The Bible bequeathed to the world the obligation of poverty relief.
Rabbi Eliezer’s tsunami.
The case of the mixed-up sacrificial birds.
Elisha ben Avuyah became a vehicle for exploring the agonizing conundrums the rabbis were too honest to ignore but too pious to articulate.
But ignoring the great rabbinic commentaries on them.
Abba the Tall, known simply as Rav.
Loyal as Moses?
A desecration of what is most sacred.
An emphasis on human relationships.
An 11th-century talmudic encyclopedia.
A new book argues that they weren’t, at least at first.
Along with a winepress and a magnificent synagogue.