Harav Yaakov Medan

Rav Yaakov Medan studied at the Netiv Meir High School in Jerusalem and in 1968, joined the first class at Yeshivat Har Etzion. He served in the IDF in the Airborne Nachal Infantry unit in the Hesder Program, and afterwards, returned to the Yeshiva as a Ram. He earned his Semicha from Yeshivat Har Etzion, a Bachelor of Education degree from Michlala in Jerusalem and a Master's degree from Touro College. Rav Medan teaches Tanach at Yeshivat Har Etzion and at numerous Yeshivot hesder and colleges throughout the country, and is considered one of the outstanding educators of Tanach today. In 2000, Rav Medan served as a Board member of the school for conversion of the Ne'eman Committee, and thus began is involvement, together with Prof. Ruth Gavison, in composing a renewed pact for relations between religious and secular, for which he was awarded the Avichai Prize. Today, Rav Medan serves as a Ram for fourth-year students at Yeshivat Har Etzion, teaches Tanach and Jewish Thought at the Yeshiva and Herzog College, and taught at the Advanced Torah Institute of Bar Ilan University and at many other institutions. In 5766, Harav Yaakov was inaugurated, together with Harav Baruch Gigi, as Rosh Yeshiva, alongside the founding roshei yeshiva, to be joined in 5769 by Harav Mosheh Lichtenstein.

Teacher Title Abstract Course
Harav Yaakov Medan The Place of the Sacrificial Service in Our Lives The third book of the Torah opens with the details of animal sacrifices in the House of God, a concept quite foreign to the modern Jew. What meaning does it retain in the present, and what does it point to in the future? Sichot Roshei Yeshiva
Harav Yaakov Medan “Take Heed in the Plague of Tzara’at” Through an analysis of tzara’at throughout Tanakh, Rav Medan proposes three reasons one might be struck with it: challenging kohanim and other authorities, evil speech, or betrayal of the Jewish People. He then analyzes a poem by Rachel and a story by Agnon that relate to “tidings from a metzora,” and connects them to our contemporary reality in Israel. Sichot Roshei Yeshiva
Harav Yaakov Medan The Priesthood and National Responsibility What is the role of the kohanim, as reflected in the prohibition of their coming into contact with the dead and in their consultation with the urim ve-tumim? In this shiur, we will focus on the importance of taking responsibility, as we will see from the contrast between the urim ve-tumim and consultation with the dead. Sichot Roshei Yeshiva
Harav Yaakov Medan Shemitta – Rights or Obligations of the Individual? The Torah emphasizes that the mitzvot of shemitta and Yovel, as well as the curses and blessings, were conveyed at Mount Sinai. What is the significance of both these sections, and why were they specifically commanded at Mount Sinai? Sichot Roshei Yeshiva
Harav Yaakov Medan The Book of the Covenant and Mount Sinai Why are the mitzvot in Parashat Behar attributed added significance? And how do we learn from them the truth of R. Akiva's dictum that "Love your neighbor as yourself" is the Torah's central principle? Sichot Roshei Yeshiva
Harav Yaakov Medan Shemitta: Individual Rights or Obligations Parashat Behar-Bechukotai stands apart from the rest of the Book of Vayikra, but what is the special connection of this unit to the Sinai covenant? Why does it remain relevant when the laws of the sabbatical and jubilee years are no longer applicable? Sichot Roshei Yeshiva
Harav Yaakov Medan Victory and Spiritual Revolution In Divrei Ha-yamim we find an account of the war waged by King Asa against Zerach the Kushite: And there came out against them Zerach, the Kushite, with an army of one million men, and three hundred chariots, and he came to Maresha… . (Divrei Ha-yamim II 14:8-10) Sichot Roshei Yeshiva
Harav Yaakov Medan ​Unconditional Commitment to God’s Covenant The acceptance of commandments must precede entry to the land. How does this relate to the sin of the spies and the crises that followed it? Sichot Roshei Yeshiva
Harav Yaakov Medan Unconditional Commitment Why did the wood-gatherer choose to deliberately violate the Shabbat at specifically this juncture in the desert, and what lesson do we learn from his mistake? Sichot Roshei Yeshiva
