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The Great Ponak

Kingdom Pursuits / Robby Dilmore
The Truth Network Radio
February 25, 2023 3:24 pm

The Great Ponak

Kingdom Pursuits / Robby Dilmore

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February 25, 2023 3:24 pm

Today, Robby is joined by Rabbi Matthew Ponak for another special show of "Ask Rabbi."

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Share it. But most of all, thank you for listening to the Truth Podcast Network. This is the Truth Network. Kingdom Pursuits, where you hear from ordinary people instilled with an extraordinary passion.

Together we explore the stories of men and women who take what they love and let God turn their passion into kingdom pursuits. Now, live from the Truth Booth, your host, Robbie Dilmore. Wow, what a treat we have for you today. We have a returning guest with us, and I've been excited about this show since he was on the first time. And so I quickly scheduled him again, and he had this idea that I thought was brilliant. And so I went with it, and the idea of it is, we're having our returning guest is Rabbi Matthew Ponak. Did I do it right? Matthew, did I get it right this time?

Yes. All right, Rabbi Matthew Ponak. And today we're going to play Ask the Rabbi. I mean, how fun is that? So you've had these questions.

You always wondered about the Jewish faith, about the way they celebrate certain things, about the way certain things happen. Well, you can join me. Of course, I'm going to get in plenty of questions, but we would love to have your question.

866-348-7884, 86634, truth is the number to call in and share. Again, Rabbi, we are so delighted to have you back and so excited to dig into some good questions. Thanks. I really appreciate being on the show again, Robbie.

It's good to speak with you again. Oh, yeah. And you live in California, right? I live on the West Coast in Canada. Oh, really? In a city called Victoria, British Columbia.

I did not know. Oh, oh, is that a beautiful place to... I went salmon fishing there one time. It's a really lovely spot, yeah. Beautiful oceans and mountains and forests. It's quite a, yeah, a really almost sacred part of the world, I find.

Oh, it really is. And we used to, when we would catch these, I guess they were cod or something, if you threw them up in the air, the eagles would swoop down off the... Have you ever seen that and get the cod before they ever hit the water? I haven't seen that in particular, but we have a lot of bald eagles around here. A lot of bald eagles around here. And I've never forgotten, oh, man, the eagles in Vancouver.

Just absolutely spectacular place to live. I'm jealous, man. I didn't know that. So I know you got questions. We've got answers. You've got to call us, 866-348-7884, and you might guess, Rabbi, that we got to... We're going to just go ahead and get these riddles right, you know, going, because, you know, speaking of asks. Yes. Oh, here we go.

So you're wondering about these ask riddles, I'm sure. So here we go. My wife asked me, you know, who my favorite vampire was. Do you believe that, Richard? Ah, she did. Oh, we went right into that, right?

Very good. My wife asked me who my favorite vampire is. Do you believe it?

Sure you do. And I told her the one from Sesame Street. And she said that doesn't count. You know what I told her?

What'd you tell her? I said, oh, he sure does. Ah, Richard, I can see you're not a Sesame Seat fan of Sesame Street.

Wrong generation, I guess. I try. Count Dracula on Sesame Street. He taught kids how to count. Okay, it was Count. Yeah, there you go.

I hate it when I have to explain, but it's okay. So my daughter asked me what do ballerinos wear, but it required math skills. Do you know why, Christian? You got any idea?

Hey. He was paying attention to something else. My daughter asked me what ballerinos wear, and I told her that requires math skills. Do you know why? Uh, two plus two? You got it. You got to put two, two, two, and two together.

I didn't see any. Wait a minute. You got it on your toes. Wait a minute, time out. You got to put two, two, two, two, and two together.

Wait a minute, time out. He didn't even pay attention. He got it right. How did he do that?

It could happen. I liked the rabbi's answer. She had to be on her toes to get that too, by the way. That is good. Yeah, that's very good. He didn't dance around the question.

He just went right to it. All right, so Tammy asked me why I was whispering, you know, and I told her that Mark Zuckerberg might be listening. You know what happened?

