Best Of The Web
“Normally, this shabbat would be the shabbat before Shavuot, but because Shavuot begins right after shabbat ends, the shabbat before is literally the day before, so I decided to publish this a week early.
The shabbat before Shavuot has no special designation, but most of the shabbatot which precede a major biblical holiday do have a special designation.
The shabbat before Passover is called shabbat hagadol (the great shabbat). It is not known for sure why that Shabbat received this title, but one explanation is that the haftorah which is read on the Shabbat preceding Passover contains the passage from Malachi 3:23 – Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and awesome day of the Lord.
During the Passover Seder we pour a cup of wine for Elijah the Prophet in expectation that he is arriving to bring us the final redemption and usher in the messianic era. We equate this first redemption of the Jewish people with the final redemption and so this is Shabbat Hagadol.”
JJ Editor's Picks
"Congratulations, Mr. President. It took an extraordinary effort, but you finally managed to spark a serious global crisis. I know you don’t like to share credit, but don’t worry. The current mess in the Middle East centered around Iran is all..."
"We’re approaching the anniversary of one of the nastiest political battles it has been my misfortune to witness—the confirmation of Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court despite credible accusations of sexual harassment and assault and his..."
"There are few one-offs in life on Earth—rarely can a single species boast a trait or ability that no other possesses. But human language is one such oddity. Our ability to use subtle combinations of sounds produced by our vocal cords to create..."
"He walked through the coffee shop door and scanned the crowd. A familiar smile bloomed as he recognized me, despite how my appearance had changed over the years. I’m bald and bearded now, and heavier. I wear an extra decade on my face, and I’m..."
"The poverty rate in the United States fell to 11.8 percent in 2018, according to data released last week by the Census Bureau — the lowest it’s been since 2001. But this estimate significantly understates the extent of economic deprivation in..."
"Streaming is the future of TV. But for now a big part of the streaming business revolves around old TV shows. Latest case in point: Netflix is paying a lot of money for the rights to show Seinfeld to its 150 million subscribers around the world..."
"On the eve of the second Israeli election of 2019, there is no shortage of apocalyptic rhetoric about the potential consequences of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s re-election. From the New York Times' editorial column to The Forward’s..."
"Is there a backlash toward the technology industry in the culture? I tend to think so, having written about its various twists and turns most weekdays for the past couple years now. But sometimes an obsession with a beat can lead to myopia, and..."