Hebrew Voices #70 – Sikh-ing God in Jerusalem

Sathari Singh at the Western WallIn this brand-new episode of Hebrew Voices, Sikh-ing God in Jerusalem, I talk with Sathari Singh, a Catholic-born convert to the Sikh faith whose lifelong dream was to come on a pilgrimage to the Western Wall and the Temple Mount. Sathari explains what he learned studying from a Hassidic rabbi, how he fought religious persecution in New York City, and what it was like as a turban-wearing Manhattan subway train driver on 9/11. Continue reading

Prophet Pearls #31 – Emor (Ezekiel 44:15-31)

Prophet Pearls Emor (Ezekiel 44:15-31) with Nehemia Gordon and Keith JohnsonIn this episode of Prophet Pearls, Nehemia Gordon and Keith Johnson discuss the Prophets portion of Emor covering Ezekiel 44:15-31. Apparent contradictions about linen garments, wild hair and blue dye are overshadowed by a more challenging textual variance concerning marriage. But should contradictions (apparent or otherwise) cause divisions, excommunications, or worse—the loss of faith? Despite opposing interpretations, Gordon and Johnson think not, as they settle comfortably with the Jewish method of inquiry where questions are as important as answers and where apparent contradictions only drive understanding. They prove it’s a beautiful thing to interact with the word of God—with the goal of knowing him intimately. That being said, the word-of-the-week is “yarah” (yud-reish-hei). They shall teach. They will torah. Continue reading

Torah Pearls #31 – Emor (Leviticus 21:1-24:23)

In this episode of The Original Torah Pearls Emor (Leviticus 21:1-24:23), we discuss the standards and conduct of the Priests and acceptable offerings, as well as the appointed times of Yehovah and the issue of the Lunar Sabbath. Lastly, we address the stoning of the blasphemer! Continue reading

Prophet Pearls #30 – Kedoshim (Amos 9:7-15)

Prophet Pearls Kedoshim, Amos 9:7-15, Kedoshim, Amos, cushites, caphtor, fruit, haftarah, Ingathering, israel, Keith Johnson, nehemia gordon, parashah, Parsha, Yehovah, Tanakh, Leviticus, torahIn this episode of Prophet Pearls, Nehemia Gordon and Keith Johnson discuss the Prophets portion of Kedoshim covering Amos 9:7-15. The nine verses of Kedoshim yield riveting questions for Gordon and Johnson to explore: Why were the Philistines brought from Caphtor? Where is Caphtor? Who is the sinful kingdom? What is David’s fallen booth? What other nations bear the name of Yehovah? And why would God tell his chosen they are the “same to me” as the Cushites? To get closer to understanding this jarring rebuke (or was it a loving affirmation?), Gordon provides biblical references for Cush—from the Tanakh and the New Testament—as well as statements of medieval commentators. Continue reading

Hebrew Voices #44 – The Rebirth of Israel and the Dead Sea Scrolls (Rebroadcast)

Nehemia Gordon speaking on Israel Independence Day 2017In Hebrew Voices The Rebirth of Israel and the Dead Sea Scrolls, Nehemia Gordon speaks on Israel's Independence Day about why he is a "Zionist", and how the discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls parallels the rebirth of Israel as a nation. You can watch the video of his address at the public celebrations of Israel's 69th Independence Day in Huntington, West Virginia or listen to the audio as part of his Hebrew Voices podcast. Continue reading

Torah Pearls #30 – Kedoshim (Leviticus 19:1-20:27)

Torah Pearls - Kedoshim ((Leviticus 19:1-20:27)In this episode of The Original Torah Pearls, Kedoshim (Leviticus 19:1-20:27), we discuss what it means to profane the name of the Lord, who is “the Lord sabaoth”, the difference between rob and steal, lie and deceive, and the origin of “Love God, love your neighbor” as the summary of the Torah. All this and more in this week’s Torah Pearls. Continue reading

Torah Pearls #29 – Acharei Mot (Leviticus 16:1-18:30)

Torah Pearls Acharei Mot, Leviticus 16:1-18:30, Nehemia Gordon, Torah portion, Torah Pearls, Day of Atonement, goat, Yom Kippur War, Temple Mount, PopeIn this episode of The Original Torah Pearls, Acharei Mot (Leviticus 16:1-18:30), we center in on the Day of Atonement and discuss the two goats and what they represent. Listen in as Nehemia recounts the miracle of the 1973 Yom Kippur War. Also, Keith tells of his recent adventures beneath and upon the Temple Mount, plus a bonus story about his meeting with the Pope. Continue reading

Prophet Pearls #28 – Metzora (2 Kings 7:3-20)

Prophet Pearls Metzora, 2 Kings 7:3-20, Metzora, 2 Kings, haftarah, Keith Johnson, leprosy, tsara'at, nehemia gordon, parashah, Parsha, two seahs, barley, torah, tanakh, yehovah, prophet pearlsIn this episode of Prophet Pearls,  Nehemia Gordon and Keith Johnson discuss the Prophets portion of Metzora covering 2 Kings 7:3-20. The duo strongly connects aspects of this ancient prophecy and its unimaginable fulfillment to 21st century headlines. The names of the cities and rulers have changed, but the themes of social justice, economic theory and crowd control read current. Adding to the hot-off-the-press feel is the fact that the major players (the lepers, the Arameans, and the king) were all just conjecturing. Only the prophet, the one paying closest attention to God, knew what was happening. In addition, Gordon sheds light on the physical and spiritual aspects of leprosy (tsara'at), the value of barley as a commodity, and the nuances of call/proclaim/qara. Gordon closes with a prayer for hearts to accept the word of God—even when its fulfillment is beyond our imaginations. Continue reading