What happened? She laughed, and then Siri laughed, and then Alexa laughed. There you go.

And I know Dan that was listening to the show up in Portland would love this question. So he's not hearing this right now, but you guys got it. So what do candy bars say when you ask them for their pronouns?

You know, that's the whole thing in schools today. They ask you for your pronouns. What did the candy bar say? You got any idea, rabbi? This was right. Have you heard of this?

Yes, I'm not sure. I don't like the answer. I just, I'll await your brilliant touch line.

It's coming. Her, she. Her, she. I'm applauding that one. Her, she. Yeah, I knew. Dan would like that one, wouldn't he?

I think he would. And so, you know, what do you tell the child who wants a chemistry set to make chloroform? That one's pretty good, don't you think? Come on, we haven't, we haven't got Greg into this. Greg, I know you know this.

I have no idea. What do you tell your child when they want a chemistry set to make chloroform? This will work every time. Just tell them, sure, knock yourself out. It'll get them. I'm going to tell them that as soon as I get home.

I'm telling them that one. And so, you knew at the end of that, I would actually have a riddle. And I tried to, to get a thoroughly Jewish riddle for you today.

Something that would make you think that we could really get a cool answer from. I'm excited to hear the rabbi's answer to it. So the little dinosaur asked where they would hold his bar mitzvah. I don't know if you've heard of this, but that's, that's what happened. And of course the parent dinosaur, you know what they, what they told him, rabbi? A little dinosaur.

I have bar mitzvah jokes, but this one is, is a new one. Oh good, good. I got, there you go. Well, he said, there's parents actually, they told him that we always use Jurassic Park.

It was a great era in paleontology. That's good. I like that. So who was the first, here's the actual riddle to call in and win. And we, we're going to do this here when we get to the, you know, you calling in and you can not only ask your question, but you can answer who was the first child in the Bible to illustrate the concept of the bar mitzvah.

This is actually a very educational question in my opinion. Who was the first child in the Bible to illustrate the bar mitzvah? And if you can answer that, Christian, tell them what they'll win. They're going to win a fabulous prize pack from the Kingdom Pursuits Prize Vault. And we have some books.

Oh my goodness. Do we have books? And we have that, let's never forget the Christian bead back scratcher.

You can just tell them you want that. I still have it and I'm waiting to give it away. God's got your back, Robert. So who was the first child in the Bible to illustrate the bar mitzvah? I know you're, you're salivating to answer that question, right, Rabbi? Well, I don't want to spoil anything. Oh, I know. I'm interested to see what's brought up.

Okay. 866-348-7884, 86634-TRUTH is a number to call in and share again who was the first child in the Bible to illustrate the concept of the bar mitzvah. And that word mitzvah is a significant word, right? Especially if you love the 119 Psalm, right, Rabbi? And so, help our listeners, because the idea of mitzvah, Jewish folks see it completely different, I think. And most Christians just think the word means commandment, but it means so much more than that, doesn't it?

Yeah, well, the word literally in the Bible is translated pretty well as commandment. And the way it's understood in a lot of Jewish writings, a lot of Jewish wisdom, it's really about a relationship. And it's an opportunity to be connecting with God. So, we could say that having a wedding, you know, that could, you could call that a commandment, right? And so, when people are getting married, it's also an opportunity to connect with each other. Oh, I hate we got to go to a break, Rabbi, but that is an amazing answer to that question. You kind of shocked me with that one.

That is too cool. So, when we come back, we've got all sorts of folks calling in, and I'm excited to hear all that. And we got a lot more with Rabbi Matthew Panack. You're listening to the Truth Network and truthnetwork.com. Welcome back to Your Truth for Today.

I mean, your kingdom pursuit. What a fun morning we're having today. Oh, my goodness. We have back with us Rabbi Matthew Panack. And he wrote the book Embodied Kabbalah. Well, he wrote several books, but this is one he just came out with, which is spectacular. And we've got a bunch of callers coming out.

