The Song at the Sea

Beshallah By :  The Jewish Theological Seminary Posted On Jan 20, 2015 / 5775 | דבר אחר | A Different Perspective

Listen to the students of the H. L. Miller Cantorial School sing the opening verses of the Song at the Sea.

The centerpiece of Parashat Beshallah is the Song at the Sea. The song gives this Shabbat on which it is read the name Shabbat Shirah, the Sabbath of Song. It is interesting to note that this is the first recorded instance in the Torah where praise of God is specifically sung rather than spoken. Dr. Joseph H. Hertz, the first graduate of JTS and the chief rabbi of the British Empire, wrote in his Torah commentary on Parashat Beshallah, “Whenever Israel has faith in God and in the Divine Mission of Moses, Israel sings” (The Pentateuch and Haftorahs, p. 270).

This arrangement is from the 1914 Union Hymnal and was originally sung in English. Ethan Goldberg, CS ’16 adapted it to fit the Hebrew text.