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    The first born – B’ha’alot’cha

    The sidra says that every first-born belongs to God (Num. 8:17). The Torah does not say why this is so, but the sages all have their explanations.

    Rashi tells us that the concept is moral and logical (b’kav ha-din) because God saved the Israelite first-born from the tenth of the Ten Plagues (makkat b’chorot) in ancient Egypt and we are showing Him how grateful we are.

    In Sforno’s view, the idea is anthropological since every culture accords special honour to the first born of every family and indeed of every species.

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