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Friday, Shevat 12, 5780 / February 7, 2020


This Shabbat is known as “Shabbat Shira” – “Shabbat of Song”.  In this Parsha, Parshat B’Shalach, after seeing that they finally got rid of the Egyptians who were chasing after them, the Torah records the song which Moshe and the Jewish people sang praising G-d for the great miracle of the splitting of The Sea.


The Torah describes this miraculous episode as follows: "The Children of Israel walked on dry land in the midst of The Sea; and the waters were a wall on their right and their left.  And Israel saw the great hand which the L-rd brought upon the Egyptians, and the people feared the L-rd; and they believed in the L-rd and in Moshe His servant.  Then Moshe and the children of Israel sang this song to the L-rd..."


Each morning, we recite the "Shira" to remind us thatevery day is a miracle worthy of being happy and singing G-d's praise.  The Torah makes special mention of the women singing, dancing and playing their tambourines in praise of G-d.


Q.   Where did the women get the tambourines after crossing The Sea?


A.   According to our sages, the women were more confident than the men, that G-d would perform miracles for the Jewish people. Thus, while still in Egypt, they prepared tambourines to help them celebrate the Exodus. They used these tambourines to accompany them as they sang their praises to G-d.


Q.   In the Parsha we read that G-d provided them with "Manna" - "daily bread from heaven."  The Manna began one month after the Exodus. What did they eat during that month, from the time of the Exodus until they received the Manna?


A.    For the first month after leaving Egypt they ate the leftover matzah from the first Seder they made the night before the Exodus and the matzah which the sun baked at the time of the Exodus. 


The Manna came down each morning covered with a layer of dew.  Each day, they went out and gathered their daily portion of Manna. No matter how much Manna a person collected, when he came home he had exactly one "Omer" per personOn Friday, they received a double portion, for Friday and Shabbat.


The lesson of the daily Manna is that G-d looks after all our needs on a daily basis. Even when it seems that our daily sustenance is coming from earthly matters, in truth it all comes from heaven. 




Montreal candle lighting time: 4:51 / Shabbat ends: 5:57