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A Study Guide to the Sefer haHinnuch

Welcome to our study of Sefer haHinnuch.  In thirteenth century Barcelona, a Jewish father faced a problem:  his son was spending too much time hanging out with his friends, and too little time learning Torah. To motivate his son, this father wrote Sefer haHinnuch.  He wrote an essay about each mitzvah, introducing the source verses, the main idea of the mitzvah, a possible root/reason for the mitzvah, some of the details, and a summary of to whom and under what circumstances the mitzvah applies. The work systematically prepares students for serious study of halachic literature, introducing almost every area of halachic discourse, its genres and types of argument.  Studying the author's attempt to formulate a reason for each mitzvah, we see an ethical master at work.  As the author draws his son into the study of Torah, he draws us in as well.

 

 
Subpages (1): Geirut-Conversion