Shaar Hashamaim(Gate of Heaven) Synagogue, Thane
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Vaihi Beshallah

This week`s haftorah describes the fall of the Canaanite general Sisera and his armies, who were swept away by the Kishon River, and Deborah`s ensuing song of thanks. This parallels this week`s Torah portion which discusses the drowning of the Egyptian forces in the Red Sea and and the subsequent songs led by Moses and Miriam.

Deborah the Prophetess was the leader and judge of the Israelites at a difficult time; the Israelites were being persecuted by King Jabin of Canaan and his general Sisera. Deborah summoned Barak son of Abinoam and transmitted to him G-d`s instruction: "Go and gather your men toward Mount Tabor, and take with you ten thousand men of the children of Naphtali and Zebulun. And I shall draw to you, to the brook Kishon, Sisera, the chieftain of Jabin`s army, with his chariots and his multitude; and I will give him into your hand." At Barak`s request, Deborah accompanied him, and together they led the offensive.

Sisera was informed of the Israelites` mobilization and he gathered his forces and proceeded towards the Kishon River. Barak`s army below and the heavens above waged battle against the Canaanites and utterly destroyed them. The river washed them all away; not one of the enemy survived.

The defeated general fled on foot and arrived at the tent of Jael, wife of Heber the Kenite. She invited him in and offered to hide him. When he fell asleep, Jael took a tent-peg and knocked it through Sisera`s temple.

The next chapter of the haftorah is the Song of Deborah, which describes the miraculous victory and thanks the One Above for His assistance.



Commentary and Graphics Source: www.Chabad.org


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