Friday, December 17, 2010

Hanukkah March of the Temple Mount Faithful

b'ezrat HaShem / with the help of G‑d

Hanukkah March of the Temple Mount Faithful — 2010/5771

The Temple Mount and Land of Israel Faithful Movement will hold their traditional Hanukkah march on the first day of Tevet (Wednesday, December 8), beginning at 9:00 AM, Jerusalem time. Starting out in Modi'in, the ancient city of the Maccabees, the march will follow the route taken by the Maccabees as they defeated the mighty Greek army on their way to liberate the holy city of Jerusalem. Their main goal was to liberate Jerusalem, to purify the Temple from the pagan idols, and to once again make the city of Jerusalem the capital of the nation of Israel.
It was in Modi'in where the high priest Mattityahu started a revolt, together with his five sons and many volunteers from the Jewish people. With the help and the strength of the G‑d of Israel, through battle after battle they defeated the Greek empire. They were a small minority fighting against what was at the time the world's greatest military force. When the Greek soldiers asked for Mattityahu's help in getting the Jewish people to make a sacrifice on a pagan altar, he cried out, "G‑d forbid that we should forsake the law and the ordinances. We will not obey the king's commands to turn away from our religion, either on the right hand or the left" (1 Maccabees 2.21-22). And with that, he killed one of the Jewish traitors who was getting ready to offer a pagan sacrifice, just as Phinehas son of Eleazar son of Aaron the priest did to Zimri the son of Salu (Numbers 25.6-15). As he went throughout the city, Mattityahu cried out to the people of Israel, "Whosoever is zealous of the law and maintains the covenant, let him follow me!" (1 Maccabees 2.27). As he fought on and on, more and more Israelis joined with him and his sons. But they all knew that the real reason for their victories and the complete removal of the Greek empire from the land of Israel was that the G‑d of Israel had become the General and the Commander of the Maccabee's forces, and He does today with Israel, so He did with the Maccabees and gave them their great victories in their time of need.
By their bold actions, the Maccabees began a spiritual revolution within the Jewish community, spreading throughout the Land of Israel which was laid heavy under a strong influence of the Hellenistic pagan culture, placing it in grave danger of loosing its godly Jewish identity. By saving Israel's godly identity through this revolution, the Maccabees provided a lesson to all the coming generations of Israel that a small minority, even one person such as the high priest Mattityahu, can change the negative march of history so long as they trust in the G‑d of Israel, and follow the eternal Torah which He gave to Israel.
Since the origin of our movement, the Temple Mount Faithful Movement has considered itself to be as the Maccabees, and as the Joshua's and the Caleb's of our time we swore to adopt this lesson of the Maccabees. We swore faithfulness to G‑d and to His Word and we trust Him absolutely. Like the Maccabees, we are struggling for the liberation and purification of the Temple Mount, the hill of G‑d in Jerusalem, to immediately remove the Arab Islamic pagan presence from the most holy place of Israel -- the location of the First, Second and soon-to-come Third Temple.
On the seventh day of Hanukkah, Wednesday, 1 Tevet 5771 (December 8, 2010) the Temple Mount Faithful Movement will travel by bus to Modi'in, where we shall swear faithfulness to the godly heritage of the Maccabees. We will light the Hanukkah menorah and say for the ears of the whole world, "You will never take the land of Israel given by G‑d only to His people Israel and give it to foreigners and enemies of the G‑d and the people of Israel". We shall swear before G‑d to make the same Spiritual revolution that the Maccabees made in their time. It will be an exciting moment to stand on the same ground where the Maccabees stood, the ground of the ancient city of Modi'in. After lighting the torch of the Maccabees, we will run for part of the way following in the tracks of the Maccabees and their victories against the Greeks, on the mountains of Beit Horon. When we arrive at the Jaffa Gate in Jerusalem we will demonstrate for the immediate removal of the Arab Islamic enemy from the Temple Mount. We will tell the leaders of the United States, the European Union, and the United Nations that they will not pressure us to stop building homes for the Jewish people on their ancient Land. We will stand against any false anti-godly plan to create a foreign Islamic terrorist state in the midst of the Land of the G‑d and the people of Israel. We shall call to everyone in the world -- and to all the leaders in Israel -- to take their hands away from the Land which belongs to G‑d, that Land which He gave to the people of Israel in an ancient, eternal covenant.
Our present era is reminiscent of the period of the ancient Maccabees, when Israel was controlled by the Greek Empire who prohibited Israel from attaining her divine mission of being a holy nation, a kingdom of priests and a light to the nations. Israel, who had sworn to commit herself to be faithful to the One True Living G‑d of Israel, immediately rejected the situation when the Greeks desecrated the Holy Temple of G‑d in Jerusalem and placed their own pagan idols inside the Holy of Holies of the Temple and forced the Israelites to accept a Hellenistic pagan faith and culture. The Israelites were determined to remain as servants 'only' to the G‑d of Israel and never to be slaves to pagan idolatries. The first book of the Maccabees reads as if it were written today. To all of those who devise evil plans to take Jerusalem from the G‑d and people of Israel, we answer today in the words of Nehemiah, the leader of Israel after the destruction of the First Temple and the redemption of Israel 2,526 years ago, who answered Geshem, the Arab and his companions:
"Then I answered them, and said to them, The G‑d of heaven, he will prosper us; therefore we his servants will arise and build; but you have no portion, or right, or memorial, in Jerusalem." (Nehemiah 2:20)
To those who have devised plans to divide the Land of Israel, to give it to her sworn enemies, listen to what G‑d said through the prophet Joel more than 2,500 years ago:
"For, behold, in those days, and in that time, when I shall bring back the captivity of Judah and Jerusalem, I will also gather all nations, and will bring them down into the valley of Jehoshaphat, and will enter into judgment with them there for my people and for my heritage Israel, whom they have scattered among the nations, and have divided up my land." (Joel 4:1-2/Christian Bible 3:1-2)
Everyone who reads this message is called to participate in this exciting and important event of the Temple Mount Faithful Movement. You can ride with us with no cost -- just bring an open heart and be a part of an event that will be another stage in the godly end-time campaign of the Temple Mount and Land of Israel Faithful Movement. For additional details, contact us by e-mail:, telephone: 02.625.1112 or FAX: 02.625.1113 (don't forget your country code).
In G‑d we trust!!

