c 1877 BCE- According to one account in the Midrash, Hashem appeared to Avram, changed his name to Avraham and commanded him to circumcise himself and all members of his household - and all future descendents at the age of eight days so that "My covenant (brit) shall be in your flesh, as an eternal covenant."

On 13 Nisan, Avraham was 99 years old when he circumcised himself and his son Yishmael who was 13.  Yitzchak, who was born a year later, was the first Jew to be circumcised at eight days.  (see Genesis 17:23-27)

 

c 1474 BCE-  The LORD instructs Aaron regarding the lighting of the Menorah which represents the contribution of the "13th tribe" of Levi for the inauguration of the Tabernacle.

 

c 544 BCE- In the 12th year of his reign, King Achashveirosh of Persia endorsed Haman's plan "to destroy, kill and annihilate all Jews, from young to old, infants and women, on a single day, on the 13th day of the 12th month, the month of Adar." On 13 Nisan, (11 months before the date chosen for the massacre), proclamations of the annihilation decree were drafted and dispatched to all 127 countries of the Persian Empire, (Esther 3:12-15).

Mordechai donned sackcloth and told Esther to go before the king and plead for her people. Esther asked all the Jews of Shushan to fast three day (Nisan 14, 15 and 16--including the first two days of Pesach / Passover) in which all Jews would repent and pray for the success of her mission. (According to Esther Raba 8, beginning today; according to Rashi in Talmud Megilla, beginning on the 14th of Nisan.)

 

1917- British troops were halted in the first Battle of Gaza after 17,000 Turks blocked their advance during World War I.

 

1920- The emergence of the Nazi Party

 

Torah Portion

שׁפטים (Shoftim)

 

 

or view this week's triennial cycle reading.

Today is

Yom Shishi, 6 Elul, 5778

Friday, August 17, 2018

 

Learn more about this date in history.