Welcoming the Sabbath

I’ve finally fixed the content of the Erev Shabbat liturgy that we use as a family, and that will be a part of The Offerings of Our Lips.

I’ve made it available for download on my website (in .pdf) or for purchase all ready bound (in this case stapled, saddle-stich style) and printed here.

3 thoughts on “Welcoming the Sabbath

  1. Hello Brian,

    The passage in Hebrews draws from Gen 14:19 where Melkitzedek “blesses” Abraham. The passage states that Melkitzedek, “בָּרוּךְ אַבְרָם ” (barukh avram). However, in the next verse, Melkitzedek states, “וּבָרוּךְ אֵל עֶלְיוֹן” (u’varukh el elyon) or “And blessed be God Most High.” How can man bless God?

    “Bless, my soul, YHWH!”
    בָּרְכִי נַפְשִׁי, אֶת-יְהוָה

    Peter

  2. Brian and Peter,

    Thanks to both of you for your comments. Brian, I appreciate you saying something even though this type of thing is not your cup of tea. However, please know that the addition of a blessing over the husband is not a personal innovation on my part, but one that has become common in modern times. (I’m fully aware that it is not Orthodox, so there is no need to reiterate your position on that).

    On the other hand, the confusion of symbolism is a concern and I would most certainly have felt very uncomfortable in the scenario you related.

    On yet another hand, Peter’s point and many more scriptures do make it plain that the lesser can bless the greater. However, that doesn’t strike me as the more significant symbolism…

    I believe I will change the title of that reading to, “Charge to the Husband” , as there is other language in the liturgy making it plain that we ought to bless God.

  3. Brian,

    I greatly appreciate the passion coupled with courtesy that you invested in this comment.

    I think we have a fairly vast disconnect here, however.

    First, more accurately labeling the “Charge to the Husband”, reflects not that it is invested with any invocatory power on the part of the wife/children, rather it is a welcome reminder to the husband of his “commission” from God, as you rightly describe. I thank you for aiding me to make that more plain, by your original comment.

    I firmly believe that the words of Avinu to a husband, as repeated on the lips of a wife, ought to be a welcome reminder, and an opportunity to more firmly trace those words into our mind by virtue of hearing them yet again in another voice.

    Secondly, I’m not sure if you’re aware or not, but I am convinced that tradition exists to serve enduring principles. And as such, tradition ought to be (perhaps must be) re-considered every generation or so, in order to re-evaluate if it is still aptly aiding the fulfillment of the principle, and if, indeed, the current generation is even aware of what principle it was designed to serve.

    Thirdly, I am working in concert with FFOZ’ labors over the traditional Siddur, and it is their desire (and mine) that people not be led to believe that the traditional forms alone are appropriate for encountering HaShem.

    Fourthly, the Offerings of Our Lips is designed to be meaningful to those who at this point in their lives might otherwise reject a traditional Jewish liturgy, while still maintaining an obvious reliance on the traditional liturgical forms for those who know what they’re looking at. So hopefully, it will have “crossover” appeal, and be useful to people just invetigating the Hebrew roots of the Christian faith, and those you are further along, but still not conversant in or comfortable with the traditional liturgy.

    Lastly, I really appreciate your admonition to consider the weight of what I’m engaged in, and believe me, brother, I have and I continue to do so. Also, I welcome your continued critique. It can only benefit the project. In fact, if you are willing, at some point I may send you a draft in order that you can make a more comprehensive critique.

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