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Mishpatim

Mishpatim

[These Are the] Rules
Exodus
21:1−24:18

These are the rules that you shall set before them. - Exodus 21:1

Summary: 
  • Interpersonal laws ranging from the treatment of slaves to the exhibition of kindness to strangers are listed. (21:1-23:9)
  • Cultic laws follow, including the commandment to observe the Sabbatical Year, a repetition of the Sabbath injunction, the first mention of the Three Pilgrimage Festivals, rules of sacrificial offerings, and the prohibition against boiling a kid in its mother's milk. (23:10-19)
  • The people assent to the covenant. Moses, Aaron, Nadab, Abihu, and seventy elders of Israel ascend the mountain and see God. Moses goes on alone and spends forty days on the mountain. (24:1-18)

When do we read Mishpatim?

2017 Feb 25 /29 Shevat, 5777
2018 Feb 10 /25 Shevat, 5778

RECENT COMMENTARY

  • By Beth Kalisch

    Following the giving of the Ten Commandments in last week’s Torah portion, Parashat Mishpatim brings us a diverse collection of civil, criminal, ritual, and ethical laws. Included in the parashah is a section of text that has become relevant to a topic that is highly contested in our day.

    Next month, the Supreme Court is scheduled to hear Whole Woman's Health v. Cole, a challenge to a restrictive Texas abortion law. It will be the first time in more than 20 years that the Supreme Court has heard an abortion case.

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