The Temple Mount and Land of Israel Faithful Movement
P.O. Box 18325, 4 Aliash Street, Jerusalem, Israel
Telephone: 02.625.1112 / FAX: 02.625.1113

© Copyright 1997 - 2010  |  Temple Mount and Land of Israel Faithful Movement

The Temple Mount and Land of Israel Faithful Movement is not associated or affiliated with the Temple Institute.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

For Your Servant Assumed Responsibility

"For your servant assumed responsibility..."
(Genesis 44:32)
Tevet 3, 5771/December 9, 2010

This year the Chanuka festival of light saw the outbreak of the worst forest fire in the history of the modern state of Israel, which destroyed over five million trees and took over forty lives. As to be expected in the fire's aftermath an atmosphere of blame and recrimination has emerged. Just who was responsible for the conflagration? Teenagers are suspected of carelessly tossing embers from a friendly picnic which quickly ignited the blaze. Firefighters are accused of being entirely too slow in initially reacting to the flames. Israel's firefighting forces have been exposed as being woefully under-equiped and under-trained. Various Israeli government ministries, led by various government ministers, over an extended period of various government coalitions have been cited as being neglectful, incompetent and unconcerned over a problem of fire fighting preparedness which has been well known for many years. Proposals for improvements have been rejected. Necessary decisions have been put on hold. By all accounts, this was a man-made disaster.
Yet, had the hills and valleys of Israel not been bone dry the gathering blaze would no doubt have progressed much more slowly, giving fire fighters a better chance to put out the flames before they swept out of control. A wetter month of November, (in which no precipitation fell), might have even prevented the fire at its source. And the strong winds which blew across the Mount Carmel region last week aided and abetted the rapid spreading of the flames. Was G-d then, an accomplice to this disaster?
This is not the first time in our long history that human frailty and Divine will have conspired to create a dangerous reality, fraught with painful and devastating ramifications. And it's not the first time that the children of Israel have had to face their own failings and take responsibility. This week's Torah reading of Vayigash opens with Yehudah drawing near to Yosef. (Genesis 44:18) Tensions couldn't be higher as Yosef threatens to imprison his brother Binyamin, an act which threatens both the life of their father Yisrael and the very integrity of the brothers themselves. If Binyamin is allowed to be taken, the family will be irreparably shattered. Israel, as a unified entity will cease to exist.
Yehudah, fulfilling his earlier promise to his father, accepts complete responsibility for his brother Binyamin's well-being. His resolve in the matter is unequivocal, forcing Yosef to finally reveal to his brothers his true identity. Yehudah's unassailable resolve not to allow his family another traumatic blow is, of course, also an acknowledgment of all the brothers' complicity in the earlier betrayal of Yosef. The guilt that the brothers have been silently harboring for more than a decade has finally been transformed into a powerful expression of family unity and mutual responsibility.
Yosef, in turn, reveals himself to his brothers, comforts them, and implores them "not be sad, and let it not trouble you that you sold me here, for it was to preserve life that G-d sent me before you." (ibid 45:5) Even as the brothers embrace, two very different perspectives are revealed. Yosef has always looked at "the bigger picture." He has always seen G-d as the guiding force behind both his misfortunes and his triumphs. He has always responded by moving forward with his life, making the best of every situation, seeing opportunity even in adversity. By doing so Yosef was taking responsibility for his life even while acknowledging G-d's will behind every turn in his fortune.
Yehudah has also had to reckon with many difficult situations throughout his life. It was he who saved Yosef's life by proposing to his brothers that they sell, rather than slay Yosef. Later in life he had to face up to his own wrong doing and acknowledge the righteousness of his daughter-in-law Tamar. And now, once again, Yehudah takes a hard look at his own actions and their consequences as he faces off with Yosef.
Yosef has made a life out of responding responsibly to adversity that came his way through no fault of his own, but ultimately only by virtue of Divine decree. Yehudah, however, has constantly had to examine and reexamine his own deeds, draw proper conclusions, and make the necessary corrections to his actions. This has been Yehudah's way of living life responsibly.
There is no doubt that G-d's hand was revealed foremost in the great Carmel Mountain blaze. No doubt it was a wake up call to the entire nation, a call for contrition and repentance; a call to examine our ways and correct them. And no doubt, just as Yosef was always able to recognize, G-d's will, even when excruciatingly painful, is always for the ultimate good of His people.
Having recognized this "Yosef's principle" of the ultimate good of the Divine will, we must, nevertheless, take upon ourselves the "Yehudah principle" of personal accountability, recognizing our errors, correcting them, and moving forward.
The Haftorah (additional scriptural) reading which accompanies parashat Vayigash in the Shabbat service is from the book of Ezekiel, in which the prophet is shown two branches, one standing for Yehudah, and one for Yosef. G-d instructs Ezekiel, saying, "Behold I will take the stick of Yosef, which is in the hand of Ephraim and the tribes of Israel his companions, and I will place them with him with the stick of Yehudah, and I will make them into one stick, and they shall become one in My hand." (Ezekiel 37:19)
Rather than slinging accusations at one another, it is incumbent upon us to take hold of the burnt branches of the once noble forest of Mount Carmel, and place them together as one people. If we can accept G-d's constant presence in our lives, as did Yosef, yet also understand deep within our hearts our own accountability and our own ability to take responsibility and to change our course for the good, as did Yehudah, we shall truly be a great nation, and so merit G-d's promise to Ezekiel:
"And I will form a covenant of peace for them, an everlasting covenant shall be with them; and I will establish them and I will multiply them, and I will place My Sanctuary in their midst forever. And My dwelling place shall be over them, and I will be to them for a G-d, and they shall be to Me as a people. And the nations shall know that I am HaShem, Who sanctifies Israel, when My Sanctuary is in their midst forever." (ibid 37:26-28)
Temple TalkTune in to this week's Temple Talk as Rabbi Chaim Richman and Yitzchak Reuven look back upon a week of terrific extremes: The joy of Chanuka against the backdrop of the devastating fire in Israel that claimed so many lives and did such horrendous damage. And in the aftermath, a little rain. And as we learn from the story of Choni Ha'Ma'agel, we never say "we've had enough rain!" so we continue to pray that the Land of Israel begins to receive bountiful rainfall. As we read of Yosef's reunion with his family in Egypt, the month of Tevet begins. What are the lessons of this month, which begins during Chanukah but yet, features a fast day over the First Temple's destruction just a week after the conclusion of Chanukah?
Rabbi Richman in

