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Thursday, November 19, 2020

Halachic Times (Zmanim)
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Jewish History

As a result of the libelous slander of the Frankists (followers of Sabbatai Zevi, the archbishop of Kamenitz decreed that all Hebrew books of the communities in his jurisdiction should be burned. On this day, he suffered a miraculous downfall and the decree was annulled. (Imrei Pinchas, 2003 ed., vol. 1, pp. 496–498)

The explosion of some barrels of gunpowder that had been caught on fire resulted in the collapse of a number of nearby buildings, placing Rabbi Yaakov Yehoshua Falk in mortal danger. In distress, he pledged that if he would survive, he would commit himself to studying the Talmud and its commentaries. He was miraculously saved, and went on to author his classic Talmudic commentary, Pnei Yehoshua. (Introduction of the author to the above work)

After overcoming the Greek forces, the Hasmoneans cleared the Temple from the idolatrous images that had been erected there. (Megilat Taanit ch. 9)

Daily Thought

“And these are the offspring of Isaac…” Genesis 30:3

“Who are his offspring? Esau and his children.”—Midrash Rabbah

Although the hero of the story is Jacob, Jacob’s ultimate goal is the rescue of Esau.

Isaac wished to rescue Esau with a blessing, lifting him from the dirt and overwhelming him with a downpour of intense light.

Rebecca, however, saw this would only further feed Esau’s wickedness. The one to rescue Esau was not his father, but his twin brother, Jacob.

Only Jacob could dress in the clothes of Esau, experience the world of Esau from within, and then heal himself from there.

And in healing himself from within Esau’s world, the precious good within Esau would be rescued and reconnected to its true place.

And that is the entire history of Jacob and Esau, the offspring of Isaac.

Likutei Sichot, vol. 15, pp. 191-199 (Toldot 1).