I'm very excited about that. But before we do that, you had done such an amazing job of explaining the concept of commandment slash mitzvah, that it's like a marriage, right? And I want you to finish that thought, because it was absolutely beautiful. And if we think about a marriage, you know, there's times of year for a lot of people, that could be an anniversary, or it could be Valentine's Day, but there's ways in which you could think of those as things you have to do in a marriage, but really, they're opportunities to be connecting. And so, in the same sense, the idea of a commandment, I guess, in English, sort of, or without interpretation, could sound kind of strict or harsh.

But I think in the best sense, it's a chance to be relating to God, and there's opportunities in every day, every season. Now, if you love me, you're gonna obey me, right? Along those lines, like, you know, if you love your dad, you know, you're gonna certainly have a whole lot better relationship with him if, you know, you don't do something you know would hurt him, right? So... Yes. And I also, there's a lot of flexibility within that system too. It's not a yes or no, it's not necessarily, there's a lot of choice. And certainly, Jewish people today, there's a great diversity on how people relate to these mitzvahs. And so, yeah, there's some people, it's more about listening and obeying, certainly, but there's a lot of people who see them as opportunities, or we're gonna find their own way through the various options within the tradition.

Darrell Bock That is just beautiful. I love that answer. Oh, I'm so glad I asked the question. Okay, so we have Jody. Oh, before I go into all these riddlers, because I'm so grateful, we got Jody, Annie, and David that are all calling in. So for you guys, if Jody happens to get your answer, please, please, please, please, please stay on the line, because I still want to talk to you. We still want to get you a prize. Do not worry that she may have the same answer you had. Or if she's got a different one, you know, everybody wins on Kingdom Pursuits.

It's just the way we do things. And we definitely want to talk to all of you. So stay on the line with me, no matter what Jody says. So we do have Jody, and she called in first, and she's in Eden, of all places. So Jody, you're on Kingdom Pursuits. Good morning.

Jody Good morning. Darrell Bock So what, who was the first child, in your view, to kind of illustrate the idea of the Bar Mitzvah? Jody I'm gonna guess Isaac, since he was the first Jewish child born under the circumcision.

Darrell Bock Isn't that beautiful? And you couldn't be more right, because it's actually, Bar is sort of the idea of son, and son of the commandment. And that fits perfectly, doesn't it, Rabbi? Jody Yes, that is a good answer. I was gonna see where you were going with that, because there's a lot of things that could be said on this topic. But I personally will accept this answer, Isaac.

Darrell Bock Oh, good. We have more coming though, Jody. So no doubt, I'm gonna put you back on hold so they can get your information.

And I'm so grateful for you calling in. But before I put you on hold, did you have a question for the rabbi? You always wanted to ask, but were afraid to, you know, whatever that was. Like, man, why do you guys do this? Or, you know, why do you crush the glass? What's the deal with that?

Or whatever you got. Jody Well, that's a good question. I have a ton of questions I guess I could ask, but we'll go with that one. Why do you crush the glass? Darrell Bock Why do they crush the glass, Rabbi? Jody Well, one of the most common answers that's given to that, explanations for that ritual is that our world is not yet whole. We haven't really completed all our work here.

And so even in times of great joy at a wedding, there's a remembrance of the work that's yet to be done. Jody Wow. Darrell Bock Wow. Jody And what is truly the first of the year? Is it in the spring or in the fall? Darrell Bock The first of the year.

Well, that's a debated question actually in our literature. But biblically, it is the spring. And then in the rabbinic era, starting about 2000 years ago, it gets really the main new year becomes in the fall.

And there's actually there's a new year of the trees that happens in around January, February, there's several new years, but the main answer these days is in the fall. Jody That's wonderful. Jody Thank you.

Darrell Bock Thank you for those are great questions, Jody. Way to go. God bless. I appreciate you calling in so much.

I'm gonna put you back on hold. We got Annie is in Springfield, Ohio. So Annie, you're on Kingdom Pursuits.