America, January 2011"Sing to the L-rd a New Song; Sing to the L-rd, All the Earth!" (Psalms 96) Rabbi Richman in America, January 2011: Please view this short video in which Rabbi Richman personally invites you to join him in America this January as he speaks about the world today and the role Israel is destined to play in leading the world "From Exile to Redemption." Click here!
For additional details of the Rabbi's speaking engagements in eight states, please click here.
Shouting to the DarknessShouting to the Darkness - A righteous Gentile's thoughts about Chanukah and the Holy Temple: Every year we are asked, "Why do you celebrate Chanukah?" and/or "Are you Jewish?" I understand people’s curiosity. I even understand that they may think it's a little weird. Heck, I even think it's a little weird that I'm not Jewish and I celebrate Chanukah. But like I tell my kids, sometimes weird is good. It means you're not following the norm. And more often than not these days, it's the norm that's becoming weird. Since the question keeps coming up, I thought I would write a little ditti about why we celebrate Chanukah. Please click here for the entire article.
Zot ChanukaThis week features the new Bat Melech video teaching with Rabbanit Rena Richman, entitled, "Zot Chanuka: The eighth and final day of Chanuka, the day on which we kindle all eight Chanuka lights is a day of great illumination. This illumination includes a great spiritual force that is brought down from above on this day, which floods the world and provides a supernal light that will remain with us throughout the entire year." Click here to view.
Making Miracles HappenThis week also features the new Light to the Nations teaching by Rabbi Chaim Richman, entitled, "Making Miracles Happen: Torah teaches us not to sit back and wait for miracles to happen. Instead we are instructed to actively pursue our own destiny as individuals and as a nation. If our intentions are good and our efforts are wholehearted, G-d will help us accomplish our goals. This is the real miracle of Chanuka. The people of Israel, led by the Kohen Gadol Mattitiyahu and his five sons, rose up and threw off the yoke of the Greek oppressors, liberated the Holy Temple and renewed the Divine service." Click here to view.
Parashat HashavuaWhen Ya'akov and Yosef reunite after seventeen years of separation, Yosef weeps while Ya'akov recites the shema prayer, ("Hear O Israel, HaShem our G-d, HaShem is One"). Was Ya'akov being distant? Cold? On the contrary. By saying the shema at the moment of his reunion with his son, Ya'akov was including his love for G-d with his love for Yosef. For there is no love outside the love of HaShem. HaShem's love encompasses all. Click here to view Rabbi Richman's short teaching on parashat Vayigash (Genesis 44:18-47:27).
Blessings from the holy city of Jerusalem,
  Yitzchak Reuven
  The Temple Institute

Monday, December 6, 2010

God hates Christmas!

Jeremiah 10 condemns Christmas trees!

Jeremiah 10
1 Hear the word which the LORD speaks to you, O house of Israel.
2 Thus says the LORD:

Do not learn the way of the Gentiles;
Do not be dismayed at the signs of heaven,
For the Gentiles are dismayed at them.
3 For the customs of the peoples are futile;
For one cuts a tree from the forest,
The work of the hands of the workman, with the ax.
4 They decorate it with silver and gold;
They fasten it with nails and hammers
So that it will not topple.
5 They are upright, like a palm tree,
And they cannot speak;
They must be carried,
Because they cannot go by themselves.
Do not be afraid of them,
For they cannot do evil,
Nor can they do any good.”
6 Inasmuch as there is none like You, O LORD
(You are great, and Your name is great in might),
7 Who would not fear You, O King of the nations?
For this is Your rightful due.
For among all the wise men of the nations,
And in all their kingdoms,
There is none like You.
8 But they are altogether dull-hearted and foolish;
A wooden idol is a worthless doctrine.
9 Silver is beaten into plates;
It is brought from Tarshish,
And gold from Uphaz,
The work of the craftsman
And of the hands of the metalsmith;
Blue and purple are their clothing;
They are all the work of skillful men.
10 But the LORD is the true God;
He is the living God and the everlasting King.
At His wrath the earth will tremble,
And the nations will not be able to endure His indignation.

Jeremiah 10 condemns idolatry, both in the letter and in the spirit, whether a physical idol or an idolatrous tradition based upon HEATHEN CUSTOMS like the "Christmas tree" that history clearly exposes as pagan in origin. Those who adorn their Christmas trees and remain in denial about its pagan origin, who play deaf, dumb and blind to the facts, who attempt to dismiss or downplay how it's a heathen custom, are living a lie and shamefully reject the clear commandments of God that speak against such spiritual adultery, mixing and matching pagan error with biblical truth, and will suffer the consequences for being so dishonest and deceitful.

Pagan holidays like Christmas and pagan customs like Christmas trees are both abominations to God. True Christians shun both, we avoid them like the plague, because we love God more than idolatrous traditions of apostate men!

Why I No Longer Celebrate Christmas

Christmas is About Giving -- Says Who?

C.H. Spurgeon on Christmas and Roman Catholicism

Will God Curse Our Countries for Christmas?

The Plain Truth about Christmas

Fire in Northern Israel

An out-of-control fire in the north of Israel has people questioning if the country is prepared to deal with an emergency.

Here's the video.

