5 Minute Torah

Parashat Ekev - Deuteronomy 7:12-11:25

The Second Coming of Torah

Sometimes we wonder why things happen the way they do. Why do things have to go terribly wrong before they can be made right? Why do things have to break before we tend to them the way we should have in the first place? In this week’s parashah we are reminded of this very fact. As Moses is recounting to the Israelites the various events leading up to their present situation, he recalls the story of the original giving of the Asaret Had’varim, the Ten Sayings (also known as the Ten Commandments):

Parashat Va'etchanan (Deuteronomy 3:23-7:11)

Shining The Light Of Torah

When most people think of “the Law of Moses,” they don’t get warm fuzzies. But God’s people shouldn’t be most people. According to this week’s Torah portion, God’s people should be the exception to the rule, and should have a connection with the Torah deep within our hearts. Through Moses, God told the Children of Israel that when they took His commandments seriously and lived them out, the nations would recognize this and praise God:

Is Justice Truly Blind?

Parashat Devarim - Deuteronomy 1:1-3:22

The book of Devarim (Deuteronomy) is often called Mishneh Torah, or the “second law,” due to it’s repetition of many of the things already expressed within the first four books of Torah. However, it does not merely recount the same events and dialogues, but adds detail and clarification to the previous events. When recalling the appointment of judges Moses gives a detail not found previously in the Torah:

Righteousness, Seduction, and Destruction

Parashat Balak - Numbers 22:2-25:9

If we were to read Parashat Balak in isolation, we would have a pretty high regard for the prophet Balaam. When Balak hires him for the task of cursing Israel, Balaam tells him flat out that he cannot go beyond what the God of Israel tells him. Indeed, each time he offers up his sacrifices and opens his mouth to speak over the Children of Israel, blessings burst forth from his mouth, rather than cursing. And at the end of the parashah he simply leaves Balak and returns home. 

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