Today we finish the book of Numbers or B’Midbar by reading two portions of scripture. In these readings we will see many things that still speak to us today. In Masa’ei we read about the setting of boundaries for each tribe. G-d laid out exactly where each tribe would settle and told them they were responsible to cleanse to the land of its former inhabitants. They were told to destroy the idols and high places of the former inhabitants.
Torah Portion Va’etchanan (I Pleaded) D’Varim (Deut.) 3:23-7:11
Haftorah Reading: Yesha’yahu (Isaiah) 40:1-26
Tonight in our Torah reading we cover two major statements that should speak to us. In the first one we read of Moshe going over the Ten Commandments again. I think he did this, at least partially, for the people who had not been there when G-d first spoke these words back in the book of Shemot/Exodus. He also delivered the Shema in D’Varim/Deut. 6:4-9. These verses teach us that G-d should be present in our conversations, thoughts and actions thru out the day, while we are home with our families and when we are out in the work world.
Torah Portion: Va’etchanan D’varim(Deut.) 3-7
Haftorah Reading: Isaiah 40:1-26
Tonight we read a Torah portion that starts with great sadness. Moshe recounts how he pleaded with G-d to allow him to enter the Land. He uses a word that conveys intense emotion – pleaded, beseeched and yet to no avail. G-d did not allow him to cross over to see that good land.
As I considered this verse this week I thought of how our lives each day are not something to be taken lightly. Our actions have consequences. Life is not a game and we get no do over. G-d is a G-d of mercy and compassion but also a G-d of justice. How we live has results that sometimes carry a heavy price. Our prayers for forgiveness for sure are heard but there may also be a price to be paid. King David is one example. G-d loved him and forgave him but there was still a result from his sin. Here in our portion we see the importance of our actions. Life is not a game but is for us to be perfected and bring us to maturity so that we can come to that place of living each moment to its spiritual fullness, that we can be G-d’s agents of showing a world His goodness, mercy and love.