Rabbi Sharon Shalom

Rabbi Sharon Shalom, the Director of the International Center for the Study of Ethiopian Jewry at Ono Academic College, approaches the subject of the Splitting of the Red Sea by asking why is it viewed as one of the most important events in Jewish history and in the personal lives of every Jew.  In his commentary in the Shabbaton magazine, Rabbi Sharon also addresses a grammatical inconsistency in the Song of the Sea, described in the Torah, to ask when exactly was this song of praise sung. He uses the Ethiopian Jewish tradition to provide answers to these questions.

Rabbi Sharon noted the similarities between his escape from Ethiopia, fleeing the Ethiopian army, and the fleeing Israelites chased by the best Egyptian chariots. He believes that specifically in desperate situations such as these, the greatest amount of hope can be found and it was natural to sing and pray. Rabbi Sharon claims that the miracle of the Splitting of the Red Sea was a result of the faith and poetry of the Jewish people. 

The same faith characterizes the approach of Ethiopian Jewry. “Ethiopian Jews sang in prayer before arriving in Jerusalem. The human dilemma is between despair and hope, between insecurity and security” This is the reason, Rabbi Sharon believes, that the Splitting of the Red Sea has always been such an important moment in Jewish history. He writes, “The miracles that took place in Egypt gave birth to faith, hope and confidence. Here [at the Red Sea] faith, hope and confidence are what gave birth to the miracle. This is a new work in the world.”

The full article can be read at https://shabaton1.co.il/?p=18048