• Rabbi Anthony Knopf

From the Desk - the Tribes of Ephraim and Menashe

Shalom Friends!

Hope you're all enjoying the week and that you had the opportunity to attend our amazing BBQ last night!

I want to remind everyone that our annual raffle event is taking place in a few weeks on August 14th.

The raffle is the synagogue's biggest fundraiser and it's very important that we succeed in order that we can continue to have our successful and beloved Beth Ora community. I urge everyone to help by buying tickets and selling to your friends, families and colleagues. For more information, please contact the office at 514-748-6559.

Wishing you all Shabbat Shalom,

Rabbi Anthony and Carly Knopf Dovid, Rachelli, Yehuda and Avrami

What’s the Deal with… the Tribes of Ephraim and Menashe?

Jacob had 12 sons. The tribes of the Israelites were named descended from and named after these sons. There is only one son who does not have a tribe named after him and that is Joseph. Instead, there are two tribes named after Joseph’s sons, Ephraim and Menashe. Marilyn Caplan asked me why there isn’t just one tribe of Joseph instead of the tribes of Ephraim and Menashe. So, what’s the deal? In preparing this answer, I benefited from an article by Rabbi Yecheskel Posner on Chabad.org.

Rashi explains that, as Jacob was lying on his deathbed, he told Joseph that G-d once appeared to him and said that additional tribes would be counted among his offspring. However, Jacob had no more children to initiate these additional tribes. He therefore understood that G-d was indicating to him that the two children of Joseph were to be considered tribes of their own. That’s why the tribe of Joseph was divided into two tribes bearing the names of his sons. Hence, there is generally no tribe by the name of Joseph. Instead, there are the tribes of Ephraim and Menashe.

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