Good morning. Are you still with us, Annie? Or you were gonna say Isaac and Oh, I was afraid of that. Well, we lost Annie, but hopefully we still got David who's in Cornersville, North Carolina. And David, you're on Kingdom Pursuits. Good morning. David Good morning, Robby. How are you? Darrell Bock I am terrific. I'm very excited to hear what you have. David Well, she definitely got my answer.

It was definitely Isaac from Abraham's son, because I know in Genesis 21, it talks about waning of him on his when he was going into his adulthood. Darrell Bock Great answer, David. Just absolutely great. And so definitely, I can personally hand you some stuff on the Kingdom Pursuits prize vault next time I see you. I didn't realize it was this David, but now that I hear your voice, I know the David that this is. But while we got, you know, Rabbi Ponek with us, Ponek, I'm gonna say it right eventually. David You got this.

Darrell Bock How would you have answered that question before you heard from our listeners? David I would have said that the notion of Bar Mitzvah didn't emerge within Judaism until the Middle Ages. And people look back in history and try to find it. But to my knowledge, the Bar Mitzvah ceremony began in around the 1200s in Central Europe, and was sort of like, and people kind of look back and looked for sources that came earlier. But in my opinion, there were no biblical figures who were doing the ceremony. Darrell Bock That's interesting.

And how do you feel about it these days? David Me personally? Darrell Bock Yeah, you know. David I mean, I think that kids ought to find ways in general to learn about life before things get real. And I think Bar or a Bar Mitzvah ceremony can be a tremendously good opportunity for that. I think it's really important for people to find the balance between sort of what their tradition is saying, so to speak, and what's really needed for today. And if those two things can be interwoven, it's a really good opportunity for learning and maturation. Darrell Bock And so, just to follow up a little bit, what would a normal Bar Mitzvah, what would the young man need to learn, or what would be the steps to him getting that ceremony?

David Meek Sure. Well, and to be clear, these days, and this goes back more than 100 years at this point, there are the same ceremony for girls as well. And it's got a different name, but these days, the whole, either one is just called a Beni Mitzvah, often. And what they're doing is they're getting trained in Hebrew, getting trained in sort of like ritual prayer leadership, or chanting. There's occasions for them to be actually doing works of charity or kindness in the community as part of that. They're learning how to write a speech and give a speech.

And it all culminates with that day when they're essentially leading the congregation, either in chanting the Torah in its original language out loud, or in prayer and giving, you know, passing on wisdom that they've learned in their training. Darrell Bock I don't know if you've ever read the book Wild at Harp by John Eldredge, or you're familiar with his work at all, but, you know, he teaches us about young men that have a desire to know that they have what it takes to be a man, right? And that, you know, we're all kind of looking for acceptance. And to feel like, you know, to some extent, especially from a man to pass on to a man, you know, I imagine you went through that process. And what did it feel like to enter the group of men in your community? John Eldredge Well, just to be totally honest, I, at that age, didn't see it in such a deep way, as you're describing, Robby.

Darrell Bock Oh, I understand. John Eldredge Yeah, I was excited. The big thing that a lot of us looked forward to at that age was the opportunity to have a big party with all of our friends afterwards. And there was presence involved. And, you know, I learned a lot. And looking back, that was my first real public speaking experience. That was my first opportunity to craft a speech and to stand up in front of hundreds of people. And it felt really vulnerable, and it was good training in that sense.

But in the moment, they sort of, it was a reward-based anticipation for me at that time in my life. Darrell Bock I love honest answers. I really, really do. So, David, while I got you on the phone, if you're still with us, have you got a question for the rabbi? David Morgan Yeah, I wanted to know. So, there's a, we just asked a question about the wedding, but I had a question. There's a customary item that they eat after the ceremony. It's called the golden soup.

I don't really know what it is, but that's what I want to ask if he could explain to me what the golden soup was. Darrell Bock I've never heard of that one. Good one, Bob. Good one, David.

