Sefer BeMidbar as Sefer HaMiddot: The Book of Numbers as the Book of Character Development

Sefer BeMidbar as Sefer HaMiddot: The Book of Numbers as the Book of Character Development

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Overview

While it is true the Bible does relate important episodes in the history of the Jewish people, it is thought of as being much more than a history book. This is why many question the Bible's rationale for including a book such as Numbers, one that seems to be little more than a history book. In comparison, Genesis as a history book makes sense. It tells of the creation of the heavens and earth and the foundational stories of the Jewish people. Even Exodus, which relates the departure of the Jewish people from Egypt, has many legal sections. This thus begs the question: what exactly is the Book of Numbers, and what role does it play in the overall narrative of the Bible? Presenting Numbers as the book of character development is the major guiding principle of the pedagogical approach set forth in this book for teaching Numbers. This approach can also be used for teaching Genesis. However, the characters in Genesis are portrayed as either "very good" or "evil." Not so in Numbers, whose main personalities can and should be viewed in hues of grey, making it a very appropriate vehicle for teaching character development to high school students.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781532647802
Publisher: Wipf & Stock Publishers
Publication date: 09/07/2018
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 380
File size: 3 MB

About the Author

Reuven Travis teaches Bible, Jewish law, and Jewish history at Atlanta’s only Modern Orthodox day school. He earned his bachelor’s degree from Dartmouth College, where he graduated Phi Beta Kappa. He holds a master’s degree in teaching from Mercer University and a master’s in Judaic studies from Spertus College. He received his rabbinic ordination in 2006 from Rabbi Michael J. Broyde. He is the author of From Job to the Shoah (2013).

Reuven Travis is a graduate of Dartmouth College, where he majored in French literature and political science. He later earned a master's degree in teaching from Mercer University as well as a master's in Judaic studies from Spertus College. He also received rabbinic ordination from Rabbi Michael J. Broyde.

He has spent 20 years as an educator, teaching students from second grade through high school, mentoring and supervising teachers, and writing and implementing biblical studies curricula.

Table of Contents

Foreword Paul Scott Oberman ix

Preface xi

Part 1 A Complex Text

Chapter 1 The Challenges of Teaching Sefer BeMidbar 3

Chapter 2 Sefer BeMidbar as Sefer HaMiddot 22

Part 2 The Narrative of Sefer BeMidbar

Chapter 3 The Census 41

Chapter 4 The Princes 67

Chapter 5 The People 85

Chapter 6 The Spies 123

Chapter 7 Korah 171

Chapter 8 Balaam 198

Chapter 9 Phinehas 224

Part 3 The Legal Positings of Sefer BeMidbar

Chapter 10 The Sotah 259

Chapter 11 The Nazirite 294

Chapter 12 The Daughters of Zelophehad 320

Final Thoughts 357

Appendix Sample Rubric for Middot Essays 359

About the Author 361

Bibliography 363

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