Friday, December 3, 2010

"I have dreamed a dream"

"I have dreamed a dream"
(Genesis 41:15)
Kislev 25, 5771/December 2, 2010
1st Night of Chanuka

"To be or not to be: That is the question." At least in Hamlet's mind that is the question. Torah answers this question with an emphatic yes, resonating from the moment of creation, and even a moment before that. But Hamlet, in his long brood, carries his darkness even further: "To sleep: perchance to dream: ay, there's the rub." It would seem that the hapless Hamlet is haunted by his own dreams, or more precisely, by what they reveal about himself. On the other hand, Yosef, our own inveterate dreamer, had no such compunction. Yosef sought only G-d's word in his dreams and in the dreams of others, and not his or their own earthly schemes or motivations. Our sages teach us that our dreams contains both the wheat and the chaff. Every dream we dream has an element of prophecy. But alas, every dream we dream contains its own fair amount of nonsense. Winnowing the kernel of truth from the mass of chaff is the particular skill that Yosef possessed, and that, in truth, very few of us today possess.
Yosef was a young man who followed his dreams, (and the dreams of others), which dragged him down to the depths of despair before propelling him upon his meteoric rise to fame and power. His story alone testifies to the Torah's endorsement of dreams and dreaming. His brothers misunderstood Yosef's dreams because they read their own fears and desires into his dreams. Pharaoh was confounded by his own dreams, unable to make heads or tails of their profound imagery. Yet Yosef, in a flash, was able to separate the message from the metaphor, and laid out for Pharaoh both the meaning of his dreams and the practical solution for dealing with their portent.
There are no dreams which accompany the story of the Chanuka victory of the Maccabi warriors over the Greek oppressors, but neither is the annual coinciding of the Yosef story with the Chanuka celebration a meaningless coincidence. On Chanuka, in commemoration of the miracle of the single cruse of oil which burned brightly for eight consecutive days, we kindle our own Chanuka lights. Anyone who prepares their own wicks for their Chanukiyot (lamps) knows the following: the wick draws up the pure olive oil, and produces both a brilliant illumination, and plenty of jet black soot.
A dream's ultimate source is G-d, akin, in the case of our Chanuka lamp, to the pure golden olive oil. In one's dream is both the Divine illumination, as envisioned in our mind's eye, (the wick), and all the senseless chatter that inevitably accompanies our dream. And that is the soot. Little wonder that we are instructed on each of the eight nights of Chanuka to take the time to gaze at and enjoy the the glow of our candles after we have kindled them. For this soft but penetrating light is both the source of our dreams and also the very light that first accompanied and illuminated creation. Our sages teach us that G-d, seeing that the world was not ready to merit this pure and holy light, hid that light away for the enjoyment of the righteous in the world to come. Behold - for the eight days of Chanuka, we are the righteous and this is the world to come!
Contrary to the apprehensions of Hamlet, we have nothing to fear from our dreams if we but cling to their pure source, seek out and behold the illumination of their true message, and regard their worthless soot and dross accordingly. One of the most moving of Psalms is Psalm 126, which begins: "A song of ascents. When HaShem returns the returnees to Zion, we shall be like dreamers."
Today all of Israel are as dreamers for we have indeed returned to our land. Our many enemies see only darkness and danger in our dream. They, like Yosef's brothers, are transposing their own fears and, (in this case), their own un-G-dly desires upon our dream. Many others just don't get it, for they, like Pharaoh, can't separate the wheat from the chaff. And to be sure, there is chaff and there is black soot, for this is a natural byproduct of G-d's dream in this world. And for this reason we are commanded to see the light and to dwell in its illumination, and not to dwell in the blackness of the soot.
Our ancestors, the Chashmonean (Maccabi) priests, knew this well. They recaptured and purified the Holy Temple years into a war for liberation that would last decades more. In spite of the daunting task and its many dangers that still lay ahead of them, they stopped all activity at once and busied themselves with only one thing: rekindling the seven lamps of the golden menora. The one cruse of pure olive oil that they discovered in the ransacked Sanctuary, which would burn uninterrupted for eight nights and days, was their reward for remaining true to their dreams and steadfast in their fight for G-d's honor, for His light is the light that our dreams are made of.
In the words of the unfortunate Dane: "perchance to dream." By all means - to dream! and to guided in life by the pure Divine light that lights up our dreams. Chanuka sameach - A Joyful Chanuka!
Temple TalkTune in to this week's Temple Talk as Rabbi Chaim Richman and Yitzchak Reuven dream aloud about Yosef the dreamer and the role he played in saving his own family and the entire nation of Egypt from famine. It seems that ever since Yosef, Jews are great at dreaming... Keeping their own dreams alive, and fueling the dreams that keep the whole world alive as well. The nations of the world are all for Jewish dream-power, but once we've made their dreams come true, they'd prefer it if we would just disappear...
Chanuka is here, time to bring the Hidden Light back into the world. Speaking of which, the light of this world is the Divine Presence which rests in the Holy Temple.
Rabbi Richman 2011 American

Tour"Sing to the L-rd a New Song; Sing to the L-rd, All the Earth!" (Psalms 96) The Book of Psalms speak numerous times about a New Song. "Sing to the L-rd a New Song." This is the song that will be sung when G-d ushers in the great moment of the Complete and Final Redemption. What is the secret of that song? What does it sound like? Will everybody get to sing it?
With G-d's help, Rabbi Chaim Richman of the Temple Institute in Jerusalem will be speaking throughout the United States during the month of January 2011. You are invited to join him and explore together, the timeless universal message of the holy Torah for all people - "From Exile to Redemption:"
  • What is the Divine promise of Redemption?
  • How does the process of Redemption affect every individual and nation? How close are we?
  • How are we all part of the Redemption? What role does every person play?
  • How do we understand cataclysmic world events in the light of the Biblical promise of Redemption?
  • How does the Holy Temple fit into this plan?
Rabbi Richman will also be unveiling an exclusive Temple building update, never before seen anywhere, which brings Israel and the world to an entirely new and unprecedented level of preparation for the rebuilding of the Holy Temple.
Rabbi Richman will be speaking in eight states. Please click here to see his complete schedule. here to view.
Chanuka: Symbolism & RealityThis week also features the new Light to the Nations teaching by Rabbi Chaim Richman, entitled, " Chanuka: Symbolism & Reality: Many Temple related commandments that we perform today are merely remembrances of the original commandments. The commandment to kindle Chanuka lights, however, is a commandment which effects a true spiritual reality unique to the days of Chanuka." Click here to view.
Parashat HashavuaHow strong is the bond between a parent and a child? A father and a son? Ya'akov could not be comforted by Yosef's loss. Just what did Ya'akov know concerning Yosef's apparent demise? Why was there a "conspiracy of silence" surrounding Yosef's disappearance? Click here to view Rabbi Richman's short teaching on parashat Miketz (Genesis 41:1-44:17).
Chanuka Sameach from the holy city of Jerusalem,
  Yitzchak Reuven
  The Temple Institute

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

A gracious song for healing from Jerusalem!

