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Category: Devar Torah

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Yibum: Keeping the deceased’s name alive

One of the most esoteric laws in the Torah is yibum, the law of the Levirate marriage. The Torah forbids a man from marrying his brother’s wife, but if the brother dies childless, the living brother marries his deceased brother’s widow (Deuteronomy 25:5–10). The Torah offers a rationale for this command. The marriage takes place so that the deceased’s name will continue on. In the words of the Torah: “The firstborn [from the Levirate marriage] shall succeed to the name of his dead brother, so that his dead brother’s name not be blotted out…from Israel” (25:6). File photoA Torah portion is read....

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