Image: A gavel and scales, symbols of the law. Photo by succo.
Mishpatim – “Laws” – is named, as all Torah portions are, for the first distinctive word in the portion, but it is also very descriptive. It is chock full of rules and regulations for Jewish living, and finishes with descriptions and commandments for the three great “pilgrimage festivals” of Passover, Shavuot, and Sukkot.
It lends itself to a variety of divrei Torah, because each law in it is a gate to a little world of its own. Here are some drashot you may enjoy:
Judaism Abhors Child Abuse by Rabbi Adin Even-Israel Steinsaltz
A Lender Be by Rabbi David Kasher
Torah MiSinai is Only One Half of the Conversation by Rabbi Sylvia Rothchild
Sweetness in Judgment by Rabbi Rafi Mollot
The Torah and Slavery by Rabbi Don Levy
The Sanctity of Laws by Rabbi Jeff Goldwasser
The Angry Ox and the Chapel Hill Shootings by Rabbi Rachel Barenblat
Chapter, Verse, Word & Letter by Rabbi Ruth Adar