David Morgan I have not heard of that one either. David Morgan And so, I will say the time when usually the couple is going to be eating afterwards, there's a tradition called Yichud, which is, you could say it's being alone or seclusion. And it happens right after the ceremony. And though in older times, perhaps it was the moment of first intimacy or something like that, these days, mostly it's a time for the couple to eat together and have a bit of nourishment and just spend a little bit of time together before they go to the reception. Because for anyone who's been at their own wedding reception, or really any events where they're the star of the show, it's very hard to eat at the host. And so that is, it's a special, I've never heard it called the golden soup, but there's something and it can be any food really, but it's often a little sample from the reception banquet.

And they actually just get to enjoy and rest and be in each other's company before they present themselves as a couple. Darrell Bock Great question, David. We got to go to a break. We'll be right back.

with us. Rabbi Matthew Ponak, who wrote the book Embodied Kabbalah, but today we're playing Ask the Rabbi, or you could even say, Ask the Great Ponak. David Pompa That sounds like a great idea. Darrell Bock Yeah, very good. So we have, David in Kernersville was not finished with his questions. He has more. And so David, I'm very, very curious. You've got more questions.

So hopefully we got more answers. David Pompa Yeah, yeah, for sure. I don't know how to, you might have to help me, Robbie, with the pronunciation of it, because I don't know it, but I know it's the, what is it, the seven blessings during the wedding? I don't want to pronounce the wrong one.

I mean, I can Google it and know, but I kind of wanted a little bit more context on it versus what, you know, I'm going to find on the internet, of course. David Pompa So you're asking what that's about? David Pompa Yes.

David Pompa Essentially. Well, there are several sort of sections of a traditional Jewish wedding. And the number seven occurs a few times. And in fact, last time I was on this show, there was a riddle about seven circles and at the wedding as well. And seven is often a symbolic number of completeness. And we think about the seven days of creation, for example, and the creation of the world that's happening between the couple, that they're actually creating something new in the world through this wedding. So that's one of the symbolic elements. But essentially, it's an honor for someone to be able to recite these blessings.

Sometimes it's one person, sometimes it's seven different people, and there's melodies that are involved. But you're acknowledging that God, you're saying, blessed are you God, you know, and for creating the fruit of the vine, there's a blessing over wine. There's a blessing, essentially, for God who has created everything for the sake of the glory of God. There's a blessing for God who creates human beings, and God who has created humans in God's likeness.

And then that's four. And then the fifth has to do with bringing joy to us. Essentially, it's a blessing for joy, and a blessing specifically for the couple for their joy. And then lastly, it is the last blessing is this recitation of all these different kinds of joy and gladness and love and song and delight. And what happens at the wedding when that's recited, it can be a very joyous moment. And it's basically, you're raining down blessings on this couple. And the tradition is, in fact, that on someone's wedding day, they are in a particularly good place to bless others. And so it's common for people to go up to the newlyweds and ask them for blessings.

And it's seen that they are in, yes, but in a very connected place where they can actually bless others in a higher way than is normal. So along those lines, I think, well, I've still got you, David, that the whole idea of the word blessing in Hebrew is worth digging into a little bit, right? That it's a huge deal to receive a blessing. And yes, and to say a blessing, yeah, it's one of the ways that, one of the interpretations of the word, the word in Hebrew is baruch, often a brecha. And it's connected to this idea that there's sort of a, you're tapping into the spiritual source. And if someone can be connected to God in that moment, it's like there being a channel or you could say a river upon which that light can flow and can help other people. It can gladden the meal. It can bring more honor and holiness to an occasion.

And it's really about being that connecting point between spirit and earth. That's so wonderful. Well, thank you, David, for those questions. Wonderful. I appreciate you calling in very much. And so I— Yeah, no problem. Thank you. Thank you. So what are your questions? You know, here's your chance. This has been an amazing time and it'd be more amazing if you come with your question. 866-348-7884, what you always want to ask?

866-348-7884. So I have another question, as you might guess, Rabbi. So I know for most Christians, we look at the plagues of Egypt and, you know, the one plague that you guys—well, at least when I hear a lot of lectures on the plagues, that is completely different than the plague that we normally hear about—is the one where you guys talk about this whole horde of horrible animals that come.

