[The following was presented as the D’Var Torah and the Introduction to Man of the Year Introduction at the recent MoTAS Shabbat]
Being a Role Model – MoTAS Shabbat 1/23
Parasha Bo – D’var Torah
In the musical The Rothschilds, Meyer Rothschild sings of the value of sons. Sons are a way to continue the line; sons provide the opportunity to teach a lesson. During Passover, we read of four sons: the wise, the wicked, the simple, and the one unable to speak. This week’s Torah portion introduces us to the two of those sons: the wicked and the one unable to speak. The portion tells the story of the last Passover plague, the start of the Passover, and provides us with the commandments for us to observe Pesach and to abstain from eating leavened bread. It reminds us through the Pidyom Ha-Ben ceremony of how our sons were saved for a reason. Lastly, it contains the first occurrence of the commandments regarding teffilin, which in traditional Judaism are reminders we put in front of us to lead us on the proper path.
Leadership is a key notion in this portion; one that is relevant to this Men of TAS Shabbat. Specifically, the portion addresses the role of a leader – in the context of the Torah a father figure – to pass on the tradition and guide the family down the path that Judaism provides.