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