Pop Parsha: Parshat Bo "Bringing Sexy Back"


Is that JT or Moses?

There are some celebrities people want to hate just because they have it all; good looks, money, and, worst of all, charm. I want to hate Justin Timberlake so much. But I don’t hate him; I love him. He is perfect in The Social Network, his Saturday Night Live shorts are amazing, and he is even good in Alpha Dog. Of course, nothing compares to both of his albums — Justified and Future Sex/Love Sounds (not to mention all his ‘N Sync classics) — which have filled our playlists for years. JT’s fans have been upset that he has recently only been seen in movies and random guest appearances. But finally, JT is back in the studio working on solo album #3. His persona, acting, and music give him this rare coolness that makes him a fan favorite. He just seems too good to be true; but can we blame him for being awesome?
This week we read Parshat Bo where we return to the story of Moses and Pharaoh, this time for the final three plagues of locusts, darkness, and the death of the firstborn.
Rabbi Shavit-Lonstein and I have been engaged in a month-long debate on Temple of Aaron’s bimah about whether Moses was justified in killing the Egyptian before fleeing from Egypt. The more and more I read from our commentators and midrahsim, the more I want to drop all of my books and say: Could it be that Moses was just so much better than all other human beings that he is judged on a different level?
After seven plagues and all that we know of Moses, it seems that we still want to find ways to make Moses imperfect. I am not sure if it is an inferiority complex or actual denial of his greatness. Maybe it’s similar to how all baseball players from the last 30 years, regardless of what they say or do, are suspect of tainted production. Some players were cheating, but some were just Ken Griffey Jr. good.
Sometimes in this world there comes along a person who simply is too good to be true. Sometimes it’s our significant other, sometimes it’s a musician who is incredibly talented, and sometimes it’s the greatest prophet ever. While we are hesitant to believe in their greatness, sometimes we have to accept and follow their lead (or at least buy their album). Instead of trying to find their faults, we should instead enjoy their accompaniment and legacy. I am not sure what Justin Timberlake’s album will bring, but if I was a betting man I bet it’ll be platinum. And I know that Moses had flaws, but I am tired of hearing about them. I want to hold onto the idea that man can be that great and closely connected to God.
(Photo: edwardk662)