Drash Cards for Beshallach (5763)
by Marc Mangel
• Today, the key verse that I want to talk about is Ch 14, v31: “trusted in God”. The Hebrew word is Ya-A-Meen. Hirsch says that ‘believed’ is not a proper translation.
• Some translations: Hertz — belief; Tehama — had faith; Art Scroll Rashi — believed; JPS Sarna — we convinced; Oxford Bible — believed; Fox — trusted; Jerusalem Bible — believed; JPS older version — convinced
• The hardest question in monotheism is asked 2.5-3 months after the Exodus in Ch 17, v 7: “Is the Lord among us or not?”
• The Gerrer Rabbi said that if we want God to dwell among us we have to make room for God. What do we have to believe for this to happen.
• One answer to ‘what do we believe’ is that it doesn’t matter. Art Green describes the three B’s of Judaism: 1) Belong, 2) Behave, and only then 3) Believe
• Heschel said that a Jew takes a leap of action rather than a leap of faith.
• My answer: 1) The beginning of spirituality and belief is awe. 2) It doesn’t matter if you believe the story. What matters is that you believe it is your story. 3) We should not be asking ‘is the book true’ but ‘can we learn new truths by studying the book’.