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Sunday, December 27, 2015

Week 1 (Book 5): Song of Songs and Reuven, Oaths and Jeremiah

Week 1:

1. The Song of Songs, which is Solomon's.

2. "Let him kiss me with the kisses of his mouth, for your love is better than wine.
3. Because of the fragrance of your goodly oils, your name is 'oil poured forth.' Therefore, the maidens loved you.


Shevuoth (Torah verses)

Book of Jeremiah: Chapter 1

Week 1 in the Jewish calendar is the week of Rosh Hashanah. Rosh Hashanah is literally the “head of the year,” a day that encompasses all days of the years.  The Song of Songs means the song that excels all songs – perhaps also the song that encompasses all songs; Rosh Hashana is the day that excels all days – it encompasses all days).

It is also known that every “Shlomoh” in Shir HaShirim is a reference to G-d. Solomon is the king; Rosh Hashanah is the day in which we make Hashem the King. Solomon also means “peace is his.” On Rosh Hashanah, we know that everything, including peace in our lives, is in the hands of Hashem. (Think of uNetaneh Tokef).

The second verse for this week makes reference to the closeness of the days of awe. (The verse “Search for him when He is close” is a reference to the days of awe.  The third verse, which speaks of “oil poured forth,” is a reference to how Hashem’s actions towards the Jewish people give forth a scent felt throughout the entire world, and that is why the “maidens” (the gentile nations) love Him as well. On Rosh Hashanah, all mankind is judged, not just the Jewish people, and the nations sense this to some extent. On Rosh Hashanah we recognize that He is King over the entire universe, including all of humanity. Wine and oil are signs of physical blessing received on Rosh Hashanah (See Book 1, Week 1, Chesed shebeChesed), and are also metaphors for knowledge, which is related to Rosh Hashanah (See Book 1, Week 52, Da’at).

Of the seventy souls of the Jewish people that descended to Egypt, the first one mentioned in Reuven, the firstborn. Jacob calls Reuven, “"Reuven, You are my first-born, my strength and the first of my vigor.” First, literally from the word, “Rosh,” head, like “Rosh Hashanah.

The tractate of Shvuot is based on various different verses in the Torah. Like the day of Rosh Hashanah and Shir HaShirim, Shevuah is an all-encompassing term.

Chapter 1 of the Book of Jeremiah also is all-encompassing as it describes the major theme of the entire book, the destruction that was about to befall Israel and Jerusalem. It also contains the idea of everything being included, and to some extent foretold from the very beginning, as Jeremiah is told that he had been chosen by Hashem while he was still in his mother’s woumb.

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