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Haftarah Parashat M’tzora

Haftarah Parashat M’tzora

2 Kings 7:3-20

7:3 וְאַרְבָּעָ֧ה אֲנָשִׁ֛ים הָי֥וּ מְצֹרָעִ֖ים פֶּ֣תַח הַשָּׁ֑עַר וַיֹּֽאמְרוּ֙ אִ֣ישׁ אֶל־רֵעֵ֔הוּ מָ֗ה אֲנַ֛חְנוּ יֹשְׁבִ֥ים פֹּ֖ה עַד־מָֽתְנוּ׃

7:4 אִם־אָמַרְנוּ֩ נָב֨וֹא הָעִ֜יר וְהָרָעָ֤ב בָּעִיר֙ וָמַ֣תְנוּ שָׁ֔ם וְאִם־יָשַׁ֥בְנוּ פֹ֖ה וָמָ֑תְנוּ וְעַתָּ֗ה לְכוּ֙ וְנִפְּלָה֙ אֶל־מַחֲנֵ֣ה אֲרָ֔ם אִם־יְחַיֻּ֣נוּ נִֽחְיֶ֔ה וְאִם־יְמִיתֻ֖נוּ וָמָֽתְנוּ׃

7:5 וַיָּק֣וּמוּ בַנֶּ֔שֶׁף לָב֖וֹא אֶל־מַחֲנֵ֣ה אֲרָ֑ם וַיָּבֹ֗אוּ עַד־קְצֵה֙ מַחֲנֵ֣ה אֲרָ֔ם וְהִנֵּ֥ה אֵֽין־שָׁ֖ם אִֽישׁ׃

7:6 וַאדֹנָ֞י הִשְׁמִ֣יעַ׀ אֶת־מַחֲנֵ֣ה אֲרָ֗ם ק֥וֹל רֶ֙כֶב֙ ק֣וֹל ס֔וּס ק֖וֹל חַ֣יִל גָּד֑וֹל וַיֹּאמְר֞וּ אִ֣ישׁ אֶל־אָחִ֗יו הִנֵּ֣ה שָֽׂכַר־עָלֵינוּ֩ מֶ֨לֶךְ יִשְׂרָאֵ֜ל אֶת־מַלְכֵ֧י הַחִתִּ֛ים וְאֶת־מַלְכֵ֥י מִצְרַ֖יִם לָב֥וֹא עָלֵֽינוּ׃

7:7 וַיָּקוּמוּ֮ וַיָּנ֣וּסוּ בַנֶּשֶׁף֒ וַיַּעַזְב֣וּ אֶת־אָהֳלֵיהֶ֗ם וְאֶת־סֽוּסֵיהֶם֙ וְאֶת־חֲמֹ֣רֵיהֶ֔ם הַֽמַּחֲנֶ֖ה כַּאֲשֶׁר־הִ֑יא וַיָּנֻ֖סוּ אֶל־נַפְשָֽׁם׃

7:8 וַיָּבֹאוּ֩ הַֽמְצֹרָעִ֨ים הָאֵ֜לֶּה עַד־קְצֵ֣ה הַֽמַּחֲנֶ֗ה וַיָּבֹ֜אוּ אֶל־אֹ֤הֶל אֶחָד֙ וַיֹּאכְל֣וּ וַיִּשְׁתּ֔וּ וַיִּשְׂא֣וּ מִשָּׁ֗ם כֶּ֤סֶף וְזָהָב֙ וּבְגָדִ֔ים וַיֵּלְכ֖וּ וַיַּטְמִ֑נוּ וַיָּשֻׁ֗בוּ וַיָּבֹ֙אוּ֙ אֶל־אֹ֣הֶל אַחֵ֔ר וַיִּשְׂא֣וּ מִשָּׁ֔ם וַיֵּלְכ֖וּ וַיַּטְמִֽנוּ׃

7:9 וַיֹּאמְרוּ֩ אִ֨ישׁ אֶל־רֵעֵ֜הוּ לֹֽא־כֵ֣ן׀ אֲנַ֣חְנוּ עֹשִׂ֗ים הַיּ֤וֹם הַזֶּה֙ יוֹם־בְּשֹׂרָ֣ה ה֔וּא וַאֲנַ֣חְנוּ מַחְשִׁ֗ים וְחִכִּ֛ינוּ עַד־א֥וֹר הַבֹּ֖קֶר וּמְצָאָ֣נוּ עָו֑וֹן וְעַתָּה֙ לְכ֣וּ וְנָבֹ֔אָה וְנַגִּ֖ידָה בֵּ֥ית הַמֶּֽלֶךְ׃

