Parashat, Kdoshim For Children

This week's Torah portion contains one of
 the most controversial passages in the
 entire Torah. While the meaning of "You shall
not lie with a man as one lies with a woman,"
seems obvious, it is extremely difficult for many
 Jews to take at face valueMORE>. 

God instructs Moses regarding the
 procedures for the Day of Atonement;
sexual prohibitions are then 


The Lord spoke to Moses after the death of the two sons of Aaron who died 
when they drew too close to the presence of the Lord. God said, "Tell your 
brother Aaron that he is not to come at will into the Shrine behind the 
curtain, in front of the cover that is upon the ark. Instead, Aaron shall only 
enter the holy Shrine when he is clean and dressed in his sacred garments. 
He shall take animal offerings to make atonement for himself and his 
household. He shall purge the Shrine of the uncleanness and transgression of 
the Israelites, whatever their sins; and he shall do the same for the Tent of
 Meeting and make it holy.....Cont.

God tells Moses to give the people a
series of ethical and ritual laws
 instructing them in how to be holy

The Lord has just told Moses to tell the Israelites about the law commanding an annual Day of Atonement and sexual prohibitions. The Lord told Moses, Speak to the whole Israelite community and say to them:
You shall be holy, for I, the Lord your God, am holy. You shall each revere your mother and your father, and keep My Sabbaths. Do not turn to idols or make molten gods for yourselves. I, the Lord, am your God.
When you reap the harvest of your land, you shall not reap all the way to the edges of your field, or gather the gleanings of your harvest. You shall not pick your vineyard bare. You shall leave them for the poor and the stranger: I the Lord am your God.
You shall not steal, and you shall not deal deceitfully or falsely with one another. You shall not swear falsely by My name, profaning the name of your God. I am the Lord.
You shall not coerce your neighbor. You shall not commit robbery.

The Ashkenazic custom is to read 

Amos 9:7-15. The Sephardic custom is 

to read Ezekiel 20:2-20.

The Israelites Are No Better Than Other Nations

The haftarah selection from Amos opens with a judgment speech against sinful nations. The prophet warns that wicked kingdoms will be wiped off the face of the earth—and that includes the nation of Israel, which God does not think is any better than the Ethiopians, Philistines, or the Arameans.
But God promises not to completely erase the nation He brought out of Egypt. In punishing His own people, God will save a small remnant of the once numerous group. This speech is designed to remind the people of Israel that merely being a member of the Chosen People does not guarantee salvation--a life of good deeds is required as wel

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