May the Lord heal you from all your ailments! Refuah Sheleimah (a complete healing). Here is a song to help you get well:
May the Lord heal you from all your ailments! Refuah Sheleimah (a complete healing). Here is a song to help you get well:

Monday, November 29, 2010

Death to Eurabia?

Eurabia: A Voice Cries Out in Defense of Europe's Heritage

With  birthrates among traditional Europeans in decline while population          growth in Europe's Muslim communities soars, one European voice asks          whether Europe wants to preserve its cultural and religious  identity.         Will anyone listen before it's too late?

Read more - Eurabia

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Cast Into the Pit

"And they took him and cast him into the pit."
(Genesis 37:24)
Kislev 18, 5771/November 25, 2010

What happens when an individual, a single soul, is torn from his father? When the wrath of his brothers is kindled and his own flesh and blood are set upon him, seeking his death? When he is thrown into a pit, abandoned to fate and the deadly caprice of the scorpions and snakes who slither and scamper over his naked body? When he is brought from the pit and sold to passing Ishmaelite merchants, mercenaries, dealers in human stock, who sell him again, at a neat profit? When he is ordered to be steward of his masters house, and gains mastery of all the possessions found in his master's house, whose master's wife attempts to seduce him, and unsuccessful, accuses him of rape, and he is arrested and convicted and thrown in the pit? Does his souls wither? Do his dreams perish?
The book of Genesis is the book of the patriarchs, Avraham, Yitzchak and Ya'akov. Yet more words are dedicated to the life of Yosef than are dedicated to lives of the three patriarchs, and more details are known about the life of Yosef, his trials and tribulations, than are known about the three patriarchs. For sure, Yosef's life was pivotal to the survival of the nation of Israel. But what is Yosef's life to us today?
G-d spoke to Avraham. He spoke to Yitzchak. He spoke to Ya'akov. Yet G-d never spoke directly to Yosef. At critical junctures in his life Yosef had no one to rely on but himself. He had to be his own guide, choose his own path. G-d didn't tell Yosef to go here or to go there. He didn't tell Yosef that He would protect him from harm. He didn't promise him seed or that his seed would prosper. Yosef was on his own. Completely.
On his own but never alone. Yosef never suffered loneliness for he attached himself always to G-d. He didn't require G-d's consolation or instruction for he acted always with the knowledge that the G-d of his fathers, the Creator of the universe, permeated His creation with His presence. Yosef was rejected by his brothers but he could never be estranged from G-d, for he understood that G-d, unlike man, was always there right by his side. A man's fate may seem cruel, but when seen through the eyes of Yosef, a man's fate ultimately is neither cruel nor capricious, but an expression of G-d's will, of His direct involvement in the life of the individual. G-d didn't appear to Yosef, nor did He talk to Yosef, but every moment of Yosef's life, every unforeseen development, every low point and high point of Yosef's life, was informed by G-d's will. Yosef knew this. This was the message of his own dreams, and this would be the message that he perceived in Pharaoh's dreams. And Yosef conducted himself always with this knowledge. This is why Torah calls Yosef tzaddik - righteous: despite every temptation he maintained his unbroken attachment to G-d.
Of all the patriarchs and sons of Israel who populate the book of Genesis, it is Yosef who most personifies the dilemma of modern man: man's isolation from his fellow man. Yosef, at any time could have fallen through the cracks, never to be heard from again. He could have been just another statistic, lost in the labyrinth of man's cruelty to man. But Yosef prevailed. He took upon himself what is the very heart and soul of Torah teaching: personal responsibility. In this manner it can be said that Yosef fulfilled G-d's expectations of man.
Yosef's soul neither withered, nor did his dreams perish. On the contrary, it was his indomitable sense of self and his fidelity to his dreams that carried him through his darkest moments. Ultimately, Yosef was the master of his own fate. We too can gain mastery over our own lives if we, like Yosef, accept upon ourselves the overriding teaching of Torah: personal responsibility for our own actions and an unbreakable bond to G-d.
Temple TalkTune in to this week's Temple Talk as Rabbi Chaim Richman and Yitzchak Reuven ponder American pressures and promises: Will we be guilty of selling Yosef again? The conflict between the righteous Yosef and his holy brothers is a conflict that still effects us to this very day. Will we ever fix the sin of the sale of Yosef? It's high time for the people of Israel to stop selling themselves short, and to stand up to the task that G-d appointed us for, no matter what is being used to bribe, threaten, cajole, intimate, or browbeat our people into giving up our Land and our legacy.
The Palestinian denial machine has determined, in the name of science, that the Western Wall is not Jewish. Everybody's upset, but they should have been upset long before this...
The Challenge of AdversityThis week features the new Bat Melech video teaching with Rabbanit Rena Richman, entitled, "The Challenge of Adversity: The suffering and adversity that are a part of life and that are so difficult to comprehend, are nevertheless an expression of G-d's love for us. If we can accept our suffering as a challenge, we can grow stronger and closer to G-d." Click here to view.
A Prayer for RainThis week also features the new Light to the Nations teaching by Rabbi Chaim Richman, entitled, "A Prayer for Rain: The rain that falls in the land of Israel represents and reflects our spiritual and physical well-being. G-d does right by Israel if Israel does right by G-d. If the rain is not falling, it is time for repentance and prayer." Click here to view.
Parashat HashavuaHave you ever felt utterly and completely alone? Yosef must have. He was separated from his loving father and his brothers wanted to kill him. Ultimately he was thrown in a pit filled with scorpions and snakes and then sold to some passing Ishmaelites, who in turn sold him into slavery. Yet we're never alone, and if our hearts are turned to G-d, we will identify His fingerprint upon our lives Click here to view Rabbi Richman's short teaching on parashat Vayeshev (Genesis 37:1-40:23).
Blessings from the holy city of Jerusalem,
  Yitzchak Reuven
  The Temple Institute

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Will to live

"Don't let the darkness destroy your will to live in the light."
- a friend years ago

Friday, November 12, 2010

The Stones of the Place

" ...and he took of the stones of the place... "
(Genesis 28:11)
Kislev 4, 5771/November 11, 2010