7:10 וַיָּבֹ֗אוּ וַֽיִּקְרְאוּ֮ אֶל־שֹׁעֵ֣ר הָעִיר֒ וַיַּגִּ֤ידוּ לָהֶם֙ לֵאמֹ֔ר בָּ֚אנוּ אֶל־מַחֲנֵ֣ה אֲרָ֔ם וְהִנֵּ֥ה אֵֽין־שָׁ֛ם אִ֖ישׁ וְק֣וֹל אָדָ֑ם כִּ֣י אִם־הַסּ֤וּס אָסוּר֙ וְהַחֲמ֣וֹר אָס֔וּר וְאֹהָלִ֖ים כַּאֲשֶׁר־הֵֽמָּה׃

7:11 וַיִּקְרָ֖א הַשֹּֽׁעֲרִ֑ים וַיַּגִּ֕ידוּ בֵּ֥ית הַמֶּ֖לֶךְ פְּנִֽימָה׃

7:12 וַיָּ֨קָם הַמֶּ֜לֶךְ לַ֗יְלָה וַיֹּ֙אמֶר֙ אֶל־עֲבָדָ֔יו אַגִּֽידָה־נָּ֣א לָכֶ֔ם אֵ֛ת אֲשֶׁר־עָ֥שׂוּ לָ֖נוּ אֲרָ֑ם יָדְע֞וּ כִּי־רְעֵבִ֣ים אֲנַ֗חְנוּ וַיֵּצְא֤וּ מִן־הַֽמַּחֲנֶה֙ לְהֵחָבֵ֤ה בהשדה [בַשָּׂדֶה֙] לֵאמֹ֔ר כִּֽי־יֵצְא֤וּ מִן־הָעִיר֙ וְנִתְפְּשֵׂ֣ם חַיִּ֔ים וְאֶל־הָעִ֖יר נָבֹֽא׃

7:13 וַיַּעַן֩ אֶחָ֨ד מֵעֲבָדָ֜יו וַיֹּ֗אמֶר וְיִקְחוּ־נָ֞א חֲמִשָּׁ֣ה מִן־הַסּוּסִים֮ הַֽנִּשְׁאָרִים֮ אֲשֶׁ֣ר נִשְׁאֲרוּ־בָהּ֒ הִנָּ֗ם כְּכָל־ההמון [הֲמ֤וֹן] יִשְׂרָאֵל֙ אֲשֶׁ֣ר נִשְׁאֲרוּ־בָ֔הּ הִנָּ֕ם כְּכָל־הֲמ֥וֹן יִשְׂרָאֵ֖ל אֲשֶׁר־תָּ֑מּוּ וְנִשְׁלְחָ֖ה וְנִרְאֶֽה׃

7:14 וַיִּקְח֕וּ שְׁנֵ֖י רֶ֣כֶב סוּסִ֑ים וַיִּשְׁלַ֨ח הַמֶּ֜לֶךְ אַחֲרֵ֧י מַחֲנֵֽה־אֲרָ֛ם לֵאמֹ֖ר לְכ֥וּ וּרְאֽוּ׃

7:15 וַיֵּלְכ֣וּ אַחֲרֵיהֶם֮ עַד־הַיַּרְדֵּן֒ וְהִנֵּ֣ה כָל־הַדֶּ֗רֶךְ מְלֵאָ֤ה בְגָדִים֙ וְכֵלִ֔ים אֲשֶׁר־הִשְׁלִ֥יכוּ אֲרָ֖ם בהחפזם [בְּחָפְזָ֑ם] וַיָּשֻׁ֙בוּ֙ הַמַּלְאָכִ֔ים וַיַּגִּ֖דוּ לַמֶּֽלֶךְ׃

7:16 וַיֵּצֵ֣א הָעָ֔ם וַיָּבֹ֕זּוּ אֵ֖ת מַחֲנֵ֣ה אֲרָ֑ם וַיְהִ֨י סְאָה־סֹ֜לֶת בְּשֶׁ֗קֶל וְסָאתַ֧יִם שְׂעֹרִ֛ים בְּשֶׁ֖קֶל כִּדְבַ֥ר יְהוָֽה׃

