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From the Desk of Rabbi Alter

Kol Colchester Vaetchanan July 27, 2018

In the Shema, we say, “You shall love God with all your heart, with all your life and with all your possessions.” This is a commandment to be willing to give up even our lives and our possessions in the pursuit of meaning. The Sages explain that

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Kol Colchester Parshat Devarim, July 18, 2018

The Sages tell us that Moses did not rebuke the Jewish people until right before he died. They cite other examples of people who only gave rebuke right before their passing from this world – Jacob to his sons, Samuel to the Jewish people, and a few

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Kol Colchester, Parshat Maasey July 12 2018

“You will be clean in God’s eyes and in the eyes of the nation” (Numbers 32:22). The Jewish nation is about to enter the Land of Israel and two of the 12 tribes seem to want to avoid their responsibility to join their brethren in the battle

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Kol Colchester, Parshat Pinchas July 7 2018

Kol Colchester Parshat Pinchas tells of the heroic deed of Pinchas, who jumped up with spear in his hand to save the Jewish people from a plague of immorality. When the moment called for bold action, Pinchas was ready and willing to step forward. Later in the

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Kol Colchester Balak June 6 2018

In this week’s Torah portion, Bilaam’s great praise for the Jewish people is found  in the famous words that begin our daily prayers and that every Bar/Bat Mitzvah child knows by heart: Ma tovu ohalecha Yaakov – “How goodly are your tents, O Jacob” (Numbers 24:5). The Sages explain

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Kol Colchester, Parachat Korach, June 15 2018

Korach is a classic example of a person with great potential, who made wrong decisions. The Sages tell us that Korach was a wise man. He was chosen to be one of the select few who were spiritually fitting to carry the Ark of the Covenant. The

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Kol Colchester, Parchat Shlach June 8 2018

“I can’t succeed.” At first glance, the statement of “I can’t” sounds more accurate. Because “I” can’t do anything independently at all. It’s only because of God that I’m even able to wake up in the morning and tie my shoes! But on a deeper level, the

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Kol Colchester Parhat Naso May 24 2018

The Torah states: “Speak to Aaron and his sons, saying, ‘So shall you bless the Children of Israel: saying to them, “May God bless you and safeguard you. May God make His countenance shine upon you and be gracious to you. May God lift His countenance to

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Kol Colchester , Fourth Book Bamidbar May 12, 2018

Kol Colchester Bamidbar The fourth book of the Torah is known in English as “Numbers,” yet the true translation of Bamidbar is “in the desert.” The primal setting for the Torah is in a desert. The Sages tell us that one who wishes to truly understand Torah’s

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Kol Colchester Parshat Archarel Mot Kedoshim

In this week’s Torah portion, God gives the Jewish people certain laws that will lead to them having a more fulfilling life. One of the laws is: “In the presence of an old person shall you rise…” (Lev. 19:32) A LIFE LESSON Rising in the presence of

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