Parashat Shelach / A High-handed Sinner

What Manasseh does is simply to read the negative verses about Reuben and Eliphaz, in a literal manner. Through that reading, he expresses his theological surprise that God includes these negative verses in the Torah.

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A person who has accidentally sinned must bring a sacrificial offering as atonement. However, in this week’s Parashat Shelach (Numbers 13:1 – 15:41), the Torah states categorically: “But the soul that doeth...