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What is meant by “let the joy of God be your stronghold (following a verse that referred to celebrating the holidays)”?

R. Johanan in the name of R. Elazar bar Simeon said, “The Holy One, blessed be He, said to Israel, ‘My children, borrow money for my sake, and rejoice on the holy day, and trust to me, I will pay it back.'”

Beitzah Chapter 2


23 January in History

In 1492, the first printed copy of the Chumash with Megilot appeared. The two most famous printers of early Hebrew texts were the Soncino Family, who were Jewish and Daniel Bomberg, a Flemish Christian who worked in Venice.

18 Shevat in History

With the inquisition having arrived on American shores, twelve Jews were burnt in an auto de fe in Lima, Peru, on the 18th of Shevat 5399 (1639). Of the sixty-three Jews who were condemned at the time to various punishments, eleven were burnt alive at the stake, along with the body of a twelfth, who had committed suicide during the trial.

Amongst those burnt was Manuel Bautista Perez, reported to have been the richest man in Peru at the time, as well as Francisco Maldonado de Silva, a surgeon, poet, and philosopher who was seized in Chile in 1627, and remained in the dungeons of the Inquisition for nearly twelve years. His devotion to his faith never wavered; while in prison he even converted two Catholics to Judaism!

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January 2011