Our Stories

Torah Talk for Parashat Nasso

June 14, 2016 by Sharon Freundel (Community)

In this parasha, Hashem describes the service of the Gershonite family of Levi’im (Levites); laws relating to the sotah (suspected adulteress) and the nazir (nazirite) are given; Hashem tells Moshe and Aharon the Birkat Cohanim (Priestly Blessing); the heads of tribes bring gifts to the Mishkan (Tabernacle).

The Birkat Cohanim is a simple blessing that was given by the Cohanim (priests) in the Beit HaMikdash (Temple) to individuals after someone brought a sacrifice. It is still recited in many diaspora congregations today on the Jewish holidays, and every day in Jerusalem and other parts of Israel during the morning service. It is the last remaining vestige of the Temple service that we still have today. In fact, the oldest known Biblical text are amulets with these verses written on them, which were found in graves dating from the First Temple Period (before the 6th century BCE) and are now in the Israel Museum in Jerusalem. Read more >