Shabbat is more than a day of refraining from worldly activity.

When experienced to its spiritual fullest, its holiness enlightens all other days of the week.

We invite you to enhance your Shabbat with these words of Torah.


Kohanim standing with their Tallit above them for Birkat Kohanim

The Priestly Blessing – Birkat Kohanim

The Priestly Blessing – Birkat Kohanim

Scherman, Rabbi Nosson
June 2, 2023

In Parshat Naso, we are introduced to The Priestly Blessing, the three-part beracha that the Kohanim pronounce over the Jewish people.


“Moses was commanded to instruct the Kohanim that they would have the privilege and the duty to bless the nation of Israel, both in the Temple and, for all time, in the synagogue. This does not mean that they have any independent power to confer or withhold blessings, but that part of their Temple service is to be the conduit through which God’s blessings would be pronounced on His people… To emphasize that the ultimate blessings are God’s alone, this passage concludes with God’s assurance that He will confer his own blessing on the Children of Israel. (R’ Hirsch)


The First Blessing – May Hashem bless you and watch over you.

God blesses Israel with prosperity to enable the people to devote themselves to Torah study and fulfillment [of the commandments]. (Sforno)


The Second Blessing – May Hashem cause His countenance to shine to you and favor you.

May God enlighten you so that you will be capable of perceiving the wondrous wisdom of the Torah and of God’s intricate creation. (Sforno).


The Third Blessing – May Hashem raise His countenance toward you and grant you peace.

Peace is not simply the absence of war. It is a harmony between conflicting forces. Within man, it is the proper balance between the needs of the body and his higher duty to the soul. In the universe it is balance between the infinite elements as well as between the holy and the mundane. (Ohr HaChaim)”