Gentlemen, take advantage of some couch time during the holiday and Shabbat to review Lesson 0 of 1 John, and do your homework for Lesson 1 of 1 John. Your workbook (and audio from the Lesson 0 – Introduction) are available here.

If you don’t have the means or where-with-all to print the workbook, email me and we’ll get one printed for you. No excuses! Do your homework… remember Rick follows the same teaching rules that I do: If you have failed to do the homework – you have not earned the privilege to speak and share in class.

Rick Spurlock will be teaching Lesson 1 this Tuesday evening.

The following week, we will hear from Greg Upham on the topic of head covering… to cover, or not to cover, that is the question… I expect that Greg will give us a super review of the pertinent passages both from the Scriptures, and the sages. Why not take some time to review the topic yourself, beforehand?

Here are the questions I have for the Rabbi. If you have any to add, or have changes to suggest, please post a comment. I’ll compile and send them off to him on Tuesday.

Questions for the Rabbi

  1. Can you discuss some of the specific occurrences of Hebrew letter variants throughout the Torah and/or Tanach and their significance?  For example: Opening of Vayikra-small aleph-and other occurrences?
  2. When you are eating, do you sing the HaMotzi before and the HaMazon afterward, or do you say it. Do you bless Hashem every time?
  3. In the aftermath of the Enlightenment, we see the Besht and others arise with differing concepts of Judaism. Evidently, in response to this, Herzl established Orthodox Judaism. Is the concept of this sect to be as close to the Men of the Great Assembly?
  4. Can you express the Orthodox view of those taken into Assyrian captivity in 586 BCE? Are these northern tribes really lost in your opinion?
  5. Hillel and Shammai are the greatest of the zugot – and the last. We have studied the altercation and resulting massacre surrounding the 18 measures proffered by Shammai. It is our understanding that Hillel eventually won out regarding his view on Gentile inclusion into Israel. We even praise him over Shammai during the Kiddush Rabbah each Shabbat. Yet it appears that your halachah is following Shammai. Is this so?
  6. Can you discuss the concept of atonement through the various sacrifices in Vayikra and what is meant by atonement?  The goats and the one for Azazel in Vayikra 16 (Acharei Mot). Is this strictly a ritual purity issue?
  7. Would you say that the Torah we have today is the exact same that Moshe received (despite the change in the letters from paleo Hebrew to the modern Aleph-Bet), as the Rambam’s 13 principles teach?
  8. What’s with the kippa? Why do Jews cover their heads all the time. It seems almost as important as burning the Torah or idolatry. I’d like to hear the passion behind this minhag.
  9. Why do most Orthodox Jews not have techelet in their tzitzit? We have been told the snail necessary to create the techelet has been re-discovered.
  10. Do you wear your tallit during Minchah prayers?
  11. If I get dressed before prayers – and I’m wearing a dress shirt, it’s nearly impossible to get my tefillin on. Is this the way Moshe Rabbeinu started??
  12. Please review the various titles we find in Jewish literature, such as, rabbi, rav, rebbe, r., etc. and when it’s appropriate to use each one.
  13. CHAZAL say that if all Israel would keep Shabbat, the Mashiach would come. Is there anything you are doing in your walk to hasten the coming of Messiah? Do you allow for any Gentile observance in this regard?
  14. Jeremiah speaks of Gentiles recognizing they have inherited lies from their fathers. Zechariah speaks of a minyan of Gentiles grasping the kanaf of the Jew… we see these prophecies coming to pass in our days. What are your thoughts on this – and the thoughts of greater Orthodoxy?
  15. You don’t wear payot, evidently. Why not?
  16. Do you tear the toilet paper into squares ahead of Shabbat? Where do you draw the line for work vs. life in these matters?
  17. Would you find it a problem to lead Gentiles in prayer to Hashem? Would you lead Ma’ariv prayers sometime?