But, you know, for us, it's the plague of flies. And so there's a big contrast right there. And I don't know if you know what I'm talking about, but I hope you do. I do, yeah.

And I am—I did not realize that there was such a difference there. And I'm just trying to find the exact verse here so I can look at the Hebrew. You don't have to have that handy, do you, Rabbi?

I know it's right there. It better be, what, Exodus 7, 8, somewhere in there. But, you know, essentially, you know, I studied the Hebrew a lot, because you may know that's one of my favorite things to do is study Hebrew letters and that kind of thing. And, you know, it was really, really cool when I hear lectures from Jewish rabbis about this plague of, you know, how they perceive it versus, you know, just this idea of flies coming upon us, like, man, that just doesn't have near the punch as all these diverse animals. And, you know, that was—I was just wondering if you had experienced that, anybody ever asked you that before, or you ever saw it before or thought about it? No, I actually—are you referring to Exodus 8 here where it's saying, where have it, right here?

So, one translation here is, you know, God did so, and heavy swarms of insects invaded Pharaoh's palace and the house of his courtiers. Is that—that's the— Exactly. That's—and so I have a tendency to want to listen to Rabbi Kaplan out of—he's in Canada as well—out of habad.org? Are you familiar with that? There's a few Rabbi Kaplan's around, but he might be in my local community as well.

Yeah, I bet there are. Yeah, that makes sense. You know, the literal translation here really is simply heavy swarms, something like that. Exactly. And then it says, to Pharaoh's house.

And it actually doesn't say explicitly what the nature of these swarms were. And so that sounds like it's up to interpretation. So, when you guys do a Passover Seder or something like that, and you're reciting—I love the way you do it—the different plagues, do you do it where you pour a little bit of wine every time you recite the plagues? We do, yeah. And we say it in Hebrew.

I'll bet you do. Yeah, yeah, so there's no—yeah, the differentiation you're speaking of, it could simply be—look, when there's not a clear answer, different translations are going to say different things. It might be as simple as that. And I'm looking at what's called the new JPS translation here in front of me, and it says heavy swarms of insects, which is not so different than what you're saying. Right. And I would imagine that if you're hearing another version of that, it may well be from—it's an interpretation that's given, what's called a midrash, that someone is looking backwards in time and saying, oh, well, it said it's a swarm, and what it really meant was, you know, that kind of thing. And there's many different ways of understanding these passages through different kinds of interpretation.

Right, right. And so when I was listening to this particular sermon, or whatever you want to, you know, however it was, he was talking about that these were swarms, and, you know, it was clear when I started to study it that there were other people that had that same view. But whatever it was, I couldn't agree with you more that here's something that seems uncontrollable coming at you. And, you know, when we think about a swarm of flies, I don't think we even begin to have a picture of what the Egyptians were experiencing during those plagues. Like, this was overwhelming. It was destroying their country, their lifeblood, so to speak, right? So again— Yeah, it was a plague. It was not a few flies buzzing around or whatever it was.

It was very, very irritating and difficult and overwhelming. So we will be right back, which gives you time to call in at 866-348-7884, 866-34-TRUTH, when we come back, we're playing Ask the Rabbi. You're listening to the Truth Network and TruthNetwork.com. Welcome back to Kingdom Pursuits, where we hear how God takes your passion and uses it to build the kingdom. We're having so much, really, just a blast today. I hope you are. And this is your last chance, man. We don't have but a couple more minutes, so you call us 866-348-7884, 866-34-TRUTH. It's your chance to ask the great Ponak, Rabbi Matthew Ponak. So we have Richard is in Winston-Salem. And Richard, you're on Kingdom Pursuits.

What you got? Hey, I was calling just to ask, there's been a lot of conversations about medical Western circumcision, and a lot of the rebuttals is that Jewish culture does circumcision. And I was also explaining that it's two different types of circumcision. Is that true?

I just want to clarify your question. Are you asking if circumcision is part of Jewish ritual, and also if it's a different type than a medical circumcision? Yeah. Some people would say that medical circumcision is the same as Jewish circumcision, but I was under the influence that it is not the same.

