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Three Signs to Confront Moshe's Three Fears

Uncovering the Lie of the Nile

43 min

The Nile River

Class Summary:

This weekly women's class was presented on Tuesday, Parshas Shemos, 21 Tevet, 5781, January 5, 2021, live from Rabbi Jacobson's home in Monsey, NY. It explores the three signs Moshe made for the Jewish people and their inner meaning and significance. What was the point of having the stick turn into a snake? Moshe's hand become white like snow? and the water turning into blood?

Please leave your comment below!

  • GW

    Gelly Weinberger -3 years ago

    This class was a real eye-opener in this insight

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  • SG

    Sarah Goldberg -3 years ago

    The snake's teshuva

    This shiur pointed out the symbolism of the staff snake turning into a snake and then reverting.

    It got me thinking of the times in Chumash we saw the snake. 

    First of course the snake as yetzer Hora and temptress encounters Chava and ultimately brings death and suffering to mankind. He is also punished as we know. (Even today if someone is called a snake we know what that means). 

    Then snakes were in the pit with Yosef but don't harm him. By now the evil snake is neutralized. 

    Then Hashem uses the staff-snake-staff miracle to impress and convince Moshe. This is repeated later with Pharaoh. Here the snake is being utilized for constructive purposes. 

    Later in the midbar when there is a plague Hadhem instructs Moshe to put an image of a snake high on a stick to be used for healing purposes. (This symbol still used by the medical profession). By now the snake has been transformed from the yetzer to neutral to positive. 

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    • SG

      Sarah Goldberg -3 years ago

      As part of the historical teshuva path of  the snake, after  being the yetzer with Chana, neutral with Yosef and before being the healer in the Midgard, one more stage can be seen.

      After Moshe finally accepted his mission from Hashem in Midian abd setting off in deference to the explicit order to go, deferring circumcision his newborn son, he was attacked by a snake who swallowed him top down half way and then bottom up half way to indicate his sin was the bris neglected when he stopped an inn. 

      That snake, actually an angel was acting as a messenger from Hashem. The ne t level in his teshuva. 

      It was alright to postpone the general mitzvah of the bris of his son because of  the  overriding explicit order to go, but not ok to postpone because of hotel arrangements.  

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  • RDB

    Rabbi Danny Bergson -3 years ago

    Thank you for amazing insights

    to believe in peoples capacity 

    to believe in revealing and expressing ones potentional

    to speak truth to power 

    these three qualities and values are fundamentals so eternally relevant 

    -

    today it is so easy to write people off 

    to lose sight of ones own potential greatness and reside in mediocrity 

    and to think that we are too small to stand up and have an effect against the big corruptions of the day 

    who can fight against the power of big tech and there progressive agenda ?

    or China human rights abuses ?

    but we can little by little 

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  • Anonymous -3 years ago

    Please check out and share Red Light - a beautiful song of Chizzuk: www.lifeinasong.org 

    Reply to this comment.Flag this comment.

  • SG

    Sarah Goldberg -3 years ago

    Judaism is distinguished from all other religions because it's based

    On mass revelation.  3 million witnessed Har Sinai and much else and that fact had contemporaneous corroboration from the world and an unbroken mesorah until today. And so it's veracity proven. This is the Kuzari's 3 pronged test of  veracity.  

    Every other religion fails that test of  veracity usually because a single alleged prophet claims he encountered the Divine and the message is....whatever. 

    But, the encounter at the burning bush was also an alleged event with a  message witnessed by only one person.  This is precisely why other religions fail to convince. 

    Why should we believe the burning bush happened? Because Moshe alone said so? We reject alleged prophets from other religions who claim a personal unwitnessed encounter with the Divine.. After all Moshe  is the beneficiary, for better or worse, of that unwitnessed encounter.  And how do we know it? Moshe himself took dictation from Hashem and wrote it all down including the bush encounter. 

    Or, perhaps,  we give credibility in general to the totality of the Torah because it passes the above 3 pronged test of veracity especially related to the actual Exodus and Har Sinai,  and other critical parts of  the saga that were witnessed by the nation as a whole. And, being that this  is so, the unwitnessed less critical seemingly minor parts of the saga gain credibility from the proven veracity of the saga as a whole.

      The burning bush claim and Moshe as the redeemer also matched the eventual geula promise the yidden,  even as slaves, held for centuries.  And then corroboration came with the plagues, and the actual departure from Mitzrayim.  

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  • SG

    Sarah Goldberg -3 years ago

    Moshe could have remained cloistered and comfortable

    Why go and wrestle with the oppressors abd even the reluctant stubborn oppressed?

    Even today, great yidden can remain cloistered in the beis medresh for a lifetime or go put and wrestle with the ignorant oppressed (in a different modern sense) yidden and even the oppressors (modern society). 

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  • SG

    Sarah Goldberg -3 years ago

    The first 2 signs were right there and Moshe could see

    The miraculous signs. But not so the third sign,  which involved water from the Nile. He wasn't at the Nile.

    So Moshe had to believe that the third sign would also come to pass. He believed in Hashem and His abilities.  

    If so,  why couldn't he believe that Hashem could take out the people,  especially considering Hashem's promise to Avraham,  a mesorah that Moshe knew like everyone else? 

    Moshe was just a detail, a chosen shaliach to accomplish that which Hashem had promised abd certainly could deliver on. Why doubt Hashem's choice of shaliach? 

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  • SG

    Sarah Goldberg -3 years ago

    Moshe wanted to avoid leadership

    Moshe kept the Torah as much as possible before it was given, like the Avos.

    Pirke Avos says to avoid being in a leadership or governmental position.  Maybe that's also why he demurred.  

    Rabbi Dovid Grossbsum was offered the Chief Rabbinate position. His father advised him to refuse.

    But, maybe Hashem's specific directive to take the job overrode the requirement to avoid such leadership positions. 

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  • SG

    Sarah Goldberg -3 years ago

    Where's the sincerity?

    Hashem asks Adam "where are you?". He asks Cain "where's your brother?". Hecasks Moshe "what's in your hand?" 

    These are sincere questions?

    Always just to "open the conversation?" 

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  • SG

    Sarah Goldberg -3 years ago

    Notice that when the Bush burned but wasn't consumed

    Moshe recognized it as a miracle.

    But, after Mattan Torah,  Krias yam suf, the mann, the well, the fact that the Aron took up no measurable space (similar to the bush), it wasn't seen as miraculous any more.  In fact they complained about the boring mann! 

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