Harav Yaakov Medan The Sin of the Spies and its Lessons The Rishonim present a number of perspectives regarding the nature of the sin of the spies. What can we learn about the necessity of human action and relying on God from this story? Sichot Roshei Yeshiva
Harav Yaakov Medan The Dispute of Korach and His Company The story of Korach and his company as relayed in this week's parasha presents a number of different groups with different complaints. Why do these complaints surface only now, and what is Korach's plan in unifying them? Sichot Roshei Yeshiva
Harav Yaakov Medan The Miracle at Arnon Sichot Roshei Yeshiva
Harav Yaakov Medan Chok or Mishpat – The Read Heifer and the Service of God What is the lesson of the mitzva of para aduma? In this shiur, we compare and contrast two approaches and the necessity to choose between them. Sichot Roshei Yeshiva
Harav Yaakov Medan Leadership Parashat Pinchas presents two models of leadership: that of Pinchas and that of Yehoshua. Yehoshua's leadership style is characterized by close, step-by-step accompaniment of Moshe, the previous leader, until Yehoshua is appointed as his successor. This process, by definition, entails the new leader assuming his position at a relatively late stage in life. Indeed, according to the Seder Olam, Yehoshua was 82 years old when Moshe passed away. Sichot Roshei Yeshiva
Harav Yaakov Medan Two Leaders, Two Styles of Leadership Parashat Pinchas describes the rise to leadership of both Yehoshua and Pinchas. In this shiur, we analyze the differences between their ascents to their positions, as well as their different styles. Sichot Roshei Yeshiva
Harav Yaakov Medan The Oral Law and the Secret of "Eikha" Moshe in the Torah, Yishayahu in the Prophets, and Yirmiyahu in the Writings, all express their amazement at the situation and fate of the nation of Israel using the same expression - "eikha" - and our Sages teach that this is no coincidence. The three questions are connected to one another, and they share a single answer. Sichot Roshei Yeshiva
Harav Yaakov Medan The Tribes who Remained in Israel Rav Medan's reading of Divrei Ha-yamim leads to an innovative theory regarding the tribe of Menashe, its large numbers and large territory, and the meaning of the covenants upon entering the land. Sichot Roshei Yeshiva
Harav Yaakov Medan Broken Zealotry Parashat Pinchas begins with praise of Pinchas's act of zealotry. Chazal teach us that he knew what to do under the circumstances because he had learned it from Moshe Rabbeinu. What does this mean, and what can we learn about zealotry from Pinchas's actions? Sichot Roshei Yeshiva
Harav Yaakov Medan Three Prophesied with the Word “Eikha” In this sicha, we discuss the famous aggada regarding the appearance of the word eikha and how it teaches us about the sins that caused the Destruction. Sichot Roshei Yeshiva
Harav Yaakov Medan The Atonement of the Egla Arufa Sichot Roshei Yeshiva
Harav Yaakov Medan Repentance Teshuva raises many questions: Isn't it unjust if God doesn't punish someone for his misdeeds? How is it possible to turn a new page? How can we start this project and maintain it afterwards? Sichot Roshei Yeshiva
Harav Yaakov Medan Beit-El The Midrash and Rashi appear to have deliberated at length over the place that Beit-El occupies (or should occupy) in our consciousness. A literal reading of the parasha would seem to justify the actions of Yeravam ben-Nevat, who abandoned Jerusalem and built a new religious center for the nation in Beit-El. Sichot Roshei Yeshiva
Harav Yaakov Medan Why Was Yerushalayim Chosen? What makes Jerusalem so special? Why does David choose it as his capital, and why is still central to Jewish identity? Sichot Roshei Yeshiva
Harav Yaakov Medan A United Jerusalem Over the generations, much has been written about the interplay between the individual and the collective, and this is reflected in the Torah as well. It is the city of Jerusalem that unites all the individuals of the Jewish People into one unit. Sichot Roshei Yeshiva
Harav Yaakov Medan Parashat Vayigash: Yosef as a Role Model for Involvement in Secular Society In Sefer Bereishit we find differing models of integration and isolation, and these still frame the question of our involvement with the rest of the world today - its dangers and its potential.