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Massei Haftorah in a Nutshell

Massei Haftorah in a Nutshell

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Jeremiah 2:4–28; 4:1–2.

This week’s haftorah is the second of a series of three “haftarot of affliction.” These three haftarot are read during the Three Weeks of mourning for Jerusalem, between the fasts of 17 Tammuz and 9 Av.

The prophet Jeremiah transmits G‑d’s message to the Jewish people, in strong tones chastising all the sectors of the people, including the leadership, for their abandonment of G‑d. “What wrong did your forefathers find in Me, that they distanced themselves from Me, and they went after futility and themselves became futile?” He reminds them of the kindness G‑d did for them, taking them out of Egypt and leading them through the desert and settling them in the Promised Land, yet they repaid kindness with disloyalty. “For My people have committed two evils; they have forsaken Me, the spring of living waters, [and furthermore, this was in order] to dig for themselves cisterns, broken cisterns that do not hold water.”

G‑d asks them to view the actions of their neighboring nations, the Kittites and Kedarites, “and see whether there was any such thing, whether a nation exchanged a god, although they are not gods. Yet My nation exchanged their glory for what does not avail.”

Jeremiah then goes on to foretell the suffering the Jewish people will suffer at the hands of their enemies, and also their erstwhile allies: “Your evil will chastise you, and you will be rebuked for your backslidings; and you shall know and see that your forsaking the L‑rd your G‑d is evil and bitter.”

The haftorah ends on an encouraging note, assuring the people that if they return to G‑d with sincerity, they will be restored to their full glory.

This is a synopsis of the Haftorah that is read in Chabad synagogues. Other communities could possibly read more, less, or a different section of the Prophets altogether. Additionally, specific calendrical conditions can cause another Haftorah to be read instead of this one.
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Brett Annable summerland July 19, 2017

Interesting how G-d made interaction between Israel and the nations as part of the process of sanctification. Reply

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