Reuben Ebrahimoff




The Haftorah for Parshat Ki Tisa

The Haftorah is read from the book of Melachim Aleph (Kings 1), 18:1-39

Eliyahu calls for nationwide Teshuva at Har Carmel

The connection of the Haftorah to the Parsha:  Parshat Ki Tisa relates Bnai Yisrael’s, the Jewish People’s, sin of worshipping the golden calf.  Similarly, the Haftorah discusses the sin of worshipping the baal idols during the reign of the evil Jewish King Ahab.

The storyline of this week’s Haftorah: In the prequel to these weeks Haftarah Eliyahu Hanavi is told by the Idolatrous King Ahab, that there isn’t a pagan deity that he hasn’t worshipped. Aha continues to remark that “Hashem promised draught and famine to the ones who worshipped idols”, but I continue to drink water everyday! Therefore your G-d doesn’t have any power, nor does he even exist. Well that was enough to trigger a response from the Zealous Israelite Prophet Eliyahu; He held up his hands to the sky and said “My G-d, shuts your G-d off! You will have NO rain for 3 years”. That came true.

Our Haftarah begins with Eliyahu experiencing a prophecy from Hashem (G-d) saying it’s time to go back to the Evil King Ahab, and let him know that it will begin to rain again. Eliyahu went to Samaria which was to the North of Jerusalem to meet Ahab. Ahab’s wife was the Super Evil Queen Jezebel. She tried to kill every G-d fearing Jew in the land of Isra el. She almost succeeded except for Obadiah, Abdullah in Arabic) a convert from Edom, who was in the Royal administration hid 100 of the remaining prophets in two caves and paid for their food & oil for lamps from his own money. Ahab asked Ovadia to go all over the land of Israel, to look for water, otherwise all their animals were going to die of thirst.

King Ahab & Obadiah split up and went looking in different directions. Suddenly Elijah appears in front of Ovadia. Elijah tells Ovadia to go bring King Ahab to him. Ovadia asks “what did I do wrong?” “I’m going to go get King Ahab & when I get here you’ll be gone and he will kill me. Elijah assures Ovadia that he will be thee when King Ahab comes.

When King Ahab set eyes on Elijah he said “So there’s the trouble maker” & Elijah replied “on contraire mon fraier” “You are the trouble maker. Let’s settle the score for once and for all”. “We’ll go up to Mount Carmel. We’ll take two slaughtered bulls and put them up on their respective altars and let’s see whose g-d replies to them with a flame from the heavens.

Eliyahu commands the king to assemble the people and the idolatrous priests of Ba’al & Asherah. All 950 of them. Eliyahu suggests an experiment to determine who the true G-d is. After dancing, singing & drumming, the Ba'al 7 Asherah Priest’s get no response from their gods. Eliyahu prepares for the sacrifice and tefilla. Hashem responds with a heavenly fire that burns the ox of the Israelites to a crisp in a nanosecond. Every who witnessed this miracle fell to their knees and said, “Hashem hoo ha’Elokim”; “G-d is the lord”.

Elijah’s Biography:

  • Was called “the Tishbi” and Eliyahu Ha-Giladi, from the Territory of Gilad who lived around 875-850 B.C., 2850 years ago.  He was the student of Achiya Hashiloni.  Eliyahu never married.
  • Was a great Prophet and priest of the Northern Kingdom of Israel, and the leader of the sons of the prophets - B’nai Haniviim
  • Was zealous to honor god; had a burning intolerance of human imperfection
  • Performed 8 miracles in his lifetime. Five of them were private miracles, while the other 3 were public miracles.
  • Gained a reputation of appearing and disappearing like the wind.
  • Rose up  to heaven in a chariot of fire led by horses of fire
  • Had had 4 Students:  MICHAH the Prophet and Rabbi of Isaiah the prophet; JONAH – a prophet in the tray assar; OVADIAH – another of the prophets in tray assar; and ELISHA – Elijah’s decouple.  Elisha requested from Eliyahu a blessing to perform double the miracles and resurrections as Eliyahu.
  • Always appears at: Every Seder – during the Cup of Elijah, Kos Eliyahu; Every Bris - Kiseh Eliyahu, the Throne of Eliyahu; Every Motzai Shabbos - We sing the song of “Eliyahu Hanavi”.
  • His body was never separated from his soul so he still lives. He did not die because his mission was not complete. We know this because of the Pasuk in Malachi, that says "Behold I am sending you the prophet, before the great and awesome day of G-d. 

Famous Phrases: Melachim 1, 18:21, “Ad motai atem poschim al shtei se’eefim”  “how long will you continue hopping between two opinions?

Elijah at Mt. Carmel

Elijah at Mt. Carmel

Haftorahman’s lesson of the week:  Elijah reprimanded the Jews who kept swerving on and off the path of Hashem, to worship idols.  Don’t vacillate! Forge a clear path in serving God, in serving mankind, in loving your fellow Jew, and stick with it!

Giovanni Girolamo Savoldo
Brescian, c. 1480 - 1548 or after
Elijah Fed by the Raven, c. 1510
Oil on panel transferred to canvas, 168 x 135.6 cm (66 1/8 x 53 3/8 in.)
Samuel H. Kress Collection 1961.9.35



Dor L’Dor by Ephraim Waxman Feldheim



Written by: Reuben Gavriel Ben Nissim Ebrahimoff 5768-2008