Ah. Well, different families these days are going to be making different choices around that, exactly the nature of the procedure. But if I could give you a traditional answer, so to speak, it would be that the difference is that a Jewish circumcision is done in a ceremonial context. And there's particular blessings involved, and there's a way of doing it that might, in some cases today, definitely overlap with a medical procedure.

But a medical procedure, most people are not bringing prayers and ritual customs and those kinds of things into a hospital for, let's say, just a purely medical procedure. But in a traditional Jewish procedure, it is, I think, essentially the same procedure, but it's surrounded in more, I guess, religious customs. So, you know, the way you would say that is a Brit milah, right? Brit milah, yep, is the Hebrew word for it, yes.

Could you share with us kind of, you know, what you feel is the significance of a Brit milah? Well, it is just about the oldest, most explicit mitzvah, the oldest, most explicit commandment or way of connecting in the Bible. And it goes back to Abraham and Isaac and Ishmael as well. And it is connected with, in that context, being a part of the people of Israel and having this relationship to God. And it's a way that Jewish boys have been brought into the fold, so to speak, since time immemorial.

It's a very closely held tradition to this day, and in a day of a lot of sort of religious flexibility, it's one of the customs that has stayed the most consistent throughout the ages. Oh, I absolutely love your question, Richard. That's just spectacular. Thank you so much. I really appreciate you calling in, buddy. God bless.

All right, you've still got time. 866-348-7884 to get that question in, 866-344-TRUTH. I love, love, love the way you brought that together, Rabbi, with the idea of the mitzvah, the first mitzvah, with this connection that, and it seems like that, you know, I've heard some sermons that King David, obviously, there's a whole lot about circumcision when it comes to King David, but I understand that he really, really cherished it. In some of the Psalms, he was speaking specifically of that mitzvah, how he felt connected to God through that. Yeah, it's been, you know, a fairly often reflected upon point of connection and mitzvah throughout the ages. Yeah, you'll find it, I mean, it's fairly central in a lot of the writings of the Bible. I mean, even referring to the Philistines in the book of Judges, for example, the uncircumcised ones and stuff like that, it was a pretty important part of identity, even way back then. And if I may, Rabbi, I want to go back to a topic just from before the break about the swarms or the animals versus the insects.

I have another source here, I found that it goes back just about 2,000 years, there's a debate. So Judaism is so much about discussion and dialogue and kind of holy disagreement, if you will. And so we often have multiple answers to a lot of important questions.

And that's part of what it means to be Jewish, is having these, you know, dialogues. And there's two rabbis, Rabbi Yehuda says, well, arov, which you could also translate as mixture with like a mixture, meaning a mixture of animals. So there were beasts and there were all kinds of things. And Rabbi Nehemia says, well, they were a mixture of insects. And this is from a midrash going back about 2,000 years. So that's probably one of the oldest sources about this disagreement that you've found. That's cool.

That really is. Well, we have David is in Burlington. We hopefully can get this question in real quick. David, you're on Kingdom Pursuits. Good morning.

Good morning. Rabbi, could you explain the Jewish understanding of sheol, the definition of sheol and what it means from a Jewish perspective? Sheol, like the pit is often translated. So it's not a word that's used much anymore when people talk about the afterlife in Judaism. But biblically, it probably refers to some kind of underworld or afterlife context. There's really not much explicit description about it. But I understand it is a place where the ancestors dwell, so to speak, where people are going.

And it's not a place of negativity or positivity even. Oh, I hate the show is coming to an end, David. That is an awesome question. We're just going to have to have Rabbi back on because we've got to talk about the sons of Korah when it comes to this whole idea. So I know we got a lot of stuff coming your way for the great PONAC. Thank you. So I just can't tell you what it means to all of us, Rabbi, that you would give us another Saturday and hopefully we can do it again soon. This is the Truth Network.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-02-25 16:50:03 / 2023-02-25 17:05:34 / 16

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