The sun set suddenly and Ya'akov avinu - Jacob our forefather - was compelled to pitch camp and stay the night. So Ya'akov "took of the stones of the place and placed [them] at his head, and he lay down in that place." (ibid) Now a person who has set out on a long journey knows that a good night's sleep is an imperative if he is to continue on his way in peace the following morning. Among other considerations to be made for a good night's sleep, comfort will surely be paramount. And anyone who has ever gone camping knows that the smallest pebble or bramble under one's bedroll will render utterly impossible a restful slumber. Yet Ya'akov, with great purpose, gathered up stones to employ as his pillow. Whatever was he thinking?
Midrash relates that the twelve stones that Ya'akov gathered up at that place were twelve stones that he pulled from the altar that his father Yitzchak had been bound upon one generation earlier. From this we learn that Ya'akov didn't stumble upon this place inadvertently. He knew exactly what this place was, that is, the place where his grandfather Avraham bound his father Yitzchak, the place where Adam first built an altar, the place known by our sages as the place of the world. That is, the place of the future Holy Temple.
Ya'akov deliberately dismantled the altar of Avraham and Yitzchak. Wasn't that disrespectful? Shouldn't he had stood off a bit in the distance, silently taking in the site of the great test of Avraham's faith? He could have meditated, contemplating the profundity of the site. But Ya'akov chose to do something else altogether. He chose, by deconstructing the altar and then reconstructing it as a pillow for his head, or should we say, a pillow for his consciousness, for his entire spiritual being, to opt into his father's and grandfather's experience of a direct and immediate relationship with G-d.
And Ya'akov took this paradigm of the man - G-d relationship not one, but many steps forward. He could hardly relive his father's experience by throwing himself down upon the altar. That was a onetime moment in the history of mankind. Instead, Ya'akov sought to take the intimacy of this moment and make it accessible to all. He removed twelve stones from the altar representing the twelve sons he was yet to have. He wanted to bequeath the Moriah experience of his father and grandfather to his children and to all further generations of man, through his children. This is the meaning of his exclamation upon awakening from his dream: "How awesome is this place! This is none other than the house of G-d, and this is the gate of heaven." (ibid 28:17) Just as Avraham's tent was open and welcoming to all passers by, "the house of the G-d of Ya'akov" (Isaiah 2:3) would likewise be a true house, accessible to all.
Ya'akov chose to not only honor the holy site where he spent the night, but to bring it to life and make it his, through his own active intervention. Those who today only view the Temple Mount from afar, insisting that we must not approach the Mount, may be paying respect to the place of the Holy Temple, but they are also, intentionally or not, rendering the place and all that it stands for, distant and irrelevant. The positive commandment that we fulfill by visiting the Temple Mount, (in accordance with halacha), is known in Hebrew as mora Mikdash - showing reverence to G-d on the site of the Holy Temple. The word mora - reverence - is derived from the same root as the word Ya'akov avinu uttered, "ma nora," "How awesome is this place!" (Genesis 28:17) Visiting and making our presence felt, as Jews and believers in the G-d of Ya'akov, on the Temple Mount is a direct continuation of Ya'akov's own actions which he took on this spot to lay his rightful claim to the spot and to the covenant between man and G-d that it embodies. We are unable in our generation to pull stones from the altar itself, but by being on the Mount where we are commanded by Torah to be seen by G-d, we can begin to remove the stones that have lodged in our hearts.
Temple TalkTune in to this week's Temple Talk as Rabbi Chaim Richman and Yitzchak Reuven are transfixed by this week's Torah reading of Vayeitzei, and its connection to the Holy Temple - past, present and future, and how Yaakov's prophecy on the Temple Mount, as expressed in the rocks he gathered, is being fulfilled today.
Tractate ZevachimWith great thanks to HaShem, the Temple Institute is proud to announce the historical, landmark publication of the Talmud Tractate Zevachim. This classic work deals intensively with the description and explanation of the Divine service of offerings, as it is performed in the Holy Temple. Now, for the first time in 2000 years, Tractate Zevachim has been published with an in-depth exploration and elucidation of all the commandments and traditions concerning the Temple offerings. Years in preparation, this work includes the "Sha'arei Heichal" ("Gates of the Sanctuary") commentary written by the Beit HaBechirah Kollel of the Temple Institute, whose scholars specialize and excel in the Torah knowledge of the Holy Temple and the Divine service, providing ground-breaking research, new insights, and, literally, hands-on investigation into the practical implementation of the commandments concerning the Temple offerings. To learn more, please click here.
Avraham & Sara, Part IIIThis week features the new Bat Melech video teaching with Rabbanit Rena Richman, entitled, "Avraham & Sara, Part III: United in their search for the One G-d, united against all the odds of a world hostile to the knowledge of the One G-d, and united in their love for one another, the source from which they drew their strength, Avraham & Sara are to be emulated by all who seek out the love and guidance of G-d in their lives." Click here to view.
Suppressing IniquityThis week also features the new Light to the Nations teaching by Rabbi Chaim Richman, entitled, "Suppressing Iniquity: G-d is neither an accountant nor a scorekeeper. He doesn't tally up our good deeds, subtract from them our transgressions, declare the balance and call it a day. G-d gathers up our good deeds, places them before Him, and does not allow our transgressions to diminish His delight with with all the good that we have accomplished." Click here to view.
Parashat Hashavua" ...and he took some of the stones of the place and placed them at his head, and he lay down in that place." (Genesis 28:11) What was "that place," and what was the nature of those stones that Ya'akov gathered together, and which, upon his awakening from his dream of a House of G-d, formed a single stone, which became the very "foundation stone" upon which all creation is established? And how could the "foundation stone" upon which the entire world rests find itself in that place and at that very moment when Ya'akov chose to take his sleep? It was Ya'akov's consecration of the stone with olive oil that made the transformation possible. Click here to view Rabbi Richman's short teaching on parashat Vayeitzei (Genesis 28:10-32:3).
Blessings from the holy city of Jerusalem,
  Yitzchak Reuven
  The Temple Institute

Thursday, November 11, 2010

The End of America?

