17 Yitro

וַיִּשְׁמַע יִתְרוֹ כֹהֵן מִדְיָן חֹתֵן מֹשֶׁ֔ה אֵת כָּל־אֲשֶ֨ר עָשָׂה אֱלֹהִים לְמֹשֶׁה וּלְיִשְׂרָאֵל עַמּוֹ כִּֽי־הוֹצִיא יְהוה אֶת־יִשְׂרָאֵל מִמִּצְריִם׃

And Jethro, the priest of Midian, Moses’ father-in-law, heard of all that God had done for Moses and for Israel His people—that the Lord had brought Israel out of Egypt.

Shabbat

Name

Parasha

Haftora

Brit Chadasha

February 15th
2020

Yitro “Jethro”
Excess

Exodus 18:1-20:23

Isaiah 6:1-13

Mat. 8:5-20
Acts 6:1-7

 YitroParashat Beshalach includes the narrative of the Exodus from Egypt and the miraculous crossing of the Sea, it is in Yitro that we see the culmination of that crossing. Parasha Yitro is full of monumental ideas, foundational concepts, and widely-recognized importance. By all measures, this portion must be considered a highlight of the entire Torah since it includes no less than the Ten Commandments (Aseret Hadivrot -Ten Sayings).

Yitro heard that God had done wonders for Moses and Israel and had redeemed them from Egypt. He journeyed from Midian with Moses’s wife and sons to the Israelites’ encampment at the mountain of God. We hear nothing of Moses’s reunion with his wife and children, but rather a detailed account of Yitro’s organizational advices Moses to set up a judicial system to alleviate the burden upon him and thus better serve the needs of the people.

The most difficult matters would be brought to Moses’s attention, the remainder being attended to by a judicial system populated by God-fearing, upstanding, wise men. Moses listened to his father-in-law and implemented his suggestions by doing “all that he had said.”
Resolving conflicts between one another is defined as inquiring of God. It is not only a matter of seeing to a well-ordered society, which requires a method of conflict resolution in order to enable disputants to carry the correct balance between them, but also a matter of clarifying the will of God in order to reveal the truth and render justice in the situation at hand.

At times, perhaps, people ought to withhold some information for the sake of the honor of another individual. Moses honored Yitro by agreeing to implement his plan rather revealing that he had thought of the very same plan himself.