Best Of The Web
“In the Haftara of this week, we read from I Kings about the erection of the First Temple by King Solomon. It ends with Solomon quoting the word of G-d to his father King David, “You shall not erect The House, but rather your son who comes from your loins, he shall build the house for my name”.
Why was King David, the beloved of G-d, not allowed to build the Temple? The answer is given elsewhere; 1 Chronicles 22:8, “But the word of G-d came to me, saying, ‘You have shed much blood and have waged great wars. You shall not build a house to my name, because you have shed so much blood before me on the earth”.
So much lies behind these verses.
From the beginning of the Commonwealth there was frequent tension between the Priestly caste and the Royal caste. These two elite tribes, Levi and Judah, would often vie for supremacy. The founder of the Royal House was of course King David whose hands were stained with the blood of his enemies. The progenitor of the Priesthood is Aaron. Aaron, our sages say, is the prototype of a peace-lover, “Be like the disciples of Aaron, Love peace and pursue peace, one who loves all mankind and brings them close to Torah” (Ethics of Our Fathers, Chapter 1, Mishnah 11-12) . In the previous Parsha we are told about how Aaron sought to placate the impatient Israelites and ended up facilitating the building of a golden calf. This was the the temperament of Aaron; always seeking a peaceful resolution-sometimes to a fault.”
JJ Editor's Daily Picks
"The likely successor to British Prime Minister Theresa May, Boris Johnson, has plans to subsume the government department overseeing development aid into the foreign office, effectively eliminating it. That will destroy a post-Brexit United..."
"Gerard Baker, editor-at-large at the Wall Street Journal (no reflexively anti-Trump publication) recently wrote a piece decrying Donald Trump and his foreign policy as a fount of erratic unpredictability. This essay will give the counter view...."
"On Wednesday, Congresswoman Ilhan Omar announced that she will be visiting Israel and the Palestinian territories in the coming weeks. Omar will be accompanied by Rep. Rashida Tlaib. The two freshman congresswomen have become a focal point of..."
"Netflix may have lost US subscribers for the first time since it began making its own shows, but that didn't stop the streaming giant from dropping new figures about how many people are sucked into its Adam Sandler vortex. (Spoiler: More than..."
"A few years ago, Amy Balliett, CEO of a Seattle-based design and marketing firm, noticed that as the work week slogged on, her employees’ energy and productivity wilted. “That would slump to such an extent that the same task on Monday would..."
"Over the last few days the #faceappchallenge has taken over social media. This “challenge” involves downloading a selfie-editing tool called FaceApp and using one of its filters to digitally age your face. You then post the photo of your wizened..."
"Although there are plenty of irrational aspects to life in modern America, few rival the odd fixation on lawns. Fertilizing, mowing, watering — these are all-American activities that, on their face, seem reasonable enough. But to spend hundreds..."
"Can a book change the way we think? I don’t mean that in the sense of a reader’s opinion or ideology shifting—of course the right literary work can do that. But can a book rewire the brain itself, literally changing the way one particular mind..."
"It’s our job to let kids know we see and hear them, but we’re not necessarily going to solve siblings’ conflicts for them (or else they never get the practice). When squabbles start, imagine you’re a sportscaster and describe what you see in..."
"Magali Trejo-Martinez, a 22-year-old living in Salem, Oregon, recently went on a date that was rather uninspiring. “I had dinner, had a couple margaritas, and then went home,” is how she recapped the evening. This outcome wasn’t entirely..."
"The first lunar landing was many things — a D-Day-like feat of planning and logistics, a testament to the power of man's will, an ostensible propaganda coup for NATO. It was also, I think, one of the most misunderstood events in the history of..."
"THE FIRST TIME Bernie Sanders ran for president, he didn’t talk much about being Jewish. In fact, he didn’t talk much about himself at all. His 2016 primary campaign, like his whole political career, was relentlessly focused on one topic: income..."