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Friday, September 04, 2009

The King Has No Healthcare!

There is no record of public outcry against King Chizkiyahu’s Healthcare Reform Plan. Until Chizkiyahu, doctors and patients consulted the Sefer Harefuos.  It was an ancient book dating back King Solomon and, according to the Rambam, an effective medical text. Some say that the original manuscript was actually written by Noach and preserved carefully for centuries.

Chizkiyahu threw away the Book of Cures. He hid it and told people to rely on G-d instead (Pesachim 4).

Apparently, it worked. There were no protests that we know of, no town hall meetings and no angry talk show hosts. The Rabbinic leaders of the time praised Chizkiyahu. The people began to pray and the Jewish kingdom entered one of its brightest eras.

And then King Chizkiyahu got very sick. He was going to die and, by his own design, he had no book of cures to consult. The prophet Yeshaya made an unprecedented visit to the palace and prophesized that the king would die. There was no hope.

Chizkiyahu turned to Yeshaya and asked him to leave. He turned to the wall and prayed. His prayers were answered and Yeshaya was back in minutes with a new message from G-d: the king would live for fifteen more years. He would marry Yeshaya’s daughter, raise two children, revive the Davidic line and lead the Jewish people.

Chizkiahu learned from his grandfather King David: Even if a sharp sword is tickling your neck – Prayer works.

I am not suggesting that we abolish doctors (neither is President Obama, by the way). I’m just putting things into perspective. Ultimately our health does not lie in the hands of insurers, congressmen, or doctors. Life and death are in the hands of Hashem.

ChizkiahuCare worked, and the results were immediate.


Posted on 09/04 at 04:32 AM • Permalink
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Meet Rabbi Sender Haber

Rabbi Sender Haber is the Rabbi of the B'nai Israel Congregation in Norfolk, VA. He is well known throughout Hampton Roads, having arrived over twelve years ago as one of the original four members of the Norfolk Area Community Kollel. In that capacity, Rabbi Haber was involved in community wide programming, teaching, and outreach. He has inspired many Jews to expand their Jewish identity and increase their love of Torah and commitment to its observance. Everyone who knows Rabbi Haber is touched by his breadth of Torah knowledge and his ability to convey the wisdom of the ages in such a way as to make those esoteric writings accessible to persons of all levels of experience and a variety of backgrounds.

Rabbi Haber has served in a number of capacities during his years in Norfolk. Since 2003 Rabbi Haber has been a teacher of Jewish Studies at Toras Chaim Day School in Portsmouth, teaching boys and girls of all ages, with a focus on Gemara, Halacha, and Chumash. He has also taught at Yeshivas Aish Kodesh and Bina High School in Norfolk, and served as Assistant Rabbi of B’nai Israel for 6 years. He also serves as the Rabbi of the “Lost Tribe,” Tidewater’s Jewish Motorcycle group! While handling all of these responsibilities, he has continued to participate in numerous Chavrusos (one-on-one learning partnerships) covering a wide range of topics and writings.

Rabbi Haber and his wife Chamie have been married for thirteen years. They have four children, Minna (9), Moshe (6), Ely (4), and Akiva Meir, born in August of 2012. They both come from rabbinic families steeped in Torah, Kiruv and Chesed. Rabbi Haber received his Rabbinic Ordination (Yoreh Yoreh) from Rabbi Sender Rosenbloom and Rabbi Mordechai Freidlander of the Jerusalem Beth Din. He was awarded a Teaching Certificate by Torah Umesorah Association for Jewish Day Schools in 2004 and again in 2009. In addition, Rabbi Haber has spent over a decade studying Talmud, Jewish Law, and ethics in some of the world’s most prestigious Yeshivos including Beth Medrash Gavoha in Lakewood, NJ and Yeshivas Mir in Jerusalem.

Rabbi Haber can be contacted through the Synagogue office at 757-627-7358, or through e-mail at