The laws concerning the rebellious child appear at the start of this weeks' Parsha. The rebellious child is peculiar because he is punished not for what he has done in the past but for what he will do in the future. Rashi explains the rationale; let him die now as an innocent person. If he were to live, his crimes would become increasingly severe and eventually he would be put to death, guilty of a crime. Let him die the death of innocence now rather than that of guilt later.
We were made in the image of God (Bereshit 1:27). We must strive to fulfil essence of God in our actions and in our dealings. And so, if God is merciful we should be merciful. If God is just we should be just and so on. For the obvious reason that human nature is incompatible with the divine spirit it is clear that we are setting unrealistic expectations for ourselves. צֶ֥דֶק צֶ֖דֶק תִּרְדֹּ֑ף Justice, Justice you will pursue The above quote from this week's parsha stands as
As we slowly inch closer to the end of the Torah, the stake are rising. Expectations are slowly melding into realities and the convergence of Jewish history is amounting to the entrance into Israel. The final phase of the slave to autonomous being transition is well underway. Whilst the promised land is bequeathed to the people there remain many inhabitants of different cultures and different religions. Religions, which according to the text, have so seriously misconceived of
The parsha reads: וְזָכַרְתָּ֣ אֶת־כָּל־הַדֶּ֗רֶךְ אֲשֶׁ֨ר הֹלִֽיכֲךָ֜ יְהוָ֧ה אֱלֹהֶ֛יךָ זֶ֛ה אַרְבָּעִ֥ים שָׁנָ֖ה בַּמִּדְבָּ֑ר לְמַ֨עַן עַנֹּֽתְךָ֜ לְנַסֹּֽתְךָ֗ לָדַ֜עַת אֶת־אֲשֶׁ֧ר בִּֽלְבָבְךָ֛ הֲתִשְׁמֹ֥ר מצותו [מִצְוֺתָ֖יו] אִם־לֹֽא׃ Remember the long way that the LORD your God has made you travel in the wilderness these past forty years, that He might test you by hardships to learn what was in your hearts: whether you would keep His commandments or not. וַֽיְעַנְּךָ֮
This week we examine one the most dense Parshiyot in the Torah. In this parsha we have the text of the first paragraph of Shema, we have the 10 commandments and some of the most quotable sentences in the Torah. We will focus on one such passuk: לֹ֣א תֹסִ֗פוּ עַל־הַדָּבָר֙ אֲשֶׁ֤ר אָנֹכִי֙ מְצַוֶּ֣ה אֶתְכֶ֔ם וְלֹ֥א תִגְרְע֖וּ מִמֶּ֑נּוּ לִשְׁמֹ֗ר אֶת־מִצְוֺת֙ יְהוָ֣ה אֱלֹֽהֵיכֶ֔ם אֲשֶׁ֥ר אָנֹכִ֖י מְצַוֶּ֥ה אֶתְכֶֽם׃ You shall not add anything to what I command you or take anyt