Reading the Dictionary
In his latest video (http://youtu.be/Nij3I_Rw0g4 ) Shapira presents a quotation from the Jastrow Dictionary. He is attempting to prove that the Aramaic word “palach” (or derivatives of that word) must be referring to worship of the divine. Shapira insists that this word refers exclusively to devotion to God and not to service of a human being.
He could not be more wrong, and the same entry from the Jastrow dictionary proves him wrong.
Shapira looks straight into the camera and he tells his audience that “palach means “worship.” But the dictionary entry that he presented says that while “palach” can mean worship it can also mean service of a human. In fact the first Biblical reference on the line that Shapira snipped out of the dictionary is Genesis 14:4 which speaks of service of a human and the classic Aramaic Targum translates the word with a derivative of “palach.”
Take your choice. Either Shapira cannot read a basic dictionary entry, or Shapira is confident that his audience is incapable of reading a basic dictionary entry and he has the audacity to lie straight to those who trust in him.
Either way, one thing is for sure. When Shapira looks straight into the camera and makes an emphatic point his confidence is not rooted in truth.
One more point before I sign off. Shapira was ordained as a “rabbi” by a Christian organization. One of the common duties of a rabbi is to officiate at wedding ceremonies. The text of the Jewish marriage contract contains derivatives of the word “palach.” In the context of the wedding contract the word means fulfillment of responsibility from a husband toward his wife and the word carries no connotation of worship of a deity.
If Shapira cannot read a basic Jewish marriage contract then what does this tell you about the organization that saw fit to ordain him as a rabbi?
If you found this article helpful please consider making a donation to Judaism Resources by clicking on the link below.
Judaism Resources is a recognized 501(c) 3 public charity and your donation is tax exempt.
Yisroel C. Blumenthal