Mah Tovu

By Rabbis Annie Lewis & Yosef Goldman

מַה טּבוּ אהָלֶיךָ יַעֲקב מִשְׁכְּנתֶיךָ יִשְׂרָאֵל

Mah tovu ohalekha Ya’akov, mishkenotekha Yisrael.

How goodly are your tents, O Jacob, your habitations, O Israel!

—Numbers 24:5

We sing this song “Mah Tovu” in the hopes that we might slow down when encountering the stranger and get beyond our walls of fear and self-protection to see the humanity of the other with compassion. We sing this song as a prayer that we might all lift up our prophetic voices and turn curses into blessings, that all who search for sanctuary will be embraced in goodness.

 

Song