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 Parshat Vayera - The Way of God and the Way of Righteousness and Justice How can examining the events of Sedom help us understand Avraham's complicated relationship with God's will on the one hand and the values of righteousness and justice on the other? Parshat HaShavua - The Weekly Torah Reading
Harav Yaakov Medan Parshat Chayei Sara, Ketura What is the connection between the rabbinic dispute over the identity of Ketura and the people of Israel's covenantal claim to the Greater Land of Israel, between the Nile and the Euphrates? Parshat HaShavua - The Weekly Torah Reading
Harav Yaakov Medan Parshat Lekh Lekha - Berit Bein HaBetarim: The Covenant between the Parts While the Covenant between the Parts is mostly remembered for God's promise that Avraham's descendants will become a great nation, it also promises that they will endure slavery and suffering in Egypt. What is behind Chazal's varied approaches to the reason Avraham deserved such a harsh punishment? Parshat HaShavua - The Weekly Torah Reading
Harav Yaakov Medan Parshat Noach, Then I Shall Bring Upon the Nations a Clear Language What is the connection between the colorful midrashim about the Tower of Bavel and various stories from other place in the Tanakh? Parshat HaShavua - The Weekly Torah Reading
Harav Yaakov Medan Parshat Vaera - I Shall Harden Pharaoh's Heart What does it mean when God "hardens the heart" of a sinner in the Tanakh - as He did to Pharaoh in Egypt - and how can a person be held accountable for his sins in such a case? Parshat HaShavua - The Weekly Torah Reading
Harav Yaakov Medan Parshat Vayeshev - From the Valley of Chevron to the Valley of Dotan: In the Footsteps of Yosef and the Midrash What can Yosef's journey to find his brothers - and Chazal's commentary on this journey - teach us about the intricate interpersonal relationships at play in this episode? Parshat HaShavua - The Weekly Torah Reading
Harav Yaakov Medan Parshat Vayigash - Yosef and Yehuda The respective narratives of Yehuda and Yosef contain several clear parallels. What does the Torah's attitude toward these two brothers teach us about the quality of leadership throughout the history of the nation of Israel? Parshat HaShavua - The Weekly Torah Reading
Harav Yaakov Medan Parshat Toldot - Esav's Merit Chazal's portrayal of Esav as a wicked murderer does not quite match the relatively mild description of Esav in the actual text of the Torah. How can we explain this discrepancy, and what does it mean for us today? Parshat HaShavua - The Weekly Torah Reading
Harav Yaakov Medan Parshat Vayechi - Rachel's Death and Burial What is the reason for Rachel's unique, eternal role in our tradition, and how does this connect to the perennial dispute over the location of her burial site? Parshat HaShavua - The Weekly Torah Reading
Harav Yaakov Medan Parshat Bo - This Month Shall Be for You The Jewish dating system in common use today bears little resemblance to the system used in the Tanakh, whose roots can be found in this week's parasha. What is the history behind this discrepancy, and how should this inform our choice of dating system today? Parshat HaShavua - The Weekly Torah Reading
Harav Yaakov Medan Parashat Miketz - The Meaning of Yosef's Estrangement The Torah's description of Yosef's evolving relationship with his family contains many unusual and inexplicable elements. How can understanding Yosef's mindset and mentality throughout his harrowing narrative help explain many of these incongruences? Parshat HaShavua - The Weekly Torah Reading
Harav Yaakov Medan Parshat Shemot - They Were Fruitful and Multiplied The number of years that the people of Israel were enslaved in Egypt is subject to debate among the commentators. What can the answer to this question tell us about the incredible growth of the nation in Egypt from seventy souls to a vast multitude? Parshat HaShavua - The Weekly Torah Reading
Harav Yaakov Medan Parshat Vayetze - Beit El Beit El plays a critical role in Parashat Vayetze, and indeed, in several places throughout the Tanakh. What can Beit El's location and its relationship with Jerusalem tell us about its sanctity and its significance for the people of Israel? Parshat HaShavua - The Weekly Torah Reading
Harav Yaakov Medan Parshat Vayishlach - Anyone Who Says Reuven Sinned Our Sages were torn over whether the incident between Reuven and Bilha was a terrible sin or a minor misdemeanor. What can our analysis of the incident teach us about Reuven's role in his interactions with his various family members and about his legacy as a would-be leader of the nation of Israel? Parshat HaShavua - The Weekly Torah Reading
Harav Yaakov Medan Parshat Beshalach - The Wanderings of Benei Yisrael in the Desert Parshat HaShavua - The Weekly Torah Reading
Harav Yaakov Medan Parshat Teruma - The Mishkan and the Tent What can examining the respective roles of the Mishkan and the tent covering it teach us about the dual nature of the people of Israel's relationship with God?. Parshat HaShavua - The Weekly Torah Reading
Harav Yaakov Medan Parshat Mishpatim - Murdering with Guile What is the meaning of the unique fate the Torah assigns to the person who murders with guile, and how does the Tanakh's account of Yoav and his punishment fit this model? Parshat HaShavua - The Weekly Torah Reading
Harav Yaakov Medan Parshat Yitro What was the precise nature of Yitro's involvement with the people of Israel's nascent legal system, and what role did his advice actually play in guiding Moshe's judicial policy? Parshat HaShavua - The Weekly Torah Reading
Harav Yaakov Medan Parshat Shelach, The Mission of the Spies The details of the story of the spies in Parshat Shelach are notoriously difficult to understand. How can we make sense of the episode's various incongruities and shed light on Moshe's role in this historic disaster?