“The drama of King David’s flight from his son Absalom at the age of sixty-five, took place towards the end of his life (II Samuel 15:7; Radak; Kara ibid). Thus, the placement of this chapter at the beginning of Psalms present a problem; a puzzle which is magnified by the fact that we find psalms dealing with David’s early life near the book’s end. One solution offered by the Yalkut Shimoni does away with the problem entirely: Rabbi Eleazar said: “The portions of the Torah were purposely recorded without proper sequence, because, had they been in order, whoever read them would have had the power to revive the dead and to perform miracles. Therefore, the true order is concealed from man an d known to Hashem.” [The Torah is God's plan and blueprint for life. Our mission and challenge is to toil over it in an effort to achieve understanding. If these vital formulae were spelled out clearly and unambiguously, then anyone could know the secret of producing life and manipulating nature. (See Overview, ArtScroll edition of Bereishis I).]
Temple Isaiah sends you this "Living Picture," in the French tradition of Tableaux Vivants in celebration of the New Year. Just as the Pageant of the Masters brings famous paintings to life, at Temple Isaiah we strive to bring the teachings of Torah vibrantly into the present. Our lives are lovingly sketched out, and God is the great Animator breathing into us spirit and motion. But we are our own colorists. By our own hands we color our days happy or gloomy, joyful or full of remorse. We choose to dip our brush into the palate of the past or the promising pinks and golds of tomorrow's sunrise. Your life is a work of art, and together, as a Jewish community, let us create a masterpiece. Shanah tovah!
This week's Torah portion sets the message from Rabbi Marty. Vayishlach means "And he sent" and begins with Jacob sending gifts to his estranged brother, Esau. But, when they final reunite after 20 years, they are reconciled and Jacob is healed!!!