Shabbat Message: Building a Parapet

September 12, 2019
By Beth Mordecai
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Shabbat Message: Building a Parapet

Some weeks are so busy; it can be hard to find time to breathe. There may be so much going on it is difficult to give complete focus to any task. Our parsha this week, Ki Teitzei, contains 74 mitzvot, or commandments. One of these commandments is a curious law: “When you build a house, you shall make a parapet for your roof so that you do not bring bloodguilt on your house if anyone should fall from it.” (Deut. 22:8).

This law is designed to protect the owner, the family, and visitors to the roof. In the Ancient Near East, the roof was a place to socialize, dry flax, and sleep using nature’s air conditioning on hot summer nights. People were often injured or killed from injuries sustained from falls. In the name of safety, God commands the owner to build a short wall to protect people on the roof.

Today, we can look at this commandment and compare it to many requirements on buildings for safety. There is a deeper spiritual meaning, as well. Our Beth Mordecai community is a warm and welcoming group. I genuinely love being the rabbi for this community. We each act a bit like that safety rail for each other. I have seen this community come together to help each other. We help keep each other from falling off. Thank you to everyone and your caring hearts.

Shabbat Shalom,
Rabbi Metz

Category : Rabbi Rabbi's Journal Shabbat