Numbers 19:1 - 22:1

Judges 11:1 - 11:33

In this Torah portion, God instructs Moses and Aaron regarding the red heifer. Miriam, who is the sister of Moses and Aaron, dies. Moses hits a rock to bring forth water rather than speaking to it. At the end of the portion, Aaron dies.

FULL SUMMARY

Responding to Thirst

Moses' frustration and fatigue were no excuse for his refusal to accept the people's cry for help.

More on this Torah Portion

Why Words Can Hurt

Just as words can push people apart, so too can they bring us closer.

Bullying and Name Calling

In his anger, Moses uses a destructive label for his people in public.

When We Lose Control

Hukkat: A resource for families

Remembering Miriam

A closer look at Moses's sister.

Challah for Parashat Hukkat

Slaughtering the red heifer.

Parashat Chukat Quiz

Learn more about the weekly Torah portion.

Tools of Justice

Our actions and our words must be in line with one another.

Water Consciousness

How to send environmental problems down the drain.

Preparing for an Unknown Future

The Torah law about the red heifer was given because it anticipated the temporal nature and limitation of what Miriam had to offer.

The Waters of Lustration: Tears and Tzedakah

Jewish sources suggest tears and tzedakah [charity] as two modern replacements for the Red Heifer, two ways to purify ourselves from the death and destruction that surround us.

A Flawed Hero

Moses' fatal flaw is his inability to wean his people from their dependence on him.

Highest Standards

Because of his position of leadership, Moses is judged extremely harshly when he sins.

Parting Is Such Sweet Sorrow

Miriam, whose death is recorded in Parashat Hukkat, embodied the honor and glory of the women of Israel.

When To Talk And When To Act

Comparing Moshe to Yiftah raises questions about when we should be people of speech and when we should be people of action.

Two Strikes And They’re Out?

Though we may challenge the severity of Moses' and Aaron's punishment for striking the rock, we affirm sacredness by trying to comprehend it.

Facing Long-Standing Foes

Several commentators identify the Canaanites with whom the Israelites fought as the nation of Amalek, continuing the Israelites struggle against their age-old enemy.

Parashat Chukat: Summary

God instructs Moses and Aaron regarding the red heifer; Miriam dies; Moses hits a rock to bring forth water rather than speaking to it; Aaron dies.

Miriam: Water Under The Bridge?

Miriam's death should motivate us to recognize people today who provide nurture and support.