Parsha Talk Emor 5784 2024

Parsha Talk with Rabbis Eliot Malomet, Barry Chesler and Jeremy Kalmanofsky. Parashat Emor [Leviticus 21-24] is sometimes the penultimate parashah in Leviticus, except in years such as this one, 5784, which is a leap year. As a consequence, there are no double paashiyot. While Leviticus can be read in as few as 7 weeks, this year, with each parashah a separate week, it will take ten weeks.
The parashah is best known for chapter 23, which in additional to the weekly reading, is also read on the 2nd day of Passover and the first two days of Sukkot, because of the festival calendar. There are also laws governing the priesthood, some of the perquisities for being a priest, some restrictions on marriage, and disqualifications from service for certain blemishes. The last aliyah, coinciding with chapter 24, includes the curious case of the m’kallel, the blasphemer, one of those rare cases that occur in the Torah where Moses must seek additional guidance from God to determine how to proceed.
Since we recorded on Yom Ha’Atzma’ut, Israel’s Independence Day, Israel was never far from our minds. Most of our conversation focused on the subject of blemishes and priestly service then and now. We hope you enjoy it!
We are ever mindful of the hostages and their families, and the men and women who defend Israel as soldiers in the Israel Defense Force. May the hostages be speedily returned to their homes; may the soldiers be removed from harm’s way. Shabbat Shalom.