Midrash

midrash

How Does Midrash Work?

Midrash is commonly defined as the process of interpretation by which the rabbis filled in "gaps" found in the Torah. It is a literature that seeks to ask the questions that lie on the tips of our tongues, and to answer them even before we have posed them.

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What Is It?

Midrash 101

Midrash 101

Brush up on the basics of midrash.

Midrash Aggadah

Exploring ethical ideas, biblical characters, and narrative moments.

How Midrash Functions

The rabbis explain and expand on the Torah--and in doing so, reveal much about themselves.

Abraham & Sarah in Midrash

The midrash rounds out what we know about these biblical figures.

Methods

Midrash gleans deep meaning from the Torah's text.

Central Texts

Midrash Rabbah

Midrash Rabbah

One name, many books.

Midrash Tanhuma

A compilation of narrative and legal midrash.

Mekhilta

Legal midrash on the Book of Exodus.

Sifra-Sifre

Legal midrash on Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy.

Midrash Halakhah

Clarifying legal passages in the Torah beyond their obvious reference points.


Stories in Midrash

Exodus Rabbah: A Text Study

Exodus Rabbah: A Text Study

Exploring Moses and Aaron's confrontation with Pharaoh.

Serah - Asher's Daughter

How the Midrash interprets Serah's role in Israelite history.

Moses' Death: A Text Study

Midrash explains how Moses could be happy with dying.

Modern Midrash

Contemporary artists expand the Jewish bookshelf.

Midrash Today

Finding midrash in your local synagogue and your local movie theater.

Books

The Classic Midrash: Tannaitic Commentaries on the Bible

The Classic Midrash: Tannaitic Commentaries on the Bible

By Reuven Hammer

Legends of the Jews

By Louis Ginzberg

A Midrash and a Maaseh

By Hanoch Teller

Reimagining the Bible: The Storytelling of the Rabbis

By Howard Schwartz

The Book of Legends (Sefer Ha-Aggadah)

By Hayim N. Bialik and Yehoshua H. Ravnitzky

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