Metaphors in the Torah: “Bo” (Exodus 10.1 – 13.16)

One of the problems with insisting that everything in the Torah is a metaphor is that “The Land of Israel” can also be interpreted as a metaphor and thus eliminate the need for Zionism (i.e. The actual need to live in the physical land given to Abraham).

Most people deal with this issue by insisting there is a double meaning for

everything in the Torah and that there is a literal, "lower", meaning and a metaphorical/symbolical, "higher", meaning. For me, that doesn’t  wash because there is absolutely no way that the events described in the Torah can be literally true. For example: After Moses struck the rock with his staff, two million thirsty people would have surged forward and we would have a "Wembly Stadium" situation where a dozen people or so were crushed.


Nevertheless, what the rabbis do is even worse. They pick and choose which passages they will follow and then take it upon themselves to either ignore or change those passages which they don’t like.

In this week’ passage the Israelites are told that they must repeat the story of Passover from generation to generation, specifically from son to son. This is one of the reasons I issued a challenge to “anyone” to prove Judaism is based on matrilineal descent.


Abraham is promised the land of Canaan ONLY if he agrees to teach God’s ways to his descendants. Since, Abraham only had 8 sons and no daughters then the covenant MUST pass from father to son. This is what we see here in the section called "Bo". In spite of the rabbis insistence that it is the mother which educates the children, the passage here specifically says it is the sons who are to be educated, not the daughters. Furthermore, in Israel today, I don’t believe there are too many women teaching in the yeshivas…

Another very important issue is noted by the famous historian Maxwell Dimont, who states in his book: “Jews, God and History” that the Passover Haggadah, written by the rabbis, does not contain a single quotable quote from Moses. Nevertheless, if is chock full of quotes from rabbis, most of whom were never even in Egypt, much less participated in the Exodus.

So, the traditional Passover service, for all intents and purposes, is itself a violation of the law. It just gives lip service to the Passover events themselves and glorifies, almost exclusively, rabbinical wisdom and scholarship. One would think it was the only the rabbis who freed the Israelites from slavery and God did nothing.

Another point to consider can be found in Exodus chapter 13, line nine. In a clear reference to the Passover it says that the story of Passover shall be as a memorial to one’s eyes and a sign on one’s hand. More or less, this is the exact same phrasing used for putting on  the tifillin found in other parts of the Torah. Is the story of Passover contained in the tefillin? Well, yes and no….

Tefillin, usually just contain the sections which command a person to place the tefillin on one’s hand and as a memorial for the eye (i.e. they don't tell  the story of Passover itself). Later we shall read about the ten commandments. The commandments are clearly to be placed on one’s door, but the rabbi’s decided that if the people actually did that then they would think that it was ONLY God’s commandments that the people needed to follow. The rabbis, however, wanted to make it clear that the people must also obey THEIR laws as well. So, today, on doors of religious people there is a container called a “mezuzah” it it contains a scroll of the command to place the commandments on the door, but NOT the commandments themselves.

First off, both the tefillin and the mezuzah are containers. The person cannot see or read what is inside them. In fact, many times after repairs are done on an apartment the little scroll falls out and the container is empty. Regardless, empty or full, the container contradicts BOTH the letter and the spirit of the law.

If one had, openly, on their door even one of the commandments (Let’s say for example: On your door it said: “Thou shall not murder”). That would help you as well as anyone coming into your house. After all, at least he would see it. Today, thanks to the rabbis, all one sees is a little pencil shaped container on the inside of the door frame. Most people don’t even notice it…And, by the way, most people think the commandment is: "Thou shall not kill", probably because most people never actually read the Bible (see the movie: "Sergeant York" with Gary Cooper)

Regardless, the message, however, is not to literally place the commandments on one’s hand as a reminder to obey God’s laws. The commandment is speaking about guiding principles. And the guiding principle of the Passover story is that when the Jews are in trouble, their God will come to their rescue, not their rabbis…..BUT, they must call out to their God for help. Today, people don’t even bother to call out to their God, or to read his words. Why should they when all they have to do is: "Ask the rabbi" on the internet.... 

Most Torah commentaries are, in actuality, Talmud commentaries (i.e. they are full of quotes from the rabbis and explain very little about the weekly torah portion. For example: go to YOU TUBE and click on “Torah Portion: BO”. You will see that almost 9 out of ten of those commentaries explain only why God used the word for “come” when he meant “go”. Why have rabbis for almost 1,000 years ignored everything else in this portion and focused on this one word? Because the Rashi did so one thousand years ago and the fundamental principle of rabbinical Judaism is: “monkey see, monkey do”… If my rabbi wears a fur hat in August, I will wear a fur hat in August. If my rabbi dresses like a penguin, I will dress like a penguin…If my rabbi remains in Poland while 300,000 Nazis cross the border, I will remain in Poland....