Home Subscribe Services Support Us
Print Version

Email this article to a friend

YomTov, vol. V1 # 1

Nissan - A Focus of Our Attention

by Rabbi Yehudah Prero

In the Torah, we find Hashem giving Moshe an instruction that shaped our calendar. Hashem said to Moshe and Aharon (Shmos 12:2) "This month should be to you the beginning on the months; it should be first to you for the months of the year." The month that Hashem was referring to is the month of Nissan, the month in which the holiday of Pesach occurs.

The Ramban explains the uniqueness of this command and this month. He writes that the reason the month of Nissan is to be the first, the month which is assigned the place as the first month, by which we count all others, is because of the significance of the event which occurred in that month. Nissan is to serve as a reminder of the tremendous miracles that occurred with our exile from Egypt. It is a reminder that we will encounter on a daily basis. When we state, for example, that today is the 29th day of the 12th month, we are stating that it is the 12th month from our salvation from the Egyptians, from the birth of our nation. Hence, we assure that we are continuously reminded of the event that is to remain primal in our lives.

The Aruch HaShulchan (Orech Chayim 429:1-2 ) elaborates on the importance of the month of Nissan. Why was the month of Nissan chosen to be the first? The Egyptians worshiped the kid, a young goat, which is the first of the astrological signs in the zodiac. The kid is also the astrological sign for the month of Nissan. Pharaoh relied heavily on the astrological signs for power and strength. We find by the plague of Barad, hail, that Pharaoh said "G-d is righteous, but I and my nation are evil." However, after the cessation of the plague, he still refused to release the nation of Israel. When the next plague of Arbeh, locusts, arrived, he stood steadfast in his refusal to release the nation. Why the change from contrition to brazenness? The plague of Arbeh, and then Choshech, darkness, when Pharaoh instructed Moshe and Aharon never to appear before him again, occurred when the astrological sign of the kid was coming into power. This period is the month we know as Nissan. Pharaoh believed that as the sign of his god was at its full power, there was no way he would succumb to the G-d of his slaves, the G-d of Moshe and Aharon, the G-d that inflicted plagues upon him and his nation. Pharaoh knew that he would emerge on top during this month. He was wrong.

The month of Nissan is the first month because of its great significance. Not only does it contain the reminder about our miraculous departure from Egypt. It is also significant as it is a clear demonstration of the oneness of G-d and his dominion. The month of Nissan, in which Pharaoh, who relied on this month for success, was defeated, illustrates that it is Hashem who is our G-d in heaven and on earth. It is Hashem who controls, whose divine providence shapes our lives. No other entity has any such power, contrary to Pharaoh's belief. No other force, whether it is our daily toil and effort or the signs in the zodiac, can affect our lives without G-d's fingerprints on it. Because of the importance of this lesson, Nissan is the first month, the month, by which we count all others.

The month of Nissan is upon us. The month which signifies the power of G-d is here. The month which celebrates our miraculous birth of our nation has arrived. It is our responsibility to recognize what the month of Nissan is all about. In this way, come Iyar, Sivan, and the other months, our reference point has true meaning and significance.

R' Yehudah Prero

For questions, comments, and topic requests, please write to Rabbi Yehudah Prero.



View Complete List

Chanukah Vs. Purim
Shlomo Katz - 5760

Build with Your Dreams
Shlomo Katz - 5772

Heart To Heart
Rabbi Dovid Green - 5760

Looking for a Chavrusah?

Honor And Suspicion
Rabbi Dovid Green - 5761

Continuity Crisis?
Rabbi Yaakov Menken - 5764

Non Negotiable Part II
Rabbi Aron Tendler - 5765

Frumster - Orthodox Jewish Dating

Chanukah, Chutzpah, and Coming Close to G-d
Rabbi Yehudah Prero - 5757

Learning To Be "Stingy" With Our Words
Rabbi Yissocher Frand - 5765

Giving Satan What He Really Wants
Rabbi Pinchas Avruch - 5763

> On A Wing and A Prayer
Rabbi Yochanan Zweig - 5770

The Hasmoneans Take a Stand: A History of Chanukah, Part II
Rabbi Yehudah Prero - 5774

It's Never Too Late
Rabbi Pinchas Avruch - 5766


Diminishing Returns
Rabbi Naftali Reich - 5769

The Four Cubits We Occupy
Rabbi Label Lam - 5765

Miracles of Modesty
Rabbi Yehudah Prero - 5762

All For The Children
Rabbi Aron Tendler - 5762

Project Genesis Home

Torah Portion

Jewish Law



Learn the Basics




Ask The Rabbi

Knowledge Base


About Us

Contact Us

Free Book on Geulah! Home Copyright Information