The beginning of a U.S. currency crisis and hyperinflation. Become a member of NIA for free at

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Two Nations are in Your Womb

"Two nations are in your womb."
(Genesis 25:23)
Cheshvan 27, 5771/November 4, 2010

Even before they emerged from the womb, Ya'akov and his twin brother Esav were battling it out. Midrash tells us that whenever Rivkah, (Rebecca), would pass by a place of idolatry, Esav would strike out violently within her, and every time she passed by a place of Torah, (the tents of Shem and Ever, where Torah was taught), Ya'akov would stir with longing. The written words of Torah itself immediately note the nature of their differing world views: "And the youths grew up, and Esav was a man who understood hunting, a man of the field, whereas Ya'akov was a pure man, dwelling in tents." (Genesis 25:27) "Dwelling in tents," in Hebrew, "yoshev ohalim." The five Hebrew letters which make up the word "ohalim," "tents," are the same five letters which spell the name of G-d. In other words, Ya'akov was "a pure man who dwelled with G-d."
But who was Esav? Esav was a man who understood the chase, the ways of the world, and what it takes to get ahead, to get what you want, to take what you want, when you want it, and by whatever means necessary. Esav was a man of means, he "understood the hunt." The Hebrew word for hunt, tzayd, is related to the word for equipment, tziyud: Esav had the right stuff, all the necessary accoutrements, and then some. He wore a three piece suit, carried a leather briefcase, a laptop, a bluetooth, a gold watch, a silver cane. He was a "man of the field," outstanding in his field, the best at what he did. He was out there, in the limelight, in the news, in the gossip columns, the subject of paparazzis.
Yitzchak, (Isaac), loved Esav because "the hunt was in his mouth." (ibid 25:28) Our sages explain that Esav was a smooth talker, and his words could sway and persuade others. His words could slay hearts. His words could kill. Esav was a man of instant gratification. He returned from the hunt hungry and with a fire in his belly. He wanted food to fill it. He wanted it now and at any cost. He ate, he killed his hunger, he rose up and was off again, out to acquire more. (ibid 25:29-34)
Come to think of it, Esav possessed all of the qualities that modern society seems to lionize. We may not admit to admiring these qualities, but we are taught, and frequently experience first-hand, that this is what it takes to make it in today's world. Do unto others before they do it unto you. It may not be pretty, but it works. And what of Ya'akov? He lived in Esav's shadow.
"And Yitzchak loved Esau," (ibid), not because he admired or approved of Esav's aggressiveness or his possessiveness, or his sense of entitlement, or his crass worldly accomplishments, or his murderously violent nature, but because he, too, felt that this is what it takes to get by in this world. And if Esav lacked humility, if he had no room in his heart for his fellow man, if he had no faith in or need for G-d, well then, Yitzchak thought, Esav could, in time, acquire these traits. No, Yitzchak wasn't naive, but he was the man, who, when still a lad, walked hand-in-hand with his father Avraham to Mount Moriah, where, bound upon the altar, the heavens opened up above him, and the angels' tears dimmed his eyes. Yitzchak was cut from a different cloth.
Rivkah, however, grew up in a household of scoundrels not unlike Esav. She understood where he came from and she understood to where he was bound. Rivkah, we are told, "loved Ya'akov." (ibid)
Contrary to Esav's claim, to his bitter lament, to his heart-tugging cries, Ya'akov stole neither his birthright, nor his blessing. For both the birthright and the blessing always belonged to Ya'akov. He was the man of G-d. When Ya'akov was tired, as we shall see, (ibid 28:11) he lay down his head in a place of G-d. When Ya'akov was hungry, driven from his home, pursued by his murderous brother, he prayed to G-d that He would provide him with sustenance, with clothing and with shelter. And with these words he concluded his prayer: "And if I return in peace to my father's house, and HaShem will be my G-d. Then this stone, which I have placed as a monument, shall be a house of G-d, and everything that You give me, I will surely tithe to You." (ibid 28:22)
We don't need to live like Esav, from hand to mouth, always on the hunt, trusting no one and at odds with our brother. There is another way. The way of our father Ya'akov. If we determine that where we lay down our head will be a place of G-d, that our sustenance, our shelter, and all our worldly accomplishments will be expressions of our faith in G-d, then this world will be one of G-dliness, and not a G-dless hunting ground.

Temple TalkTune in to this week's Temple Talk as Rabbi Chaim Richman and Yitzchak Reuven discuss Yaakov's birthright & blessings, and the Torah's insistence that we all accept personal responsibility for the course of human events.
How do we understand the perplexing struggle between Ya'akov and Esav? What do these forces represent, and how is their struggle ultimately resolved?
Unesco, in a quintessentially Esavian manner, declares that Ma'arat HaMachpela in Hevron as well as Rachel's Tomb in Bethlehem are mosques. Why is Rachel crying for her children (Jeremiah 31), and why is Rachel G-d's guarantor that her children will return to their land?

True to the Temple MountAmericans for a Safe Israel (AFSI): True to the Temple Mount: Americans for a Safe Israel (AFSI), established in 1970 to advocate for Israeli sovereignty over the historical biblical heartland of Israel, (Judea, Samaria and Gaza), have made it an annual commitment in recent years to include an ascent to the Temple Mount in their itinerary during their stay in Israel. Click here to learn more about AFSI's commitment to the land of Israel and to the Temple Mount, and to view photographs documenting AFSI's visit to the Mount.

Returning with MercyThis week also features the new Light to the Nations teaching by Rabbi Chaim Richman, entitled, "Returning with Mercy: G-d's love for every individual is unreserved and unconditional. We may distance ourselves at times from G-d, through our own selfishness, carelessness and short-sightedness, but G-d is ever ready to accept our return to Him, with "open arms," and an embrace that only grows stronger, in spite of, or perhaps even because of, our own human frailty. Have we the capability within ourselves to likewise be so magnanimous toward others?" Click here to view.

Parashat HashavuaThe work of the patriarchs, Avraham, Yitzchak and Ya'akov was to establish in this world an eternal bond between man and G-d. Toldot chronicles the struggle for supremacy between two radically different approaches toward leadership: the way of Ya'akov, and the way of Esav. Esav excelled in so many ways he seemed a natural for the part. And after all, he was the first-born. There was but one thing missing from Esav's understanding of life: the fear and the acknowledgment of G-d. Forever stymied by his own egotistical take on life, Esav languished, while Ya'akov assumed the mantle of leadership. Click here to view Rabbi Richman's short teaching on parashat Toldot (Genesis 25:19-28:9).

Blessings from the holy city of Jerusalem,
  Yitzchak Reuven
  The Temple Institute

Sunday, October 31, 2010

What is Israel waiting for?

