Shabbat Shalom! – Shemot

Shemot means “names” and Parashat Shemot is indeed full of names. We begin perhaps the most famous Bible story of them all, the story of the Exodus from Egypt. This is a full portion, with many different famous stories in it.

A few of these drashot also address the fact that this Shabbat falls on the evening after Inauguration Day in the United States. Having seen the Obama Era in U.S. History come to an end, and the Trump Era begin, it is good to take a moment to reflect.

Let’s see what our commenters make of this portion and/or this moment in history:

Shemot – Names by Rabbi Kari Hofmeister Tuling, PhD

Does the Presidency Have a Prayer? by Rabbi Jeffrey Salkin

Know Your Past by Rabbi Jordan Parr

Each Life is a Novel by Rabbi Marc Katz

The Revolutionary Road to Marriage by Rabbi Esther Hugenholtz

The Mother Who Bore 600,000 by Rabbi Stephen Fuchs

Names and Deeds by Rabbi Ruth Adar

Published by


Rabbi Ruth Adar is a teaching rabbi in San Leandro, CA. She has many hats: rabbi, granny, and ham radio operator K6RAV. She blogs at and teaches at Jewish Gateways in Albany, CA.

5 thoughts on “Shabbat Shalom! – Shemot”

  1. The story of the Exodus, and the story of Esther, were my two favorite bible stories of all. You’re absolutely right that Exodus is very appropriate today.

    1. Yes, indeedy – and Esther is also appropriate. I love the line (in chapter 4?) where Mordechai writes to Esther about what will happen if she fails to rise to the occasion. It still reads as a warning against complacency.

Leave a Reply