7:17 וְהַמֶּלֶךְ֩ הִפְקִ֨יד אֶת־הַשָּׁלִ֜ישׁ אֲשֶׁר־נִשְׁעָ֤ן עַל־יָדוֹ֙ עַל־הַשַּׁ֔עַר וַיִּרְמְסֻ֧הוּ הָעָ֛ם בַּשַּׁ֖עַר וַיָּמֹ֑ת כַּאֲשֶׁ֤ר דִּבֶּר֙ אִ֣ישׁ הָאֱלֹהִ֔ים אֲשֶׁ֣ר דִּבֶּ֔ר בְּרֶ֥דֶת הַמֶּ֖לֶךְ אֵלָֽיו׃

7:18 וַיְהִ֗י כְּדַבֵּר֙ אִ֣ישׁ הָאֱלֹהִ֔ים אֶל־הַמֶּ֖לֶךְ לֵאמֹ֑ר סָאתַ֨יִם שְׂעֹרִ֜ים בְּשֶׁ֗קֶל וּֽסְאָה־סֹ֙לֶת֙ בְּשֶׁ֔קֶל יִהְיֶה֙ כָּעֵ֣ת מָחָ֔ר בְּשַׁ֖עַר שֹׁמְרֽוֹן׃

7:19 וַיַּ֨עַן הַשָּׁלִ֜ישׁ אֶת־אִ֣ישׁ הָאֱלֹהִים֮ וַיֹּאמַר֒ וְהִנֵּ֣ה יְהוָ֗ה עֹשֶׂ֤ה אֲרֻבּוֹת֙ בַּשָּׁמַ֔יִם הֲיִהְיֶ֖ה כַּדָּבָ֣ר הַזֶּ֑ה וַיֹּ֗אמֶר הִנְּךָ֤ רֹאֶה֙ בְּעֵינֶ֔יךָ וּמִשָּׁ֖ם לֹ֥א תֹאכֵֽל׃

7:20 וַיְהִי־ל֖וֹ כֵּ֑ן וַיִּרְמְס֨וּ אֹת֥וֹ הָעָ֛ם בַּשַּׁ֖עַר וַיָּמֹֽת׃

The commentary about the connection between the Haftarah and Torah reading was written by

Leviticus Chapter 14, Verses 1-2
1 And the LORD spoke unto Moses, saying:
2 This shall be the law of the leper in the day of his cleansing: he shall be brought unto the priest.
II Kings 7:3-4
3 Now there were four leprous men at the entrance of the gate; and they said one to another: 'Why sit we here until we die?
4 If we say: We will enter into the city, then the famine is in the city, and we shall die there; and if we sit still here, we die also. Now therefore come, and let us fall unto the host of the Arameans; if they save us alive, we shall live; and if they kill us, we shall but die.'

Leprosy in antiquity is parallel to the incurable diseases of the contemporary world. It seemed to be everywhere. One could have gone to a priest then and now one might go to a healer. Sometime the afflicted recover but the cure does not necessarily come from the procedure performed. Might this be why people often put their trust in a higher power?

Gail Shuster-Bouskila

Rabbi Gail Shuster-Bouskila has earned two degrees in education. She made Aliyah to Israel in 1978, and finished her rabbinic studies at Hebrew University. She was ordained at Reconstructionist Rabbinical College in Philadelphia in 1979. She was the first women rabbi in Israel. Since making Aliyah, as a free-lance rabbi, she has counseled many people on life cycle events, including women’s issues, marriage and Bar/Bat Mitzvah and has lectured around Israel about modern Midrash, liberal Judaism, women's issues and the philosophy of Rabbi Mordecai Kaplan. From 2005 to 2010, she held the position of Chair of the Israel Reconstructionist Foundation. She worked to deepen Israel - Diaspora Jewish relations among Liberal Jews through contact with individuals and groups.

Recorded by
Natalie Barkan

Natalie was the first girl to celebrate a Shabbat morning bat mitzvah at Emmanuel Synagogue in Oklahoma City and the first woman to read Torah at the “upstairs” adult service. She supported herself through graduate school by teaching bar/bat mitzvah students and today still enjoys chanting Torah and serving as shlichat hatzibur at Hod Ve-Hadar congregation in Kfar Saba. Natalie has lived in Israel for over 30 years studying and teaching Judaica in various frameworks. She serves on the executive board of The Abraham Fund Initiatives, working to promote equality and co-existence between Jewish and Arab citizens of Israel. She is married to Dani and the mother of three sons. Natalie has known Susie Dvoskin for 20 years, celebrating Rosh Hodesh together and praying at Hod Ve-Hadar. Five years ago, Natalie took the big plunge and did her first women’s triathlon. Susie is her inspiration and mentor, not only in sport, but in the art of positive thinking! She has participated in this project out of a deep love and affection for Susie

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