God commands Israel to build Temple

How should Christians view efforts to build the Temple?

The Ezekiel Temple

Obama dogs Ohio

"Liberty cannot be preserved without a general knowledge among the people, who have...a right, an indisputable, unalienable, indefeasible, divine right to that most dreaded and envied kind of knowledge, I mean the characters and conduct of their rulers."
-- John Adams
(1735-1826) Founding Father, 2nd US President

Obama dogs America.

"Where's the Birth Certificate?" dogs Obama

The President usurper, the fraud and foreigner, the bastard from Africa, the con man from Kenya, reveals his shady character by refusing to be transparent with many important documents from his educational records to long form birth certificate. Emperor Obama must go!

Saturday, October 30, 2010

The Field and the Cave

"And the field and the cave within it were established to Avraham as burial property, purchased from the sons of Heth."
(Genesis 23:20)
Cheshvan 21, 5771/October 29, 2010

Avraham avinu - Abraham our father - is renowned for the gracious manner in which he invited wayfarers and hosted them in his tent. In fact, his tent, as our sages tell us, was a square tent with entrances on all four sides, so that any travelers passing by would see the open entrance and immediately feel welcome to stop in and rest, receive a hearty meal, be refreshed and be tended to by Avraham himself. The most famous of these occasions is, of course, that which is documented in Torah, in which three passing sojourners are approached by Avraham, still weak from his circumcision. Interrupting an encounter he is experiencing with G-d, Avraham runs to meet these three passing strangers, (whom he imagines to be idol worshippers, based on their appearance), bathes their feet, and invites them for a meal. While Sara prepares cakes for them Avraham runs after a young calf among his livestock, in order to slaughter it and prepare for them a meal. Of course the three strangers prove to be three angels with a special message for Avraham and Sara, but had Avraham not run to greet them and bless them with his hospitality, the rest of the story would never have occurred.
We are taught that the actions of the fathers, (the patriarchs), are signs and instructions for the children, (the descendants of Avraham, Yitzchak and Yaakov). We are meant to learn from their example, in how we treat one another, how we deal with the nations, and in our relationship with G-d. Certainly we are to learn from Avraham the importance of hospitality and welcoming guests into our home. What truly marked Avraham was not simply that he was a friendly and gracious host, always welcoming an opportunity to greet a new face and make a new friend, but the energy and initiative, determination and persistence that characterized, not just the manner in which he pursued his three heavenly guests, but how he pursued all the challenges and goals of life that G-d set before him.
Avraham employed the same zeal and unwavering determination when carrying out G-d's command to bind and offer up his son Yitzchak, the supreme and most perilous challenge of Avraham's life. And it is with the same meticulous attention to detail and respect and concern for others that Avraham purchased the burial cave of Machpelah as a final resting place for Sara. And leaving nothing to chance, Avraham instructs his servant Eliezer to travel abroad to find a bride for his son Yitzchak. But why was Avraham so concerned and proactive in purchasing a plot of land in Israel and finding a suitable bride for his son? After all, had not Avraham already secured G-d's promise that his progeny would inherit the land? Why work so hard to accomplish a promise that you have already pocketed?
Avraham understood intuitively that the Divine promise he received from G-d was not a carte blanch or a one-way all-expenses-paid ticket, but a covenant, a contract which required that both parties work toward the achievement of the common goal. G-d's promise is eternal, G-d's promise is irrevocable, G-d's promise is unassailable, but G-d's promise will only be fulfilled through the undaunted efforts of His children. Actively engaging G-d and actively pursuing their common aim of making G-d a welcome "guest" in this world was what personified Avraham, from his rebel days in Ur, and later, his "making of souls" in Haran, and finally his laying down of the spiritual cornerstone for the Holy Temple on Mount Moriah, (the binding of Yitzchak), and his laying of the physical cornerstone for Jewish settlement and possession of the land of Israel in Hevron, (the purchasing of the Machpelah). This is the legacy of Avraham that he has bequeathed to his children. We are not to rest until we have secured our place in the land of Israel and G-d's place in this world via the building of the Holy Temple on Mount Moriah and the renewal of the Divine service. This is G-d's promise and this is our challenge. Nothing less!
Temple TalkTune in to this week's Temple Talk as Rabbi Chaim Richman and Yitzchak Reuven discuss this week's Torah reading of Chayei Sarah, which opens up with our forefather Avraham's purchase of the "Double Cave" in Hevron. Why does Torah emphasize this so much, and what is our connection to this mysterious, ancient place whose very name, Hevron, means "connection?" All this in the light, (or darkness), of this week's statements issued by the Synod of Catholic bishops which essentially "cancels" promises made by G-d to our father Avraham, to all the patriarchs, to Moses and to the entire people of Israel. What exquisite timing! What better week to cast doubt on the Biblical connection to our homeland, than the very week in which Torah testifies to that connection!
Avraham & SaraThis week features the new Bat Melech video teaching with Rabbanit Rena Richman, entitled, "Avraham & Sara: United in their search for the One G-d, united against all the odds of a world hostile to the knowledge of the One G-d, and united in their love for one another, the source from which they drew their strength, Avraham & Sara are to be emulated by all who seek out the love and guidance of G-d in their lives." Click here to view.
The Prayers that BindThis week also features the new Light to the Nations teaching by Rabbi Chaim Richman, entitled, "The Prayers that Bind: What is the nature of true prayer? Do our words and thoughts have the power to effect change? True prayer in its rarest and most precious form is the yearning of the heart. These feelings of yearning form an unseen yet tangible connection between us all, binding us to each other and in turn to every aspect of creation." Click here to view.
TI DigestWe are pleased to introduce a new feature on the Temple Institute website: TI Digest, which consists of an archive of articles, videos and slide shows which have formerly been listed on the Events page. It is our hope that this will ease navigation on our site and make it easier to find the features that you are looking for. Please click here to go to TI Digest.
Parashat HashavuaThe celebration and the sanctification of life are the keys to the gates of the Garden of Eden through which we can pass into life eternal. Click here to view Rabbi Richman's short teaching on parashat Chayei Sara (Genesis 23:1-25:18).
Blessings from the holy city of Jerusalem,
  Yitzchak Reuven
  The Temple Institute